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Heart-Healthy Football Fare

Keep football feasts packed with fun and flavor! Tailgating and watch parties don’t mean you should fumble on your nutrition choices.

  • Meats: No tailgate is complete without a pile of grilled meat! But choose lean or extra-lean beef burgers (patties the size of a deck of cards) or try turkey burgers or salmon burgers (packed with omega-3 fatty acids). Replace traditional fried wings with grilled chicken strips or pulled pork tossed lightly in your favorite sauce. Resist a heavy hand with the salt shaker; instead, add chopped onions or extra pepper to spice things up. Choose 100% whole-wheat buns or lettuce wraps.
  • Sides: Get your crunch fix with fresh, crisp veggies paired with dip, instead of chips or fries. Add corn on the cob to the grill. Skewers of white onions and red peppers are perfect for Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ fans!
  • Drink: Limit alcohol and opt for beer with fewer calories and carbohydrates. Be sure to drink water, too!

Slow Cooker Barbeque Chicken or Pork

Slow cooker meals allow you to get out of the kitchen to actually watch football at your watch party! And just like a sloppy joe sandwich, your kids will love this pulled meat meal!


Chicken or Pork

  • 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken breast or tenderloins, OR 1 lb. pork loin or tenderloin/center loin (visible fat removed)
  • 1 cup water

Barbeque Sauce

  • 1 14.5 oz can, no salt added tomato sauce
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • ½ cup cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp yellow mustard
  • ½ tsp garlic powder
  • ½ tsp onion powder
  • ½ tsp chili powder
  • ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp paprika


  1. Whisk together barbeque ingredients in a medium bowl.
  2. Place chicken or pork in slow cooker; pour water and barbeque sauce over meat.
  3. Cover and cook on low setting for 8-10 hours, or on high setting for 3-4 hours.
  4. Using a fork, break meat apart. Serve as desired.

Take the first step to making healthier food choices by taking part in the American Heart Association’s National Eating Healthy Day on November 6th. Visit