There are two reasons to love football season. The first is obvious — you love the game. The competitive nature, cheering for your team and gathering with friends and family to watch a nail-biting fourth quarter. The second (and our personal favorite) — the food! Yep, for many, football season means one thing: game day snacks. Nachos, buffalo wings, and dips galore — what’s not to love? Whether you’re a football fanatic or not, Sundays are an excuse to gather around the TV with good food and good company. That said, you don’t have to sacrifice your health and fitness goals to enjoy yourself. You’ll be glad to know there are lots of healthy game-day foods that are equally nutritious and delicious.
Just look at TB12! Whether you’re team Tom Brady or not, his dedication toward health and fitness is admirable. And ICYDK, he attributes his success to his anti-inflammatory diet (full of lean proteins, healthy fats, and mostly plant-based foods) and healthy lifestyle. Clearly, he’s doing something right. So, why not swap those unhealthy game day snacks for something more nutritious?
Ahead, we’re sharing a mouth-watering game day menu that will accommodate both your cravings and your fitness goals. From healthy dips and spreads to low-carb appetizers, to nutrient-dense sweet treats, these tasty game day recipes will give you something to cheer about all season.
Oven-Baked Crispy Onion Rings
Yes, you can enjoy your favorite savory snacks in a healthy way! Baked to golden perfection, these oven-baked healthy onion rings are a healthy alternative to deep-fried onion rings and make for a healthy addition to your game-day menu.
- 2 sweet onion
- ¾ cup breadcrumbs
- 1 tsp sea salt
- ½ cup flour
- ⅛ tsp hot sauce
- Cooking spray
- 4 egg whites, whisked
Step #1: Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Cover 1-2 baking sheets with parchment paper or spray with cooking spray.
Step #2: Mix together the flour and seasoned salt in a shallow dish. In another shallow dish, place the whisked egg whites and hot sauce. Place the breadcrumbs in another shallow dish.
Step #3: Take the onion rings, dip in the flour, then the egg whites, then the breadcrumbs. Place on the baking sheet in a single layer.
Step #4: Spray the onion rings well with cooking spray. Bake for 10-12 minutes until beginning to get brown and crispy on the bottom. Flip over carefully and spray the tops with cooking spray. Cook an additional 7-10 minutes until golden brown.
Buffalo Cauliflower Wings
These plant-based wings will save you major calories, plus you’ll avoid excess sugar and fat! Don’t worry, they’re just as flavorful (and addictive). In fact, we’re willing to bet your fellow football-foodies won’t even know this healthy game day snack is made with cauliflower.
- 1 head of cauliflower cut into florets
- ½ cup water
- ¼ cup plant milk
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp paprika
- ¾ cup oat flour (make your own by blending dry rolled oats into a fine powder)
- Pinch of sea salt & pepper to taste
- ¾ cup of your favorite hot sauce
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
To serve: Serve with your favorite healthy Ranch Dip and veggie sticks for dipping! For a healthy option that tastes like the real deal, we love Primal Kitchen brand.
Step #1: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Step #2: Mix the water, plant milk, and spices to a large mixing bowl and whisk well to combine.
Step #3: Add the cauliflower florets to the bowl with the sauce and gently stir to coat the florets.
Step #4: Transfer the cauliflower to the parchment-lined baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Flip over and cook for another 10 minutes or until they start to get crispy.
Step #5: While the cauliflower is cooking, add your hot sauce of choice to a large mixing bowl with the honey, and melted coconut oil. Whisk well.
Step #6: Transfer the cooked cauliflower florets to the mixing bowl, and stir well to coat the florets with the hot sauce mixture.
Step #7: Add the cauliflower florets back to the baking sheet and bake for an additional 10 minutes.
Step #8: Serve with a side of ranch (or your favorite dip of choice) and a side of veggie sticks!
Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Dip
This Creamy Roasted Red Pepper Dip requires less than 10 ingredients and comes together in 10 minutes. Made with protein-packed Greek yogurt, roasted red pepper, and a handful of spices, it’s a healthy twist on a classic game-day staple!
