Tasty Tailgating Recipes

August 11, 2022

Whether you’re gearing up for the big game live or cheering on your favorite time from your favorite campground the right tailgate recipe is sure to please. These easy tailgating recipes are sure to be a hit no matter when you decide to make them.

Below, you’ll find a few of our favorite tailgating recipes that are game-day approved.

Best Tailgating Recipes

Beer Brats


  • 2 Tbsp. butter
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 bottles lager-style beer
  • 10-12 bratwurst
  • Sauerkraut, spicy mustard, hearty buns, for serving



  1. Heat oil and butter in a sturdy Dutch oven.
  2. Add onions and saute over medium heat until soft, golden and caramelized, about 10 minutes.
  3. Add beer, scraping bottom of pan to get all the golden bits.
  4. Add brats and cook for 10 minutes.
  5. Remove brats from pot and grill each side until golden brown. Continue simmering onions while brats are cooking.
  6. Serve brats with cooked onions, kraut and mustard.


Cheesesteak Sandwiches


  • 1 (1 lb.) boneless ribeye steak, frozen for 1 hour
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 4 hoagie buns
  • Olive oil, for griddle
  • 1 green pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1 red pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
  • ½ cup shredded mozzarella
  • 8 slices provolone



  1. Freeze ribeye for an hour. Remove from freezer and thinly slice against the grain using a sharp knife. Set aside.
  2. Heat a flat griddle over medium-high heat.
  3. Melt butter and combine with garlic powder. Brush the insides of the hoagie rolls and toast on the griddle until golden brown. Set aside.
  4. Chop all vegetables.
  5. Drizzle griddle with olive oil and add veggies. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook until onions have caramelized, and peppers are tender, about 5 minutes. Remove from griddle and set aside.
  6. Drizzle griddle with more olive oil and spread steak out on the surface. Cook for 2-3 minutes, flip and cook the other sides for another 2-3 minutes.
  7. Add veggies back to griddle and mix with the steak. Form the steak/veggie mixture into four piles and top each with a sprinkle of mozzarella and two slices of provolone.
  8. Turn off grill and close the lid for a minute or so to let the cheese melt.
  9. Use a spatula to scoop up each pile and add to a toasted hoagie.


Grilled Buffalo Wings


  • 2 pounds chicken wings
  • 2 cans lager beer
  • 1 (12oz) bottle premade buffalo wing sauce
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • ¼ cup honey
  • for serving: blue cheese and ranch dressing, celery and carrot sticks, beer (if desired)



  1. Marinate wings in beer for at least 2 hours or overnight.
  2. Clean and oil grill. Preheat to medium-high (375-400 degrees).
  3. Add wings to grill, grouping them together to keep wings juicy. Cook for 20 minutes, flipping every 5 min or so. Once wings are cooked, place in a heatproof bowl, then cover with sauce, melted butter and honey. Toss to coat.
  4. Return wings to the grill and cook for another 5 minutes flipping once. Sear with blue cheese, ranch, celery and carrots sticks and beer. Cheers!


Jalapeno Popper Tot Dip


  • 1 (2lb) bag frozen tater tots
  • 2 (8oz) packages cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup light sour cream
  • Juice of ½ a lime
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. pepper
  • 6 jalapeno peppers, seeded and chopped
  • 2 cups shredded Mexican blend or cheddar cheese
  • 2 jalapeno peppers, sliced
  • 1 lb. bacon, cooked and chopped
  • 6 green onions, sliced (green & white parts)
  • 2 avocados, chopped
  • Tortilla chips, for serving



  1. Preheat oven to 425°F. Arrange tots in the bottom of a 9×13-inch casserole. Bake until crispy, about 25 minutes. Meanwhile combine cream cheese, sour cream, lime juice and spices in a large bowl. Stir in chopped jalapenos and 1 cup of the shredded cheese.
  2. Once tots are crispy, remove from oven, cool slightly and carefully spread cream cheese mixture over tots. Top with sliced jalapenos, followed by bacon and remaining cheese. Bake for 20 minutes, until bubbly and warmed throughout.
  3. To serve, top with green onions and avocado, then dig in with chips!


Cheesy Bubble Bread


  • 1 ¼ cups butter
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 3 Tbsp. chopped parsley
  • 2 cans refrigerated homestyle buttermilk biscuits
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella
  • ½ cup shredded Parmesan
  • Marinara sauce, for dipping



  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 13×9-inch baking pan with parchment paper and grease with butter or spray with cooking spray. Melt butter, garlic and salt in a saucepan. Stir in parsley.
  2. Open cans of rolls and cut each one into quarters. Roll into balls, dip in garlic butter and arrange closely together in prepared pan. Drizzle remaining garlic butter over rolls. Bake for 25 minutes until golden brown.
  3. Remove from oven and sprinkle with both cheeses. Return to oven for 3-5 minutes until cheese has melted. Cool until rolls can be touched and serve with warm marinara sauce.


Cast Iron Baked Beans


  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1/2 red pepper, chopped
  • 1/2 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 (15oz) can pork and beans
  • 1 (15oz) can kidney beans, drained
  • 1 (15oz) can cannellini beans, drained
  • 1 (15oz) can chick peas, drained
  • 1/2 cup ketchup
  • 1 Cup root beer
  • 1 Tbsp. dry mustard
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 6 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled



  1. Combine all ingredients and simmer, uncovered, on low or indirect heat, stirring occasionally, for 30 minutes or until thickened. Add additional salt and pepper if needed.


Green Chile Cheese Wontons



  • 1 (8oz) pkg. cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 (4oz) can chopped green chilies
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • ¼ tsp freshly ground pepper
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 cup shredded pepper jack cheese
  • 1 pkg wonton skins

Dipping Sauce

  • ½ cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 chipotle chile in adobo, chopped
  • Juice of ½ lime
  • 1-2 tsp. agave, to taste
  • Salsa, if desired



  1. In a medium bowl stir together cream cheese, green chiles, garlic powder, pepper and salt.
  2. Drop a teaspoon of filling in center of wonton skin, Brush all four sides with water and pinch two opposite sides together. Pinch remaining two sides together at the center of wonton, joining all four sides together. Seal all edges.
  3. Arrange a layer in your air fryer basket, making sure to leave space between wontons. Bake for 7-10 minutes, depending on your air fryer. (Note: It’s best to cook one wonton as a test to see what temp works best for your fryer.)
  4. While wontons are cooking, combine all dipping sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Pour salsa into another bowl.
  5. Cook remaining wontons. Serve while hot with dipping sauce and salsa. Makes about 30-35 wontons.


Grilled Pound Cake Sundaes


  • Pound cake (store bought or make your own)
  • Butter, melted
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1-2 cups chocolate chips
  • Ice cream
  • Berries and whipped cream to top



  1. Cut pound cake into slices and brush each side with butter before placing on the grill. Grill for two to three minutes per side.
  2. Bring heavy cream to simmer in heavy bottomed pot. Once hot, pour over chocolate chips and stir to melt.
  3. Top pound cake with ice cream and chocolate ganache. Add berries and whipped cream to taste.


About the Author: Kampgrounds of America

Kampgrounds of America is the largest system of open-to-the-public campgrounds in the world, with over 500 locations across the United States and Canada. Founded in Billings, MT in 1962, KOA’s family of campground brands – KOA Journey, KOA Holiday and KOA Resort – today serve more than a million camping families each year. KOA is dedicated to “connecting people to the outdoors and each other” by providing people with a variety of camping experiences and the information they need to make the most of their camping trip. Read more of their camping and travel resources by visiting



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