By David Grotto, RD, LDN
For today’s post, I’m going to spare you the usual dietary rhetoric and instead shower you with some really yummy recipes that are sure to be a hit at your Super Bowl gathering. But before I do, indulge me as I share my real-life Super Bowl story, which will hopefully make you keenly aware of the dangers of getting your head in the game while having a hand in the snack bag.
In 1985 I was single, living on my own and quite excited about hosting my first Super Bowl party. It was a very special time. You see, I’m from Chicago and the Bears were back in the Super Bowl for the first time since I was three years old. Money was tight and I didn’t have an elaborate spread to offer my guests. I purchased a ridiculously large “king-sized” bag of corn curls – it probably could have easily fed the Bears’ entire front line. Long story short, I became so involved in the game that I hadn’t noticed that I was hording the entire bag of corn curls. Four quarters and a halftime later, I realized that I pretty much devoured the entire circus-sized bag all by myself. The funny thing is I don’t care much for corn curls. Go figure!
Fast forward a few hours later and a trip to the urgent care center; I discovered that the body can only absorb so much fat in the course of a day. Trust me…you don’t want any more details than that. My point? Endless supplies of fatty foods without an eye on portion size are not good bed fellows. So the only bit of advice I have to offer before I share these great bowl recipes with you is to eat what you want but watch your portions!
Breakfast Bowl Kickoff: Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal with an Egg Boost
Stats: Oatmeal and eggs make a great combo because they both tackle hunger in a big way and may prevent you from overeating during the game!
1/3 cup of milk
1 package apple & cinnamon instant oatmeal
¼ cup vanilla yogurt
Chopped apples for garnish
Beat egg and milk in a 2-cup microwave-safe bowl until blended. Stir in oatmeal. Microwave on high for 1 ½ to 2 minutes or until liquid is absorbed and egg is set. Stir. Top with yogurt and chopped apples.
Recipe and photo courtesy of the American Egg Board, www.incredibleegg.org
First Quarter: The Lil’ Tuna Bowls
Stats: This omega-3-rich salad is a perfect for dipping with your fave raw veggies or with some nice hearty crackers.
2 cans chunk light tuna
2 tablespoons relish
1/2 tablespoon olive oil based mayonnaise
1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 cup Greek yogurt (fat free)
Drain tuna. Place all ingredients in a bowl and stir to combine. Scoop ¼ cup servings into individual mini bowls and serve with slices of cucumber, red pepper, carrots, celery sticks, and cherry tomatoes.
Recipe and photo courtesy of Rebecca Scritchfield, MA, RD, ACSM
Second Quarter: Black and Green Olive Tapenade Bowl
Stats: Olive it! You might be called for “holding” onto this monounsaturated fat-rich bowl. Don’t penalize your teammates – share!
1 cup black Kalamata olives
1 c green olives
1/4 c capers
1/4 c chopped fresh basil
1/4 c chopped fresh parsley
1/4 c chopped sundried tomatoes
1 small garlic clove
dash of oregano
1 c extra virgin olive oil
Place all ingredients in a food processor except for the olive oil. Process until chopped into small pieces. Add the olive oil and pulse chop a few times. Dish out into 1 serving bowl or individual bowls and serve with whole grain crostini crackers.
Recipe and photo courtesy of Nour Zibdeh, RD, www.practicalnutritionbydietitian.com
Halftime Classic: Chipotle Chili Bowl
Stats: This stick-to-the ribs offering with 34 grams of protein and 11 grams of fiber will ensure your team is satisfied and geared up for the second half!
Servings: 6 -1 ½ cup bowls
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 fennel bulb, halved, cored, and chopped
2 red bell peppers, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons finely chopped chipotles in adobe
1 tablespoon dried oregano
2 tablespoons chili powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
3 (14.5 ounce) cans no-salt added diced tomatoes, with liquid
1 (15 ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup of water
Directions: Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onion, fennel, peppers, and garlic and cook for 12-15 minutes, until vegetables are soft but not browned. Stir in chipotles, oregano, chili powder, and salt and cook for an additional one minute. Add remaining ingredients and gently simmer over low heat for at least an hour, stirring occasionally. Garnish with shredded cheese if desired and serve.
Recipe and photo courtesy of Renee Clerkin RD, LDN
3rd Quarter: Guac and Bowl Quinoa-Stuffed Avocado Skins
Stats: Get plenty of monounsaturated fats from avocado and sterols from quinoa with this delish combo sure to put a serious hurt on cholesterol!
1.5 cups cooked red quinoa that has cooled
2 avocados, diced
2 medium tomatoes, diced
2 Tbsp lemon juice
2 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
Directions: Cut avocados in half, remove the pit, and then cut avocado into a checkerboard pattern. Then scoop the pieces out with a spoon leaving the avocado skin halves in-tact and save these for later. In a bowl, combine cooked (and cooled) quinoa, avocado, diced tomatoes, lemon juice, olive oil, salt and pepper. Scoop quinoa filling into avocado skins (it’s about 1/3 cup scoop each) and enjoy!
Recipe and photo courtesy of Janel Ovrut Funk MS RD LDN, www.eatwellwithjanel.com
4th Quarter: The Fruit Bowl.
Stats: All those water and antioxidant-packed fruits will keep guests off the injured reserved bench from too many “WOOTS” and “BOO-YAHS” and injuries sustained from high and low fives that missed their mark.
You don’t need to look in your play book of recipes for this Super Bowl champion. Simply toss together a bunch of washed and cut up fruit like berries, grapes, melons…whatever…the team will LOVE it! More red and blue pigmented fruits just might help Uncle Mel’s knees recover from his reenactment of the “Superbowl Shuffle”…ouch!
Have fun out there – let me know how you liked the recipes from my fellow RDs. What are your plans for gameday? Share them in the comments below or in our Food and Cooking community.