For a Super Super Bowl Sunday!
by Kirsten Harrington
The best Super Bowl parties offer plenty of game-day food.
Food, friends and football — there’s nothing quite as American as gathering for the big game. With Super Bowl right around the corner, we’ve put together a game plan of satisfying side dishes and tempting treats that will have your friends and family cheering!
MetroWest resident Nicole Gower and her family have been hosting Super Bowl parties for years. It’s a great excuse to hang out with friends, play some flag football, and watch the game. Nicole suggests providing a hearty dish, which could be as simple as ordering pizza, and then asking guests to bring a side dish.
“Then everyone will have something they can eat if they have food allergies or are gluten-free,” she said.
She also turns to Pinterest for inspiration, like the crowd-pleasing spinach artichoke dip she served last year.
“Keep it simple,” she said. “Salty and sweet, and you’re good to go.”
Putting your slow cooker to work on game day means you can relax and join the party. Make a big batch of chili or soup the day before, or serve meatballs in marinara with hoagie rolls and cheese slices on the side.
“We do baked potato bars quite often,” said Krista Fleming, a Windermere resident who loves to host football fans. “They are a favorite where I can have most of the food prepared in advance, so we can all enjoy the game.”
Set out the toppings and let guests create their own favorite. The possibilities are endless, from sautéed peppers, chili, onions and cheese sauce to diced ham, cottage cheese and fresh herbs. To make things even easier, cook the baked potatoes, wrap them in foil, and keep them warm in a slow cooker set on low.
Sliders are the perfect game-day food, because they are easy to eat, fun and come in so many varieties — from make-your-own burgers or pulled-pork sliders with a variety of toppings to make-ahead BLT, melted ham and Swiss, tomato and mozzarella with fresh basil, or a variety of cold cuts and sauces.
It wouldn’t be a Super Bowl party without plenty of munchies. You can’t go wrong with basic potato chips and dip or tortilla chips with salsa and guacamole, but why not add a few creative choices like baked macaroni-and-cheese bites, seasoned popcorn, egg rolls, stuffed mushrooms or veggie sticks with hummus? Make a batch of nachos, tater tots with toppings, or waffle fries with dipping sauce. And don’t forget dessert. Bowls of M&Ms, bite-sized cookies, and brownies or handheld turnovers will satisfy everyone’s sweet tooth without missing a moment of action.
Mac ‘n Cheese Bites
With Broccoli & Bacon
1 package macaroni and cheese dinner (with butter and milk as noted on box)
1 cup cooked broccoli, chopped
1/2 cup crumbled cooked bacon
2 eggs, beaten
3/4 cup finely shredded cheddar cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Prepare macaroni and cheese according to package. Stir the eggs, broccoli and bacon into the finished macaroni and cheese. Spoon into well-greased mini-muffin tin, and top with a sprinkle of cheddar cheese. Cook for 9-12 minutes or until lightly brown on top. Cool slightly before removing from pan. Makes 30-36 bites.
Hot Spinach Artichoke Dip
1 cup thawed, chopped frozen spinach
1 1/2 cups thawed, chopped frozen artichoke hearts
6 ounces cream cheese
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup grated Parmesan
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
Boil spinach and artichokes in 1 cup of water until tender. Drain, discarding liquid. Heat cream cheese in microwave for one minute or until hot and soft. Stir in remaining ingredients and serve warm with crackers or sliced baguette.
Easy Oven Tacos
1 pound lean ground beef or turkey
1 can black beans, drained
1 packet taco seasoning
1/2 cup salsa
1/2 cup taco sauce
12 hard taco shells
1 1/2 cups grated Mexican blend cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cook ground beef or turkey in skillet until brown or cooked through. Drain fat. Mix in black beans, taco seasoning, taco sauce and salsa. Cook 3-4 minutes until mixture thickens. Meanwhile, spray a 9-by-13-inch casserole dish with cooking spray and line with upright taco shells. Fill each shell with meat mixture, gently pressing mixture into shell. Top with cheese and bake 8-10 minutes or until cheese is melted. Serve with shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, sour cream and sliced olives. 💓