It could be argued that the best part about watching the Super Bowl—beyond the halftime entertainment, clever ad debuts and (occasional) moments of on-field excitement—is getting to eat and drink whatever you want while you watch it. Even if you don’t care about the game or Lady Gaga, you can always dig into the bevy of greasy eats, from buffalo wings to chili, to chips and guac.
But perhaps you’re not ready to surrender your new year’s diet for one afternoon of leatherhead-sponsored indulgence?
There are ways to snack as you watch without sacrificing taste or nutrition. Tricia Williams, the executive chef and founder of Food Matters NYC, an organic customized food delivery service, shares guilt-free recipes that you can use on game day.
“We love to recreate people’s favorite foods in a healthful way,” says Williams. “I believe eating is a pleasure and you should enjoy [it].”
“They make a great substitute for the original snack and everyone will appreciate their earthy spice and zing,” says Williams.
This healthy spin on the junk food wonder of your childhood substitutes a spice mix of garlic powder, onion powder, red pepper powder, green pepper powder, turmeric, a pinch of ancho chili powder and nutritional yeast in place of the finger-linking “nacho cheese” topping.
The protein-rich quinoa chips are formed out of a dough of quinoa flour, salt and water, lightly sauteed in saffron or sunflower oil on high heat, and then baked in the oven at 300 degrees until crispy.
Kimchi powder, coconut oil and a pinch of sea salt make for a spicy, jazzed up popcorn that’s also good for you. Kimchi is aprobiotic, which means it contains immunity-building bacteria that aid in digestion, while coconut oil is a good source of healthy fat and fiber. “I find popcorn tossed in coconut oil helps you feel fuller for longer so you don’t eat as much,” Williams says.
To make the kimchi spice, spread the contents of one small jar of kimchi on a baking sheet and roast at low heat, with the oven door slightly open, for about four hours or until dried out. Then, blend or grind up the dehydrated kimchi until its powder-fine. (If you don’t have the time or patience for this process, Williams recommends subbing in any store-bought vegetable powder, such as spinach or beet.)Full recipe below
Healthier buffalo wings
“Restaurant chicken wings are often coated with white flour and fried in vegetable oil. I like to bake my wings until they are super crispy and then toss them in our vegetable-based buffalo sauce,” explains Williams.
Her butter-free buffalo sauce combines diced vegetables including red peppers, carrots, onions with tomato paste, cider vinegar and maple syrup to give it a tang and thickness. The wings are tossed with canola oil and sea salt and then baked at high heat. She pairs it with a “blue cheese” dipping sauce, which blends cashews until they’re creamy and adds apple cider and lemon.
Kimchi Popcorn recipe, provided byYancy Gandionco, Food Matters NYC chef
1 small jar kimchi
3 tablespoons coconut oil
1/3 cup organic or heirloom popcorn kernels
Sea salt to taste
Yields: 4 Servings
Preheat oven to its lowest setting. Strain jar of kimchi. Spread kimchi evenly out onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Place in oven with door slightly open. New ovens often come with a magnet to prop door open to give oven the ability to dehydrate. Let dry overnight or until kimchi is completely dried out. Place in blender or spice grinder and pulverize into a powder. Set aside.
In a three-quart pot, heat coconut oil, popcorn kernels and salt over medium heat. Allow kernels to pop. Remove from heat and sprinkle immediately with kimchi powder.