Healthy Tailgating Recipes

Find healthy, delicious tailgating recipes, including chili, wings and finger foods from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

Italian Vegetable Hoagies

Rating: 4.88 stars
15
This delightfully easy, and somewhat messy, sandwich packs a punch with sweet balsamic vinegar, artichoke hearts, red onion, provolone cheese and zesty pepperoncini. We love it for dinner as well as lunch. If you're packing the hoagies to take along, keep the ingredients separate and assemble right before eating to avoid soggy bread. Serve with tomato and cucumber salad.

Tortellini Salad

Rating: 5 stars
2
A tomato-rich dressing boosts the flavor and lowers calories and fat in this tortellini salad (the dressing is also great on green salads or grilled fish). Roasted red peppers, artichoke hearts and sun-dried tomatoes add a good dose of vitamins A, C and fiber.

Vegetarian Taco Salad

Rating: 4.63 stars
23
Nobody will miss the meat in this colorful, zesty vegetarian taco salad. The rice and bean mixture can be made ahead and the salad quickly assembled at mealtime. Recipe by Nancy Baggett for EatingWell.

Lemon Squares

Rating: 2.5 stars
2
Lemon squares are so delicious, but classic lemon square recipes tip the scales with their calories and saturated fat. Our healthy lemon squares recipe shaves almost 200 calories and more than 5 grams of saturated fat per lemon square. For a variation, use lime juice in place of the lemon juice.

Avocado Hummus

Rating: 5 stars
5
This vibrant green hummus recipe couldn't be easier--just toss a few ingredients in the food processor and whir away! Aquafaba (the liquid from a can of chickpeas) and avocado make this healthy dip extra smooth and creamy. Serve with veggie chips, pita chips or crudités.

Broccoli, Beef & Potato Hotdish

Rating: 3.78 stars
18
This easy casserole, full of ground beef, roasted broccoli and topped with hash browns, was inspired by the classic Minnesota Tater Tot hotdish. Roasting the broccoli before adding it to the casserole gives the whole dish a much more complex and exciting flavor, but it's by no means necessary. If you want to keep it simple, skip roasting the broccoli (Step 2) and use 6 cups frozen broccoli, thawed, in its place (omit 1 tablespoon oil, as well).

Chilaquiles Casserole

Rating: 4.78 stars
55
Our version of this enchilada-style chilaquiles casserole is packed with nutritious beans and vegetables. Canned prepared enchilada sauce has great flavor and keeps the prep time quick. It can vary in heat level so find one that suits your taste. If you want to eliminate the heat altogether, try a green enchilada sauce (which is often milder than red) or substitute two 8-ounce cans of plain tomato sauce.

Blackened Salmon Sandwich

Rating: 4.94 stars
1
Blackened salmon is great in a sandwich with a spread of mashed avocado and low-fat mayonnaise plus peppery arugula leaves, cool tomato slices and zesty red onion. We grill our Cajun-style salmon so there is no need for any added cooking oil. Catfish makes an excellent stand-in for the salmon but you'll want to use a grill basket if you have one to keep the fish from breaking apart.

Salsa-Black Bean Burgers

Rating: 4.71 stars
17
Salsa and some pantry staples give this vegetarian bean burger recipe tons of flavor. We use crushed tortilla chips to bind the burgers together, making them a great vehicle for using up those crumbs that inevitably fall to the bottom of the bag.

Barbecue Snack Mix

This crunchy snack mix has just the right blend of sweet and savory spices to make it completely addictive.

Chili Cornbread Casserole

Rating: 3.76 stars
9
Here's a fun way to serve chili and cornbread together. Don't let the ingredient list intimidate you--this casserole is easy to make and a real crowd pleaser.

Kettle-Style Caramel Corn

Who knew you could make your own healthier homemade version of this craveable treat? And it tastes just as good.
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Inspiration and Ideas

Sriracha-Buffalo Cauliflower Bites

This recipe for spicy Buffalo cauliflower bites is a great vegetarian alternative to Buffalo wings.

Barbecue Snack Mix

This crunchy snack mix has just the right blend of sweet and savory spices.

Homemade Trail Mix

Rating: 3 stars
1

Try this with portable mix with any combination of dried fruits and nuts.