We all love football, and we all love our TEC Grills. So there is nothing better than tailgating, which combines both of our loves! The TEC Cherokee and the G-Sport are perfect for tailgating because they will easily fit in the back of your truck or SUV. But since you can use the entire surface for cooking, you can still easily feed a crowd.
Just like your favorite team, you need to have a game plan well in advance of game day. Here are some ideas and tips to make your next tailgate a big W-I-N!
Choose a Theme and Menu
Do you ever struggle when putting together a menu for a meal? No matter if it is a casual weeknight family meal or an elaborate dinner party, choosing a theme for the meal or event provides a focal point and makes it easier for you to plan.
You can apply the theme to just the menu. But for a tailgate, you can extend the theme to include the décor for your parking lot party, or even ask your friends to dress up in the spirit of the theme! Suggestions for your tailgate theme:
Team Spirit – Focus on foods that are in your team colors, the mascot, or a team rivalry.
Cuisines – Make it a Mexican, Italian, Asian, or Southern (our favorite!) theme.
Football – Make everything look like a part of the game, from football shaped meatballs to a cake that is decorated like the field. If you are struggling for ideas here, just take a look at this Pinterest board for lots of inspiration!
The key point here is: if you can do it ahead of time, then do it ahead of time! Put together your shopping list and prep list based on your theme and menu. Try to prep as much as possible the night before the game, so you aren’t stressing in the morning.
Also put together your “tailgate tub”. This is one (or more) of those plastic bins that you can fill with all the supplies you need, like: paper towels, trash bags, plates, utensils, condiments, salt and pepper, etc. Pack up your tub once before the season starts, and then refresh as needed throughout the season. This way, you are always ready to go, and don’t have to stress about the details for every game.
Of course, you are also going to need the big things like coolers (don’t forget the ice!), folding table, chairs, and a tent or canopy. It is also a good idea to have a rain plan too, because nothing is more miserable than sitting through a game when you are soaking wet. So throw in some ponchos, rain jackets, umbrellas, and tarps just in case.
On the morning of the game, have your final checklist ready so you can check off items as you load them up. Give yourself plenty of time to get to the parking lot early to find a good spot, and get set up. Tailgating is an institution in the South, so folks really go all out. Here is a setup from a USC Gamecocks game in Columbia, SC (the home of TEC Grills).
When you are ready to eat, simply fire up the grill. One of the great features of TEC Grills is that they heat up so quickly, and also grill your food quickly using 100% infrared technology. So you will have plenty of time to grill, eat, and get to your seats. Just remember to give yourself enough time after grilling to let your grill cool down before loading it back up.