- 8 oz roasted red peppers, drained
- 1 tsp dried basil
- ¼ tsp ground cumin
- 1 garlic clove
- ½ cup Greek yogurt
- ½ cup whipped cream cheese
- sea salt & black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup mixed vegetables of choice, to serve
- 20 low-carb crackers of choice, to serve
Step #1: Add the roasted red peppers, yogurt, cream cheese, garlic, basil, cumin, salt, and pepper to a food processor. Pulse until smooth and creamy. Taste and season as needed.
Step #2: If possible, refrigerate for at least 2 hours for flavors to combine and deepen. Serve with your favorite veggies or crackers!
Greek Pita Nachos
Add these Greek Pita Nachos to your list of healthy game-day eats. For a protein-rich option, serve it up with shredded chicken, or top it off with a serving of chickpeas!
- 1 tbsp red onion, diced
- 2 tbsp feta cheese (or plant-based alternative)
- 2 tbsp black olives
- 2 tsp olive oil
- ½ cup cucumber
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- ½ cup tomato, diced
- sea salt & black pepper
- 2 tbsp Greek yogurt
- 1 cup baked whole wheat pita chips
To serve (optional)
- Shredded chicken
Step #1: Place the pita chips on a plate. Scatter tomatoes, cucumbers, black olives, feta cheese, and red onion on top.
Step #2: Mix together the yogurt, olive oil, and lemon juice. Drizzle on top. Season everything with salt and pepper.
Plant-Based Game Day Snacks
Baked Parsnip Fries
These Oven-Baked Parsnip Fries are a healthy alternative to traditional fries, yet they’re equally as delicious! Option to swap the parsnips for sweet potatoes or customize with additional spices or seasonings.
- 1 lbs parsnip
- ½ tsp garlic powder
- ½ tsp paprika
- ¼ tsp black pepper
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- ½ tsp kosher salt
Step #1: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Peel your parsnips and slice in half. Slice in half again, and then into quarters and eighths as needed to make thin fries or match sticks.
Step #2: Toss the parsnip fries with olive oil, salt, garlic powder, paprika, and pepper. Spread out in a single layer on a baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray.
Step #3: Bake for 20-25 minutes, flipping halfway. Make sure to watch the parsnips carefully so they don’t burn since it can happen quickly. They are ready when they are lightly browned and crispy. Serve and enjoy!
Sweet & Savory Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Pumpkin lovers, this one’s for you! Serve up this healthy game day snack while soaking in your favorite seasonal flavors.
To make this protein-packed healthy game day snack, lightly coat 1-2 cups of raw pumpkin seeds (rinsed and patted dry) with cinnamon and a dash of salt. Spread evenly on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 300 degrees F for 20-30 minutes, stirring them every 5-10 minutes or until golden brown!
DIY Trail Mix
A little sweet, a little savory, and a whole lot delicious! We guarantee you’ll love this DIY healthy trail mix. Best of all, this simple healthy snack can be easily customized for any diet or eating plan! Make an extra large batch and save half for your weekly meal prep!
- 1 cup mixed nuts
- ½ cup pumpkin seeds (or seeds of choice)
- ¼ cup cacao nibs, dark chocolate chips, or chopped chocolate
- ¼ cup coconut flakes
- ¼ cup goji berries (optional)
- ½ tsp cinnamon
Step #1: Mix the above ingredients in a small bowl until well combined
Step #2: Store in an airtight container until ready to eat!
Low-Carb Game Day Recipes
Healthy Guacamole Dip
Because no gathering is complete without a side (or two) of guac! This low-carb dip is full of healthy fats to keep you feeling full for longer while giving you a game-day energy boost.
- 2 large ripe avocados, pitted and halved
- 1 lime, juiced
- ½ cup tomatoes, diced
- ¼ cup red onions, diced
- ⅛ cup cilantro, diced (optional)
- 1 tsp paprika
- Pink sea salt and black pepper to taste
Step #1: Using a spoon, scoop the avocado flesh into a mixing bowl and mash with a fork or vegetable masher.
