These Healthy Tailgating Snacks and Appetizers Are a Slam Dunk — Er, Something
Let's face it: on game day, you're here for the food as much as you are the football. But while you're living it up with your family and friends, it can be easy to lose track of just how many pigs in a blanket you've scarfed down — on top of the calories in your beer of choice. With these healthy recipes, you won't have to worry about your snacking. From light dips to low-carb takes on tailgating classics (nachos, anyone?), these snacks and appetizers keep you satisfied but never overly stuffed. Better yet, they're super easy to make and even transport to wherever the party may be.
Broccoli Tater Tots
Typical tater tots are filled with, well, potatoes, but these cheesy broccoli treats hit the spot at only three grams of carbs per serving.
Get the recipe: broccoli tater tots
Crispy Cauliflower Buffalo "Wings"
The cauliflower is tossed in a garbanzo batter, coated with hot sauce, and baked until it's as crispy as those other wings. Even picky eaters will love it.
Get the recipe: crispy cauliflower buffalo "wings"
Shishito Peppers With Flaky Sea Salt and Lime
It'll take you just 15 minutes to whip up this appetizer, including a lime-cream dipping sauce on the side.
Get the recipe: shishito peppers with flaky sea salt and lime
White Wine Garlic Prawns
It's not a tailgate until you've fired up the grill, and even the most inexperienced cook can master these tasty prawns. All you need are Chardonnay, lemon, and parsley.
Get the recipe: white wine garlic prawns
Who doesn't love a good dip? This green salsa is a cross between traditional salsa and guacamole, with tomatillos, avocados, onions, and jalapeños.
Get the recipe: green salsa
Gluten-Free Quinoa Pizza Bites
Yes, you can serve quinoa at a tailgate. Make the recipe with cherry tomatoes for a vegetarian-friendly option, or substitute pepperoni.
Get the recipe: gluten-free quinoa pizza bites
Mini Pepper Nachos
Load up these pepper nachos however you like — but ground turkey, plenty of veggies, and avocado will keep 'em low-carb.
Get the recipe: mini pepper nachos
Creamy Zucchini Boats
Zucchini has never tasted quite this good before. Each of these cheesy-, garlicky-, veggie-filled boats is only 25 calories.
Get the recipe: creamy zucchini boats
Crisp Grilled Ghost Pepper Wings
There's no way this list could be complete without a more traditional chicken wing recipe. These wings will get nice and crisp on the grill, but know that the spices aren't for the faint of heart.
Get the recipe: crisp grilled ghost pepper wings
Cucumber Cups With Tapenade
These vegan cucumber cups — filled with olives, capers, red onion, garlic, and jalapeño — are the perfect bite-size snack.
Get the recipe: cucumber cups with tapenade
Slow-Cooker Buffalo Chicken Meatballs
You'll love the set-it-and-forget-it ease of these meatballs come game day. You can even cook them up in the morning and simply reheat them before kickoff.
Get the recipe: slow-cooker buffalo chicken meatballs
If you're feeding a crowd, homemade hummus is the way to go — the yield is much higher than store-bought, for roughly the same price.
Get the recipe: homemade hummus
Chicken Lettuce Wraps
These chicken lettuce wraps travel easily to your next tailgate. Just cook the chicken and other ingredients ahead of time, and throw them on lettuce when you arrive.
Get the recipe: chicken lettuce wraps
Paleo Fried Pickles
Same crispy perfection, fewer carbs. The batter is made with almond meal and tapioca starch and fried in coconut oil.
Get the recipe: Paleo fried pickles
Spicy Shrimp Guacamole Bites
The shrimp cooks up in just five minutes, and from there, it's a quick assembly: simply stack guacamole (homemade or not) and shrimp on a tortilla chip.
Get the recipe: spicy shrimp guacamole bites
Southwestern Zucchini and Corn Bites
The perfect poppable snack. Serve these crisp, veggie-packed patties with a creamy avocado ranch.
Get the recipe: Southwestern zucchini and corn bites
Grilled Mushrooms With Bruschetta and Goat Cheese
Cook the mushrooms and bruschetta on the grill or in the oven, then top them with goat cheese and basil for a perfectly savory bite.
Get the recipe: grilled mushrooms with bruschetta and goat cheese
Grilled Shrimp With Lemon
Shrimp is a healthy alternative to beef. Simply thread some on a skewer and throw them on the grill — they'll be done in less than five minutes.
Get the recipe: grilled shrimp with lemon
Cilantro Ranch Sweet Potato Cauliflower Patties
These crispy snacks are seasoned with ranch, helping to deliver that same creamy flavor without the extra calories or fat.
Get the recipe: cilantro ranch sweet potato cauliflower patties
No one will be able to resist these crispy, golden-brown Parmesan zucchini slices. And if you have to make more, they take only 25 minutes to cook, including prep time.
Get the recipe: Parmesan zucchini