Power Ranking the Best Tailgate Foods

24th May 2024

best tailgate foods

The Best Tailgating Food

With tailgating season still in full swing as we enter the final week of the NFL regular season, we thought it was appropriate to power rank our top 10 favorite tailgate foods.

10. The Italian Sub

italian sub the ultimate party sub

The Italian sub, the ultimate party sub. Whether you call it a sub, hoagie, hero, grinder, Po' Boy or wedge, the Italian is a staple of Northeast tailgates. The Italian sub is the godfather of all game-day sandwiches. This masterpiece of Italian meats and cheeses is the perfect sandwich to share with fellow tailgaters. Whether you're bringing a massive party-sized sub or bite-sized Italian sliders, the Italian is the perfect game-day sandwich.

9. Pulled Pork

game day pulled pork sandwich

While it might not be the king of the game-day pork dishes, you'd be hard pressed to find a tailgate where someone wasn't enjoying some pulled pork. Pulled pork is a key player in most tailgates, whether you're eating it on a sandwich, on top of nachos or you have yourself a bowl of pulled pork.

8. Grilled Buffalo Chicken Wings

fresh batch of buffalo chicken wings

Nothing screams tailgate more than a fresh batch of Buffalo chicken wings, besides maybe a member of Bills Mafia jumping through a table. The Buffalo chicken wing is one of the greatest bar foods and easily one of the most iconic tailgating foods to come out of the city of Buffalo. There is nothing like a charcoal-grilled buffalo wing to spice up your tailgate.

7. Chili

chili while tailgating a cold winter football game

Chili might not be the most famous tailgate food of all time, but there is nothing quite like a warm bowl of chili while tailgating a cold winter football game. Love it or hate it, chili and football are so intertwined that Cincinnati's Skyline chili is pretty synonymous with the Bengals tailgate experience.

6. Buffalo Chicken Dip

buffalo chicken dip super bowl party

A good buffalo chicken dip can make you the most popular person at the party. A Super Bowl party staple, buffalo chicken dip is easily one of the most popular tailgating and football-watching dishes ever invented. You'd be hard pressed to find any tailgate party without some of that delicious dip.

5. Cheeseburgers

cheeseburger with french fries and a side of ketchup

Second only to the hot dog, the cheeseburger is an American staple that you will find at literally any tailgate you go to.

4. Nachos

nachos stadium style

Whether you like your nachos stadium style with bright yellow cheese sauce or loaded with multiple cheeses, meats and toppings, this treat is one of the most popular tailgate foods. There is nothing quite like digging into a cheesy plate of loaded nachos.

3. Ribs

ribs tailgate food

Depending on what part of the country you're tailgating in, you may be eating ribs. While this is not necessarily the most widespread tailgate food, when done correctly, ribs can be the best.

2. Hot Dogs

hotdog for football gameday

The humble hotdog, the staple of any backyard barbecue and any sporting event for that matter. While you might expect to see this iconic sausage at the number one overall spot, its big brother takes the cake. That's not to say a good hotdog isn't the perfect game-day snack.

1. Beer Brats

beer brat game day tailgate meal

The beer brat is the quintessential game-day tailgate meal. This delicacy hailing from the Midwest is arguably the best food to come out of tailgate culture. Whether you boil your brats before or after you grill them, we can all agree that nothing beats a beer brat.