Football Season (and Fall/Winter) is, hands-down, my favorite time of the year. We have so many things to look forward to – cooler weather, college football on Saturday, NFL on Thursday, Sunday, and Monday.

As the weather changes, food starts to get richer, and sweaters get cozier. A big bowl of Chicken Noodle Soup (or Creamy Chicken and Noodles) hits the spot for me on chilly days.

But that’s not what this post is about. This post is about bringing together my favorite game-day foods. We like to do it up when we are watching football, and we really like to go all out for Superbowl Sunday – a tradition that I inherited from my parents.

A collage of images of game day recipes.
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Finger Foods and Snacks

We always love to start off with finger foods and snacks. I love having a little something to munch on while the main dish is cooking and everyone is arriving.

A close-up of a football shaped bowl of party mix with pretzels, chex, and goldfish.
Addicting Chex Party Mix (Crack Pretzel Snack Mix)
4.87 from 23 votes
Chex party mix is a twist on a family favorite called "Crack Pretzels" that covers all the bases – salty, crunchy, cheesy – and addicting. Because nothing is more satisfying than a handful of a salty snack mix when hunger hits.
Get the Party Mix Recipe
a spilled jar of candied pecans on a white and yellow napkin.
Sweet and Spicy Bourbon Candied Pecans
4.85 from 51 votes
Sweet and Spicy Bourbon Candied Pecans are salty, sweet, and just a little bit spicy. This delicious bourbon candied pecans recipe is an addicting bourbon pecans snack.
Get Candied Pecans Recipe
Toasted ravioli in a baking pan with a bowl of sauce.
Toasted/Fried Ravioli (with Pizza Seasoning)
5 from 4 votes
Toasted Ravioli are a St. Louis staple but this recipe can be made at home in less than 30 minutes. Flavored with pizza seasoning, this homemade version is fried until crispy and is so delicious.
Get Fried Ravioli Recipe

(Make sure to make this one ahead of time!)

Seasoned pretzels spread out on a wooden board.
Crack Pretzels – The Most Addicting Snack
4.74 from 46 votes
"Crack" Pretzels are aptly named for their addictive quality. You can't have just one! They have a ton of ranch flavor, but also have a little spice, a little garlic, and a subtly warm cinnamon undertone.
Get Crack Pretzel Recipe
A zoomed in image of a small skillet filled with bacon onion jam.
The Very Best Bacon Jam (Balsamic, Onion, and Thyme)
4.80 from 5 votes
Bacon & Onion jam is one of my favorite appetizers – served with some crackers and cheese, it is such a treat. The balsamic flavor is deep & rich, the caramelized onions give off such a sweet flavor, and of course, the taste of bacon is always amazing.
Get Bacon Jam Recipe

A classic!

Easy Pigs in a Blanket Recipe
These Easy Pigs in a Blanket take just two ingredients and 20 minutes. Makes a great snack for kids or double the batch for your next party!
Pigs in Blanket Recipe
Spinach Artichoke Bread Ring Dip
Spinach Artichoke Bread Ring Dip combines homemade rolls with an amazing Spinach Artichoke Dip with the food processor doing most of the work.
Spinach Artichoke Bread Ring Recipe

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Chips, Salsa, Guacamole, and Queso

Chips and dip are almost always going to be a hit – you can buy your dips, but it is so much more fun to make them from scratch.

A chip dipped in queso held over a red bowl.
Instant Pot Queso Dip
5 from 4 votes
Instant Pot Creamy Queso Dip is loaded with real cheese, tomatoes, jalapeños, and SO MUCH flavor. It is made in just minutes with a pressure cooker for an impressive and crowd-pleasing appetizer.
Get the Creamy Queso Recipe
A chip with homemade salsa on it above a bowl of salsa and a pile of tortilla chips.
Fresh Garden Salsa
5 from 3 votes
Making your own Homemade Salsa could not be easier. Made with fresh ingredients, this easy homemade salsa recipe is one of the best ways to use summer tomatoes and is the perfect salsa for any occasion.
Get 5 Minute Salsa Recipe
Easy Creamy Bean Dip
One of my most requested recipes and a party favorite, this easy bean dip is the perfect snack to go along with your afternoon happy hour or a weekend football game.
Creamy Bean Dip Recipe
Quick and Easy Guacamole
This quick and easy guacamole recipe is a keeper! Simple. Creamy. Delicious. It’s perfect for tacos, eggs, grilled chicken, or just for dipping. Enjoy!
Easy Guacamole Recipe
Bacon Jalapeño Popper Dip
Bacon Jalapeño Popper Dip is the perfect appetizer for your holiday feast. It’s creamy and cheesy and full of bacon and and jalapeño peppers.
Bacon Jalapeño Popper Dip Recipe

