Former football star reveals his top 5 tailgating recipes and tips

(BPT) – It’s time for football and that means one thing — tailgating season. As a quarterback, Tony Romo knew all of the plays on the field. Now, Romo has a new way to beef up the game as he offers up his top go-to recipes and tips to make any tailgate a winner.

1. Mexican Style Beef Nachos

It’s not a party without nachos, and these flavorful Mexican-style beef sausage nachos will pack a crunch and a punch. Feel free to customize the recipe by adding some of your own favorite ingredients or adjusting the seasonings to suit your taste. If you start your meal prepping at home, keep cooked ingredients separate until you combine them on-site to keep nachos crispy, or prep the whole recipe on-site.

“It’s always important to make sure that if you’re cooking on-site, the food remains safe,” Romo recommends. “Always keep raw meat in a well-insulated cooler, separated from other ingredients. Another tip is to use ice blocks instead of cubes, as they’ll melt slower.”

2. Easy Roast Beef Potluck Rolls

These easy-to-prep sandwiches that deliciously combine sweet Hawaiian rolls, mild and tangy provolone cheese plus thinly-sliced deli roast beef are not only tasty, but they travel super well and are the perfect hand-held meal for your parking lot or backyard tailgate party.

“I like to keep things simple with a tailgate,” says Romo. “People want to hang out and chat about the game while eating, so having food that’s portable or handheld is always a good call.”

3. Cheesehead Sliders

What could be better than the taste combination of juicy beef and cheddar cheese? Then there’s a special secret ingredient: one-half cup of beer, to help create rich flavor and add moisture to enhance your beef patties for these easy-to-eat, handheld favorites.

“You don’t need to be a cheesehead fan to love these sliders,” says Romo. “You just need to be a fan of good food.”

4. One Skillet Beefy 7-Layer Dip

For a real crowd-pleaser, this recipe gives you one layer of flavor for each point in a converted touchdown — what better tailgate food is there than this? Beef sausage, Mexican blend cheese, mild chilies and jalapenos add up to a winning combo.

“When you’re tailgating, the food has to be a crowd-pleaser so I always serve tried-and-true classics like beef,” Romo adds. “If I’m making something new, I like to make it beforehand to make sure it will be a hit. I can’t show up to a tailgate and not deliver.”

5. Cheesy Bourbon Hot Brown Skillet Dip

This is a really simple recipe to prep that uses deli roast beef, three different cheeses and of course bourbon for a surprisingly satisfying depth of flavor. It’s not only easy to prep and delicious, it’s also perfect for colder games. The cast iron skillet can go straight from the oven to serving and keeps the dip warm until it’s gone.

“I always check the weather to make sure that what I’m bringing suits the temp. If it’s going to be cool outside, what better to bring than something hot to warm you up?” Romo adds, “I like to cook my food at home before going to the tailgate and keep foil over it to keep it warm while in transport. But if I’m going to prep the food on-site, it’s always a good idea to measure out your ingredients beforehand and pack them in labeled zip top bags to save time.” Premade seasonings and sauces in their own bags can also help save a ton of time and space.

Romo says there’s no better way to fuel up for the big game and that’s why he’s partnered with Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner., a contractor to the Beef Checkoff.

To see these and plenty more delicious tailgating recipes to wow your friends and family, check out Beef. It’s What’s For Dinner.