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August 8, 2022

The Ultimate Tailgate Menu | Best Game Day Food Ideas  

College football season is almost upon us. That means another season to get out, cheer on the Wildcats (Bear Down!), and hopefully watch the team compete in the Pac 12. Plus, with UCLA and USC leaving for the Big Ten in 2024, this will be the last chance to see USC play in Tucson for, in all likelihood, a very long time (UCLA will play its last game in Tucson next year).

There’s no better way to gear up for the games than the pregame tailgate. And with most of the early season games kicking off at night, it gives you plenty of time to eat, drink, and just have fun with friends.

Even if the game doesn’t go as you hoped, you can still control the tailgate and offer up the ultimate food spread. Whether you are tailgating right on the main drag of lawn, or you have a secret location that you and your friends like to hit up, there are plenty of easy, tasty and cheap options you can serve your guests, both with and without a grill.

3 foot tuna sub

3-Foot Subs

Whether you’re in a pinch and running out of time to prep for the tailgate, or you want something that will feed the masses and satisfy stomachs, a 3-foot sub from eegee’s is the way to go. These subs come in many variations that are then cut down into three-inch sections.

These smaller sections make perfect finger food, and it’s easy enough to go up and get more whenever guests want. Plus, you can serve the subs cold, so if you have a prolonged tailgate, you never have to worry about the food cooling on you.

In fact, when setting up your tailgate menu, the one thing you’ll need to worry about with eegee’s party subs is whether or not you have enough.

burgers and hot dogs on a grill

Dogs and Burgers

You can include chicken wings in your menu if you want, but have you seen the price of chicken wings these days? Those things are not only getting more expensive, but they’re also getting more difficult to locate. And, let’s face it, chicken thighs just aren’t as good as chicken wings. Thankfully, dogs and burgers are so much easier to handle.

You can cook these up quickly, so if more guests stop by you’re able to toss a few more up on the grill. And while boxes of frozen burgers are easy, it’s always best to grab some ground beef and whip up the burger patties yourself. This way you can add your secret spice blend for that extra special taste.

No grill? That won’t be an issue, at least with the dogs. You can go New York City hot dog vender and boil the hot dogs for that extra plump, ballpark taste.

Chips and Dip

Want something that’s cold and doesn’t take a load of work? Chips and dip are the way to go. And, thankfully, because you live in Tucson you have access to some of the best salsa and guac in the country. Whether you decide to make it your own, grab it from the store, or pick up a few pints from your favorite local Mexican restaurant, there are plenty of options. Just make sure to keep the guacamole covered, otherwise, you’ll end up with that layer of brown on top.

individual cups of mixed fruit over ice

Mixed Fruit

Maybe not a tailgate staple, but this is an awesome option when it’s hot out. Grab a pre-made bag of frozen mixed fruit and pour it into a large serving bowl. By the time guests start to grab the fruit, it will be just cool enough to bite into.

It’s also an excellent option because you already know there is going to be at least one person that shows up and wants something healthy. With the frozen fruit, you can at least give them something (and maybe even grab a turkey sub from eegee’s, which will give them a lean meat option as well).

Potato Salad

Potato salad might be the one side that really goes with everything. It matches perfectly with a sub, and it’s an exceptional complement to hot dogs or burgers. It’s colder, which means you not only can bypass the grill, but you can make it the night before, which will help you with prepping.

Just, please, for everyone else that’s going to be at the tailgate, don’t be the person that puts raisins into their potato salad. If you want something fruity, you can have the mixed frozen fruit on hand. But do not toss raisins into the potato salad, unless you don’t want anyone else eating it.

large bowl of bean chili


Okay, so this might not be the kind of food you serve right out of the gate in September. In fact, you probably don’t want to whip out the chili for the first two months of the football season. But during one of those late October or early November night games, there’s really nothing better than making homemade chili.

With chili there are so many other meals you can spin out of it. You can use it for the ultimate chili-cheese dip, which goes well with both French fries and nachos. You can build chili dogs, and if you want to go Cincinnati on guests, you can pour some chili over pasta for a little bit of chili mac. Or, of course, you can just chow down on that bowl of chili.

It’s always a great idea to offer some variety to your tailgate menu items over the course of the year. This way, guests never fully know what they are going to get when they arrive. It also helps keep things interesting, even if the game isn’t.

eegees Fun Pak

Even though the football season doesn’t start until September, it’s still going to be hot outside. Cooler weather isn’t going to come until well into October, which means you’ll want to find ways to help cool off guests.

Having iced cold beverages on hand is one thing, but maybe you want to kick the flavor up to the next level. If that’s the case, you can pick up an eegee’s party pak of your favorite eegee flavor, then mix it into a cocktail, or just drink it as is.

Start Tailgate Meal Planning Today

Before you know it the Wildcats will be back in fall camp, which means the season will be fast approaching. So start tailgate meal planning today. And remember, if you are ever in a pinch or want food that will feed fans without causing you any stress, your local eegee’s is always ready to help.

What!?! FREE eegee’s? Yes!

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