Home Recipe Roundup 30 Best Tailgating Recipes

30 Best Tailgating Recipes

No game day is complete without these tailgating recipes! What turns a parking lot into a party space?

Good company and good food, that’s what!

If you’re looking for food ideas to bring to your next tailgating party, I have you covered.

A party without food is just a meeting. Be sure your tailgate party is fun and exciting with these tailgating recipes! 

Grilled Hot Dog Sandwiches with Ketchup
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From delectable dips to finger foods,  this collection of recipes will make your tailgate a success.

Even if your team loses, you’ll still feel like a winner with these scrumptious treats.

You be in charge of the booze while I take care of the food! This is about to be an epic tailgate party!

1. Beer Cheese Dip

Have 15 minutes? You definitely should make this beer cheese dip, then.

This dip is the ultimate cheese lover’s delight! With not just one, but three kinds of cheese in it, to say that it’s cheesy is an understatement.

Cream cheese, mozzarella, and cheddar are blended together with mustard, paprika, salt, and pepper. 

The dip also contains beer, but it’s totally safe for kids. The alcohol in the beer evaporates during cooking, leaving its nuanced flavors. Delightful.

Garlic Parmesan Chicken Wings

2. Garlic Parmesan Wings 

Love Wingstop’s garlic parmesan wings? It’s a personal favorite, so imagine how happy I was to find this copycat recipe.

These copycat wings are just as garlic-flavored, buttery, and cheesy as the originals. Cayenne, pepper, and other spices give them a bit of heat, as well.

They’re fried until golden, turning the skins crispy, crunchy, and golden. They’re finger-licking good, to say the least.

3. Sausage and Cream Cheese Pinwheels  

If you’re looking to impress, you can’t go wrong with the combo of sausage crumbles and cream cheese.

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Add pastry into the picture, and you’ll get one of the most delectable finger foods ever.

Flaky and buttery puff pastry filled with sausage crumbles and cream cheese are baked to golden perfection.

Just looking at these pinwheels is making my mouth water.

They’re perfect for tailgating, but together with coffee, they make for a perfect breakfast or afternoon snack.

Pigs in a Blanket with Dipping Sauces

4. Pigs in a Blanket 

First of all, how adorable is the name, “pigs in a blanket?” The name alone is already impressive! 

Soft, buttery, and flaky puff pastries are frilled with mini-sausages and melted cheese.

Hot dogs and cheese – these two are a match made in heaven. The pastries serve as great vessels to hold them in. All together, they’ll create the perfect bite. 

5. Cowboy Caviar 

Caviar is a luxurious appetizer of fish roe. There’s none of that fanciness in this recipe, but trust me, you’ll love it, nonetheless.

While it looks and tastes nothing like caviar, cowboy caviar might just be your newest favorite.

Beans, veggies, and avocado chunks are tossed in a zesty sauce, creating one stunning dip.

Serve cowboy caviar with your favorite chips or top it on grilled meats. Yup, this dip also doubles as a sauce.

Loaded Beef Nachos with Avocado and Vegetables

6. Nachos

For a crowd-pleasing snack, go for nachos! No one can say no to nachos.

Nacho chips are smothered with ground beef, refried beans, jalapenos, and cheese. How mouthwatering is that?

You can make it even more extra with guacamole, salsa, and sour cream. That’s a Tex-Mex masterpiece, right there!

Also, nachos are such an exciting treat. For some reason, scooping all those delectable toppings with the crunchy chips is just so darn fun.

7. Veggie Tray 

How about something light and refreshing, for a change? The thought of vegetable sticks may not sound too exciting, but give them a chance.

The key is to use a variety of vegetables for added color.

I’m telling you, the combination of carrots, asparagus, tomatoes, celery, cucumber makes such a vibrant and appetizing tray.

Just the veggies alone can be bland, which is why this list also has a myriad of dips for you to choose from! Just pick one or two and you’re all set.

Sausage Balls

8. Sausage Balls 

Once again, sausage and cheese join forces to make an insanely addictive treat!

These balls are baked, not fried, so sure, we can call them healthy.

Sausage crumbles and shredded cheddar cheese are tossed with Bisquick mix to create a batter for these scrumptious balls. 

The biscuit mix makes this recipe super quick and easy. It’s ready in just 30 minutes.

I highly recommend you double the batch, though. As I said, these balls are ridiculously addictive.

9. Pico De Gallo 

Similar in flavor to salsa, pico de gallo is a sauce made of tomatoes, onions, cilantro, jalapenos, and lime juice.

Sweet, spicy, and refreshing, it’s great with chips and crudites, as well as grilled meats. 

If you want your salsa with chunky bits, pico de gallo has your name written all over it.

