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Tailgate recipes with Nashville restaurants

Don’t pass on these bites — rush on over to the store for the ingredients.

Long soft pretzels and pita chips sit on a wooden serving board with a small cast iron dish of yellow dip.

Hot Pimento Cheese Dip

Photo by Nelson’s Green Brier Distillery

Table of Contents

There’s no “I” in team, but there is in tailgate. Before you can ready, set, hike — you’ve got to kick off your Super Bowl party on a full stomach.

We wouldn’t let you drop the ball as a host this season, so we’re sharing tailgate recipes from four Nashville restaurants.

Nelson’s Green Brier Distillery’s Hot Pimento Cheese Dip


  • 1 lb. shredded white cheddar cheese
  • 8 oz. diced roasted green chiles
  • 10 roasted garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tsp. cayenne
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 12 oz. cream cheese
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 3 tsp. granulated onion
  • 1 cup of roasted jalapeno, diced
  • 8 oz. diced white American cheese
  • 1/2 tbsp. chopped rosemary
  • 1 cup green onion


Step one: Leave the cream cheese at room temperature so it softens.

Step two: Add the cream cheese, sour cream, white cheddar, and American cheese into a mixer with a paddle attachment.

Step three: On low speed, add chiles, cayenne, garlic, granulated onion, jalapeno, rosemary, and green onion.

Step four: Mix all ingredients until everything is incorporated, then season with salt and pepper.

Step five: Place in a cast iron skillet and warm in your oven at 325 degrees for 25 minutes, or until golden brown on top.

Step six: Place the dish in front of your hungry fans with pretzel crisps, veggies, or pita.

Eight wings coated in a white sauce sit in a serving tray on top of a newspaper-like paper with celery and carrot stick garnishes and a small bowl of ranch in the center.

Parmesan Garlic Wings

Photo via Jasper’s

Jasper’s Garlic Parmesan Wings


  • 12-24 medium-sized wings/drummies
  • 4 tbsp. olive oil
  • Salt and pepper (50/50 blend)

Garlic Parmesan sauce:

  • 2 cups mayo
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup roasted garlic
  • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp. honey
  • 1/2 tbsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp. black pepper
  • 1/8 cup Italian seasoning
  • 1 tbsp. crushed red pepper
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 tbsp. onion powder


Step one: Place the mayo, garlic oil, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice, and honey in a blender. Once evenly blended, place the mixture into a mixing bowl and add the remaining ingredients. Pro tip: The sauce can be made ahead and refrigerated until you’re ready to prepare the wings.

Step two: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Step three: Season the wings with oil, salt, and pepper.

Step four: Place the meat on a sheet tray and roast for 20-30 minutes, flipping the wings half way through until their internal temperature is 165 degrees.

Step five: Remove the wings from oven and immediately toss with the sauce mixture. Serve and enjoy.

A pile of fried hushpuppies fill a bowl, garnished with green onion and next to a plastic cup of homemade butter.

Hushpuppies with Honey Butter

Photo by Brown’s Diner

Brown’s Diner’s Hushpuppies with Honey Butter


  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 cup onion, grated
  • 1/2 jalapeno, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed or finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp. butter, melted
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 egg, separated

Honey Butter:

  • 8 oz. softened butter
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • 3/4 cup honey
  • 3 green onions, chopped


Step one: Mix the cornmeal, flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda, onion, and jalapeno with a whisk.

Step two: In another bowl, add egg yolk, buttermilk, melted butter, and garlic before whisking to combine the ingredients.

Step three: Fold in your wet and dry ingredients.

Step four: In a separate bowl, whip the egg whites to stiff peaks before folding in them into the mixture. Do not overmix.

Step five: Heat the oil to 375 degrees. Using a scoop or spoon, drop ~1 1/2 tbsp. of the mixture into hot oil, turning for 4-5 minutes. Serve with honey butter, which you’ll make by whipping the ingredients until fluffy before garnishing with chopped green onions.

A mixture of shrimp, peas, peppers, and rice sits in a pan of sauce on a completed tablescape.

Tailgate Paella

Photo by Andrew Thomas Lee via The Iberian Pig

The Iberian Pig’s Tailgate Paella


  • 1 quart bomba rice (or any medium grain)
  • 1/2 lb. sobrasada (or any soft chorizo)
  • 2 lbs. boneless chicken thigh, cubed
  • 1 lb. 16/20 shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 3.5 quarts chicken stock
  • 1 pinch saffron (~25 threads)
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 3 tbsp. salt, more for seasoning
  • 2 medium onions
  • 2 medium tomatoes
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp. smoked paprika
  • 2 cups green peas
  • 2 cups piquillo peppers, cut in strips (or a jar of roasted red peppers)
  • 2 lemons cut into eighths
  • 1 bunch parsley, finely chopped

Pro tip: You will use a 22-24-inch paella pan for this recipe. You can do the first four steps a day ahead and just keep everything cold in the fridge ready for game day.


Step one: In a large stock pot, season your stock with salt, saffron, bay leaf, and thyme. Bring everything to a simmer to dissolve the salt and steep the aromatics. Add more salt to taste; this should be well seasoned.

Step two: Roughly chop your onion, tomato, and garlic. Add those ingredients to a blender and pulse until you get a chunky puree. Season lightly with salt and two tablespoons of smoked paprika — this will be your sofrito.

Step three: In the pan, start rendering the sobrasada or chorizo over medium heat. Once it has rendered all its fat and started to fry, add in your cubed chicken thighs and season lightly. Cook until the chicken is about 80-90% done. Remove meats from pan and set aside. Very briefly, sear your shrimp on both sides and set it aside.

Step four: Add your raw sofrito to the pan after cooking your proteins and bring it to a nice simmer for ~20-30 minutes until most of the moisture has evaporated and the sofrito has developed some color.

Step five: Bring your stock back to a simmer. With the sofrito in the pan, add in your rice and stir the mixture for a couple minutes until the rice has turned opaque. Add in your piquillo peppers, then flatten out the rice evenly in the pan. Pour in three quarts of rice if you’re using bomba rice, or just over two quarts if you’re using a medium grain rice, reserving the extra if needed. Give the pan a gentle shake until everything has settled evenly — do not stir from this point. Arrange the chicken and sobrasada on top of the rice. Bring it to an aggressive simmer for ~eight minutes until the liquid has reduced to the level of the rice. Reduce the heat and add in the shrimp and peas on top before gently simmering for an additional 10 minutes. Rotate the pan every few minutes for even heat distribution. Pro tip: Check the rice closer to the bottom of the pan for doneness, it should be slightly al dente. Add more stock if the rice is not done and simmer a couple minutes more.

Step six: Turn up the heat. Increase heat to mid-high and rotate the pan — this is where you develop the socarrat. The rice will fry and caramelize on the bottom for two minutes. Remove it from the heat immediately if it starts to burn. Cover the pan lightly with foil and allow the mixture to rest for five minutes. Garnish with the parsley and lemon wedges before serving.

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