When you think big-budget organized sports like the NFL, a vegan fan base may not be the first thing that comes to mind. Save for the Skittles commercials this coming Sunday, most of the fancy halftime food ads are totally lost on us. Big Game supermarket deals focus heavily on the burger and barbecue variety, and local bars usually hock chicken wings by the bucketful while we sift through the bowl of complimentary peanuts and pretzels. But there are plenty of (nonleather) pigskin fans out there who will be in search of something fresh and meat-free to gnaw on while watching the Seattle Seahawks take on the New England Patriots this weekend. And for them, here is a handy dandy Game Day recipe guide.
Field Roast FTW -- Seattle Seahawks are a natural vegan fan favorite. Their home stadium of Century Link Field is staffed with vegan vendors offering everything from grilled veggie dogs and herbed fries to Asian-inspired veggie tacos and edamame. Plus, Seattle is home base to veggie meat titan Field Roast. For a Seattle-inspired Super Bowl menu, a Field Roast mockup of the Marshawn Lynch "Beast Burger" is mandatory. Inspired by the "two-of-everything with a side of Skittles" burger sold at Century Link Stadium, Field Roast crafted a vegan version using two patties of Field Roast burgers, two slices of Creamy Original Chao slices, two slices of Upton's Naturals Bacon, two onion rings, lettuce, tomato, Veganaise, and burger buns. A full list of Game Day recipes is available here.
Espresso Brownies -- Besides a winning NFL team, Seattle also lays claim to some of the best coffee joints in the U.S. (Oh yeah, and also Starbucks). Perk up your Seattle spread with coffee-laced sweets like these 5 Minute Espresso Walnut Brownies from Minimalist Baker
Vegan Clam Chowder -- Call it Slam Chowder, Sham chowda, whatever you want, but the veganized version of New England clam chowder is easily bumped up to deliciousness with the addition of three very important ingredients: Shiitake mushrooms (which have an eerily similar texture to clams), kelp powder for that fishy taste of the sea, and Magic Vegan Bacon Grease (trust!) for a smoky depth. Mess around to create your own version, or stick to the pro's advice with this Isa Chandra Moskowitz PPK instructional.
Crab Corn -- Pronounced Crab Caaahn, this popcorn dish has all the seasonings of a traditional boil (minus crustaceans) and is made by heating one-fourth cup of coconut or canola oil with 2/3 popcorn kernels on the stovetop, and when all is popped, drizzle melted Earth Balance and hit it with a solid shaking of nutritional yeast, Old Bay seasoning, and celery salt.
Vegan baked beans -- Cliché? Possibly. Delicious? Yes. Both New Englanders and vegans can agree on the love of a good baked-bean dish, and this maple-butter-topped recipe from Oh She Glows hits the spot.
It is a stale and simply untrue trope that jocks can't be vegan. Just look to NFL defensive lineman free agent and 300-Pound Vegan creator David Carter for proof. When planning your massive party spread, consult the mighty vegan's favorite Game Day snack foods of spicy buffalo cauliflower, seven-layer bean dip, and this recipe for a creamy cashew queso dip (a Vitamix blend of cashews, nutritional yeast, onion, garlic, and jalapeño).