How To

No Stadium Required: Chef’s Guide to Tailgating from your Couch

No Stadium Required: Chef’s Guide to Tailgating from your Couch

Jan 21, 2017

chicken being made on a sheet pan

Don’t worry if you don’t have tickets to the big game, we’ve got you covered with game day recipes, grilling tips and of course, beer. Here’s our chefs and experts’ guide to throwing an epic tailgate party right from the comforts of your couch.

Set the Scene
“Get out those team colors! Find creative ways to incorporate your home team’s colors into the décor be it with disposable plates and silverware, centerpieces, flowers or even the food itself,” says Amanda Geary, Parties and Special Events Manager at Wildfire.

“Keep in mind the golden rule: One TV please! Allow for open floor space for guests to move around and cheer. Dedicate another space for the non-watchers and make sure there’s some food and drink easily accessible for both.”

Grill, Baby, Grill
No parking lot? No problem. You can still grill at home and recreate that tailgate experience. Just remember: A certain amount of prep work is needed because not even the best recipe in the world will work if your grill isn’t clean. For a refresher, here’s a step-by-step guide from Community Canteen’s Executive Sous Chef Phil Frederick:

1.  Brush your grill grates thoroughly with a hard-bristle grill brush.

2.  Clear the interior of any ash. If you have a gas grill, make sure the burners are clean and the holes are unobstructed to allow for proper gas flow.

3.  Next, heat up your grill prior to use and brush again with a clean towel or grill brush dipped in oil.  Allow it to dry and repeat three times to ensure the grates are clean and “seasoned.”

4.  Make sure to keep your grill clean during use. Brush and re-oil as often as needed.

5.  Once you get down to grilling, brush a little oil on meats, veggies and fish before putting them on the grill to avoid sticking.

6.  Always let your grill heat up properly before placing on the food. Hot and clean grill grates will prevent sticking.

Recipes They’ll Cheer For
We asked our chefs for their favorite game day eats, from dips to wings. Here are some recipes to try at your next home game.

Calabrian Chili and Roast Garlic Chicken Wings from stella barra

Here is the recipe for Calabrian Chili and Roast Garlic Chicken Wings with Chive Garnish from Stella Barra Pizzeria Chef Darren Underway.

Carolina-Style Pulled Pork with Mustard Mop  from Community Canteen

Here is the recipe for Carolina-Style Pulled Pork with Mustard Mop from Community Canteen’s Executive Sous Chef Phil Frederick.

Spinach and Artichoke Fondue from Wildfire

Here is the recipe for Spinach and Artichoke Fondue from Wildfire, Divisional Executive Chef Moreno Espinoza.

Let’s Talk Beer

pint glasses of beer
You don’t want your beer selection to be a gametime decision so we asked our beer experts: What do you drink during the big game?

Stella Barra Pizzeria’s Bartender, Jeff Clark’s pick: Stiegl Radler – “This fruit forward beer is brewed in Austria and has a low 2.5% abv, a grapefruit-forward taste, and drinks more like a grapefruit soda than a beer.”

Stella Barra Pizzeria’s Bar Manager, Jeff Chang’s pick: Lagunitas Maximus – “Lagunitas Maximus is from my home state of California and really is an IPA on steroids. Packing an ABV of 8.2% it’s sure to satisfy your needs for hops.”

Wildfire Wine and Spirits Director, Brad Wermager’s picks: Samuel Adams Boston Lager – “Pair this with burgers and brats since the caramel/malty flavors in the beer will marry well with the juicy and savory flavors of these tailgate favorites. For the Wildfire Spinach and Artichoke fondue, I would definitely pair the Blue Moon Belgian White Ale since the coriander and orange elements in the Blue Moon works well with the cream and artichokes.”

Big Bowl Alcohol Manager, JD Russell’s picks: Evolution Lot #6 Double IPA – “We’ve featured this beer from Maryland that’s bursting with hop flavor aroma. We recently collaborated with Evolution for a beer dinner and we had Lot #6 paired with local peach and blueberry cobbler for dessert … an absolute match made in heaven.”

We hope this helps you have the best football bash ever. Happy tailgating!


You May Also Like...

