What USA Eats on Game Day

By Anjelica Blige

Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Did you know that the Super Bowl is the second largest food holiday of the year behind Thanksgiving? It’s true. We love to eat and drink as we watch the big game regardless of whether our favorite team is playing or not. It’s a tradition that allows us to all indulge in tons of junk food, at least for one day.

But why do we correlate certain foods with the game? It’s time to dive in.

Much of what we eat during the game stems from what is being advertised to us as we watch. Chips and dip were the top foods eaten on game day in 2014.

By the time Monday morning rolls around, Super Bowl watchers will have consumed 14,500 tons of chips, 4,000 tons of popcorn, and 8 million pounds of guacamole. This means that each person has consumed around 2,000 calories each. Yikes.

Finger foods are also a common trend among game day grub. The more convenient and bite-sized the snack, the better. Hot commodities at Super Bowl parties include wings and all the typical vegetable fixings that come with it like celery and carrots.

During the 1960s and ‘70s, cooking a whole chicken was common for the game, much like a turkey is the staple of Thanksgiving. The wing craze didn’t begin until the ‘80s.

Restaurants realized they could sell smaller portions of chicken for a cheap price, make them spicy with buffalo sauce, and charge more for the beer that people are going to order to cool themselves down.

During last year’s game, the National Chicken Council said that nearly 1.25 billion chicken wings would be eaten during the game.

If you don’t like wings, you’re in luck. Pizza is a hot commodity during the Super Bowl, too. The Super Bowl is the biggest day of the year in pizza delivery sales. The three big chain pizza companies–Pizza Hut, Dominoes, and Papa John’s–will each have their most successful day. Dominoes, though, is set to deliver more than 11 million pizza slices. Whoa.

The day after the Super Bowl is the leading day of the year for people calling in sick, so of course, there’s beer to be had, too. Collectively, Americans will consume nearly 50 million cases of beer during the game, which is sure to leave some with a mighty hangover on Monday morning.

Anyone else think the day after the Super Bowl should be a national holiday? With all that food and beer, it sounds like we’ll need it tomorrow.