Step #2: Add the remaining ingredients, stirring the mixture until well combined.
Step #3: Serve and enjoy! Keeps in the fridge for 2-3 days, though best served fresh.
Turkey Avocado Roll Ups
Protein-packed, ready in minutes, and completely satisfying!! All you need is two ingredients (sliced turkey and avocado) for a healthy snack made in minutes!
To make this protein-rich game day snack, mash ripe avocado in a bowl and add a tablespoon to the center of a turkey slice. Spread evenly, adding any additional toppings such as spinach, cottage cheese, or mustard. Roll the turkey into a rollup, and enjoy! It’s that simple. If you prefer, you can also use a tortilla wrap of your choice.
Hummus Pepper Boats
Looking for a light yet satiating veggie-based option? Try these Low-Carb Hummus Pepper Boats. Stuff them with your favorite (homemade or store-bought) hummus or dip of choice!
- 1 red bell pepper
- ¾ cup hummus
- fresh parsley, chopped
- chili flakes
- sea salt & black pepper, to taste
- Optional toppings, such as avocado, beans, cucumber, or veggies of choice
Step #1: Slice the bell pepper to make 4 boats. Discard the seeds.
Step #2: Divide the hummus between the 4 boats. Tops with parsley, chili flakes and season with sea salt and pepper.
Every game day needs a pizza. Skip the excess carbs and calories for this lighted-up Cauliflower Pizza alternative! Guaranteed to satisfy your pizza cravings in a healthy way!
- 1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup almond flour
- 1½ tbsp coconut flour
- ½ tsp ground cumin
- 1½ tbsp olive oil
- 1 handful shredded mozzarella, optional (or plant-based alternative)
- 1½ tbsp fresh rosemary
- 2 ½ tbsp ricotta (or plant-based alternative)
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes, chopped
- ½ eggplant, sliced
- 2 ½ tbsp favorite pesto
Step #1: Start by preheating the oven to 180°C or 350°F and line a pizza pan or large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Step #2: Next, add the cauliflower florets to a food processor and blend until it turns into cauliflower rice.
Step #3: Add the riced cauliflower to the center of a cheesecloth or a clean dish towel and squeeze out the moisture. Add to a large mixing bowl.
Step #4: Whisk the eggs and add to the bowl with the cauliflower along with the almond and coconut flour, seasoning, olive oil, shredded cheese, and salt. Mix well.
Step #5: Add the cauliflower pizza dough to the pizza pan or baking tray and flatten to create a circle. Top with the pizza sauce, ricotta cheese, pesto, and tomatoes.
Step #6: Bake for 30-40 minutes.
Step #7: Serve with fresh basil and allow the pizza to cool for a few minutes before slicing. Enjoy!
Hearty Comfort Recipes
Easy Butternut Squash Chili
Who said chili had to include meat? This Plant-Based Butternut Squash Chili will be loved by meat and plant-based eaters alike! That said, it’s easy to customize for any dietary or food preference. Easily swap the plant-based crumbles for beans or meat of choice, or use a protein-rich bone broth in place of veggie broth.
- 3 cups butternut squash, diced
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 15 oz canned pinto beans, drained and rinsed
- ½ tbsp olive oil
- 14 oz canned fire roasted diced tomatoes
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 lbs vegetarian meat crumbles
- 1 tsp oregano
- ½ cup celery stalk
- 3 cups vegetable broth
- 2 tbsp ground chili powder
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeds removed and diced (optional)
- 2 garlic, chopped
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- sea salt & black pepper, to taste
Step #1: Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, red pepper, celery, and jalapeno. Cook for 5-8 minutes until onions are beginning to become translucent.
Step #2: Add the vegetarian ground meat, chili powder, oregano, cumin, and bay leaf. Cook for 6-8 minutes, breaking up the vegetarian meat until it is browned.
Step #3: Add the tomatoes, pinto beans, broth, and squash. Bring to a simmer and cook for 20 minutes or until squash is tender but not mushy.
