Superbowl parties have changed a lot for me over the years. As a journalism major in undergrad I remember our college having Superbowl parties where the game was muted and we only watched and analyzed the commercials. My early 20’s featured some very exciting Superbowl parties, usually courtesy of my brother-in-law and the different bar hopping we would do in his rural city. There was a lot of beer, loud cheering, appetizer eating, and gambling done at those festivities, and my husband and I always took the following Monday off from work.
Enter parenthood and the need to either find babysitters (good luck on Superbowl Sunday) or make a new kind of fun. When we lived in a bigger city, a group of us with toddlers and babies would often have a potluck party that amounted to kids running all over the place, dads huddled around a television, and moms just content to have an excuse to enjoy a cocktail and some adult conversation.
Little ones and Superbowl Sunday can mix, but it is just a different type of party because older kids typically have school the next day, and really there is nothing worse than a tired, haggard Monday from staying up too late and having too much fun the night before. The past few years my family has skipped out on leaving the house and big group gatherings and instead just stayed home. It makes for much calmer Superbowl Sundays, but in a way I love them even more than the huge parties.
Nowadays my daughters and I will start discussing the half-time show a few months before the Superbowl. We are excited to see what Lady Gaga can bring to the table (Hopefully not a wardrobe malfunction that includes a dress made of meat–which Lady G has done before!). We loved Bruno Mars and Beyonce last year, and Katy Perry was a huge hit in our finished basement the year before that for my girls. I have taken to posting a FB picture of my kids and their judgment of the half-time performances during the Superbowl game. They love seeing if people agree or disagree with them! We also keep hoping that the NFL will bring PINK, Taylor Swift, or Rihanna to the stage some year soon.
Superbowl Sundays now consist of getting into our pajamas in the afternoon and getting situated in our basement to watch some pre-game puppy bowl action. I break out the TV trays and give my family a feast of easy munchies that include: chicken wings, trail mix, popcorn, chips-n-salsa, deli meat, crackers, slices of cheese, fruits, and veggies. It is a smorgasbord of finger foods and I often give myself a break as a parent and just let them graze throughout the entire Superbowl Sunday, instead of hounding them to sit still and finish their plates.
Here are a few of my staple party recipes, that are easy and yummy for Superbowl Sunday.
Quick-N-Easy Veggie Dip
- 2 cups Mayonnaise (or Miracle Whip, if you are not picky. My husband is picky and only lets us keep mayo in the fridge.)
- 1/4 cup Dorothy Lynch Dressing (if you live in the Midwest) or regular French Dressing.
Mix two ingredients together in a bowl and serve with crackers or veggies. It is a zesty dip that tastes great smeared onto cracker sandwiches. My mom created and made this dip all the time for my brothers and me, and I still love it. My family will stack deli meat, cheese, tomatoes, and this dip in between Triscuits or Ritz crackers to make mini-sandwiches that are delicious.
Fresh Fruit Chips-n-Salsa
A good friend of mine served this at a kid-friendly party she was hosting and it tasted great and was so refreshing.
- 2 large apples (cored and diced). (I keep the peels on, but some prefer to peel the apples.)
- 2 average size kiwi (peeled and chopped)
- 1 cup of sliced strawberries
- 1 cup chopped up grapes (Some similar online recipes only include the top 3 fruits, but I like adding grapes.)
- 2 Tablespoons of apple butter or apple jelly
- 2 Tablespoons of brown sugar
Mix all above ingredients together and set in the fridge until ready to serve. *I find the moisture from the fruits gets it to a “salsa” type consistency, but you can also add a bit of water or orange juice if necessary. When ready serve in a bowl with “Stacy’s Cinnamon Sugar Pita Chips”. The sweet chips are tasty with the tangy fruit scooped up on top of them.
After all of the eating is done and typically not too long after half-time, my kids can often be found whining to stay up later when in actuality they are tired. So my husband and I will pause the game on our DVR and get the little ones to bed. We can then watch the rest of the game on our own. I usually fall asleep on the couch unless the game is super close, and my husband relishes the quiet time he has to criticize the referees and shake his head at the play calls without also having to play tackle games with our three-year-old.
Superbowl Sundays are definitely much calmer, but I find myself always looking forward to the cozy, comfy fiesta that it has become at our house.
How do you celebrate Superbowl Sunday? Let us know by leaving a comment or sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org