Healthy Tailgating Recipes

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

Staff Picks

Slow-Cooker Vegetarian Chili

Rating: 3.67 stars
3
Grab your crock pot for this delicious and easy slow-cooker vegetarian chili with beans, fire-roasted tomatoes, bell peppers and sweet potatoes. The recipe requires just 20 minutes of active time: after a bit of chopping, you just dump the ingredients in the slow cooker and let it do the work. Adding a squeeze of lime juice and a sprinkle of cilantro just before serving brightens up the flavors. Top it with some shredded cheese, if you'd like, or serve it as-is to keep it vegan. Either way, this healthy chili is sure to become a go-to when you want a satisfying and healthy dinner.

Fresh Apple Squares

Rating: 3.5 stars
5
One batch of dough does double duty as both the crust and streusel topping to make one of the easiest desserts around.

Apple-Cinnamon Fruit Bars

Rating: 3.57 stars
4
These easy apple-cinnamon fruit bars make a big batch--perfect for fall potlucks and parties.

Sweet Potato Skins with Guacamole

Rating: 4.67 stars
3
Top crispy sweet potato skins with guacamole for a healthy take on classic potato skins in this easy crowd-pleasing recipe.

Chilaquiles Casserole

Rating: 4.78 stars
74
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.

Avocado Hummus

Rating: 5 stars
8
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.

Air-Fryer Buffalo Wings

Rating: 5 stars
2
A sports bar favorite comes home with these deliciously crispy chicken wings, which require just 10 minutes of active prep time, thanks to the air fryer. In fact, one of EatingWell's recipe testers declared this air-fryer Buffalo wing recipe "a reason to buy an air fryer." Add a spicy sauce, carrot sticks, celery sticks and ranch dressing for dipping and you have a healthy take on wings that's sure to score.

Slow-Cooker Buffalo Chicken Dip

Rating: 5 stars
1
This healthy copycat recipe for classic Buffalo dip cooks in your slow cooker for an easy, hands-off appetizer you can keep warm for the whole game, party or any casual gathering. Serve with carrot sticks, celery sticks and tortilla chips for dipping.

Vegetarian Taco Salad

Rating: 4.63 stars
31
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.

Slow-Cooker Brisket Sandwiches with Quick Pickles

Rating: 5 stars
2
Make your BBQ or cookout easy with this slow-cooker beef brisket recipe. Rauchbier, a smoky German beer, gives this fork-tender brisket real pit-barbecue flavor, but you can use any beer that suits your taste, or even substitute beef broth, to achieve mouthwatering results. While the brisket is cooking, whip up the quick pickle recipe and stir together a garlic mayo to top off the sandwiches.

Italian Vegetable Hoagies

Rating: 4.88 stars
20
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.

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Rating: 4.81 stars
12
This makeover recipe was one of the favorites chosen for our 30th anniversary issue. Tahini gives this cookie a subtle sesame flavor.
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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.

Kickin' Hot Chili

Rating: 4.5 stars
2

If you like your chili seriously hot, this recipe is for you. For an even bigger kick, use the whole teaspoon of cayenne pepper.