Even if you are not a football fanatic the other 364 days of the year, one can't help but join in the fun and festivities when the Super Bowl rolls around!

Planning and throwing a Super Bowl party can be time and labor extensive, not to mention expensive. But it doesn't have to be any of those things if you plan accordingly and utilize these smart Super Bowl Party Tips.

  • Show some sprit. Don't worry if you don't have any football themed decorations, simply decorate in your team's colors.
  • Hydrate the team. Even though football is traditionally a beer drinking sport, have plenty of water and soda on hand for those designated drivers.
  • The first quarter. Pre-made fruit and veggie trays can be pricey. Making your own is inexpensive and can be put together in about 15 minutes. Baby carrots, celery sticks, grape tomatoes, cucumber slices and broccoli all make great choices for a vegetable tray. For a tasty fruit platter try grapes, strawberries, cantaloupe, honeydew melon and pineapple.
  • Keep the food hot when the game gets going. Crockpots are great tools for parties because they will keep food hot without supervision. Queso, cocktail meatballs, soup, chili, or even spinach artichoke dip can all be made in the crockpot and are great game day foods.
  • Half time. Chili is a crowd pleasing football favorite. It is easily made in a crockpot and uses budget friendly ingredients such as beans and canned tomatoes. A ‘chili bar' is a fun way to serve up your chili to guests. Set up an accessible table with all of your favorite chili toppings such as cheese, chips, cornbread, chives, sour cream, and crackers; and allow your guests to serve themselves.
  • Football is a team sport. Don't be afraid to ask your guests to contribute to the party by bringing additional snacks, drinks or chili toppings.
  • The fourth quarter. Brownies or bar cookies are the perfect dessert to serve at parties. Most recipes for brownies can be mixed in one bowl and then cooked and served from one large pan, this makes preparation, clean up and serving a breeze.

Chili not only makes great game day food, it is perfect for dinner any night of the week!

Chef Heather attended and graduated from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts, but has been developing family friendly meals since she was nine years old in her mother's kitchen. She is an avid crockpotter and knows how to get food on the table in a pinch. She currently serves as a writer and recipe developer for meal planning site www.foodonthetable.com