Our crowd-pleasing game day desserts can be made ahead, are easy to transport, and don't require forks or refrigeration.
August 19, 2008
1 of 28Photo: Lee Harrelson; Styling: Virginia Cravens
Team Spirit Cupcakes
Team Spirit Cupcakes Recipe Showing your team spirit on game day has never been easier with these tailgating desserts. Just buy vanilla-frosted cupcakes from the bakery and decorate with coarse sugar and lollipops in your school's colors. For easier transport, pack the frosted goodies in a cupcake keeper, like this one from Bakers Sto 'N Go. The holder seals in the flavor and has a convenient grab-and-go handle.
2 of 28Photo: Kana Okada; Styling: Sara Quessenberry
Ginger Chocolate-Chip Bars
Ginger Chocolate-Chip Bars Recipe Give traditional chocolate chip bars a game-winning twist by kicking up the flavor with spices like ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. To keep the bars moist and chewy, store them in a plastic container for up to 3 days before the game.
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Fresh Lemon Bars
Fresh Lemon Bars Recipe The fresh lemon flavor of these sweet, fruity bars are a fan favorite. Dust them with powdered sugar just before serving.
4 of 28Photo: Jennifer Davick; Styling: Buffy Harget
Peanut Butter-Caramel Bites
Peanut Butter-Caramel Bites Recipe Use your team's colors to decorate these peanut butter cookie cups. These colorful treats are sure to elicit cheers from even the youngest of fans.
5 of 28Jennifer Davick; Buffy Hargett
Pecan Tassies Recipe These mini pecan pies are just the right size to pick up with your fingers—no forks or plates required.
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Peanut Butter Candy Bar Brownies
Peanut Butter Candy Bar Brownies Recipe What's a football game without peanuts? When you make these 5-star-rated brownies, stir in crushed peanut-shaped peanut butter cookies, two kinds of chocolate-peanut butter candy, creamy peanut butter, and honey-roasted peanuts.
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Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies
Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe Ultimate football rivalries deserve ultimate cookies–so plan to take these along for your next tailgating extravaganza. They are everything chocolate chip cookies should be.
8 of 28Photo: Karry Hosford
Peppered Peanut Brittle
Peppered Peanut Brittle Recipe Since peanut brittle is already in pieces, this is one dessert you don't have to worry about staying intact for the drive to the campus. And, it's nice to have some sweets in small pieces for game-day nibbling.
9 of 28Photography: Becky Luigart-Stayner; Styling: Lydia DeGaris-Pursell
Bourbon Fudge Brownies
Bourbon Fudge Brownies Recipe Bourbon and vanilla enhance the rich chocolate flavor of these moist brownies. If you don't want to use bourbon, use hot milk in its place.
10 of 28Photo: Beth Dreiling Hontzas; Styling: Lisa Powell Bailey
Oatmeal-Pecan Snack Cookies
Oatmeal-Pecan Snack Cookies Recipe Chock-full of nuts, dried fruit and nuts, these rich treats are like a cookie version of granola. If you're getting the tailgate set up in the morning, have a couple for breakfast.
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Pecan Toffee Recipe Break this toffee into small pieces so there will be plenty of candy to go around. We guarantee it will go fast.
12 of 28Randy Mayor; Cindy Barr
Sour Cream Pound Cake
Sour Cream Pound Cake Recipe Pound cake is perfect for tailgating because you don't really have to have a fork to eat it. The thicker the slice, the better! You can make pound cake ahead of time and freeze it, and, if there are any leftover pieces, you can freeze those, too.
13 of 28Photo: Mark Ferri; Styling: Andrea Steinberg
Football Cake Pops
Football Cake Pops
Recipe What could be better for a tailgating dessert than a cake ball shaped like a football that's served on a stick? Make a batch now and you'll be the most popular person at your tailgate party.
Crimson Tide Cupcakes Recipe Score an extra timeout for yourself and order cupcakes ahead from your favorite bakery. Hand crafted pennants with cheer worthy sayings are just as effective at icing the competition.
16 of 28Photo: Alison Miksch; Styling: Buffy Hargett Miller
If you've never known the glory of a mayonnaise cake, you're in for a treat! The staple ingredient yields an ultra-moist crumb and keeps the sugar from taking over your taste buds.
18 of 28Photo: Lee Harrelson; Styling: Jan Gautro
Recipe These decadent brownies are made with layers of brownie, cookie dough, and Oreos. What more could your tailgating guest want?
19 of 28Oxmoor House
Giant Cookie-in-a-Pan Recipe This cookie cake is easy to transport and will serve lots of guests. Use M&M’s your team’s colors to make it even more festive.
20 of 28Photo: Jennifer Davick; Styling: Lydia DeGaris Pursell
Mississippi Mud Brownies
Mississippi Mud Brownies Recipe Even if you’re not rooting for a Mississippi team — from the fluffy marshmallows to the chocolate frosting — you’ll love these brownies.
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Popcorn-Marshmallow Pops Recipe Use M&M’s your team’s colors to make these fun popcorn pops that make for tasty treats as well as a fun tailgate decoration.
22 of 28Oxmoor House
Peanut Butter and Dark Chocolate Fudge
Peanut Butter and Dark Chocolate Fudge Recipe Make the combination of peanut butter and chocolate even better by stirring in instant coffee granules and topping the fudge with chopped peanuts. You can easily make these treats the night before your tailgate.
These brownies are incredibly rich and moist, and impossibly easy to make: just roll 'em, dip 'em, and stick 'em! For easier handling, push the finished pops, standing upright, into Styrofoam and place in the refrigerator to chill.
25 of 28Photo: Gooseberry Patch
Tiger's Eye Brownies
Tiger's Eye Brownies Recipe Nothing goes together better than peanut butter and chocolate. Serve these at your tailgate for a moist and delicious dessert.
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Rum Cake This moist, rich rum cake is great to make ahead for tailgates. It tastes even better the next day.
27 of 28Photo: Gooseberry Patch
Red Velvet Cake Balls
Red Velvet Cake Balls Recipe Red Velvet Cake balls are the perfect bite size dessert. They are incredibly easy to make and an easy-to-pick up tailgate treat.