6 Recipes Bringing Barbecue’s Best Flavors to NFL Fans on Game Day

If your enthusiasm for buffalo chicken is starting to wear thin by this point in the football season, perhaps it’s time you opted for the tangy flavors of barbecue to carry you through Super Bowl Sunday. Barbecue-infused dishes offer zesty, sweet, and smoky flavor profiles, all beautifully offset by the creamy cheese, onions, and potatoes found in these soothing home-cooked dishes.

These six recipes will offer you and your guests a taste of spicy-sweet, barbecue-flavored bliss to enjoy during the next game.

Source: iStock

1. Crispy Barbecue Onion Rings

It simply wouldn’t be a party without at least one deep-fried option on the table, and you can’t go wrong with these Crispy Barbecue Onion Rings from Kitchen Simplicity. Chopping, seasoning, battering, and frying your own onions will result in sensationally juicy rings that you’d be hard-pressed to find in any fast food joint. These golden fried onions are sprinkled with a zesty medley of paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and chili powder. If you’re serving burgers or hot dogs, try stacking these rings on top for an extra-indulgent crunch.


  • 1 large onion, sliced to desired thickness, rings separated
  • Canola oil (or preferred high-heat oil), for frying

Barbecue seasoned flour mix

  • ½ cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper

Barbecue buttermilk

  • ⅓ cup barbecue sauce
  • 3 tablespoons buttermilk (regular milk, or milk alternative)

Directions: Pour as much oil as needed into a deep skillet until you reach 1 inch in depth. Heat the oil over medium heat until it reaches 350 degrees Fahrenheit on a thermometer. Adjust heat as necessary to maintain that temperature.

Mix together seasonings and flour in a large plate. Stir together barbecue sauce and buttermilk in a medium-sized bowl. Dredge sliced onions in flour mix. Dip in barbecue sauce mixture, allowing excess to drip off. Transfer back to the flour mixture and toss.

Transfer to the hot oil, in batches, making sure not to over-crowd the pan. Allow to cook, flipping once, until deep golden-brown. It should only take a few minutes. Remove to paper towels to drain. Season with additional salt, to taste. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Source: iStock

2. Barbecue Chicken Dip

Dip is yet another crucial component in any football-based gathering. How Sweet Eats shares an immaculate recipe for Barbecue Chicken Dip, smothering shredded butter-roasted chicken and red onions in a cheesy, tangy barbecue-flavored sauce for a wonderfully comforting dish. The recipe takes 35 minutes to complete and yields 8 to 10 servings. Serve along with chips or crackers. We can’t promise that your guests won’t start eating it by the spoonful — it’s that good!


  • 3 bone-in chicken breasts
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • ½ red onion, chopped
  • ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 2 (8-ounce) blocks cream cheese, softened to room temperature
  • ⅔ cups ranch dressing
  • ⅔ cups your favorite barbecue sauce
  • 8 ounces sharp cheddar cheese, freshly grated
  • Crackers or chips for serving

Directions: Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Rub chicken breasts with softened butter, then season with salt and pepper. Place on a baking sheet and roast for 30 to 40 minutes. Let cool completely, then pull chicken off the bone into bite-size pieces. While the chicken is roasting, heat a skillet over medium-low heat. Add olive oil and onions, cooking until soft, about 5 minutes. Add in brown sugar and cook, stirring occasionally, until caramelized. Remove from heat.

In a large bowl, mix together softened cream cheese, ranch dressing, ⅓ cup of the barbecue sauce, onions, and half of the cheddar cheese. Fold in chicken.

In a casserole or baking dish, layer the cream cheese mixture, smoothing the top off. Cover it with the remaining barbecue sauce, then the remaining cheese. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until bubbly and hot. Serve with crackers or chips.

Source: iStock

3. Barbecue-Glazed Potato Wedges Wrapped in Bacon

The Messy Baker Blog’s Barbecue-Glazed Potato Wedges Wrapped in Bacon are baked in a sweet barbecue sauce glaze, causing them to caramelize as they crisp to perfection in the oven. To top things off, these sweet and savory morsels are wrapped in bacon, which lends an additional touch of smokiness to the blend of flavors. The wedges are fun, simple finger foods that are sure to be a crowd pleaser, taking 50 minutes to make and yielding 34 wedges. Keep in mind that the dish can just as easily be enjoyed by vegetarians with the simple omission of bacon.


  • 3 medium red potatoes
  • 1 teaspoon canola oil
  • ¼ teaspoon season salt
  • ¼ teaspoon garlic powder
  • Pinch of kosher salt and pepper
  • 12 slices of bacon, cut in half
  • ½ cup barbecue sauce

Directions: Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with parchment or aluminum foil. Lightly grease a cookie grate and place it on top of the baking sheet.

