With the 2020 Super Bowl right around the corner, most of us are busy getting our pre-game together for what we’ll be sipping, serving, and snacking on Sunday, February 2. But as much as we love fried chicken wings, cheesy queso and chips, and chocolate anything, we don’t love falling into a food coma during the halftime show (it’s the best part!)
But what we really want to avoid is backtracking on all the progress we’ve made on our new year’s goals to get fit, lose weight or just eat healthier.
Don’t lose heart—you can still celebrate with some not-so-guilty eats. We’ve rounded up a few simple recipes for healthier versions of some game-day faves, including dips, wings, and more…tasty treats that promise to become regular crowd pleasers around your table, minus the stress of feeling like you’re blowing your healthy game plan.
A televised sporting event without wings? That’s a bummer. These easy wings are baked at a high temperature to get ‘em nice and crispy.
CRISPY BAKED BUFFALO WINGS
Ingredients (for the wings)
– 1 pound chicken wings
– 1 tsp. avocado oil or melted ghee
– ½ tsp. coarse sea salt
– ½ tsp. ground pepper
(For the semi-homemade Buffalo sauce)
– ¼ cup butter
– ½ cup hot pepper sauce, such as Franks Red Hot
1. Preheat oven to 400 F, then place a wire baking rack on a rimmed baking sheet
2. Wash and pat dry chicken wings. Brush or toss the wings with the oil, then dust evenly with half of the sea salt plus the ground pepper, and lay the wings on the rack, making sure they don’t overlap
3. Bake at 400 F for about an hour, or until golden brown and the skin is firm to the touch
4. While the chicken is baking, make the sauce
5. Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat, whisk in the hot pepper sauce. Cook for about 2 minutes, until bubbling, then remove from heat.
6. When the chicken comes out of the oven, let them rest for 5 minutes then place in a large bowl and cover with the sauce. Stir until each wing is evenly coated.
Move over, queso, this warm and gooey dip gets a healthy boost from Greek yogurt and veggies—corn, red bell pepper, onion, and jalapeño.
Roasted Corn & Cheese Dip
– 4 slices thick-cut bacon, chopped (or 1 tbsp. olive oil for vegetarian)
– 1 tsp. olive oil
– 3 ½ cups roasted corn (frozen works well)
– ¼ tsp. salt
– ¼ tsp. pepper
– ½ sweet onion, chopped
– ½ red pepper, chopped
– 1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped
– 4 green onions
– 2 garlic cloves, chopped, minced or pressed
– ½ tsp. smoked paprika
– 1 (17 oz.) container 2% Greek yogurt
– 5 oz. cheddar cheese
– 5 oz. Monterey Jack cheese, freshly grated
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. If using bacon, heat a large skillet over medium heat and add bacon. Fry until crispy and all fat is rendered, then remove bacon and let drain on a paper towel. If not using bacon, start here and add 1 tbsp. of olive oil to a pan over medium heat. Add roasted corn to the skillet, cooking and stirring until warmed through, about 5 minutes. Remove corn and add it to a large bowl.
3. Add olive oil to the skillet; then add onions and red peppers with salt and pepper.
Cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add in jalapeño, green onions and garlic,
cooking for just 2-3 minutes. Transfer mixture to the bowl, adding in the yogurt,
paprika, bacon and 4 ounces of each cheese. Stir until combined then transfer to serving dish. Top with remaining cheese.
4. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until cheese is golden on top.
Serve immediately with tortilla chips or crackers.
A sweet alternative to greasy, high-calorie French fries? Enter, the sweet potato Parmesan tot—the perfect winter comfort food and game-day snack.
Sweet Potato Parmesan Tots
– 4medium sweet potatoes
– 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
– Kosher salt and black pepper
– 1 clove garlic, grated
– 2 cups Panko bread crumbs
– 2 teaspoons chipotle or regular chili powder
– extra virgin olive oil for brushing
– 4 tablespoons salted butter
– 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
– 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
– 2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Prick the sweet potatoes all over with a fork. Bake directly on the rack until tender, 50-60 minutes. Allow cooling.
2. Once cool, use your hands to peel away the sweet potato skin. It should just easily slip off. Place the potatoes in a medium-size bowl and mash well. Stir in the Parmesan cheese, garlic, and a pinch each of salt and pepper.
3. Combine the Panko and chili powder in a shallow bowl. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
4. Scoop about 1 tablespoon of the sweet potato out of the bowl, roll into a cylinder and place on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining sweet potato mix. The sweet potato mixture will be wet, don’t stress, the shape does not need to be perfect. Roll the sweet potato cylinders in the crumbs to coat and place back on to the baking sheet. Lightly brush/mist each tot with olive oil. Transfer to the oven and bake for 15 minutes, flip and bake another 10-15 minutes or until golden and crisp.
5. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the herbs and cook 30 seconds, until fragrant. Drizzle butter over the tots. Serve warm, with ketchup and additional herbs, if desired.
These are just a few of the dozens of recipes at your fingertips offering healthier options for dishing up a winning Super Bowl party. So get out there and count points on the field instead of unwanted calories. You’ll be your very own MVP.