It is that time of year again and in my house Sundays mean football and, of course, I am always trying to find healthy alternatives to the traditional greasy filled classics without missing out on the fun.
I stumbled upon this recipe from Southern Living…being a southern girl it is one of the first sites I go to when I need a little inspiration.

Buffalo Chicken Meatball Sliders


  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons fennel seeds
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
  • 2 pounds ground chicken
  • 1/2 cup firmly packed fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, chopped
  • 1/2 cup finely greated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 small sweet onion, grated
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 (5 oz.) bottle Buffalo-style hot sauce
  • 32 small rolls or buns, split
  • Blue Cheese Dressing

Garnishes: thinly sliced celery, fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves


1. Place first 3 ingredients in a mortar bowl or spice grinder; grind to a fine powder, using a pestle or spice grinder. Place chicken, next 6 ingredients, and crushed spices in a large bowl. Combine mixture with hands until blended and smooth (2 minutes). Cover and chill 1 hour.

2. Preheat oven to 400°. Drop mixture by rounded spoonfuls 1 1/2 inches apart onto a lightly greased aluminum foil-lined jelly-roll pan, using a medium-size cookie scoop (about 1 1/2 inches).

3. Bake at 400° for 10 to 12 minutes or until done. Toss meatballs with hot sauce. Serve on split rolls with Blue Cheese Sauce.

From Southern
It calls for Buffalo-style hot sauce but if you are not into your mouth being on fire then I always have a milder option on hand!!

Another great alternative if you are trying to stay away from meat are these delish butternut squash enchiladas…They are sure to be a great pleaser…with layers of healthy veggies, yummy green enchilada sauce (secret: I use Hatch canned green enchilada sauce. I buy it by the case) and Mexican cheese….all you’ll hear is “seconds please!!!”

Butternut Squash Enchilada Casserole

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes


  • 1 medium sized butternut squash, peeled and diced (approx. 2 and 1/2 lbs)
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced
  • 1 poblano or green bell pepper, cored and sliced
  • 2 jalapenos, cored and sliced
  • 2 tablespoons high heat oil (such as sunflower oil)
  • 2 teaspoons cumin powder
  • sprinkle of salt & pepper
  • 1 (15 ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh baby spinach leaves (optional)
  • 2 cups salsa or enchilada sauce
  • 8 small or 6 large corn tortillas; cut into quarters
  • 1 and 1/2 cups shredded Mexican cheese


  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F then place the diced butternut squash, sliced onion, jalapeno and poblano pepper in a 9 x 13” baking dish and toss with high heat oil. Sprinkle with cumin, salt & pepper (to taste) then mix until evenly distributed. Roast vegetables in the oven for about 40 to 45 minutes, until the squash is tender. Remove from oven then lower temperature to 350°F.
  2. Transfer the roasted vegetables to a large bowl along with 1 cup salsa, drained and rinsed black beans and chopped cilantro. Using the same baking dish that you roasted the veggies in, prepare the casserole by spreading a thin layer of the salsa along the bottom, then cover with a layer of tortillas. Top the tortillas with 1/3 of the roasted vegetable mixture then 1/2 cup cheese.
  3. Layer tortillas on top of the vegetables followed by the 1 cup of baby spinach leaves. Top with a thin layer of the salsa and another 1/3 of the roasted vegetables then 1/2 cup shredded cheese.
  4. Lastly, add the last of the tortillas, a thin layer of salsa and the last 1/3 of the vegetables on top. Sprinkle with remaining cheese and bake in the oven for 20 minutes, until light golden brown on top.
  5. Allow it to cool for at least five to ten minutes then cut into squares and serve. Garnish with avocado, cilantro or plain Greek yogurt.

Recipe from:

Being a Texan no Sunday football day is complete without some Frito Pie…Yes I know you’re thinking, “What is that???”  Let me fill you in so you can impress all your Texans friends…and since Sundays are a cheat day…

No matter what other names you may hear, the original Frito Pie only has 4 ingredients:
1 small bag of Fritos (Original)
1 pot of homemade chili or canned if you must but I am not a fan of canned meat
Freshly grated cheddar cheese
Diced white onion
You can get creative and throw on what ever you fancy…sour cream, jalapeños, avocado, salsa, and the list goes on…
All you do is split a bag of fritos down the front and start loading it up… true TExans have been known to eat it right out of the bag but maybe if you’re having guests a plate will be in order. Either way, be sure to have a lot of napkins on hand.
And you use the chili recipe hear so it does double duty….


  • 3 15-oz. cans black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 14-1/2-oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1 medium chipotle plus 2 Tbs. adobo sauce (from a can of chipotles in adobo sauce)
  • 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lb. 85% lean ground beef
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 large red onion, finely diced
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. chili powder
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 ripe avocado, cut in a medium dice


Put one-third of the beans into the bowl of a food processor, along with the tomatoes and their juices, chipotle, and adobo sauce. Process until smooth and set aside.

Heat the oil in a 5- to 6-quart Dutch oven or similar heavy-duty pot over medium-high heat until it’s shimmering hot, about 2 min. Add the beef, season with 1/2 tsp. salt, and cook, using a wooden spoon to break up the meat, until it loses its raw color, about 3 minutes. Transfer the beef to a large plate using a slotted spoon. Add half of the onion and 1/4 tsp. salt, and cook, stirring, until it begins to brown and soften, about 3 min. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the chili powder and cumin and cook for 20 seconds. Add the remaining black beans, the puréed bean mixture, and the beef to the pot and simmer for 10 min., stirring frequently. Add half of the lime juice, half of the cilantro, and salt and pepper to taste. If the chili is thicker than you like, it may be thinned with water.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, mix the remaining lime juice and onion with the avocado. Season generously with salt and pepper. Serve the chili topped with the avocado mixture and remaining cilantro.

Recipe from: