February 6th is Super Bowl Sunday this year and we’re warning you now: it’s time to get your snacks on lockdown. The Pittsburgh Steelers are taking on the Green Bay Packers in football’s crowning moment, so this isn’t the party for delicate finger foods. This is a party for Super Bowl snacks. Besides, we’ve all given up on healthy eating resolutions by now, right?
I’m a sucker for a soft pretzel, but the ones from the mall sometimes leave me sad and sitting in a goo of fake buttered oil flavoring. That’s why I can’t say enough good things about this recipe for soft pretzel bites from Two Peas in a Pod. So, so delicious and salty perfection. Who can say no to pretzel bites? Not your sports fans!
Yeah, I said Pierogies! You can’t go to Pittsburgh without snacking on pierogies (dumplings usually filled with potatoes and cheese, sauerkraut, or even blueberry or dried plum.) Sure, you could whip out dozens of handmade pierogies, but these days you can pick up a giant box of frozen pierogies at your favorite warehouse market instead. Boil your pierogies ahead of the party, then toss in a pan with some melted butter to warm up. Serve on warmed platters with toothpicks.
Kielbasa with Sauces
We’re talking Wisconsin and Pennsylvania here, you’ve got to serve kielbasa. Grab two kielbasas, slice diagonally, and saute over medium high heat until lightly browned. Serve au natural with toothpicks, simmering in a slow cooker with BBQ sauce, a side of spicy mustard and saurkraut, or a melted cheese sauce (did someone say to add a teaspoon of dry mustard to your cheese sauce? I think I just did.)
Chips and Dip
You're not serving tea and crumpets, right? Make it easy on yourself and go with chips and dip. Choose kettle-style chips for a heartier crunch and frankly, nothing can beat the classic french onion dip: 1 packet dried french onion soup with 16 ounces of sour cream. My cheesehead sister-in-law recommends Doritos and ketchup for dipping. I’ve never been brave enough to try it, so I’ll ask you to try it instead.
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Chili Con Queso
It could not be easier to make a chili con queso into which to dip your tortilla chips. 1 large can of chili, 1 medium box of American cheese. Heat. You can make chili con queso even more delicious by making a pot of chili from scratch the day before, warming it in your slow cooker an hour before the game with 1 ½ cups of shredded cheddar cheese and 1 ½ cups of shredded pepper jack. Either way, there will be some happy, happy people at your party.
Most warehouse stores stock mini-cheesecake bites in the frozen section, but you can also make your own. I love Bakerella’s cheesecake bars. You can make them a day or two ahead of time (if you trust you or your household to stay away until game time.) Cut the pan into smaller bites.
Have you ever tried making poppers from scratch? Once again, there are plenty of ready-to-go poppers in your grocer’s freezer, but if you’re feeling ambitious (and you can’t find poppers already filled with bacon,) you’ve got to try these Best Ever Poppers.
Apples and Dulce de Leche
Maybe the lightest snack on the list, this variation on chips and dip might be the sleeper hit at your party. Dulce de leche is a thick caramel with a distinct flavor. Drop by your local Latin market and pick up a couple jars of dulce de leche (you can make your own by boiling cans of sweetened condensed milk, but I won’t be held responsible for explosions.) Slice 4-6 granny smith apples and toss them with lemon juice to prevent browning. Warm the dulce de leche gently in the micro, serve with the apple slices.
You can follow a traditional fondue recipe (gruyere, emmenthaler, white wine) or you can mix it up by using cheddar and other sharp Wisconsin cheeses. Serve with blanched veggies, small boiled red potatoes, and baguette slices.
My husband insisted that I include a section on mini-grilled sandwiches. Baguette with roast beef and swiss, broiled for a minute to melt the cheese; hearty white bread with jack and cheddar pressed in a grill pan and quartered for awesome grilled cheeses; ham and brie with roasted red pepper spread on ciabatta; basically any meat, cheese, and bread with spread that you grill and cut into finger sandwich size. Keep them warm and toasty in a low oven on a stoneware platter.
Alright, your turn, what’s going to be hitting your Super Bowl party this year?