In The Restaurants
New Detroit-Style Pan Pizza Rises at Stella Barra Hollywood
Sep 20, 2018

The Detroit-style pan pizza craze has swept the Midwest for years, and now, it has reached the West…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Here’s Where to Brunch this Weekend
Sep 17, 2018

If you're anything like us, you plan your weekend around brunch. Here is your guide to all of our…

read more >
How To
A Few Of Our Favorite Game Day Recipes
Sep 14, 2018

When you are in the mood to get your hands dirty in the kitchen for hosting your crew or solo…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Gluten-Free Friendly Restaurants
Sep 12, 2018

Finding gluten-free friendly restaurants has gotten a lot easier than it used to be. At Lettuce…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Rise & Shine: The Best Way to Breakfast During the Week
Sep 12, 2018

Early risers rejoice! We've rounded up all of our weekday breakfast specialties that will keep you…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Food For Thought: What Our Chefs Cook Their Kids
Sep 12, 2018

School is back in session and our chefs are cookin' up a storm...but this time for the kiddos. We…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Where to Eat Lunch
Sep 10, 2018

For that one hour escape from your office, you want to make sure to make most of your lunch hour.…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Free Delivery Through DoorDash
Sep 6, 2018

Through September, DoorDash is offering FREE DELIVERY for all Lettuce restaurants! Still feel like…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Best Spots for Group Dining
Sep 5, 2018

You finally got the whole crew to agree on the same day and time, now you just have to find the…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Kid-Friendly Dining Options and Activities
Sep 3, 2018

You've been to the zoo, the beach, the pool... the kids are starting to get stir crazy. We've got…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Here’s Where to Happy Hour
Sep 1, 2018

It's 5 o'clock somewhere! Here are all the happy hour deals at select Lettuce Entertain You…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Fall Foliage on the Horizon: Five Ways to Enjoy the Season
Aug 28, 2018

As summer dwindles down, our days are getting chillier and the leaves are starting to turn. Fall is…

read more >
In The Restaurants
The Best Time of the Year: Patio Season
Aug 10, 2018

Warm weather is here, which means al fresco dining is too! We've rounded up the best patios at…

read more >
In The Restaurants
One of Our Favorite Things About Summer: Heirloom Tomatoes
Aug 1, 2018

As we savor the last months of the summer season, our chefs are just getting ready to add heirloom…

read more >
How To
This Summer, Grill Like A Chef. Here’s How
Jul 19, 2018

Executive Chef Justin Diglia of Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab in Chicago and his…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Your Summer Ice Cream Checklist
Jul 19, 2018

I SCREAM, YOU SCREAM...we all know the drill so let's get to the good stuff. July is National Ice…

read more >
How To
Jeff Mahin’s Grilled Peaches & Burrata
Jul 19, 2018

Nothing screams summer more than ripe, sweet peaches! Chef / Partner Jeff Mahin of Stella…

read more >
How To
Wildfire’s Classic Blueberry Pie Recipe
Jul 19, 2018

Wildfire is known for their seasonal pies so of course, we want to learn from the best. The perfect…

read more >
In The Restaurants
All The Reasons Why We Love Fried Chicken
Jul 4, 2018

Fact: there's never a bad time for fried chicken. Grab it on your way to the beach, order it up for…

read more >
How To
Perfect Pair: Champagne & Fried Chicken
Jul 3, 2018

Fried chicken and Champagne? Really? Yep, you read that right. Kevin Bratt, Wine Director of Joe's…

read more >
In The Restaurants
4th of July 2018
Jul 3, 2018

It's that time of year to don your red, white and blue, fire up the grill and, of course, celebrate…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Be Your Summer Cookout’s Hero
Jul 2, 2018

It's 4th of July weekend and we know you don't want to show up empty-handed to your BBQ. We're here…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Somm Picks: Top Bottles Under $50
Jun 26, 2018

Searching through wine lists can be a daunting task. Thumbing through dozens of pages filled with…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Rich Says You’ve Gotta Try: Stella Barra Pizzeria
Jun 13, 2018

Summer time is typically synonymous with (trying to) eat lighter but what if we told you that what…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Unconventional Wine Regions of the World
May 24, 2018

Everyone loves a great Napa Cab or Sauvignon Blanc from Sancerre, but lately, our LEYE Wine…

read more >
How To
Here’s How to Make Pesto
May 21, 2018

Summer is upon us and one of our favorite seasonal condiments is pesto! You can make pesto with…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Farm(ers Market) Right to Your Table: Brunch at Stella Barra
May 17, 2018

Chef / Partner Jeff Mahin (Summer House Santa Monica, Stella Barra Pizzeria, M Street Kitchen and…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Brunching in the Chicago Burbs?
May 16, 2018

When planning your weekend, brunch should always be a priority and trust us, there’s lox to love…

read more >
How To
How To: Make a Restaurant-Quality Dinner at Home
May 11, 2018

Our friends at Peapod are making it easier for you to enjoy your favorite dishes from Wildfire and…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Your Guide to the 26 Best Burgers to Try During National Burger Month
Apr 30, 2018

