This post is sponsored by ALDI but all thoughts and opinions are my own.
The big game is coming up, and while your watching experience may be different this year, your food situation can still be epic. Check out these make ahead appetizer recipes for the Big Game featuring game-day essentials from ALDI.
I have never been more ready for the Big Game. This is partly due to my older son being obsessed with NFL football (and therefore I know EXACTLY what was going on throughout the playoffs) and also thanks to a partnership with ALDI to create fun game day appetizers.
Make ahead appetizer recipes are like gold because who wants to be stuck in the kitchen when the Super Bowl starts? All of these recipes have elements that can be prepped a day ahead and make pre-game assembly a breeze.
Why I Shop at ALDI
I have been an ALDI fan for a long time now because you can get premium products at an affordable price. ALDI enables me to stretch my budget (and shop safely) and enjoy the food we love. I’m not joking when I say that ALDI changed my life when it comes to being able to afford all the food I want me and my family to eat. You can read more about my love of ALDI, and my favorite products, in my ALDI Archive here on Make Healthy Easy.
My first stop is always ALDI and it was a lot of fun to turn some of our favorite game day foods from this past fall into formal recipes that are perfect make ahead appetizers. Let’s get started!
Build Your Own Layer Dip
Layer dip is always a hit, but I’ve noticed it’s hard to find a one size fits all recipe. Someone doesn’t like olives or green onions or sour cream... It’s hard to please everyone so why not just let everyone make their own!
Layer dip is obviously one of those great Super Bowl make-ahead appetizer recipes and this version is no different. You can prep all the ingredients ahead time and set out when your party gets rolling.
To execute this layer dip game plan, simply make available many different options for layers. Here are some ideas:
- Simply Nature Pinto or Black Beans
- Casa Mamita Refried Beans
- Appleton Farms Thick Sliced Bacon
- Bulk Mild Italian Sausage
- Crumbled or Shredded Cheeses
- Simply Nature Organic Thick & Chunky Medium Salsa Park Street Deli Fresh Guacamole (assorted flavors)
- Friendly Farms Sour Cream
- Specially Selected Kalamata Olives
- Tuscan Garden Canned Banana Peppers
- Tuscan Garden Jalapeno Peppers
- Fresh Pineapple
Set out chips and clear 9 oz drink cups so family members can create their own custom layer dip.
All of these items can be prepped ahead and stored right in their serving bowls making set up at game time a breeze.
Not only is everyone happy, it also keeps people from double dipping and having lots of hands going in and out of a main dip bowl. To keep things extra clean, I recommend keeping a bottle of hand sanitizer right by this dip station so people can sanitize before touching serving spoons.
I’m very excited to share this make-ahead appetizer recipe with you because it's a sneak peek from my upcoming cookbook, due out March 2021. Buffalo wings are nearly impossible to prep ahead of time because IMO they should be fresh and hot to taste best. However, when you take all the same flavors and turn them into a juicy turkey meatball, you can prep them entirely ahead of time and simply reheat before game time.
This Buffalo Turkey Meatball recipe uses ridiculously simple ingredients. You can decide if you want to fully cook them ahead of time or just roll them ahead and bake at party time. Either method will work. Get the full recipe here: Buffalo Turkey Meatballs
Once again in the spirit of customization, I turn a game day favorite into a top-your-own bar situation. A potato skins bar is the perfect way to turn something familiar into something awesome.
While this may not seem like one of those make-ahead appetizer recipes, the actual potato skins can be made ahead of time and simply reheated or broiled with the cheese for a few minutes right before serving. Then serve them with toppings of choices like traditional chives or green onions, but also salsa, avocado, shrimp, cilantro and more!
Football Chocolate Bark
ALDI has an amazing selection of nuts, dried fruits, candy, cookies and CHOCOLATE. I confess, it’s always inspiring me.
You can use any combination of these goodies to simply press into a slab of melted chocolate.
Here’s a guide to help you successfully make chocolate bark:
- You can melt both semisweet and white chocolate in the microwave. Only melt one bag at a time and use a glass bowl to do so. Work in the following time scheme: 30 seconds and stir with spatula; 20 seconds and stir with a spatula. Continue at 15 second intervals of heating then stirring. You should only need about 4 cycles of heating max.
- Stir well to help the chips melt. You get the lumps out by stirring, not heating more.
- When using semisweet chocolate, only melt ¾ of the bag in the bowl at first. Once that amount is melted and smooth, add the other ¼ of the bag of chips and stir until melted in and smooth. Do not heat anymore in the microwave. This helps temper the chocolate and will give you a shiny, breakable finish.
- Note that white chocolate sets quickly so work fast after melting.
- Layer a baking sheet with parchment paper and pour melted chocolate on top. Use the spatula to smooth out into about a 12” x 6” rectangle. The thickness should be at least ¼” thick, but you can make it thicker if you like.
- Quickly press in your toppings. They should be pushed down slightly to help them stay in the chocolate when you cut it later.
- Let the chocolate set on the counter until hard.
- Place hard chocolate on a cutting board and cut into pieces with a sharp knife. Store in an airtight container if making ahead.
If you really want to take this recipe over the top for the Super Bowl, here's all you do to add laces:
- Wait until the bark is set then melt an additional ¼ of a bag of white chocolate chips (about a heaping ½ cup).
- Pour the melted chocolate into the corner of a ziploc bag.
- Cut the tip off the corner of the bag and gently squeeze out the chocolate to make the pattern of a long line with 3-5 dashes on it.
Hopefully one of these Super Bowl make-ahead appetizer recipes inspires you for your Game Day activities. Don’t forget to visit ALDI for all your viewing party needs!