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Get ready for game day with snacks for all ages

Serve a combination of hot and cold hearty snacks for the best game day ever
Serve a combination of hot and cold hearty snacks for the best game day ever
Chex Mix and BettyCrocker.com

Game day snacks are part of the fun of football season. Get ready for game day and serve snacks for fans of all ages. Whether you're tailgating or watching the game at home, go beyond chips and chili at your next game day party.

Let crockpots take the work out of your hot snacks for game day
Sandy Wallace

These recipes from Chex Mix and BettyCrocker.com will add a little zest to your game day table.

Bacon Blooming Onion Chex Mix

1 bag (8.75 oz) Chex Mix® traditional snack mix
2 containers (2.8 oz each) French-fried onions
1/2 cup crumbled cooked bacon
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 teaspoon ancho chile powder
3/4 teaspoon ground red pepper (cayenne)
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

Heat oven to 250°F. In large bowl, mix snack mix, French-fried onions and bacon. In small bowl, mix melted butter and remaining ingredients. Pour butter mixture over snack mixture; toss to coat.

Spread mixture on ungreased 15x10-inch pan. Bake 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Spread on paper towels to cool. Store in airtight container.

Kentucky Bourbon Bacon Chex Mix

1 bag (15 oz) Chex Mix® traditional snack mix
1 cup pecan halves
1/2 lb bacon (6 to 8 slices), crisply cooked and crumbled
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup light corn syrup
2 tablespoons bourbon
3/4 teaspoon chipotle chili powder

Heat oven to 300°F. Line two 15x10x1-inch pans with foil. Spray foil with cooking spray. In large bowl, mix snack mix, pecans and bacon. Set aside.

In 2-quart saucepan, heat brown sugar, butter and corn syrup over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until bubbly around edges. Cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally; remove from heat. Cool 2 minutes. Carefully stir in bourbon and chipotle chili powder. Pour over snack mixture; toss until evenly coated.

Spread snack mixture on pans. Bake 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, to caramelize mixture. Cool completely, about 1 hour. Break into pieces. Store covered in refrigerator.

Seattle Grunge Chex Mix

1 pouch (2 bars) Nature Valley™ oats 'n honey crunchy granola bars (from 8.9-oz box)
1 bag (8 oz) Chex Mix® Chocolate peanut butter snack mix
1/2 cup dried apple slices, cut into bite-size pieces
1/4 cup roasted sunflower nuts
1/4 cup dried blueberries

Break granola bars into bite-size pieces. In medium bowl, mix all ingredients.

Add some hearty hot and cold snacks to your game day spread. Here are some additional snacks for every taste to serve at your next game day party.

Individual Seven Layer Taco Dips

1 16 oz. can of refried beans
8 oz sour cream
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can chopped green chilis
Guacamole
Salsa
Grated Cheese

Mix refried beans with half of the sour cream. Spoon mix evenly into nine ounce wide plastic cups, using a large spoonful in each cup. Layer with one tablespoon each of additional sour cream, guacamole if desired, and salsa, spreading each layer to the edges of the cup with a spoon. Add a tablespoon each of grated cheese and canned diced tomatoes, and top with a few canned green chilis. Additional toppings you can add if desired are black olives, chopped scallions, or lettuce. You can also replace the canned tomatoes with finely diced freshed tomatoes. Serve with baskets of tortilla chips. Makes 15 individual servings.

Crockpot Meatballs

1 12 oz jar chili sauce
1 12 oz jar grape jelly
Large bag of frozen meatballs

Mix chili sauce with grape jelly or jam in pan over low heat until jelly is melted. Fill crockpot with a large bag of thawed or frozen meatballs. Pour sauce over meatballs. Cook on low heat for 3-4 hours for thawed or 6-8 hours for frozen meatballs or on high for 2-3 hours for thawed or 4-6 hours for frozen.

BBQ Cocktail Franks

Place two bags of cocktail franks in crockpot and add one jar of your favorite barbecue sauce. Heat on low for 4-5 hours or on high for 2-3 hours.

Pork BBQ Mini Sliders

Brown a half pork tenderloin on all sides over medium heat. Place pork into crockpot, add one jar of barbecue sauce and cook over low heat for 6-8 hours. Mash pork with a potato masher and cook an additional 1-2 hours. Keep warm in crockpot or chafing dish and serve with Parker House party rolls.

Rotel Cheese Dip

Cube one small block or half of a large block of any variety of Velveeta cheese food and place into small crock pot. Add one can of any variety of Rotel tomatoes and peppers. Heat on low for 2-3 hours or high for 1-2 hours until cheese is melted. Keep warm and serve with dipping tortilla chips.

Football Brownies

Make your favorite brownie recipe in a 13x9 pan. When cooled, cut into football shapes. Place football shapes on waxed paper. Heat a can of chocolate frosting in the microwave for 30-60 seconds, stirring until the frosting is glaze consistency. Pour a spoonful of glaze over each football, covering completely. When the glaze is set, add football laces using a tube of white frosting. Place brownies on a serving dish.

Using crockpots for your hot snacks frees you up to enjoy the game. Instead of spending the day in the kitchen, prepare the cold foods in advance and start the hot foods early in the day. All you'll need are a few finishing touches before the game starts.