Burgers deserve a full month of celebrations which is why May has been declared National Burger…

read more >
How To
Recipe: Community Canteen’s Carolina-Style Pulled Pork with Mustard Mop
Apr 13, 2018

Community Canteen's Carolina Style Pulled Pork with Mustard Mop will need two hands to devour! This…

read more >
How To
Recipe: Wildfire’s Kale & Artichoke Fondue
Apr 13, 2018

Wildfire's Kale & Artichoke Fondue is a healthy and delicious option for game day! With a…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Make Way for the New Fleet Of Thin Sin Pizzas at Stella Barra
Mar 30, 2018

Stella Barra Pizzeria  just introduced a new fleet of thin sin pizzas at all locations and trust us…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Dishes and Drinks with the Color of the Year: Ultra Violet
Mar 30, 2018

Every year, Pantone, the creator of colors, announces their choice in what the Color of the Year is…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Get a Slice for Pi Day
Mar 13, 2018

We all love a good pun, especially when it has to do with food! Mathematicians and foodies rejoice…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Meet the Women Behind Some of Your Favorite Desserts
Mar 7, 2018

In honor of International Women's Day on March 8 (and every day) we want to give a shout out and…

read more >
In The Restaurants
St Paddy’s Day 2018
Mar 1, 2018

St. Patrick's Day calls for corned beef, cabbage and all of the beer! Lucky for you, our restaurants…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Stella Barra’s Newest Happy Hour with Pizza by the Slice
Feb 28, 2018

How do you Happy Hour? Stella Barra Pizzeria has all the answers, with a new menu that just debuted…

read more >
In The Restaurants
This One’s For Our Indecisive Diners
Feb 26, 2018

For all of you indecisive order-ers out there - the "I want to order one of everything on the menu"…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Lettuce in Love: Weddings with Lettuce Parties
Feb 13, 2018

It's almost Valentine's Day and love is in the air. Believe it or not it's a tale as old as time (or…

read more >

Recent Posts

In The Restaurants
Late Night & Live Music with Lettuce
Sep 20, 2018

Night owls rejoice - select Lettuce restaurants and nightclubs offer everything from late-night food…

read more >
In The Restaurants
New Detroit-Style Pan Pizza Rises at Stella Barra Hollywood
Sep 20, 2018

The Detroit-style pan pizza craze has swept the Midwest for years, and now, it has reached the West…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Celebrate Oktoberfest with this Festive Kickoff Party at Hub 51
Sep 19, 2018

With fall, we see the arrival of apple-picking, pumpkin spice-flavored everything and best of…

read more >
How To
This Secret Ingredient Will Take Your Guac to the Next Level
Sep 18, 2018

El Segundo Sol serves up some of the freshest, most authentic Mexican food on the Las Vegas Strip,…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Here’s Where to Brunch this Weekend
Sep 17, 2018

If you're anything like us, you plan your weekend around brunch. Here is your guide to all of our…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Cooking and Dance Classes To Improve Your Skills
Sep 17, 2018

Ever wanted to learn how to cook like a chef or dance like a pro? We offer a variety of ongoing and…

read more >
How To
A Few Of Our Favorite Game Day Recipes
Sep 14, 2018

When you are in the mood to get your hands dirty in the kitchen for hosting your crew or solo…

read more >
In The Restaurants
5 Ways to Play Summer Scratch Off
Sep 13, 2018

Summer is coming to an end, but that doesn’t mean the fun has to stop. Lucky for you, you can play…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Gluten-Free Friendly Restaurants
Sep 12, 2018

Finding gluten-free friendly restaurants has gotten a lot easier than it used to be. At Lettuce…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Rise & Shine: The Best Way to Breakfast During the Week
Sep 12, 2018

Early risers rejoice! We've rounded up all of our weekday breakfast specialties that will keep you…

read more >
In The Restaurants
Food For Thought: What Our Chefs Cook Their Kids
Sep 12, 2018

School is back in session and our chefs are cookin' up a storm...but this time for the kiddos. We…

read more >
In The Restaurants
You Can Earn $$ By Booking Your Holiday Party Early, Here’s How!
Sep 11, 2018

Are you in charge of booking your company (or friends) annual holiday party this year? If the answer…

read more >
Lettuce Consulting Group

Grow Your Business

Learn More
Career Opportunities

Join Our Team

Search Jobs
Latest Articles

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

Sign Up Now

Lettuce on Instagram

Checkout our feed @lettuceentertainyou!