Whether you are a Patriots fan, a Seahawks fan, or none of the above, just about everybody agrees that the food is one of the best parts of game day. It is also a very necessary part, unless you want to be shunned by your guests and former friends by not providing adequate grub. So you could make a last minute run to the supermarket and scrounge up some chips and some of that disgusting prepackaged five-layered dip, or you could do your shopping in the great outdoors.
Here are seven easy-to-make wild game recipes that will be sure to make you the host of the year for Super Bowl XLIX. Some are familiar favorites while others you may not have heard of, but all are scrumptious.
1. Sweet and sour venison meatballs
There’s a reason the meatball is a staple party food for meat lovers. They are simple to make, easy to cook, and great on your taste buds. Everything gets even better when you throw out fatty beef for lean venison instead. The beauty of this recipe is that you can substitute just about anything for the meat, including wild pig and elk.
First things first, this video from Realtree shows you how to make your own large batches of venison meatballs.
Now for the sauce. Just be sure to swap out beef for the game meat of your choice.
2. Jalapeño pheasant poppers
When it comes to watching football, finger foods are key. Your guests probably won’t want to take their eyes off the TV screen for long, except for the occasional bathroom break, fumbling for the remote, and that one commercial every year during halftime that makes you roll your eyes. So, finger foods keep people munching and they’re the first to run out—especially if you make this recipe from Jeff Fuller.
3. Wild boar quesadilla
Hunting wild boar is a good way to get some bacon and do your part for the environment as well. Wild pigs are a fast-growing problem in the United States, and they can cause millions of dollars in damages to state-owned lands and the agricultural industry. Worse yet, they out-compete other species like deer for food and space.
However, few invasive species taste as good as wild boar. Making wild boar quesadilla will not only keep your guests energized for the game, they’ll also think you’re a hero for conservation as well.
4. Duck gizzard nibblers
How do you cook your duck gizzards? Although they are considered a delicacy in many places, not everyone knows how to cook gizzards well. Here, Buddy T shows you how to prepare duck gizzards for a party.
5. Venison “Macho” nachos
It is almost an universal law that every Super Bowl party (and appetizer list) should have some form of chips. Of course, you could do chips the way that everybody else does, or you could break some venison out of your freezer and set your oven to melty, meaty deliciousness.
6. Elk- and bacon-stuffed peppers
If a jalapeño overstuffed with cream and cheddar cheese, seasoned elk meat, bacon, fresh cilantro, and garlic doesn’t make your mouth drool just a little bit, we’re not sure what would. This Texas-style recipe from Todd Toven might just make your football fans forget about the game for a bit, in which case it is only natural to regale them with the epic tale of how you came to harvest this elk. Of course, you’re only going to embellish just a little.
7. Venison chili
Venison chili is a familiar favorite for many hunters and if you’re anywhere cold this year, it will give you a nice warm feeling in your stomach that many theologians have speculated is similar to a state of perfect contentment. At least until your team fumbles or you run out of chili. The lesson to be learned here? Make more chili.
As the old proverb says, you can give a man a bowl of chili and feed him for a day, or you can teach him to cook his own and reach divine union with the universe.
Have your own recipes that you want to share? Leave them in the comments below.