Crowd Pleasing Tailgating Recipes from Meijer

Fan Favorite Tailgate Foods!

Most sports fans are equally passionate about their tailgates and their team.  What are some of the top foods served up at tailgates?  While fan favorites vary, here are some of the most popular foods served up at tailgate celebrations:

  • Chili
  • Wings
  • "Stuff on Sticks"
  • Burgers
  • Sausage
  • Pulled Pork
  • Ribs
  • Nachos / Tacos
  • Layered Dips
  • Potato Salad / "Hearty" Salads
  • Brownies (cut ‘em into fun football shapes!)

Crowd Pleasing Tailgate Recipes

Spicy Black Bean Chili

Serves 8-10


1 large red onion, diced

1/2 diced bell pepper (green, red, orange or yellow)

1 tbsp Meijer olive oil

4 garlic cloves, minced (or 1 Tbsp. Garden Gourmet Fresh Garlic Paste—in the produce section)

3 (10 oz.) cans Meijer Naturals diced tomatoes with green chilies

1 (12 oz.) pkg. MorningStar Farms® Meal Starters® Grillers® Recipe Crumbles™

2 (15 oz) cans Meijer Organics black beans, rinsed and drained

1 tsp. McCormick ground cumin

1 Tbsp. McCormick chili powder

1/4 tsp. McCormick crushed red pepper flakes

salt and black pepper to taste

Optional Garnishes:  Meijer 2% Milk Shredded Cheddar Cheese, Meijer plain Greek yogurt (or light sour cream), and diced green onion.


  1. Sauté onion and bell pepper in olive oil over medium heat until crisp tender (3-4 minutes). Add garlic and cook an additional 1 minute.
  2. Add diced tomatoes, beans and crumbles. Heat through, breaking up crumbles and stirring frequently.
  3. Stir in spices and season with salt and pepper to taste.  Allow to simmer at least 15 minutes before serving.
  4. If desired, garnish with shredded cheddar cheese, plain Greek yogurt and diced green onion.

Nutrition Information (per serving): Calories 378, Fat 3.4g, Saturated fat 0.5g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Sodium 490mg, Carbohydrate 61g, Fiber 15g, Protein 26g.

White Bean Chicken Chili

Makes about 8 cups


2 cups (about 1/2 pound) chicken breast cut in small chunks (Shortcut: Use 2 cups rotisserie chicken breast meat)

1 Tbsp. Meijer olive oil

1 (48 oz.) jar white northern beans, drained

1 cup reduced sodium chicken broth

1 1/2 Tbsp. McCormick ground cumin

1 1/2 cups Meijer Salsa (mild, medium or hot depending on your preference)

2 cups 2% milk Meijer shredded Monterey jack, Colby jack or cheddar cheese


  1. In a large pot sauté chicken in olive oil until no longer pink.  (Shortcut:  Use shredded rotisserie chicken).
  2. Add beans, cumin, and salsa and heat until bubbly.
  3. Reduce heat to low and add cheese, stirring until melted.

Serving Suggestion:  Scoop up chili with Meijer tortilla chips and reduced fat Meijer sour cream

Recipe source:  Meijer, Easy Meals Healthy Families guidebook, 2013.

Layered Taco Salad with Chicken

Serves 8 to 10


1 bag (10 oz.) Dole® Heart of Romaine Lettuce (about 6 cups Romaine lettuce, chopped)

1 cup grape tomatoes, halved

2 cups shredded or diced cooked chicken (Shortcut: Use Meijer rotisserie chicken)

1 15.25 oz. can DelMonte Fiesta corn (with red bell pepper), drained (OR—1 1/2 cups thawed frozen corn mixed with 1/4 cup diced red bell pepper)

2 cups 2% Milk Meijer shredded cheddar or Colby-jack cheese

2 green onions, diced

1 1/2 cups Meijer tortilla strips (or slightly crumbled tortilla chips)


3/4 cup Meijer Salsa

1/2 cup Meijer Light Ranch dressing


  1. In a small mixing bowl mix salsa and light ranch dressing until blended. Set aside.
  2. In a large glass bowl, layer half of the lettuce.  Top with tomatoes.  Drizzle with 1/3 dressing.
  3. Add in layers the shredded chicken, Fiesta corn, and 1/2 of the cheese.  Top with remaining lettuce.
  4. Top with remaining cheese and dressing.  Garnish with green onion and tortilla strips.

Recipe by Tina Miller, MS RD Meijer Healthy Living Advisor


Touchdown Guacamole Dip

Serves 10-12


3 cups prepared guacamole

Juice of 1 lime

1/2 cup grape tomatoes

1/2 cup pitted black olives

2 cups Meijer thick and chunky salsa

2 cups Meijer 2% milk shredded cheddar cheese

1 cup Meijer light sour cream (or plain Greek yogurt)

1 bag Meijer tortilla chips


  1. Using a 9x13 pan, spread guacamole in the center of the pan – leaving approximately 3" on both sides open.
  2. Place aluminum foil on either side of guacamole to create a barrier to separate guacamole from other ingredients (squaring off guacamole). Foil should not show above the guacamole.  Sprinkle lime juice over guacamole to prevent browning.
  3. Add salsa to pan at one end of guacamole and shredded cheese to fill the opposite end of the pan.
  4. Snip the corner of a quart size zip lock bag and add sour cream (alternately, use a squeeze bottle).  Using sour cream create "yardage" field lines resembling a football field.
  5. Garnish football field with grape tomatoes and olives to represent players.
  6. Serve with tortilla chips and enjoy

Award Winning Guacamole


6 ripe, Fresh California Avocados, seeded and peeled

½ onion, chopped

1 large clove garlic, crushed

1 small tomato, diced

6 oz. Monterey Jack cheese, grated

2 green chiles, diced

1/3 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped

3 Tbsp. fresh lime juice

1 tsp. seasoned salt


  1. In a large mixing bowl, coarsely mash avocados, leaving some chunks.
  2. Add remaining ingredients and mix to blend.

Recipe source: California Avocado Commission


Fiery Adobo Pork Skewers:

A simple and satisfying tailgate snack on a stick!

Serves 4


1/4 cup Chopped (or pureed) chilies in adobo sauce

3 Tbsp. Meijer light brown sugar

3 Tbsp. Fresh lime juice

1 (1 ¼ lb.) pork tenderloin, trimmed and cut into 2" cubes

1 ½ Sweet bell pepper (orange, red, or yellow) seeded and cut into 2" pieces

1 Red onion, cut into 2" pieces


  1. Combine chilies, brown sugar and lime juice in a large bowl.
  2. Season pork cubes with salt and pepper; add to chili mixture and toss to coat.  Allow to marinate 3-4 hours.
  3. Coat grill rack with nonstick cooking spray.  Preheat to medium (350 degrees).
  4. On each of 4 skewers, alternately thread bell pepper, onion and pork.
  5. Place skewers on grill and grill about 6-8 minutes per side.
  6. Remove from grill and let rest 5 minutes before serving.

Nutrition Information (per serving):  Calories 230, Fat 6g, Cholesterol 83mg, Sodium 100mg, Carbohydrate 13g, Fiber 1.5g, Protein 30g.