Football season is here, which can only mean one thing: it's tailgate time. Whether you're planning a small, old school set-up from the back of your trunk or an all-day parking lot extravaganza with a big group, you'll need the goods to make sure your pregame party runs smoothly. Below, we've rounded up the newest tools and gadgets for tailgating, from portable grills to oversized games and several small items you never knew you needed. It's time to for your tailgate to turn up—let us help.
Traeger Ranger Tabletop Grill
Made in Salt Lake City, Traeger Grills allows you to use wood pellets for your outdoor cooking, and this grill’s compact design will let you smoke, bake, roast, grill and barbeque from any parking lot across the nation. It comes with a grill grate and cast-iron grilled, plus a meat probe and a tool that lets you set precise temperatures in five-degree increments.
Available at williams-sonoma.com, $399.95
Wicked Big Sports Supersized Flip-Cup Game
A good ol’ game of flip cup is a fun way to kill some time before kickoff, but a giant game of flip cup with supersized cup is an even better way. Each cup is 12” tall and the set comes with four red and four white cups, so eight people can join in on the madness.
Available at amazon.com, $24.99
Caravan Sports Infinity Zero Gravity Chair
Don’t sacrifice comfort at your tailgate this season. Take your cold beverage, sit back and relax on a chair that is designed to replicate the feeling of weightlessness astronauts experience in space—seriously. The chair reduces pressure and tension in the back while still providing support to your back.
Available at dickssportinggoods.com, $60
Tacklife Electric-Arc Lighter
A lighter may seem like a no-brainer item to pack for a tailgate, but instead of firing up the grill with a bargain-store click lighter or a pack of old matches, do yourself a favor and get this rechargeable, no-spark lighter with a flexible neck that delivers more than 1000 ignitions on a full charge.
Available at amazon.com, $15
Franklin Barbecue: A Meat-Smoking Manifesto
In this best-selling book, the pitmaster and owner of the famed Austin restaurant Franklin Barbecue shares his secrets to great barbeque, so you can bring mind-blowing, mouth-watering meat to your next tailgate.
Available at amazon.com, $11
King Kooker Portable Outdoor Cooker with Wok
For those who prefer a more gourmet tailgate meal, heat up this outdoor, propane-powered wok cooker and let the magic happen. You can make just about anything in this thing and the simplified framework of the cooker makes for an easy setup and breakdown after the game.
Available at amazon.com, $57
YETI ice packs
If you’ve already purchased a YETI cooler for your brews, ditch the messy bags of ice and pack up your food and beverages with the brand’s ice packs, with freezer faster and stay cooler longer. No clean up needed.
Available at dickssportinggoods.com, from $14.99
Murphy Board & Knife Set
Available at ahalife.com, $125
Cuisinart Venture Portable Gas Grill
If you don’t have the space for a big set-up, this is the grill for you. The propane tank gets stored in the base of the grill and the large handle makes this easy to carry. The added bonus? The wood lid doubles as a chopping board.
Available at amazon.com, $183
Portable Pizza Oven Pot
If burgers and smoked brisket aren’t your jam, you can make fresh pizza at your tailgate instead with this made-in-Japan compact pot, which uses double lids and a special heat rings to make cooking up a pie with a golden brown crust as easy as, well, pie.
Available at ahalife.com, $179
Tailgater Two-Person Folding Aluminum Chair
Don’t fight over the one chair at your tailgate bash. This folding chair is designed for two adults and has two drink holders in the armrest, plus a shoulder strap for easy carrying.
Available at houzz.com, $71.99
Watermelon Tap Kit
Savor the last of summer’s signature fruit by making it the marquee refreshment at your tailgate. This kit helps you turn a hollowed-out watermelon into a drink dispenser filled with your favorite cocktail. And here’s a tip for when fall approaches: it works with pumpkins, too.
Available at williams-sonoma.com, $24.95
ION Tailgater Express Portable Bluetooth Speaker
A booming speaker is a must for any proper tailgate party. This one is waterproof, plus it has a 20W built-in dynamic amplifier so you can play music via Bluetooth through your phone, or from its integrated AM/FM radio. But the best part of this speaker is the microphone input, just in case you’re up for a parking lot karaoke party.
Available at bestbuy.com, $59.99
Fanatics team gear
Sure—food, drinks and friends are all integral parts of a successful tailgate, but you’re not a true fan unless you’re repping your school or team. Whether you’re rooting for the home squad or cheering in enemy territory, Fanatics has gear for every team, for every type of weather.
The Condiment Collection
Gourmet tailgaters will love this Mediterranean-inspired condiment collection, which includes flavored mayonnaises, fired-up ketchups, spicy piri piri sauces and a classic romesco sauce.
Available at ahalife.com, $72
Grill Prep Trays
Sold in a set of two, these trays are a must-have for any grill master. The red and black colors are designed to help differentiate between raw meat and cooked meat, to prevent cross-contamination, but you can use them to hold anything that is coming off the coals smokin’ hot.
Available at williams-sonoma.com, $20