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How to Make Football Food Healthier

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In honor of the big game, you may be planning on either attending or hosting a game day watch party. That means football food, friends, and a whole lot of fun. Unfortunately, most football food can be fried, greasy, and just not the best for you and your overall health goals. That is, until now. Here are some ideas on how you can make traditional football food a little bit healthier.

#1 Beverages

Be ready when guests arrive with ice-cold beverages. Stock up on an assortment of options like bottled water, gluten-free beer, and even mocktails instead of cocktails. You can even create a more mindful handcrafted game-day punch and place it in a pitcher or punch bowl for guests to enjoy all throughout the game.

Tip: Keep cleaning up easy by clearly labeling recycling bins so guests know where to place water bottles, cans, and glass bottles so there is less of a mess after the game. See, you can even be more mindful with clean-up.

#2 Make a Main Course

Game day viewing party menus can range from elaborate dishes to simple dishes. Some more mindful recipe ideas include a BYOBB (build your own burger bar), deli sandwiches, and homemade burrito bowls. 

You can never go wrong with a beautiful piece of meat thrown on the grill or in the slow cooker. Braised beef, mini meatballs, pulled pork, ribs, shredded chicken, the options are deliciously endless.

When it comes to planning your football menu, remember to consider your guests and their taste preferences. Will the event only include adults or will children be there too? Are there any dietary restrictions? These are all questions to keep in mind when planning your game day menu for you and all of your guests.

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#4 Plan for Pizza

If you prefer to leave the game day cooking to someone else, hold off on ordering pizza and instead, leave the cooking up to your guests by creating make-your-own pizza stations. Stock up on supplies like a variety of cheeses, stone-baked pizza crusts, and tomato sauce. Set up a variety of bowls filled with mouthwatering pizza toppings such as:

  • Bacon
  • Basil leaves
  • Bell peppers
  • Grilled chicken
  • Ham
  • Garlic
  • Ground beef
  • Pepperoni
  • Pesto sauce
  • Pineapple
  • Mushroom
  • Onion
  • Olives
  • Oregano
  • Sausage
  • Spinach

Set up individual pizza-making stations for guests to make their own mindful culinary creations. You can even create a pizza-making competition complete with judges and prizes.

#4 Snack Attack

Appetizers and snacks are a staple at any football viewing party, so stock up on some game-day classics. Skip the dairy-laden nachos and swap them out for tortilla chips with a side of homemade guacamole or fresh salsa. 

Instead of bowls of dried fruit, which may be coated with sugar, try fresh fruit and vegetable trays. Substitute bowls of sodium-laden store-bought chips for other more mindful options like gluten-free pretzels,  jerky, mixed nuts, pork rinds from sustainably sourced farms, and stove-popped popcorn.

Braunschweiger Charcuterie Platter

#5 Something Sweet

A football party would not be complete without dessert or something sweet, even if it is a more mindful dessert option, so do not forget to include a sweet treat for guests to enjoy. Set up a dessert table and adorn it with bowls of chocolate, grain-free brownies in the shape of footballs, frosted cookies made with natural icing, and individual cupcakes topped with fresh fruit or small footballs, just for fun. If you are baking and frosting homemade cookies, select the team colors so your cookies match the theme of your game day viewing party.

When planning your football viewing party for the big game, strive for an event that appeals to guests of all ages, palettes, and taste buds. Enlist the help of your guests if needed and get everyone involved. At the end of the day, no matter whether your team wins or loses, it is all about making memories with the family, friends and neighbors so have fun and make it a good time for all while enjoying delicious and more mindful football food that is sure to be a total touchdown.

ashley martens

Meet The Author

Ashley Martens is a Health and Wellness Writer based in Chicago, IL. With a background in digital marketing coupled with her knowledge of general nutrition and a lifelong passion for all things health, wellness, fitness and nutrition, Ashley offers a healthy alternative to traditional writing. You can learn more about Ashley and her writing on her portfolio.