It's Super Bowl Week, which means the climactic finale of the 2022 NFL season is finally upon us. It also means we're fast approaching one of the best party days of the entire year. What is a Super Bowl, after all, without a full-blown gathering? Or at least a special spread of snacks for the big game? The Chiefs and Eagles are football's two best teams, set to square off for the next Lombardi Trophy. So let's honor their matchup with a championship-caliber menu.
What, exactly, belongs on that menu? We're so glad you asked. Here's a ranking of the top 10 Super Bowl snacks, plus some bonus recommendations on entrees, drinks and desserts from a few of our NFL experts:
10. Sugar sausages
Yes, for real. This one comes courtesy of our very own Tyler Sullivan, who was gracious enough to provide a step-by-step recipe onsite in Phoenix, the site of the Super Bowl: "Grab some kielbasa, slice it up into little pieces, throw it in a crockpot, get a light beer and pour that on top, throw a little brown sugar on it, and let it go." Sweet, salty and Super Bowl-caliber.
9. Baked ziti
NFL Assistant Managing Editor Kevin Steimle is responsible for this pick, voting for creativity -- and hearty flavor -- over the same stale favorites. Just make sure you don't go overboard before kickoff; this many carbs will weigh you down in a hurry. His recommended beverage of choice to pair with the pasta: a Kentucky Bourbon Barrel Ale, from Lexington Brewing, straight from a frosted glass.
8. Buffalo chicken dip
"This is a versatile side dish that can be eaten with chips, celery or just with a fork," says NFL writer and snack connoisseur John Breech. "What I'm trying to say is that I love this stuff, but for the record, I'm just going to call it chicken dip this year since Buffalo hasn't been associated with the Super Bowl since 1993."
7. Pigs in a blanket
Our own Jordan Dajani chose this one with pride. It's only fitting, too: Dajani has a soft spot for both the Commanders and Titans, so he needed a dish that combined two scrappy contenders: hot dogs and crescent rolls. The "pigs" nickname has a nice little tie-in to the Washington franchise, too, considering their backstory as "Hogs."
It's hard to go wrong here. Make 'em from a box, or make 'em from scratch. Either way, they're the kind of rich treat you can return to as the night wears on. "Calories eaten on Super Bowl Sunday don't count," says our own Sharra McCarriston, so get yourself a box of triple-chocolate chunk and celebrate the sweetness of another NFL season coming to a stunning close.
5. Grilled meat
Generic, yes, but NFL editor Eric Kernish insists that "the act of grilling is essential whenever possible during a Super Bowl." I'm not sure yet how this applies to me, a resident of Minnesota who enjoys negative temperatures during Super Bowl Week, but you can see why Eric feels this way: there's nothing that evokes an NFL Sunday quite like the charcoal fires of a tailgate.
A versatile snack if there ever was one: you can go straight cheese, add some pop with some guac, or just dump the entire kitchen sink on them and go to town.
3. Chips and dip
Have you ever dipped a formidable ripple into a creamy chive and onion? Also, have you ever tasted heaven?
Boring? Maybe. Clutch? Always. It's a wonder Tom Brady isn't the NFL's designated Little Caesar's spokesperson. The thing about pizza is, no matter what you choose -- greasy local joint, greasy big-name chain -- you pretty much know what you're gonna get. Just make sure you get yourself a nice ice-cold Coke to wash it all down. And then recommit to that diet.
Our own Shanna McCarriston isn't a believer: "Everyone will say wings, but a good seasoned chicken or steak tips is far superior." And she's probably not wrong. But there's also a reason "everyone will say wings." Because they're reliable! Let's be frank (or Frank's, if you prefer): it's a lot easier to order a couple dozen Buffalo bone-ins than cook a party's worth of steak tips without accidentally making jerky. Then you'd be paying for dental bills, not just premium beef cuts. Anyway, I digress. Slimy wings are an abomination, but as long as you avoid those, you're in for a finger-lickin' good time.