Where salsa is smooth and wet, pico de gallo has bits of tomatoes and onions.

Spinach Artichoke Dip

10. Spinach Artichoke Dip 

Honestly, the thought of spinach and artichoke in a dip didn’t sound appetizing to me.

But when I tried this dip for the first time, many years ago, it completely changed my life.

I never thought vegetables could be this addictive.

Mixed with cream cheese, garlic alfredo sauce, parmesan, romano, and mozzarella, spinach and artichokes transform into a ridiculously creamy delight.

I don’t even mind if there are no chips, crudites, or any dipping food involved. I can eat this dip with a spoon.

11. BLT Sandwich 

BLT sandwiches are easy to make, easy to eat, and easy to love.

When it comes to tried and tested food combinations, bacon, lettuce, and tomato ranks high.

These three simple ingredients, when put together with bread, create the ultimate sandwich.

The three offer various levels of crunch, and their flavors create beautiful harmony – salty, smoky, and refreshing. How lovely.

The regular BLT sandwich is already awesome, but this one has another component that makes it all the more amazing: avocado slices.

They add a layer of richness and creaminess that go really well with the rest of the ingredients.

Homemade Buffalo Wings

12. Buffalo Wings 

Crispy skin on the outside, tender and juicy meat on the inside, and hot and spicy all throughout.

Buffalo wings are the ultimate game-day snack, so it definitely deserves to be on this list.

These buffalo wings definitely pack a punch, thanks to Frank’s red hot sauce.

Along with melted butter, it creates a hot, tangy, and savory glaze that coats the wings so beautifully.

Honey Beer Bread

13. Honey Beer Bread  

Beer in bread? It may sound strange, but yes, it’s a thing.

Together with self-rising flour, beer has properties to make bread rise.

With this combination, you won’t need yeast or other leavening agents to lift bread dough, and wonderfully, at that.

This honey beer bread has a slightly crispy outer crust, and a super soft and chewy interior. 

How about the flavor, though? Well, you’ll be happy to know that it’s delicious! And the smell is heavenly.

14. Jalapeno Poppers  

Jalapenos and cheese make a fantastic pair. Case in point: jalapeno poppers. These treats are the best beer match food, in my book.

I don’t know what it is, but there’s just something about jalapeno poppers that make them perfect with booze. 

But even without the alcohol, you’ll still enjoy these poppers! The jalapenos definitely pack a punch, but the rich cream cheese filling balances them out.

BBQ Baked Beans

15. BBQ Baked Beans 

If you’re looking to add substance to your tailgating menu, these beans perfectly fit the bill.

BBQ baked beans are the definition of comfort food. This dish is sweet, savory, and smoky. It satisfies the belly and warms the heart.

Baked beans usually require expert cooking skills, but not these ones. This recipe comes tougher in just 40 minutes!

16. Bacon Cream Cheese Bites  

Just by looking at them, you can already tell they’re addictive. And they are. I mean, come on, it’s bacon and cream cheese!

The cream cheese spread is seasoned with chives, adding an earthy and mildly spicy contrast to its creaminess.

Wrapped in bread and baked until golden and crispy, these bite-sized wonders will knock your socks off.

Chili Con Carne with Tortilla Chips

17. Chili

If you’re missing the goodness of a bowl of Texas Roadhouse chili, you’re in for a treat. This copycat recipe tastes just like the original.

This chili has beans, ground beef, jalapenos, cheese, tomatoes, a variety of seasonings – the works. 

It’s so hearty and comforting, and one spoonful will warm you right up. It’s the perfect dish to bring to an autumn tailgating party!

18. Grilled Corn on the Cob  

Oh, how I love grilled corn on the cob. It’s such a simple snack, but man, it’s phenomenal.

In this recipe, all you’ll need is to slather the corn with olive oil and butter, and onto the grill, it goes. 

There are no herbs, spices, and seasonings besides salt and pepper. The sweetness and unique texture of the corn really shines through. 

Buffalo Chicken Dip

19. Buffalo Chicken Dip 

If you enjoy buffalo wings, but not the messiness that comes with eating them, this recipe is calling your name.

Made of shredded chicken, hot sauce, and three kinds of cheeses, it has everything you’ll want in buffalo wings, and more.

It’s savory and creamy, spicy and tangy. It really embodies all the flavors of the classic wings.

Homemade Sloppy Joes

20. Sloppy Joe 

Trust Trisha Yearwood to make scrumptious Sloppy Joes. 

With her recipe, you can say goodbye to bland, goopy Sloppy Joes that most cafeterias serve kids at school.

Instead, look forward to a hearty combination of ground beef and beans coated with a thick barbecue sauce.

