Planning a tailgating party on a budget requires more than a few good shopping maneuvers in your playbook.
Assuming you’ll want to watch the game rather than be stuck in the kitchen, think ahead, says Paul Sidoriak of GrillingMontana.com.
“Most dishes can be prepared almost entirely in advance and finished before kickoff, often coming out better than if they were made completely on game day,” he says.
For example, boil and cook bratwursts ahead of time. “Then, on game day, re-heat in boiling beer and sauerkraut, and then finish on the grill,” Sidoriak says.
Here are 5 more suggestions for tailgating fare that’s worthy of a place on the grill:
“Sam Can” Chicken
Chef David Burke came up with this twist on beer can chicken, using the new canned Samuel Adams Boston Lager.
In a large bowl, prepare marinade of one cup soy sauce, a tablespoon chopped ginger, a tablespoon chopped garlic, a tablespoon ketchup, a teaspoon mustard, two tablespoons honey, a pinch of red pepper flakes, and the juice of a freshly squeezed lemon.
Add a three- to five-pound chicken and marinate for two hours.
Get grill hot and open beer. Remove about a tablespoon of beer from the can. Put a few holes in the top of the can. Place your chicken right side up on the can, so that it sits up straight.
Place the beer-can chicken in the middle of the grill and let cook for about one hour or until it reaches the temperature of 165 degrees.
Grilled Hanger Steak with Bacon Chimichurri
Even tailgating is better with bacon.
This steak recipe uses bacon to spice up the accompanying sauce.
Honey BBQ Pulled Chicken
LSU Tigers and New Orleans Saints devotee Chef David Guas suggests preparing this chicken ahead of time and serving it cold on buttermilk biscuits.
But it’s just as tasty hot from the grill.
Served with a trio of sauces, these potato wedges cost less than $2 per serving to prepare.
Grilled Crab Cake
Make crab cakes on the grill instead of baking to pick up great flavors from the charcoal, Sidoriak says.
In a large bowl, combine one egg and a quarter cup each of Sriracha, Worcestershire sauce, and mayonnaise. Whisk until smooth.
Fold in one can jumbo lump crab meat, taking care not to break up the crab.
In a separate bowl, mix together a half-cup Panko breadcrumbs and 12 crushed Ritz crackers. Sprinkle half the crumbs onto crab mixture and fold in.
Repeat with remaining crumbs.
Form cakes carefully and try not to over-handle. Bake at 350 until golden brown, about 20-25 minutes.
Frugal Foodie is a journalist based in New York City who spends her days writing about personal finance and obsessing about what she’ll have for dinner. Chat with her on Twitter through @MintFoodie.