The Big Game is here once again! Each year, this football game brings fans, family, and friends together to cheer on their team and enjoy festive foods that score big on flavor and tradition. Did you know? U.S. households will eat an estimated 1.4 billion chicken wings on Sunday! Even if you are only there for the half-time show, you are bound to find something to crunch and munch. The surprise play you don’t want to watch? Any issues with food safety that can knock your event off the go-to list. Keep bacteria on the bench with some fresh tips and resources to ensure your party is positioned to win!
Make sure someone (adult) is home to get the delivery*, check temperatures (danger zone is 40 – 140 degrees/2 hours) and packaging to be sure nothing is tampered with or left at an unsafe temperature for any length of time.
*Notify the company if you suspect tampering or that perishable food was left out too long. Don’t eat the food, or even taste it to see if it is safe.
Cook, Serve or Save
Time your order and serve delivered prepared foods when you receive it. If you are not serving right away, follow storage directions and refrigerate or freeze items until you are ready to cook them.
Keeping best practices for winning at food safety every day in mind as you plan and set up your event. Check your food thermometer to be sure it is working or purchase a new one. Wash hands, counters, cutting boards and serving utensils. Repeat washing hands as different foods are handled or prepared. Have plastic bags and storage containers ready to use so putting foods away is easy and quick.
- Clean— When handling raw meat and poultry, wash your hands for at least 20 seconds and clean and sanitize surfaces often with soap, water and a sanitizer.
- Separate— Don’t cross-contaminate. Use separate cutting boards, plates and utensils to avoid cross-contamination between raw meat or poultry and foods that are ready-to-eat.
- Cook— Cook to proper internal temperatures, checking with a food thermometer.
- Chill— Refrigerate promptly and do not leave food out at room temperature for over two hours.
Set up the buffet so hot foods, like wings, can be kept hot, and cold foods, like deli wraps and salads, can be kept cold. Slow cookers and chafing dishes are good choices for the range of snacks and appetizers that may require heat to maintain enjoyment and safety. A tray with ice or ice packs is good for cool foods, unless your location is very warm. Consider keeping perishable foods out for two hours or less – then get them properly stored to minimize food waste.
The game is over, leftovers are packed away, and the kitchen/buffet is clean and ready for the next meal. Leftovers can be kept refrigerated for 3 to 4 days or frozen up to 3 months. To serve safely, reheat to an internal temperature of 165 F.
Odds are you will share happy pictures (or sad, depending on which team won) of your party with friends and family via text and social media. Should anyone that attended let you know that they became ill after the event, next steps would be to ensure they get medical attention immediately and get some guidance from your local health agency. It can happen to anyone, even when best practices are strictly managed. You cannot see, taste, or smell harmful bacteria. Some guests, especially young children and those older than 65, may be more vulnerable to exposure. Reporting foodborne illness is critical to keeping food safe for everyone.
If you or a family member experience symptoms of a serious foodborne illness, seek medical attention and contact your local health agency.
The CDC public health gateway can help you locate your local health agency.
Questions? Try these toll-free federal food safety hotlines. For meat, poultry, or pasteurized egg products, call the USDA Meat & Poultry Hotline at 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854). For all other food products, call FDA’s Food and Cosmetic Information Center at 1-888-SAFEFOOD (1-888-723-3366).
Four Food Strategies for a Game Day Win
When hosting a Super Bowl party there is a ton to consider. Providing food and drinks for guests, making sure the house is tidy, putting together an ample and comfortable viewing setup, and more go into preparing for the big party. It can be overwhelming and that’s why we are here to help. We’ve taken four food strategies from our playbook for easier shopping and preparation for the big game!
1st Down: Catering
Our catering services put you way ahead of the game. Offering a variety of foods that will delight even the toughest of critics. From 6-inch subs and spicy meatballs; all the way to gourmet chocolate dipped cookies and banana cream pie, we have everything you need to make your party super! Simply set the date and time you would like to pick up and we will have it ready for you to take home. Your guests will be wowed with a professional food experience! Place an order for game day here: http://bit.ly/2NPL07E.
2nd Down: Recipes
Take a look at our abundant recipes page for all the inspiration you need. Our wide variety of choices include something that will please everyone at your party! Simply filter through the categories to figure out what you’re looking for. Not sure what you want to cook? No problem! You can browse with ease. Search through mouthwatering game day ready recipes like baked buffalo cheese sticks, and when you find that winning recipe you can add all of those ingredients directly into your virtual shopping cart. From there, you can take advantage of our pick-up or delivery options. The recipes on our website are a great way to try something new with the assurance that it will be a flavorful bite to eat.
3rd Down: Pick-up
We understand how important your famous guacamole dip is to the success of your party, even when time is running low. Save time by submitting a grocery pick-up order on our website. Choose a time and location for pick-up, pay online, and park in one of our marked grocery pick-up parking spaces at your selected time. Once you submit your order, our in-store shopper navigates the aisles grabbing exactly what you need to make that tasty dish. Shoppers are trained to handpick the highest quality and freshest groceries to ensure your satisfaction. Learn more about grocery pick-up: http://bit.ly/38vG4wv.
4th Down: Delivery
Scrambling late in crunch time hoping for a Hail Mary play? We’ve been there. That’s why we will deliver the food you need for the game! Hop onto our website and select the groceries that you need for the evening. Proceed to checkout, put in your address and what time you want the grocery items delivered. We will bring them right to your doorstep while you can relax and finish your last-minute cleaning. Learn more about grocery delivery: http://bit.ly/2Rm04MF
These four strategies are here to help remove some of the stress that naturally comes with hosting friends and family. Regardless of the level of trouble you are currently in, we have a reliable, simple and smooth solution to bring you to a game day win. For more gameday ideas check out our Ultimate Big Game Savings or our Ultimate Big Game Youtube Playlist.