Cut each potato into 8 wedges (pictured above). Place the wedges in a bowl and drizzle with canola oil. Sprinkle with season salt, garlic powder, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss until the potatoes are evenly coated.

Wrap each potato wedge with bacon. Place the wedges on the pan. Bake for 25 minutes.

Remove from the oven. Brush each potato wedge with a thin layer of barbecue sauce. Bake for an additional 10 minutes. Serve with extra barbecue sauce if desired.

Source: iStock

4. Barbecue Popcorn

For a dish that’s light and easy to munch, try cooking up some fresh Barbecue Popcorn. Being so easy to make, the dish is ideal for large gatherings and parties. PBS’s recipe balances the sweetness of sugar beautifully with the savory flavors of paprika, garlic salt, onion, mustard, and chili for a delightfully piquant party mix. Using grape seed oil in your air popper will yield a light and clean taste — it’s also a good source of polyunsaturated fats, PBS notes. The dish takes just 10 minutes to make and yields 4-6 servings.


  • 2 teaspoons garlic salt
  • 1½ teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1½ teaspoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon table salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground mustard powder
  • 3 tablespoons grape seed oil
  • ½ cup popcorn kernels

Directions: In a small bowl, mix the garlic salt, smoked paprika, sugar, onion powder, chili powder, table salt, and mustard until evenly combined.

Using an air popper, pop the corn kernels into a large bowl. Drizzle the oil over the popcorn, shaking the bowl gently to evenly distribute the oil over all the pieces.

Shake some of the spices over the popcorn and gently shake the bowl again. Repeat this a couple of more times until the seasonings are all used up and evenly distributed. Serve immediately.

Source: iStock

5. Barbecue Chips

Barbecue potato chips off the grocery store shelf are one thing, but these homemade deep-fried Barbecue Chips take the dish to a new level. Your guests will go crazy for a hot, crunchy batch of these chips, seasoned with piquant paprika, onion powder, and chili powder along with brown sugar, offering a sweet balance to the dish. The recipe takes about 45 minutes to make and yields 5 cups of chips that will be devoured in no time. (If, somehow, you manage to hold on to any leftovers, be sure to store them in an airtight container to maximize freshness.)


  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon garlic salt
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ teaspoon seasoned salt
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon fresh black pepper
  • 2 large baking potatoes, scrubbed
  • Vegetable oil, for frying

Directions: Combine all of the seasonings in a small bowl. Set aside.

Using a mandolin or a very sharp knife, slice the potatoes to ⅛ inch thick. Place the slices in a bowl of ice water so that they are fully submerged. Soak the potatoes for 30 minutes.

Remove the potatoes from the ice water and transfer them to a paper towel-lined plate. Pat them completely dry.

Fill a heavy-bottomed stock pot with 2 inches of oil and heat it over medium-high heat until the oil reaches 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Fry the potatoes in batches, flipping them constantly in the oil until they turn golden-brown (approximately 3 to 4 minutes). Use a slotted spoon to transfer the potatoes to a paper towel-lined plate. Let them cool for 30 seconds before transferring them to a large bowl. Sprinkle the hot chips with a portion of the seasoning mixture and lightly toss them until they’re evenly coated. Repeat the frying and seasoning process with the remaining potatoes.

Source: iStock

6. Barbecue Chicken Pizza

Pizza is the ultimate party food, and the dish is only further enhanced by the addition of smoky barbecue sauce, onions, and mixed cheeses piled atop a freshly made crust (feel free to use a store-bought crust to save time, but using Sally’s Baking Addiction’s own recipe — found here — will yield the best results). You’ll love how the mozzarella and smoky Gouda cheese on this Barbecue Chicken Pizza complement its tangy barbecue flavors. This recipe takes 2.5 hours to make and yields 1 (12-inch) pizza.


  • ½ recipe homemade pizza crust (or 1 store-bought crust)
  • ⅓ cup and 2 tablespoons your favorite barbecue sauce
  • 1 cup cooked, sliced chicken breast (about 1 8-ounce breast)
  • ⅔ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ⅔ cup shredded smoked Gouda cheese
  • ½ small red onion, thinly sliced
  • Fresh cilantro, for topping

Directions: If making homemade pizza dough, prepare dough and preheat oven to 475 degrees Fahrenheit.

Toss 2 tablespoons of barbecue sauce with the cooked, chopped chicken to coat it. Set aside.

After crust is complete, top with the barbecue sauce. Add more or less barbecue sauce depending on your taste. Then layer on the shredded mozzarella, the barbecue-coated chicken, shredded Gouda, and the onion slices. Bake for 14 to 16 minutes.

Top hot pizza with fresh cilantro. Slice pizza and serve immediately. Store leftover pizza covered tightly in the refrigerator and reheat as you prefer. Baked pizza slices may be frozen up to 1 month. Please see homemade pizza crust recipe for how to freeze the pizza dough.

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