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Tailgating 101 with Cocina Fresca

The fans are gathered, the game is on, and the crowd is hungry. There’s a lot to take care of before you actually get to sit down and enjoy the game. Even then, you might be the one making sure everyone is having fun before, during, and after.

So how are you going to #LiveFresca during this weekend’s games? Let’s dive in to our tailgating tips and recipes to help you make the festivities fun and hearty during any game. Now go long, we’ve got a touchdown in sight.


Get Your Dipping Playbook Ready

Is it really a tailgate if you didn’t bring a dip to impress? We have not one, but two coming at you from our kitchen. First up is a tried-and-true favorite:

Guacamole Fresca

Guacamole Fresca | Cocina Fresca Salsa
  • Start with 6 ripe avocados
  • Remove the pits and skins, then mash in a medium bowl
  • Mix in finely chopped cilantro
  • Squuuuuueeeezzzze in the juice of 2 ripe limes
  • Stir in 1/3 cup of your favorite Cocina Fresca salsa flavor

Alright, not bad. But we’re just getting warmed up. Keep your guests guessing with a dip that takes a page out of your advanced playbook. We promise it’s easy to maneuver, but the finished product will still make you look like a pro…

The Cibolo Creek Baked Layered Dip

Baked Fajita Layered Dip | Cocina Fresca Salsa

We’ve got the full recipe with every ingredient and all the steps listed here. You can get the baked dip ready a night before the day of tailgating and served chilled, or reheat right before kick-off. We consider it one of our All-Star recipes.


Ice, Ice, Baby

Any tailgating champ knows the cooler is one of their most important assets during the entire tailgate. Warm sodas are a no-go so pack the ice chest like a pro with these simple steps:

  • Stack your bottles and cans at the bottom of your empty cooler
  • Pro-tip! Freeze some water bottles the night before and stack in before adding ice
  • Now add in your ice, but not too much
  • Top the ice with you packaged food and any extra tubs of Cocina Fresca Salsa needed
  • You can even separate coolers into food ready for the grill and another just for drinks

Come game time, the crowd will look into your ice chest or cooler with awe. Expertly packed with not a single warm beverage to ruin the festivities. And another cooler with all the grill-ready goods. Speaking of which…


Wings, Wings, Wings!

Once you’re done chanting, catch your breath and get the charcoal going. We’re going to take a classic Cocina Fresca recipe, but this time it’s going on the grill:

Fresca Hot Wings

Fresca Hot Wings | Cocina Fresca Salsa
  • Blend 2 cups of Cocina Fresca Habanero Salsa with 1/3 cup honey and a tsp of grated ginger before boiling in a saucepan over the grill
  • Reduce to a simmer and cook 15-20 minutes until reduced by half, stir in lime juice
  • Take 3 lbs of chicken wings with tips removed and cut in half at the joint, place on the grill and cook until well-done and crisp, turning the wings every 10 minutes
  • Once done, transfer to a large bowl and toss with the sauce

These wings will impress even the toughest of tailgating in-laws. This feat deserves a trophy all on its own!


Get Competitive with Your Family’s Faves

Once the food is served and the game is blaring, get the family in a game of their own. Horseshoes is a formidable classic that most tailgaters enjoy, but have you introduced your team to cornhole?

“Tailgate Toss,” “Bean Bag Toss,” or “Baggo” is a perfect tailgate game where players take turns tossing corn-filled bags into a wood-frame platform with a single hole at the far end. Stand back 10 or 15 feet, aim, and toss the bag into the hole. Or try as hard as you can to. Sounds simple enough, but this is a game that gets everyone heated up. Anyone can play, whether you’re 9 or 90.

Make a tournament out of it and keep tabs with a custom scoreboard you can decorate with your favorite team’s logo. You can even paint the cornhole board to match. In fact, make a treat out of it for #DIY night and get the kids to paint the gameday board for the next tailgate.


Live By This Game Day Checklist

Now that we’ve shared our tailgating tips to #LiveFresca, check out this much-needed checklist with all the essentials to have your back going into the day’s events

  • Tailgate grills, smokers, fryers, or a combination thereof
  • Propane or charcoal
  • Utensils, including barbecue tools, mitts, and aprons
  • Smaller camping or folding tailgating table for griller or food prep
  • Folding tables for guests
  • Extra ice
  • Prepped food for cooking
  • Canopy, shade structures, or rain shelters
  • Balloons, banners, or signs to make your tailgate party visible
  • Folding chairs
  • Heavy duty trash bags for cleanup and makeshift ponchos in rainy weather
  • Spare blankets and throws (consider a waterproof blanket)
  • Tailgate games, speakers, and entertainment
  • Cleanup gear like wet wipes or a cleaning station