As a Penn State alum, one of my favorite seasons was fall. The crisp air, the colorful, crunchy leaves on the ground, and of course, the vibrant atmosphere of downtown on home game weekends with the Blue Band playing fight songs and cheerleaders handing out stickers and buttons. It was a college community celebrating and gearing up for a hopeful win. Game day weekends brought hordes of alumni with their campers and tents and delicious smelling food wafting in the air outside Beaver Stadium. When I went to a game (long after I graduated) the sights, sounds and smells brought back many memories, a little bit of nostalgia for those leisurely days of college freedom.
Smells are connected to memories and when it comes to food there are certain smells for certain seasons in my life. For me football season smells like BBQ grilling, Beer, wings and pizza. Of course, most of those foods wouldn’t top most dietitians “best foods to eat” list but they are common items that are featured at many tailgating parties.
I know ‘all foods fit’ but honestly if you’re eating high calorie tailgate foods regularly you might not fit so well into your pants or your favorite football jersey. In order incorporate game-day flavor favorites without all the added calories I suggest focusing on strategies to infuse those flavors into vegetable-based dishes.
I was recently featured on Fox45 to discuss healthy tailgating options.
Watch the segment here:
Create your own healthy tailgate spread by trying the recipes below that I created for a better tailgate.