5 Tailgating Foods for Healthy Game Day Snacking
Tailgating may look a little different this year, but not even a pandemic can stop die-hard football fans from celebrating their favorite teams. Whether your pre-game parties are virtual or just limited to your household, it’s likely food plays a big role in the festivities. But if you’re looking to opt for healthier game-day snacking options, consider stocking your kitchen with the following tailgating staples.
- Easily 50% fewer calories and 75% less saturated fat than traditional pork sausage
- Low carb and gluten free
- Available in a variety of flavors; stores include Whole Foods, Rouses, Costco, Walmart
- Pre-cooked; just heat on grill
Popeyes Blackened Tenders
- Non-battered, non-breaded Popeyes chicken tenders, made with Popeyes’ blackening seasoning
- Per 3 pieces: 170 calories, 0 grams saturated fat, 550 milligrams sodium, 2 grams carb, 0 grams fiber, 0 grams sugar, 26 grams protein
- Ounce for ounce, these tenders have nearly identical nutrition stats as grilled skinless chicken breasts; the main drawback is sodium.
- Tip: For orders larger than a dozen tenders, call ahead to let store location know your order size and pickup time
- Fage 2% Plain is my preference for taste and texture when using it as an ingredient swap
- Use plain Greek yogurt in place of mayo or sour cream for creamy dips, chicken salad and even guacamole to cut back on calories and add protein
Good-for-you veggie dippers
- Jicama sticks
- Red, yellow, red peppers
- Zucchini and squash
- Apple slices – perfect for creamy dips and chicken salad-style dips
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Alternative pasta salads
- Made with protein-rich pasta alternatives like Banza chickpea pasta or yellow lentil pasta
- Replace white pasta (spirals, elbows, penne) with protein- and fiber-rich pasta for a dish that can pull double-duty as a side dish or even a protein-rich entrée
Editor’s note: Registered dietitian Molly Kimball offers brand-name products as a consumer guide; she does not solicit product samples nor is she paid to recommend items. A version of this article originally appeared on WGNO’s “Get FUELED with Molly” segment.