A Touchdown Tailgate: Royal Cup's Favorite Gameday Recipes

Reading time: 4 minutes

A chill breeze is in the air and pumpkin spice is back on grocery store shelfs. That can only mean one thing – Fall has officially arrived. Blame it on our southern roots, but the team at Royal Cup knows the true meaning of this season: college football. Our favorite sport is FINALLY back, and with it comes planning and prepping a winning tailgate. Whether you’re cheering from the stands or the couch this season, these gameday recipes will have you roasting the competition – on and off the field.

Chile Coffee Sticky (WIN)gs


3 pounds chicken wings, about 3 dozen

Dry Rub

2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon finely ground coffee (Click here to purchase)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
½ teaspoon dried thyme

Sticky Sauce

½ cup rice vinegar
1 large shallot, finely chopped
2 tablespoons fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
¼ cup sugar
1-3 tablespoons sriracha
3 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
¼ cup cilantro, chopped for garnish (optional)


Combine all the rub ingredients in a bowl. Set aside.
Prepare your wings. First, using a sharp knife, find the joint between the wing tip and the middle section of the wing and slice through it. Do a similar cut in the joint between the drumstick and the middle section.
Once wings are cut, dunk them in your rub and press it on to each side of the wings. Make sure each wing has a good even coat of the rub.
Bake the wings at 400 degrees for about 40 minutes. At 20 minutes, pull them out and flip them with tongs.
While your wings cook, whisk together all the sticky sauce ingredients in a medium bowl.
Heat a large sauté pan on high heat – pour sticky sauce in the pan.
Throw in the cooked wings and toss.
Garnish and enjoy.

Recipe courtesy of Macheesmo.


Game-Day MVP Pork Sliders


Bacon-Onion Jam

2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
8 slices thick-cut bacon, cut crosswise into 1-inch length pieces
2 pounds large yellow onions, thinly sliced
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ cup brewed coffee (Click here to purchase)
¼ cup cider vinegar
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 teaspoons fresh thyme, minced, or 1 teaspoon dried thyme

Pork Sliders

Two 1¼-pound pork tenderloins, trimmed
2 teaspoons finely grated lime zest
1½ teaspoons salt (preferably kosher)
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 dozen slider or dinner rolls, split
2 cups baby watercress or arugula


Make the bacon–onion jam: Line a plate with paper towels. In a large skillet, cook the bacon over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until crisp and brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to the paper towel–lined plate to drain. Reserve 3 tablespoons of bacon fat in the skillet, discarding the rest.
In batches, covering after each addition, add some of the onions to the skillet and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until they all wilt and fit into the skillet. Season with salt and pepper. Reduce the heat to low and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the onions are very tender and golden brown, about 30 minutes.
Stir in the reserved bacon with the coffee, vinegar, brown sugar and thyme, and bring to a boil over moderately high heat. Boil, stirring often, until the liquid is syrupy and has reduced to a few tablespoons, 7 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and let cool. Makes about 2 cups.
Make the pork tenderloin: Preheat the oven to 400°. Fold back the thin end of each tenderloin and tie down with kitchen twine or plain dental floss. In a small bowl, rub together the lime zest and salt with your fingertips to infuse the salt. Stir in the chili powder. Rub the lime-chili mixture all over tenderloins.
In a large ovenproof skillet, heat the oil over moderately high heat. Add tenderloins and cook, turning occasionally, until browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer the skillet with the tenderloins to the oven and cook until the internal temperature reaches between 145° (medium rare) and 160° (medium), 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer the tenderloins to a carving board and let stand 3 minutes.
Discard the strings from the tenderloins. Thinly cut the tenderloins crosswise into 24 slices each for a total of 48 slices. Spread the bottoms of the slider rolls with equal amounts of bacon-onion jam (about 1 heaping tablespoon each). To each one, add 2 slices of pork tenderloin and a few watercress leaves and top with the bun top. Serve hot, warm or at room temperature.

Recipe courtesy of Tasting Table.


Dessert Time (Out) Dip


One 8-oz block of cream cheese, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1 ½ teaspoon espresso (Click here to purchase)
½ teaspoon vanilla
½ cup chocolate covered espresso beans, roughly chopped


In a medium bowl, beat the cream cheese until smooth and creamy using a mixer on medium speed.
Slowly add in the powdered sugar and mix until well combined. Mix in the espresso powder and vanilla.
Fold in the chopped chocolate espresso beans.
Chill dip in the refrigerator for at least an hour or until ready to serve.

Recipe courtesy of Dip Recipe Creations.


Kickoff Cocktail


2 tablespoons loose leaf tea (Click here to purchase)
1 cup vodka
1.5 oz unsweetened tea vodka
2 teaspoons honey
Soda water


Combine tea and vodka in a jar or pitcher and stir.
Cover and let steep 3-4 hours.
Strain through a coffee filter and place in an airtight container.
In a 12-oz glass, combine honey and tea vodka and stir until honey dissolves.
Fill glass with ice and top with soda water.

Courtesy recipe of Vintage Kitty.


Visit our blog for more gameday food and drink inspiration!

We hope these recipes make your tailgate the life of the par-TEA. Be sure to share your gameday celebrations with us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.