Super Bowl 2015 Party Planning: 'Homegating' Is the Best Official NFL App You've Never Heard Of
Stuck in a snowpocalypse, or just can't make it to Arizona for this Sunday's big game? You can always tailgate at home, especially with this official NFL app that you've probably never heard of: NFL Homegating.
NFL Homegating is a little different from most of the NFL apps you might have used before -- in that it's not about the teams, matchups, or game analysis, but instead all about throwing the best, most delicious, football-watching parties with the least amount of hassle.
The app, which is available on Android and iOS, is partially NFL mobile store for licensed home décor and tableware themed after your favorite team. But more importantly, it's a resource for recipes, cooking tips, shopping lists and digital invites to easily plan a Super Bowl party.
The app not only makes it easy to find some gourmet versions of tailgating classics, it helps you shop for the ingredients and put it all together -- even if you're not very good at that kind of stuff (written from experience).
Opening the app, it will ask you what your favorite team is. That's because the app is meant to be used all year long, and the NFL certainly wants to give you every chance throughout the year to buy homegating products themed after your favorite team.
But it's also perfect for one-time party planning for the Super Bowl, and we're more interested in the free planning tools this app brings for that purpose. So just pick a team, ignore the "Products" and "My Season" tabs, and head straight to Recipes.
Make Super Bowl 2015 Snacks Like a Pro
Especially for the culinarily un-inclined (yours truly), the Recipes section is what makes the NFL Homegating app a must-have.
All recipes are curated by the NFL's Executive Chef and Director of the NFL's New York headquarters' official eatery (the Huddle Café), Chef Marc Payero. And most dishes come straight from Payero himself.
(Photo : Screenshot: Robert Schoon) Most recipes come from the NFL's executive chef, Marc Payero. He offers video tips on cooking in the NFL Homegating app, too.
Payero takes a gourmet approach to the kind of downhome tailgating food everyone loves, elevating what would normally be good but plain food into something special. Like buffalo wings? Of course you do, but how about making PB&J Wings with a kick of Sriracha instead. Tired of the same BBQ sloppy joes you make for the game? Replace it with Pepper Roast Beef with Bourbon Glazed Onions.
Most recipes take less than 30 minutes to prepare, and a lot of them are the kind you can make the night before and heat up right before serving. Almost none of the cooking instructions are very complicated -- with only a couple (out of the dozens of available recipes) longer than about one paragraph.
The NFL Homegating app breaks down the food choices into categories like snacks, entrees, sides and drinks, and with beautiful photos of each dish, you'll have a hard time narrowing down your choices.
To help, you can add dishes to a "favorites" section, and share through social media or email to get some second opinions. When you're ready to start prepping, head back to the Home tab, where the Super Bowl matchup, a countdown clock and the button "Plan a Party" sits up top.
The Plan a Party section is where the NFL Homegating app truly becomes a complete Super Bowl party-prepping app, but you'll have to log in with, or create a free NFL account to use it (Tip: all you need is any email address and password; you won't even have to activate it through an email account.)
The party planner lets you invite friends via your contacts list or contact details you enter in manually, and it will auto-create a shopping list (that you can edit) from the recipes you chose for the party. You can also share that list with culinary co-conspirators. Invites even auto-generate a personalized hashtag for your party, so invitees can spread the word about your party on Twitter.
With the easy-to-follow instructions, a great selection of gourmet tailgate food, the automatic shopping list and even video tips for cooking from Chef Payero -- all on your Android or iPhone -- your Super Bowl 2015 party will be ready to rock, without spending much time figuring out what to do.
Needless to say, your friends will be impressed.
And if you have a cooking reputation like mine and keep the NFL Homegating app a secret, your Super Bowl XLIX food might even lead to a Patriots-style scandal between your incredulous friends: Gourmet-Gate.
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