All that gloriousness is stuffed in soft buns, creating a mouthwatering and filling treat.

Cheesy Queso Dip with Tortilla Chips

21. Hormel Chili Dip 

Cream cheese, cheddar, and chili are all you need to make this sensational dip. 

It’s undeniably delicious, but what makes it even more fantastic is that it comes together in less than 10 minutes.

Have your friends try it and I’m sure they’ll all think it took you at least an hour to make! That’s how good it is.

22. Chicken Quesadilla Grilled Cheese Sandwich 

This recipe is an epic mash-up of a chicken quesadilla and a grilled cheese sandwich. This is the sandwich you didn’t think you needed.

So here’s how it goes. For the quesadilla filling, shredded chicken is tossed with jalapenos, chipotle hot sauce, cheese, and salsa. 

More cheese is added on top of the filling because after all, this is a grilled cheese sandwich.

They all go in between two pieces of white bread and are grilled on a skillet until melted and toasted.

If this doesn’t make you hungry, I don’t know what will.

Cheesy Dip with Tomatoes and Tortilla Chips

23. Queso 

This copycat dip replicates the original queso to the tee. Qdoba is shaking.

A blend of cheddar, American cheese, and Monterey jack is mixed with roasted poblano peppers and tomatoes to make an appetizing dip.

I love how the vegetables balance out the umami-ness of the cheeses. 

It’s easy to make, and super affordable to boot. You can’t ask for more.

24. Pretzel Bites 

I’m obsessed with these pretzel bites. They’re soft, buttery, and arguably just as amazing as Auntie Anne’s. 

I won’t lie, they require time and effort.

Pretzels are made from yeasted dough, which means to achieve them, you’ll need to knead and roll dough, and give it time to rest.

Is it worth it? Absolutely. If this is your first time trying to make bread from scratch, this is a good place to start.

Bowl of Cheesy Cowboy Crack Dip with Corn, Onions and Chips

25. Cowboy Crack Dip 

The origins of its name may be debatable, but to me, it’s clear why it’s called crack. Cowboy crack dip is outrageously addictive.

It’s love at first bite. How can it not be? It’s a mix of cream cheese, cheddar cheese, sausage crumbles, corn, and canned tomatoes. 

OMG! The medley of flavors and textures are like fireworks in my mouth. Once you’ve tried it, it’ll be hard to stop.

Salty Snack Party Mix with Cereals and Pretzels

26. Texas Trash 

Don’t be deceived by its name. Texas Trash is a treasure.

This snack is a combination of Chex cereal, nuts, and pretzels.

With varying levels of crunchiness, it’s delightful, for sure. It’s not just about the texture, though.

Taking it up a notch is the drizzling of seasoned better and Worcestershire sauce.

The ingredients absorb the flavors of the sauce while baking in the oven, giving them a delectable taste.

Chipotle Guacamole

27. Guacamole 

So it’s no wonder why this guacamole is such a treat. 

Avocados are the millennials’ favorite fruit, and I totally get it. It’s incredibly rich and creamy, and surprisingly nutritious.

This Tex-Mex staple adds a wonderful layer of flavor and texture to nachos and tacos. But it has way more uses than that. 

You can use guacamole as a salad dressing, a meat relish, or even a bread filling. Your options are endless!

28. Grilled Hot Dogs 

Fire up the grill: it’s time for hot dogs.

These aren’t your average hot dogs, folks. The dogs are marinated in a blend of Worcestershire sauce, minced garlic, ketchup, and olive oil.

I’ve never done it before, but now that I have, there’s no turning back.

The marinade lends such a scrumptious flavor to hot dogs, I can’t believe I didn’t think to try it before.

Homemade Cheesy Seven Layer Taco Dip with Black Olives, Tomatoes and Onions

29. Taco Dip 

This isn’t just any kind of taco dip! This one has a whopping seven layers, and you’ll love all of them.

In one dip, you’ll get refried beans, sour cream, cream cheese, salsa, tomatoes, pepper, green onions, shredded cheese, and black olives. 

From the colors to the flavors to the textures, this taco dip gets tens across the board.

Homemade Buffalo Chicken Wraps

30. Buffalo Chicken Wraps 

Buffalo chicken tenders, bacon, and tomatoes are coated with ranch dressing and wrapped in a tortilla.

These wraps are as scrumptious as you’ll imagine them to be.

They’re very hearty, but don’t be surprised to find yourself wanting a second serving. Don’t worry, I won’t judge.

30 Best Tailgating Foods (+ Recipe Collection)


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author avatar
Kim - InsanelyGood
Hey there! I'm Kim. I love running, cooking, and curling up with a good book! I share recipes for people who LOVE good food, but want to keep things simple :)

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