Step #4: Serve with fresh lime juice, baked tortilla chips, sour cream/Greek yogurt, avocado, cilantro, cheese, or any of your favorite chili toppings.
Stuffed Sweet Potatoes
We’re giving potato skins an upgrade with this nourishing fall recipe. These stuffed sweet potatoes are protein-rich, full of good-for-you nutrients like avocado and beans, and simple to whip up even on the busiest of days.
Find the full recipe with step-by-step instructions here!
Healthy Sweet Treats
Chocolate Avocado Mousse
Made with a few simple ingredients like avocado, almond milk, and cocoa powder, this dessert is a touchdown!
- ⅛ tsp salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 3 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 tbsp maple syrup
- 2 avocados
- ¼ cup unsweetened almond milk
- 4 oz dark chocolate chips
Step #1: Melt the chocolate: Place the chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds on high power. Remove and stir. Repeat and stir. If still not melted, continue 10 second increments to make sure it doesn’t burn.
Step #2: In a bowl, combine all the ingredients with the melted chocolate. Use a hand blender (or whisk or high-powered blender) to blend until smooth. Taste, and if possible for better consistency, refrigerate for 1-2 hours before serving.
Almond Butter Stuffed Dates
Think caramel candies, but healthy! Enjoy plain, or add your favorite additions like chopped pistachios, unsweetened coconut flakes, or dairy-free chocolate chips! Serve room temperature for a gooey caramel texture or slightly frozen for a thick texture.
Here’s how to make this tasty treat:
Step #1: Simply slice raw Medjool dates lengthwise and remove the pits.
Step #2: Stuff them with almond butter (or nut or seed butter of choice), then add your favorite toppings (such as nuts, seeds, or fruit!). Serve and enjoy!
Healthy Chocolate Bark
Who knew making chocolate could be this easy!? This simple treat can be customized for any flavor preferences, feel free to customize it to your liking!
- ½ cup coconut oil
- ⅓ cup cacao powder
- 3 tbsp maple syrup
- ¼ cup pumpkin seeds
- 2 tbsp coconut flakes, unsweetened
- 2 tbsp freeze-dried berries, unsweetened
- 2-3 tbsp chopped nuts of choice
Step #1: Melt the coconut oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Lower the heat and whisk in the raw cacao powder and maple syrup.
Step #2: Line a small baking tray with parchment paper and pour the chocolate mixture onto the lined tray. Evenly spread the raw chocolate.
Step #3: Top with remaining ingredients.
Step #4: Cover and freeze until the chocolate is set (about one hour).
Step #5: Remove from the freezer and break into bite-sized bark.
Step #6: Store in an airtight container in the freezer until ready to serve!
Fall-Flavored PB Maple Bliss Balls
When healthy sweet treats taste like decadent fall-flavored dessert, what’s not to love? These Maple-Flavored Bliss Balls are naturally sweetened and made with whole food ingredients.
- 1 cup oats, rolled
- ¼ cup shredded coconut
- ½ cup peanut butter
- 2 tbsp maple syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 tbsp cacao nibs
Step #1: Add all ingredients minus the cacao nibs to a food processor or high-speed blender and blend until the mixture comes together.
Step #2: Add the cacao nibs and pulse again until combined.
Step #3: Add the mixture to a bowl and set in the fridge for 15 minutes.
Step #4: Once chilled, roll into bite-sized rounds.
Step #5: Store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Want to double the recipe with a second flavor? Try these Carrot Cake Energy Balls! They taste like mini pie fillings, yet they’re made with nutritious ingredients like oats, almond butter, pecans, and flaxseeds.
FitOn Time-Saving Tip: Save any leftovers (though highly unlikely) for tasty snacks throughout the week!
A Tasty Reason To Celebrate Football Sundays
With this list of healthy game day eats, fuel your fall with the most delicious foods. No matter if you’re watching the game, we guarantee these recipes will have you savoring every football Sunday! Happy snacking.