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Tasty food ideas for tailgating

Heading out to catch the big game and wondering what to cook for your tailgate party? Well, look no further, as here are some great suggestions as well as a mouth-watering barbecue rib recipe all the super fans will love!

Food for the big game
Tailgate party

If you’ve ever hosted a tailgate party, you know how much fun it is to get the fans fuelled up for the game. And if you’ve ever been a guest at a tailgate party, you know how much fun it is getting all fuelled up! Let’s face it: The pre-game party is more about the food than the football game, so why not serve up some great eats and have some fun!

Sure, you can bring whatever food you like, but if you take a quick tour of the parking lot before game time, you’ll see — and smell — what the fans really want, and that’s delicious barbecue fare! Or basically anything that tastes great when washed down with an icy cold brew, so give them what they want with these favourites!

  • A juicy grilled burger. Bump it up to another level with a smoky blue cheese burger.
  • Hot dogs are always a hit, but why not make them gourmet for a change? Try the triple P, the chihuahua dog or the Philly cheese, and watch the fans ask for seconds!
  • Pulled pork is another stadium favourite, and it couldn’t be easier! Prepare the recipe the day before, then add the shredded meat to a disposable aluminum roasting pan. Cover it with foil, then reheat it over medium heat on the grill. Be sure to stir it often.
  • Add a salad or two to your menu with coleslaw, potato-bacon salad or Italian pasta salad.
  • Make a big pile of ribs such as these tailgaiting barbecue ribs! You make them at home, and then all you need to do before game time is grill and serve!

Tailgating BBQ ribs

Serves 4 meal-size portions or 6 appetizer portions


  • 2 racks of baby back pork ribs

The rub

  • 1 tablespoon packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons mustard powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper
The barbecue sauce
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 3 finely minced garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 cup apple butter
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup Hot & Spicy ketchup
  • 2 tablespoons molasses
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • Pinch of salt and pepper or to taste


  1. Combine all the dry rub ingredients in a small bowl.
  2. Lay the racks of ribs on a cutting board, pull off the silver membrane, and discard it. Cut each rack into four pieces of three to four ribs each.
  3. Generously rub the dry mixture onto each rib piece. Be sure to cover both sides.
  4. Refrigerate the ribs for a minimum of 1 hour. Meanwhile, make the barbecue sauce.
  5. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic, and saute for 2 minutes.
  6. Add the chili powder and onion powder. Cook for 1 minute while stirring constantly.
  7. Add all the rest of the ingredients, and bring the mixture to a boil. Stir often, and simmer for about 5 minutes. Remove from heat, and refrigerate until needed.
  8. When ready to cook the ribs, preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
  9. Lay the rib pieces in a roasting pan. Cover. Bake for about 2 hours or until the meat is tender.
  10. Remove the ribs, and refrigerate until pre-game time.
  11. At the stadium, preheat the grill to medium. Generously brush each rib piece with the barbecue sauce, and cook for 5–6 minutes per side.
  12. Serve as is, or cut into single rib portions if desired.

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