Rah, rah, sis-boom-bah. Nothing beats gathering with friends at the local watering hole, or at an open-trunk tailgate party, to root for your favorite team. Sporting our team-color-striped tees and scarves, we are right there with you. But in one fell swoop, munching on the requisite fare (hot wings, beer, chips) while watching the game can wipe out nearly an entire week’s worth of smart eating and workouts.

Cue nutritionist Dawn Jackson Blatner, RD. As nutrition consultant to the Chicago Cubs, she’s well versed in what manly men like to eat while watching their prized sports—and she knows just how to sneak in better-for-you options the gang will scarf down all the same. Now that’s what we call a big win for the home team.


SKIP: Crackers & cheese (6 crackers, 2 ounces of cheese)

SERVE: Crackers & hummus (6 crackers, 4 tablespoons of hummus)

You Just Saved: 100 calories, 13g fat


SKIP: Tortilla chips & cheese dip (1 ounce, 4 tablespoons)                       

SERVE: Tortilla chips & bean dip (1 ounce, 4 tablespoons)                       

You Just Saved: 100 calories, 14g fat


SKIP: Potato chips (1 ounce)

SERVE: Popcorn (1 cup)                                              

You Just Saved: 150 calories, 9g fat


SKIP: Italian sub sandwich (3-inch)                       

SERVE: Turkey sub sandwich (3-inch)                       

You Just Saved: 100 calories, 10g fat


SKIP: BBQ chicken wings (4)                                    

SERVE: Skinless BBQ chicken drumsticks (4)

You Just Saved: 100 calories, 16g fat


SKIP: Pizza with sausage & pepperoni (2 slices)           

SERVE: Thin crust cheese pizza (2 slices)           

You Just Saved: 300 calories, 12g fat


SKIP: Regular beer (2)                                               

SERVE: Light beer (2)                                               

You Just Saved: 100 calories

What are Your secrets to a healthy tailgate?