If you're not headed to Atlanta to watch the game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, or if you've decided to forgo a Sunday Funday out at one of your local sports bars, it's safe to say that you'll likely be watching Super Bowl LIII from the couch at home. And with the big game just days away, it's time to start thinking about the most important part of Super Bowl Sunday: the food. While a big screen TV and plenty of ice-cold beverages are essential to your viewing party, you can't possibly watch Patriots–Rams without some nourishment.
What are the best Super Bowl party foods to serve your hungry guests? We polled SI staffers to find out and rank the most popular finger foods and appetizers typically served on Super Bowl Sunday. Does pizza belong on a Super Bowl menu? Are foods that require utensils off-limits? It's safe to say: there were some opinions. But in the end, we arrived at the ultimate ranking of the best Super Bowl snacks, from substandard choices to must-have staples.
12. Crab Dip
What exactly is crab dip? Many SI staffers weren't sure, but we can confirm it is a warm, creamy dip that is made with cream cheese, mayonnaise, spices and some lump crab meat, and then baked in the oven and served with chips or slices of bread. It's apparently a famous New Orleans dish, which means Saints fans will likely drown themselves in it on Super Bowl Sunday.
11. Potato Skins
Before they started the endless appetizer promotion, restaurant chain T.G.I. Friday's had a half-priced apps special during the evenings and late-night, and their famous loaded baked potato skins were definitely a staple. Loaded up with cheddar cheese and crispy bacon bits and served with ranch and sour cream, potato skins are a decent choice.
A big simmering pot of chili for a football game on a cold February evening? It sounds like a match made in football food heaven, but the majority of our team seemed unhappy with the tools needed to eat a hearty bowl of chili on gameday—"chili gets the downvote because it requires a bowl and a spoon," one staffer said—and the fact that one serving could suffice as a whole meal, leaving you too full to enjoy other snacks and at risk for falling asleep in the second half.
9. Jalapeño Poppers
Spicy, creamy, crunchy and easy to eat: jalapeño poppers check a lot of boxes when it comes to Super Bowl snacks. The only downfall is the time and cooking skills required to make them—no one wants to be standing over a pot of oil deep frying 50 little poppers for five hours—but luckily there are lots of frozen options that hardly involve any work at all.
8. Veggie Platter
A nice crunchy carrot stick or crisp cucumber always goes down good in between all of the ooey-gooey and super-saucy finger foods on the menu. This is also a good option for your vegan, vegetarian or rabbit friends. The biggest question when crafting a crudités platter pertains to the dressing: ranch or blue cheese?
7. Pigs in a blanket
Easy and kid-friendly, pigs in a blanket have stood the test of time. Make sure you serve them up with ketchup and mustard, just to infuriate everyone. And if you're looking for a variation on the classic, here's a recipe for everything-bagel-spiced pigs in a blanket.
Though SI staffers were thoroughly divided on this longtime staple, there were some definitive opinions against ordering some pies on Super Bowl Sunday. "Pizza will have a place at my table 364 days a year, but it has no business being on a Super Bowl menu," said one person. "I would not eat it during the game, but good if you have kids at the party," said another. It's too close to call, so we'll leave it up to you to decide if you'll do homemade or delivery (or DiGiorno!).
Most people think of traditional hamburger sliders, but these mini delights can take any shape or flavor: meatball, pulled pork, chicken parm, turkey burgers and more. Swap the bread for waffles and add fried chicken, or whip up a bison burger on a whole wheat bun for a healthier take. Whatever you choose, make sure they are bite-sized and plentiful.
4. Buffalo Chicken Dip
A rising star in the Super Bowl appetizer game, buffalo chicken dip combines the all-time classic chicken wing with the cheesy, creamy and scoopable-ness of a dip into one delicious dish. While some SI staffers preferred more healthy or more indulgent options, buffalo chicken dip ranked high as a party favorite.
Whether you're feeding a crowd or a small group, nachos are sure to deliver. Each chip serves as a vehicle for your toppings of choice—beef, chicken, beans, pico de gallo, guac, olives, jalapeños—and it's all smothered in some sort of cheesy goodness. Now thats a football fiesta.
2. Chips and guac
Unless you're Cardi B and you have a card from Chipotle for a lifetime supply of free chips and guacamole, you'll probably have to make (or buy) your own on Super Bowl Sunday. We've determined that this dynamic duo is a necessity for your party, so grab some avocados now so you can start whipping up a bowl of the glorious green stuff.
You can't have a Super Bowl party without chicken wings. And luckily, there are so many options to choose from. Kimchi-glazed chicken wings, ginger-and-honey wings, sticky Asian wings, classic buffalo wings—the list of sauces and cooking styles is endless, making this the ultimate football finger food for every type of fan at your party.