Loving the BITE: Super Bowl Recipe and Party Tips
Are you ready for some football? In my household, yep, we sure are. I happen to be married to one happy lifelong San Francisco 49ers fan. And, since I am one not-so-happy lifelong Denver Broncos fan, I’ll go ahead and concentrate on the food. Here’s what I’ll be cooking for our party and my tips for every cyclist trying to stay Healthy and Lean at parties throughout the year:
Recipe of the Week: Super-Easy Super Bowl Spicy Chicken Wings
- 3 lbs skinless chicken wings and/or drumsticks
- 2 Tbsp organic coconut oil or organic butter
- ¾ cup flavorful hot sauce (I like Chalula)
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 cup Greek yogurt
- ½ cup blue cheese crumbles
- salt/pepper to taste
- Place chicken in a slow cooker. Cover with hot sauce. Divide coconut oil or butter and place small amounts on top of chicken throughout slow cooker. Cook 6-8 hours on low.
- Meanwhile, mix yogurt and blue cheese. Salt and pepper to taste. Place in refrigerator.
- Once chicken in cooked, salt and pepper to taste. Dip in Fresh Blue Cheese dressing.
- ***Vegetarian Spicy Bean Option: Replace Chicken with 3 cans rinsed and drained garbanzo beans. Cook on low for 3-4 hours. If desire crispier texture, remove with slotted spoon, place on greased cookie sheet, and cook in oven for 15-20 minutes at 350 deg F.
I love a good party. And, throughout football season, we host many. While I think it’s fine to splurge and enjoy party foods without thinking about health every once in a while, it can become a problem when it’s every Sunday. Or, when you’re trying to lose weight. Or, when you’re staring the beginning of the Spring racing season in the face and you don’t feel like jumping up 2 pounds for one party. How can you enjoy yourself without gaining weight?
Here are my Top 5 Party Tips:
- Even though there might be a buffet spread, and even though it may be setting out tempting you to eat ALL DAY, try to still see it as a normal meal. Don’t get sucked into eating all day. Instead, wait until you’re ready to eat a meal, choose 1-2 protein foods, some vegetables (if available – see #2), and one small treat. This is about portion control. And, after you’re done with your meal, stop eating.
- Make sure vegetables are available. No, you don’t have to be the guy who shows up with a salad and kale chips. But, a relish plate is always welcome at a party. And, with a main meal like Chicken Wings, of course you should have carrot sticks and celery sticks on the side. If #1 doesn’t work and you are tempted to eat throughout the day, guess what will be waiting for you? Carrot and celery sticks.
- Moderate your drinking. I often say that binge drinking is a triple edged sword (yes, I know, there’s no triple-edged sword). Here’s how this imaginary sword cuts you 3 ways: 1) It loads on the calories…even a non-sugary alcoholic drink times five is a whole lotta calories, 2) It reduces your inhibitions, including those concerning food choices, which often leads to overeating, 3) It can make it more difficult for your body to burn fat, for up to 3 days following the binge, as your liver deals with the alcohol rather than oxidizing fat. So, make sure to enjoy one to two tall glasses of water or unsweetened iced tea between all alcoholic drinks.
- Enjoy the company more than the food. You can still enjoy the game whether you’ve got a plate in hand or not. Sipping on some water? You’re still a funny guy. Don’t make it a food party. It’s a football party.
- Get in some activity ahead of time. Wake up early and go for a ride if possible (don’t leave it for afterwards as it won’t likely happen). But take note: this does not give you a license to overeat or over-drink. Ride early assuming that your nutrition for the day will be less than stellar. Still be on your best behavior and leave the party satisfied with your discipline in both areas.
Parties are a wonderful part of life, and I hope to never be the buzz-kill-anti-party-dietitian . I say, enjoy it. But, don’t let parties become stumbling blocks that rear their ugly heads every throughout the year. Instead, learn to manage them and control yourself. And, don’t get too caught up in the number on the scale the day after, as the usual high sodium party foods will likely make you retain water. Instead, be active, stay disciplined, and then give yourself a few days before looking at your weight. And, if needed, our Junk Food Anti-Venom Smoothie has your back.