By Elesha Ergle, RDN
Over the past six months, we have all wondered whether or not we would have fall sports and tailgating. While football seems to be limited, let’s take some time to continue to enjoy one of our favorite things about this time of year— tailgating! Let’s be creative and keep some of our traditions alive by adjusting how we do tailgating and still enjoy the flavors of football season, with these delicious recipes from Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner. Beef is a staple amongst most tailgating fans, providing versatility and optimal nutrition. So don’t give up on tailgating, just give in to some changes!
Break Out the Slow Cooker
A staple kitchen device around most tailgating fans is the slow cooker. Knock the dust off your favorite slow cooker and get ready to watch some football at home. Get game day ready with a beefy tailgating favorite, meatballs. Meatballs can be made the day before and held in a slow cooker for your game day fun. Try something different like these Cheese Stuffed Meatballs in the air fryer. Cook up the day before and reheat/hold in a slow cooker with marinara sauce. Keep toothpicks close for grabbing and snacking or cut into some rolls to make meatball sliders.
Grilling Out at the Tailgate
Wood pellet grill/smokers have come on the scene as a great way to change the way you grill. If you have a pellet grill/smoker and haven’t given in to smoking hamburgers yet, wow your small crowd with a new flavor that is sure to be a hit! Make your patties the night before and place on your smoker the next day, set temperature, and go watch the game without having to constantly monitor the grill. Find a recipe that suits your tastes or try this recipe from Hey Grill Hey.
MVP of Food Safety
Always be food safety smart with tailgating, whether you are at an actual game or at home with your close family. Remember to keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Hold hot foods at 135 degrees or higher, and cold foods at 40 degrees or below. Use a slow cooker, hot plate, grill, or oven to maintain temperatures of your hot foods. Just remember, “when in doubt, throw it out,” or take a look at the FDA’s food safety guidelines.
Fall sports seasons may look a little different for everyone, but we can still have some tailgating fun with beef at home or a small crowd where allowed. Try some new recipes and make some new traditions! For more information on food safety, beef’s awesome nutrition, and beef from pasture to plate, visit Beef It’s What’s For Dinner.