Or, you can just go all out and make some delicious macho nachos for everyone to enjoy:

A cast iron skillet filled with nachos topped with jalapeños and salsa.
Cast-Iron Skillet Macho Nachos – A Quick and Easy Recipe
Whether you are looking for the perfect party starter, a game-day snack, or a quick family-friendly weeknight dinner, these Cast-Iron Skillet Macho Nachos are sure to draw raves from everyone.
Get Macho Nachos Recipe

The last but certainly not least of the Finger Foods – we can’t forget WINGS:

Buffalo Chicken Wing Dip Recipe
Buffalo Chicken Dip is such a great appetizer recipe to serve at parties, for game day, or to serve with pizza. This creamy dip recipe is so easy to make and will be a hit for sure!
Buffalo Chicken Wing Dip Recipe
The Best Buffalo Chicken Wings Recipe
For the most ah-mazing buffalo chicken wings recipe you’ll ever make, read this post! You can even make your own blue cheese dressing with my recipe!
Best Buffalo Wings Recipe
Spicy Korean BBQ Chicken Wings
Quick and easy, no-fry baked Spicy Korean BBQ Chicken Wings for the ultimate party appetizer or straight-up dinner entree for chicken wing lovers!
Get Korean Wings Recipe
Grilled Cajun Chicken Wings Recipe
Cajun-inspired seasoning gives these wings an earthy and spicy coating, while hot sauce adds another layer of flavor to create a complexity that goes beyond the standard Buffalo.
Cajun Wings Recipe

Football Party Main Courses

After we get through the finger foods, we will serve something a little heartier, like chicken tenders with Raising Cane’s Sauce for dipping.

A white dish with crispy fried chicken tenders on it.
Buttermilk Fried Chicken Tenders
4.94 from 43 votes
Buttermilk Fried Chicken Tenders are marinated in seasoned buttermilk, breaded in seasoned flour and panko breadcrumbs, and fried in peanut oil until golden brown and crispy. They are absolute perfection.
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Being in the South, and with my husband being from Louisiana, you can’t go wrong with Cane’s Sauce!

A jar of homemade raising canes sauce dripping off of a spoon.
Copycat Raising Cane’s Sauce Recipe
4.90 from 321 votes
This Copycat Raising Cane’s Sauce Recipe tastes JUST LIKE the original and is perfect for chicken tenders. It is tangy, creamy, peppery, and addicting.
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We also love to make some fried shrimp or fried catfish with homemade tartar sauce!

A blue basket of crispy fried shimp with a small bowl of tartar sauce.
Deep Fried Shrimp
5 from 1 vote
Perfectly battered and fried to a golden crisp, these succulent shrimp make for a mouth-watering appetizer or main dish. Deep-fried shrimp are crispy and delicious, and pair perfectly with homemade tartar sauce.
Fried Shrimp Recipe
A small bowl of homemade tartar sauce with a fried shrimp in it.
Easy Homemade Tartar Sauce
5 from 16 votes
This Easy Homemade Tartar Sauce recipe is the perfect sauce to dip your crunchy fried fish fillets or crispy fried shrimp in. The tangy flavor pairs perfectly with so many dishes, and it is so easy to make.
tartar sauce recipe

Also, while a little unconventional, two of my personal favorites to serve on game day are french onion soup and/or chili (blame my mother for the soup.)

Here are three great options for chili (served with cornbread, of course) and my favorite recipe for french onion soup. Crusty bread and melty cheese, anyone?

Starting with a Classic Chili:

Quick and Easy Chili
Our favorite chili recipe is so quick and easy…just like the name. It only uses five ingredients….yes five! Perfect for easy game day prep!
Get the Chili Recipe

Paleo and bean-free – this chocolate chili has been a favorite of mine for years. Don’t pass it up because of the chocolate – the flavor it adds is amazing:

Chocolate Chili from Well Fed
My favorite chili recipe is this paleo chocolate chili – don’t question the chocolate. This chili is spicy but not hot. Reminiscent of mole, the flavors are rich, mellow, and deep.
Chocolate Chili Recipe

And for the Vegetarians:

A bowl of three bean and sweet potato chili with a dollop of sour cream on top.
Three Bean Sweet Potato Chili
This hearty, Three Bean and Sweet Potato Chili is a great alternative for the vegetarians at your game day party. It is healthy, filling, and delicious.
3 Bean Sweet Potato Chili

And, of course, the best cornbread:

A cast iron skillet with slices of cornbread in it.
Sweet Skillet Cornbread Recipe
4.85 from 33 votes
Sweet Cornbread made in a cast iron skillet is the perfect accompaniment to any meal. This cornbread is sweet, crumbly, buttery, and has a perfect crisp to the edges.
Sweet Cornbread Recipe

Or, if you like your cornbread without any sugar – my southern cornbread is really popular and is so delicious!

