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Tips for Planning a Winning Game-Day Menu

Photo Credit: Jodi Moreno, via saveur.com

Whole Foods Market and SAVEUR are partnering with Blog Awards winners and finalists for In Good Company, a series of culinary exploits from discovering new beers and sparkling wines to meeting local farmers and foragers.

This week, we’re spotlighting Jodi Moreno, winner of the SAVEUR Blog Awards finalist for Most Delicious for her blog what’s cooking good looking, which features creative, wholesome and tasty recipes.  

In her post Buffalo Cauliflower with Tangy Scallion Cashew Cream Jodi shared four tips for planning a game-day menu with healthier options and special diets in mind. They include:

  1. First and foremost, always keep it simple. Too many items on the menu, or not choosing things that you can easily prepare ahead of time is bound to set you back. For small gatherings with mostly finger foods, try to keep it to around three really great dishes that can mostly be done in advance.
  2. Plan the menu a few days in advance, which will also help you seek out special recipes if you have guests with diet preferences. Buy everything you can a day in advance, and plan to have everything prepped and mostly cooked before your guests arrive. This will allow you to spend more time with your friends and less time in the kitchen (and will also give you some breathing room in case you need to run out for some last minute wine or beer).
  3. Ditch the ol’ cheese plate and replace it with veggies, really tasty olives, gluten-free crackers and non-dairy dips. There are so many delicious dips you can make yourself at home (and so many options on the shelves of Whole Foods Market) that are free of dairy and gluten. I promise you, no one will miss the cheese plate.
  4. Last but not least, don’t stress. In my experience, friends are generally happy to be invited over for a get-together, fed, and in good company. Food always tastes best when the host is relaxed and everyone is having a good time.

Get Jodi’s recipe for Buffalo Cauliflower with Tangy Scallion Cashew Cream. Tip: The cashew cream can be made a couple days in advance!

If you’re looking for more better-for-you recipes, here are a few of our VIPs.

Lentil Sloppy Joes Recipe

Creamy Spinach Dip Recipe

Bison Chili Recipe

Beet Hummus Recipe

What are your best plays for serving a crowd on game day? Share your tips in the comments section.