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We love football in our house! Especially college football. If you live in Arizona there are two things that are certain:
- You are either team Maroon & Gold or Navy & Cardinal.
- Bashas’ is your Arizona Hometown Grocer.
If you’re a college football fan, then there’s just one thing you should know:
- Dr Pepper® is the official drink of college football fans!
Everyone in our house is team Maroon & Gold, but we have friends and relatives that are team Navy & Cardinal. That can make for a house divided, are you team Maroon & Gold or team Navy & Cardinal?! It doesn’t really matter. What really matters is this, and it’s that there’s one thing we all agree upon for our football parties, the food!
DR PEPPER & BASHAS FOR THE WIN!
I know I can always find all the drinks and food at my local Bashas just around the corner. I have a special love for this store and all things that are local to Arizona. Our family owns a string of locally owned car dealerships across the State of Arizona, and my husband’s childhood home was actually in the same neighborhood as Eddie Basha, Jr.! Eddie passed away several years ago, and we remember sharing some of the family’s favorite memories of him. He was a happy fun man, and our family adored him. As local business owners ourselves, we know the gratitude that comes from supporting local businesses and the family’s that run them. Go check out their site and all the great things their store has to offer!
The star of the show, when it comes to my football parties, are the drinks! I always have tons of Dr Pepper on-hand. If you know me, I am a huge Dr Pepper fan! They have some super fun seasonal football packaging. So it makes sense since it’s the official drink of college football fans, and has been a part of college football for 25 years, that we include it as our drink of choice for our indoor tailgate and star of the food spread!
I like to grab the mini-sizes for our family and guests that just want a little soda, or if they plan on mixing it in a mocktail or even on top of some ice cream for a float. The Cherry Dr Pepper is yum on top of vanilla ice cream! There are 23 flavors of Dr Pepper, yes 23! So you’re sure to find one that you love, go ahead and get a special treat for yourself and share it with your friends.
Then, these half litres of Regular and Cherry Dr Pepper are perfect for crowds and filling up our cups for the big games. For a football party, I like to make drinks the center of my gathering. That and the TV screen, ha! You can use a galvanized bucket like I have, another beverage container, or even a cooler for a fun indoor tailgating theme! Then I set out all the food from the center out.
Now, here’s the bonus, you can save $1.50 when you buy (1) one Dr Pepper 7.5 oz mini-can or 6pk, or .5L and a Bashas’ ready-to-serve DELI item! Who doesn’t love great drinks, great food and a great deal?! Sign me up for that! You just need to have your Bashas loyalty card at checkout. Easy peasy!
WHAT TO SERVE UP AT YOUR INDOOR TAILGATE FOOTBALL PARTY
Next up, gimme all the deli food from Bashas y’all!!! There are some occasions when I like to get crazy and from scratch in the kitchen, but game day is not that day. I want to enjoy the day with my family, and not behind the stove in the kitchen. While I love cooking and baking, sometimes I just want to feel like one of the guests too. So the deli is where it’s at! This makes for a fun, quick and easy meal that is not only no-fuss, but it’s a crowd pleaser. Shopping at Bashas makes it easy to get all the things you need at one place!
My husband loves to get the baked 8-piece chicken, but the kids like the fried chicken. We also love Bashas deli sides. I like to get macaroni, mashed potatoes, and wedge cut fries because they’re a hit with everyone, even the kids! I also like to have some pasta veggie salad, olives, and their raspberry parfait dessert. While I’m there I grab some little smokie sausages, and a bottle of BBQ sauce for our traditional appetizer.
With dietary restrictions in our home, I always have to make sure that I have items for everyone to enjoy. My husband is gluten-free and is able to enjoy the baked chicken, mashed potatoes, olives, raspberry parfait dessert, and our traditional BBQ Smokies! My son is anaphylactic to peanuts and shellfish. For him, the friendly things from our indoor tailgating selection are the baked and fried chicken, potato wedges, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, and our BBQ Smokies.
I keep talking about these Horne Family BBQ Smokies that have become a tradition to make in our home. It’s a super easy recipe that you can make in your slow cooker crockpot with just 2 ingredients! It literally takes 2 minutes to pour into the slow cooker, and they are huge hit every single time! Plus, they are top 8 free, so I know that they will be something that all of our family and guests can enjoy.
FOOTBALL THEME TABLESCAPE PRESENTATION TIPS
For the tablescape, I like to play off the theme of a “house divided” among what team we are rooting for, but that we share a love of football and food! To do this, get some general football themed decor and pair it with your guests favorite teams colors. I grabbed some little football mints that are allergy friendly, football cups and plates, some fun paper lanterns, and several mini footballs that double as toys for the kids to play with once the party gets started. You can do this as simply as with a couple of tablecloths, and straws for the Dr Pepper for just a pop of color. So for us, I went with Gold vs Navy, for our pops of color in our indoor football tailgate party.
I also grabbed some football party decorations and I think it is so much fun to remember to play around with things and “make them yours”. These lanterns that look like big paper footballs, were supposed to be hung. I didn’t want to hang them, so I grabbed an extra little galvanized bucket, flipped it upside down, and used it as a prop for the football.
Use what you have as much as you can. I try to have a lot of coordinating pieces that I can mix and match with any event, any occasion, any holiday. I have a little bit of shabby, a little bit of chic, a lot of galvanized, a bunch of white, and then a few statement pieces.
BBQ SMOKIES RECIPE | GLUTEN FREE, TOP 8 FREE, ALLERGY FRIENDLY
So you keep hearing me mention these amazing BBQ Smokies?!!! They go great with Dr Pepper, and foods from Bashas deli, plus they are quick, easy and a crowd pleaser. You’re sure to enjoy them at your next indoor tailgate party. We sure do!
- 2 12 oz packages of little cocktail weenies
- 1 18 oz bottle of BBQ sauce
Open and drain the packages of little cocktail weenies, and place in slow cooker. Pour BBQ sauce over the little weenies. Turn crockpot on high for 2-3 hours or until warmed through.
For a quicker option, you can alternately heat them on medium high on your stove top for about 8-10 minutes, until warmed through.