Tailgating season is upon us, and we’re so excited to spend game day eating extravagant quantities of hot dogs, chili, and chicken wings. If you’re anything like us, this football-focused time of year is less about the sport and more about the pre-game food and drink: You will not be able to persuade us to stop eating Buffalo chicken for even one weekend in the next few weeks. Though we all know what food and drink we really want to eat and cook at a tailgate, the logistics of hosting this party can be difficult. So, to help you out, we’ve collected our most used, most reliable, and most important tips and tricks to make your tailgate even tastier, easier, and more fun than any previous years gone by.
Every time we pack up for a tailgate, we are astounded by the quantity of things we need to bring. The list of essential equipment seems to be endless, which is why we love things that can do two jobs at once. This includes using frozen water bottles as ice blocks and as drinking water, and making loaves of bread double up as a serving bowl and a snack: Simple solutions to help cut down on the packing list.
However, we don’t want our attempt at minimalistic packing to impact the food we take. It’s so important when preparing for a tailgate to do as much as you can before you actually arrive in the parking lot: You should not be spending any time on game day slicing vegetables, marinating meat, or cleaning your grill. Try to do as much as you can ahead of time, from skewering your kebabs so they’re ready to go on the grill as soon as you arrive, to turning your cooler into a warmer so that you can keep your hot food hot throughout the day. These extra, pre-game-day stages of tailgating aren’t time-consuming or difficult, but they will result in a tastier tailgate than any you’ve ever hosted before.