12 Must-Have Tailgating Recipes

It’s that time of year again. The weather cools down, the days get shorter, and the leaves turn vibrant shades of reds and oranges. That’s right darlings, it’s football season! Many of us have been counting down since the beginning of August. Whether you prefer your college team or you choose the NFL we can always agree on one thing: tailgating. Since we all know that tailgating spreads are truly an artform we have compiled a list of our favorite, most delicious recipes to make your tailgate the best of the best.

Chocolate Oreo Truffles:

1 package cream cheese (softened)
1 box of Oreos
2 tsp vanilla
Chocolate Almond Bark

Put the Oreos into a food processor and pulverize into crumbs. If you don’t have a food processor , you can put the Oreos into baggies and smash the hell out of them with your fists or a rolling pin of fury. After the Oreos are in crumbs, add the softened cream cheese and vanilla and mix until it comes together as a big ball. Break pieces off the big ball and roll into 1 inch balls. Place on a cookie sheet that you have ideally lined with wax paper (or…not). Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Melt the almond bark according to package directions. Once melted, spear the balls with a toothpick, and dip into the melted chocolate until they are covered. If you are really anal, you can use another toothpick to cover up the hole made by the toothpick, but I’m pretty sure no one is going to stop eating these long enough to notice. After all the balls are covered in “chocolate,” chill for about 20 minutes and keep them refrigerated until ready to eat.

Taco Dip:
This is one of our favorite guilty pleasures. You can even buy them ready made if you don’t want to make one.

1 tablespoon olive oil
Nonstick cooking spray
1 1/2 cups crushed tortilla chips, divided
1 pound ground beef
1 (1.25-ounce) packet taco seasoning mix
1 cup prepared salsa
1 cup sour cream
1 avocado, halved, peeled, pitted, and cubed
1 cup grated extra-sharp Cheddar (4 ounces)

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Preheat the broiler. Spray a broiler-proof 9-inch pie plate with nonstick cooking spray. Spread 1 cup of the crushed chips over the bottom of the pie plate. Brown the beef in the skillet, breaking it up with a fork, until the meat is no longer pink, 5 to 7 minutes. Pour off the drippings and add the taco seasoning. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until most of the liquid has evaporated. Transfer the meat to the pie plate, spreading it on top of the chips. Spread the salsa over the meat and then the sour cream over the salsa. Scatter the avocado cubes over the sour cream. Top with the cheese. Broil 4 inches from the heat until the cheese is melted and bubbling, 3 to 5 minutes, watching carefully to see that the cheese doesn’t burn. Top with the remaining tortilla chips. Serve hot.

Queso is necessary. Classic is Velveeta + Ro-Tel. Do not think of what is happening in your arteries.

1 lb (16 oz) Velveeta, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 can (10 oz) Ro-Tel diced tomatoes and green chilies, undrained
Serve with chips.

Combine ingredients in microwave safe bowl. Microwave on high for 5 minutes or until Velveeta is melted. Stir until mixture is smooth and creamy.

Sweet Barbecue Meatballs:
Grape jelly with barbecue sauce may sound odd, but mixed together they make some of the best meatballs you’ve ever tasted.

1 bag (32 oz) frozen meatballs
1 jar (9 oz) grape jelly
1 bottle (18 oz) spicy barbecue sauce

Combine the barbecue sauce and grape jelly into the slow cooker and then add the meatballs. Cook on high for 2-2 1/2 hours until meatballs are thoroughly cooked.

Hot Onion Dip:
This cheesy onion dip tastes best served with Pita Chips. You can also substitute a 10-ounce bag of frozen chopped onions for fresh onion.

3 8 oz packages cream cheese (softened)
1 onion, finely chopped
2 cups parmesan cheese (grated)
1/2 cup mayonnaise Preheat oven to 400.

Lightly grase medium baking dish. In prepared dish, mix cream cheese, onion, parmesan cheese, and mayonnaise. Bake for 30 minutes.

Smoky Bacon Wraps:
All you need are little smokies, bacon, and brown sugar to be the hit of any party.

