Because a game day tailgate party requires a lot of food and beverages, anyone who hosts this type of event should have solid preparation, cooking, setup, and serving strategies. If this process seems challenging to you, these game day tailgating tips can help.
Prepare Food in Advance
To stay on schedule, you’ll need to prepare the most time-consuming tailgate dishes in advance. Begin by making a list of foods, which include the ingredients that you’ll need for different dishes. If you’re going to serve people a few yards outside a stadium, review the club’s rules and regulations before creating a list. Typically, a major stadium will have guidelines for items that are and aren’t allowed during tailgating events.
Cook Before the Game
Most proteins for tailgating dishes will require long cooking times. If you don’t want to spend hours standing in front of a grill, simply precook some meats a day before the event. These proteins include
• Thick slabs of beef
• Whole chickens
• Large chunks of pork
You could also precook proteins a few hours before the game starts. During this situation, fire up the grill in the morning, and toss different proteins on the grates. Then, when the meats are about halfway done, take everything off the grill, and wrap each item in foil. The foil will keep the meats warm until you continue cooking everything when the guests arrive.
Keep Pulled Pork Warm
After pork is shredded, its temperature will drop fairly quickly. When pulled pork is cold, it doesn’t taste great. Instead of containing heat by wrapping the pork in foil, keep the meat hot by placing it in a tray over a low grill heat. To protect the bottom of the tray, stack bricks on the grill, and put the tray on top of them.
Use Mason Jars
Mason jars can keep different side dishes fresh and organized. These jars are available in multiple sizes, so you can easily find storage options for fruits, veggies, and liquids. To stay organized, stick a label on the jars, and arrange everything on a small portable storage shelve.
Keep Air Flowing
During a tailgating party, proper air circulation is very important as heat can make certain foods spoil faster. By using bungee cords and a fan, you can create a pleasant environment for foods that are in the preparation phase.
The best way to set up cooling zones is by using a tent as a shield for sunlight. After the tent is up, grab several bungee cords, and run them through the handle on a box fan. Then, secure the end of the cords to a beam underneath the tent. If you have extra slack on the bungle cord, create a paper towel holder by hanging a roll on the line.
Freeze Water Balloons
Everyone who attends a tailgating event will probably want to support a certain team. You can make your tailgate setup more appealing by incorporating team colors where guests will grab snacks and beverages. For this task, water balloons work well because they come in a variety of colors that match team themes and uniforms.
You can use frozen water balloons instead of traditional ice cubes in a cooler. To make them, partially fill the balloons with water, and toss them in a freezer. If you completely fill the balloons, some of them may pop when the water expands during the freezing process.
If your tailgating party will last an entire day, you’ll have to stay hydrated throughout the event. The most practical way to beat the heat is by bringing many frozen water bottles to the party. While the bottles are frozen, you can use them to keep sandwiches, fruits, and vegetables cool in a cooler. Then, after the ice in the bottles melt, everyone can hydrate by drinking the chilled water.
Homemade Speaker Amps
Although large speakers with surround sound technology can blast music around a parking lot by a stadium, the process of setting up this type of equipment is time-consuming. Instead of toting heavy components around a parking lot, set up a custom sound system using plastic cups as amps.
To amplify sounds, you’ll need a set of compact speakers; they should fit conveniently in the center of a table. Grab a plastic cup, and cut a piece out of the bottom. Then, glue or tape the cup against a speaker. Repeat this process to modify your other speaker.