A cast iron pie pan with baked golden brown southern cornbread in it with a slice on top.
Southern Cornbread
4.88 from 31 votes
Made with cornmeal and buttermilk, this Classic Southern Cornbread Recipe brings out the naturally sweet flavor of corn without adding sugar. Cooked in a cast iron skillet with bacon drippings – it will please even the toughest critics.
Southern Cornbread Recipe

Game Day Desserts

We don’t always have dessert on game days – we are usually too stuffed from all of the other goodies – but there here are some fun and tasty ways to keep in the spirit of game day.

My first favorite thing to do is just a plate of chocolate chip cookies. Everyone loves them, and they can be made ahead of time. This is one of my favorite recipes for chocolate chip cookies:

Giant Chocolate Chip Cookies “Kroll’s Kookies”
Giant Chocolate Chip Cookies are thick, fluffy, crispy golden brown on the outside and soft, gooey and chewy on the side. It’s the perfect giant cookie.
Get Krolls Kookies Recipe

Then, of course, you can get cute and make treats shaped like footballs:

Football Brownies (no cookie cutter needed)
Brownies decorated to look like a football using chocolate and vanilla frosting (no cookie cutter needed). Game day or Super Bowl dessert. Recipe VIDEO!
Football Brownies Recipe
How to Make Football Cookies
How to make adorably decorated football cookies for the big game! This Super Bowl dessert is easy, festive, and fun.
Get Football Cookies Recipe
Game Day Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Ball
This Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Ball is perfect for game day snacking! You’ll love how easy it is to make and your guests will love how fun it is to eat!
Game Day Cheesecake Ball Recipe

Or, if you didn’t get enough Chex mix with your appetizers, a football-themed puppy chow for dessert! (Making both Chex recipes is a great way to use up a whole box of Chex cereal 😉 )

Football Puppy Chow – game day football snack food!
The ultimate football puppy chow! Cheer on your favorite team with this game day or super bowl snack recipe!
Football Puppy Chow Recipe
BEST Peanut Butter Football Dip Recipe
Peanut Butter Football Dip is the ultimate super bowl recipe! It tastes like a peanut butter cup! Shape it like a football for game day!
Peanut Butter Football Dip Recipe

Game Day Drinks

Last of course is drinks for game day. The easiest option is always just a cooler full of beer, but sometimes a fun cocktail (or mocktail) can spice things up a bit and be more fun:

Tequila Sunrise Drink (Game Day Version!)
This TEQUILA SUNRISE is tailor made for tailgating! This Tequila Sunrise Cake is made with Orange Juice, Grenadine, Tequila, and Beer.
Tequila Sunrise Recipe
Texas Sangria | 12th Man Game Day Drink Recipe » We’re The Joneses
A traditional red sangria recipe with a Texas twist! This fruity sangria recipe with whiskey is delicious + easy game day drink for a crowd.
Texas Sangria Recipe
Yellow Hammer Drink Recipe: Great for game day and tailgating
Inspired by the popular Yellow Hammer drink from a bar in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, these fruity drinks are great for game days, tailgating and football parties.
Yellow Hammer Recipe
Party Drinks We Love: Game Day Sangria
It’s time to step up your beverage game. Learn how to make it today at
Game Day Sangria Recipe
Bacon Bourbon Maple Old Fashioned
This Bacon Bourbon Old Fashioned is a meaty twist on the classic cocktail & you are going to be surprised how great this drink is!
Bacon Bourbon Old Fashioned Recipe

And if you had a little too much the night before watching the college games and need a little “hair of the dog” to get you through the day, a bloody mary can hit the spot:

Classic Bloody Mary Recipe
A Classic Bloody Mary for the ages. This is the best Bloody Mary recipe out there and it is so simple to make.
Classic Bloody Mary Recipe

Bacon Bloody Mary Recipe Like No Other
A Bacon Bloody Mary that is so tasty, interesting, and full of bacon goodness. This classic cocktail twist is something special and fun. #bacon #bloodymary
Bacon Bloody Mary Recipe

That’s all I’ve got – but I would love to know – what are your family’s traditions and favorite recipes?

A collage of images of football Sunday recipes.

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Hi, I'm Kari!

I am a newlywed, food blogger, health coach, and mama to a hot mess of a border collie. I love to put a new spin on old family recipes and I try to make as many meals as possible with an Instant Pot.

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