Today’s professional football, basketball and baseball players continue to build meals around nutrient-packed, plant-based foods to take their game day performance and post-game recovery to new levels. Take five-time Super Bowl champion Tom Brady, for example, who has talked about his kale breakfast smoothies, mostly vegetable diet. We can all eat like today’s top talent, too. Here are two sweet and savory recipe ideas to help you jump right in at this weekend’s tailgate:
1. Cauliflower “Wings”
Thanks to its substantial fiber content, cauliflower adds bulk and texture to the family tailgate. By pairing it with spices, you’ll satisfy cravings for spicy, crunchy and traditional tailgate foods like wings and potato chips, but with a healthier twist that your body will thank you for. To make veggie-inspired “wings” mix a handful of spices – such as garlic powder, pepper, cumin and paprika – in a bowl. Line a baking sheet with the cruciferous veggies, sprinkle with the spice mix and bake at 425 to 450 degrees F for 20 to 30 minutes. For a creamier texture, you can mix the spices with water, almond milk or even hot sauce and coat the cauliflower florets with the mix. Serve the florets with fresh veggies and a bean-based dip. For a faster option, serve the cauliflower raw. If your team is donning purple, green or gold, you can buy cauliflower and vegetables to match. For example, Philadelphia fans may rally around a bowl filled with green cauliflower, broccoli, sliced cucumbers, green peppers and an edamame or pea-based dip.
2. Fruit Spirit Sticks
On a sweeter note, these fruit spirit sticks will please anyone’s sweet tooth. The best options for fruit kebabs are varieties of fruit that are fresh and in season, but a team-colored approach also works well.
Try, for example, threading strawberries, peeled kiwi and chunks of melon onto bamboo skewers. If you like, top it with a mint marinade made by combining 1/4-cup orange
juice, 2 teaspoons of fresh lime juice, and 2 tablespoons of chopped mint leaves. Pour it over the fruit kebabs and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving. These kebabs provide an array of nutrients, such as vitamins A and C, and double as a hydration source. Many fruits and vegetables contain at least 80 percent water, which keeps players and fans hydrated throughout the season.
Article written by GUADS guest writer, Caroline