Football Food is Back!

Guess what time of year it is ya’ll! Football is back…now I’m just waiting for the AZ weather to get up to par with how I am feeling. You better believe my Ohio State Buckeye decorations are out and ready for Saturdays… not to forget the pumpkin candle as well!

While football season is my absolute favorite, I’ve heard many times before that tailgating and watching the games on Saturdays comes with a lot of extras calories. Yes, for the most part this is correct. Between the beer, chicken wings, pizza, and long list of dips, it is easy to pack in a few extra hundred calories during your game-filled weekends. While I love buffalo chicken dip and pizza just a much as the next person, this post is meant to give you a different look at your game day menu. My homemade baked hot chicken “wings” and garlic herb fries were a big hit with hub, so that means they must not be too shabby! I hope you try these 2 lighter game day recipes and let me know what you think! Go bucks!

The recipes serve 2-3


Garlic Herb Fries: 

  • 2 medium Yukon gold potatoes, sliced into strips (you can make your fries whatever shape or thickness you like)
  • 2 Tbsp canola oil
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • herbs/seasonings: black pepper, dried thyme, dried Italian herb blend, dried basil, garlic powder, onion powder, salt

Baked Spicy Hot Wings:

  • 7-8 bonesless, skinless chicken tenders
  • 1/3 cup Franks Red Hot Sauce
  • 3 Tbsp Light Ranch dressing
  • 3/4-1 cup plain bread crumbs
  • bread crumb seasonings: garlic powder, red pepper, black pepper, salt
  • canola oil spray


Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Once you have sliced your potatoes, add them to a medium sized bowl with your canola oil and seasonings. I tend to not measure my seasonings. I will tell you I used quite a good amount of black pepper. I only added a sprinkle of salt at the very end when they came out of the oven.


Finely mince your 2 garlic cloves and add them to the bowl as well. Toss your potatoes until they are evenly coated. Add them to a large baking sheet (I sprayed it will a little extra cooking spray just to make sure they didn’t stick. Let your fries cook for 30 minutes exactly. Be sure to use a spatula half way through to move them around a bit so both sides become golden brown.

Once they have finished cooking, let your fries cool on a few paper towels to soak up any extra oil. While they are still hot, top with a little salt. Enjoy!


Start by cutting your tenders in half or thirds to make them about the size of a normal chicken wing. In a large bowl, mix your ranch dressing with the hot sauce. As you cut your tenders, add them to the bowl and toss. In a separate shallow dish, mix your bread crumbs with a little salt, pepper, garlic powder, and a PINCH (I cannot emphasize this more!!!) of red pepper. Red pepper is EXTREMELY hot, so unless you like things unbelievably hot, cool it with the pepper. Don’t forget, they are already sitting in hot sauce!

Once your chicken is coated in the hot sauce/dressing mixture, toss each piece in the bread crumbs, patting them down slightly to assure the bread crumbs stick. Place on a baking sheet with a little cooking spray.

Cook your wings at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes then lower your heat to 375 and cook for an additional 5-6 minutes. Once they are finished, place your oven on broil and broil for an additional minute or so to get the exposed side a little crispy. Don’t look away for too long; you don’t want them to burn! Let cool for 5-10 minutes before digging in! Enjoy!


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