6 Winning Tailgating Recipes

With football season in full swing, fall weekends officially belong to game days and the great outdoor eating experience of tailgating. As college football enthusiasts, we know a thing or two about a winning tailgate party. In addition to ice cold bevys, simple, portable, and easy to eat foods are a must. Kick off your tailgate party with these tried and true, crowd-pleasing recipes.

Artichoke Dip
 
 {Photo: Simply Recipes}

{Photo: Simply Recipes}

 

This simple and savory three ingredient artichoke dip is always a crowd pleaser at tailgate or viewing parties. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 (14 ounce) cans artichoke hearts, drained
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • Garlic powder to taste

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut artichoke hearts in pieces. Mix all ingredients together and place in pie pan. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until top gold brown.* Serve with crackers, baguettes, or celery.

Feeling adventurous? Try adding minced garlic, chopped jalapeños, dill, or sour cream for an extra burst of flavor.

*In a pinch, microwave for 5 minutes.

Bacon Wrapped Jalapeño Poppers
 {Photo: Blog Chef}

{Photo: Blog Chef}

Called "poppers" for a reason, you can't eat just one of these bacon wrapped cheesy jalapeños. Always a hit, easy to eat, tailgating treat. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 12 jalapeno peppers, halved lengthwise, seeds and membranes removed
  • 12 slices bacon

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Mix cream cheese and Cheddar cheese together in a bowl until evenly blended. Fill each jalapeno half with the cheese mixture. Put halves back together and wrap each stuffed pepper with a slice of bacon. Arrange bacon-wrapped peppers on the prepared baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven until bacon is crispy, about 15 minutes.

Aluminum foil helps keep food moist, ensures it cooks evenly, keeps leftovers fresh, and makes clean-up easy.

Stuffed 'Shrooms
 
 {Photo:   Food  .  com  }

{Photo: Food.com}

 

These bite sized, bacon and cheese stuffed 'shrooms are sure to wow your guests.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 2 pounds mushrooms (wash and remove stems)
  • 8 ounces cream cheese (softened)
  • 4 ounces mayonnaise
  • 3 ounces real bits of bacon
  • 1 packet ranch dressing mix

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine cream cheese, mayonnaise, bacon, and ranch in bowl. Mix. Fill mushrooms with mixture. Bake 25 to 30 minutes, or until top is golden brown.

Buffalo Chicken Dip
 
 {Photo: Five Heart Home}

{Photo: Five Heart Home}

 

For any of you who know our editors - you know this dip! It's a PBSD favorite, and at almost all of our parties. Definitely our favorite dip for football season, this spicy creamy chicken goodness is like buffalo chicken wings without the mess.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese (softened)
  • ½ cup ranch dressing
  • ½ cup Frank's reshot original cayenne pepper sauce
  • 2 cups of shredded cooked chicken
  • 1 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Microwave cream cheese 1 minute to soften. Whisk in dressing and hot sauce, mix in chicken and ½ cup cheese. Bake 20 minutes. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top to melt. Bake another 5 to 10 minutes.

Serve with tortilla chips, wheat crackers, or celery. For bleu cheese lovers, sub bleu cheese dressing in place of ranch.

Bacon Wrapped Dates
 
 {Photo: Eatwell}

{Photo: Eatwell}

 

These bacon wrapped dates are the perfect marriage of sweet and savory. Soft, sweet Medjool dates stuffed with creamy, tangy goat cheese wrapped in salty, smoky bacon and baked to crispy-soft perfection. You may need to double the recipe...

INGREDIENTS:

  • 8 slices bacon (I find that thin bacon works better)
  • 16 dates
  • 4 ounces goat cheese
  • toothpicks

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Slice the dates lengthwise on one side to create an opening. Remove the pit. Using a spoon, stuff a small amount of goat cheese into the cavity of each date and press the sides together to close. Cut the bacon slices in half. Wrap each date with a slice of bacon and secure with a toothpick. Arrange evenly on a baking sheet with raised edges and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the dates and use the toothpick to turn each one so it's laying on its side. Bake for another 5-8 minutes, until browned to your liking, and turn the dates to the other side and repeat. Remove from the oven, place on a paper towel lined plate, and let stand for 5 minutes before serving.

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Dip
 
 {Photo: Building Our Story}

{Photo: Building Our Story}

 

This cookie dough dip is a sweet addition to your traditional tailgating treats. As an egg free version of your childhood indulgence, you can eat your heart out with this decadent chocolate chip dip. 

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 (8-oz.) package cream cheese
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

INSTRUCTIONS:

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl, beating until smooth. Serve at room temperature. Store leftovers in the refrigerator.

Serve the dip with Nilla cookies, graham crackers, pretzels or fruit for dipping.