1 lb bacon
1 package (16 oz) little smokie sausages
1 cup brown sugar

Preheat oven to 350. Cut bacon into thirds. Wrap each strip around a little smokie. Place on wooden skewers (several per skewer) and arrange the skewers on a baking sheet. Sprinkle liberally with brown sugar. Back until bacon is crispy and the brown sugar has melted.

Baked Jalapeño Poppers
These baked Jalapeño poppers offer a great alternative to the deep fried variety of poppers with cheese. They also have less of a kick than many jalapeño poppers, making them a great option for those who like spicy food and for those who don’t so you can please the whole crowd. They can be served warm or room-temperature, making them an easy option for game day tailgates or house-watching parties, too. (We don’t have a picture and we basically made up the recipe but trust me: they were a hit at our Superbowl Party!)

10-15 Whole Jalapeños
Garden Vegetable Cream Cheese (1 container)
Shredded Cheddar Cheese (½ a cup or more to taste)
Crackers or Tortilla Chips crumbled (optional)

Cut each Jalapeno in half and hollow out the middle, getting rid of the seeds. Note that the more seeds you leave in, the spicier the end result. In a bowl, combine the cream cheese and shredded cheese. Spoon the cheese mixture into each hollowed out jalapeño pepper. Sprinkle crumbled crackers or tortilla chips on top for texture (optional). Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes or until warmed.

Spinach Artichoke Dip:
This dip tastes great with bread or crackers like the recipe suggests, but tortilla chips are delicious too. Try warmed (but not toasted) pumpernickel bread (or any other favorite) for a fun alternative that isn’t fried.

2 cups parmesan cheese
1 (10 oz) box frozen, chopped spinach-thawed
1 (14 oz) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
2/3 cup sour cream 1 cup cream cheese
1/3 cup mayonnaise
2 teaspoons minced garlic

Preheat oven to 375. Mix together parmesan cheese, spinach, and artichoke hearts. Combine remaining ingredients and add to spinach mixture. Back for 20-30 minutes.

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Buffalo Chicken Dip:

2 pkgs ⅓ less fat cream cheese
1 bottle ranch or bleu cheese dressing
1 bottle hot sauce of your choice (we use Frank’s)
2-3 5 oz. canned chicken (depending on how much chicken you want in it)
3 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine cream cheese, ranch and hot sauce in large sauce-pan on stovetop over medium heat (try not to let it reach a boil) until entirely liquified. Combine with shredded cheese and chicken in mixing bowl, then transfer to large baking dish (we recommend a disposable aluminum one). Bake 20-25 minutes or until golden around edges and bubbly. Serve with crackers or tortilla chips and try not to eat it all at once.

BLT Wrap:

1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup dried tomatoes in oil, drained and chopped
8 (10-inch) flour tortillas
1 large head iceberg lettuce, chopped
16 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper

Combine mayonnaise and tomatoes in a small bowl. Spread evenly over 1 side of each tortilla, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Layer lettuce, onions, and bacon evenly over tortillas; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roll up tortillas; cut in half diagonally, and secure with wooden toothpick.

Pigs in a Blanket:
Metaphorically speaking, of course. We promise that there were no pigs harmed in the making of this tailgate must-have.

3 8oz cans Pillsbury Golden Layers biscuits
24 fully cooked cocktail wieners
Take biscuits and peel apart the layers. Wrap around wieners. Bake at 350 for 10-15 minutes or until slightly brown. pigs in a blanket fast cheap and easy 1_thumb[6]

Sausage Balls:
This is a quick finger food that is a definite crowd pleaser. On the off chance you have a noon football game and you find yourself tailgating for breakfast, these are an absolute must.

1 lb mild sausage (spicy sausage adds a nice kick!)
2 cups bisquick
10 oz shredded cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350. Grease cookie sheet. Mix all ingredients together with hands until well combined. Form into small balls. Bake for 20 minutes.

Alright, friends! Now that your tailgating menu is set, grab the corn hole, get your friends together, and head over to the stadium (or host your own hot party) and be the talk of the season!

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