This is why we can’t have nice wings. Here are non-Taylor Swift recipes for game day

A plate with a circle of chicken wings, celery sticks and carrot sticks around a container of ranch dressing
(Calvin B. Alagot / Los Angeles Times)

So Taylor Swift’s boyfriend’s team is going to the Super Bowl. The Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers will face off at Super Bowl LVIII next Sunday at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas. Meanwhile, the coupledom of pop star Swift and Chiefs tight-end Travis Kelce dominates the discourse. No aspect of our culture is safe as the romance of the red-clad lovebirds permeates the NFL, pop music, celebrity gossip, even politics.

It seems like the world of food is the final frontier, and while we are not without our close calls (seemingly ranch, anyone?), culinary culture has remained mostly free of Taylor and Travis, until recently.

Delaware North, the food service partner of the Buffalo Bills, featured two Taylor Swift-inspired menu items when the Bills played Kansas City at Highmark Stadium on Jan. 21: “Bad Blood” waffle fries and the “Karma” quesadilla. The spiced waffle fries were topped with both Buffalo chicken and blue cheese and Kansas City Cattleman’s BBQ pork, coleslaw and bread-and-butter pickles to honor the two teams’ respective cities. The quesadilla was stuffed with chicken tenders, bacon and cilantro ranch and topped with a “pork belly chaser.” We anticipate more song-titled food will appear at Super Bowl parties across the country this year.


While we love a “Taylor’s Version” as much as the next Swiftie, you will not find any Taylor Swift and/or Travis Kelce themed dishes here, however. Instead, we have pulled some of our favorite recipes for classic game day snacks that everyone will be happy to see on your Super Bowl table. None of these recipes takes more than an hour, and all can easily feed a crowd. Finger-food snacks like chips and dip reign supreme, which is why we’ve included our extra limey guacamole that tastes like a margarita with every bite. The oven-baked nachos, which look impressive but require minimal effort, can be easily customized. Buffalo-style chicken wings are a given, and our recipe lets you re-create the sports bar staple at home using Frank’s RedHot sauce. Whether or not you call them “This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Wings” is entirely up to you, of course.

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Extra Limey Guacamole

This guacamole packs a punch of zesty lime that not only eases the pungency of the raw red onions but also keeps the dip bright green well after half-time ... if there is any left.
Get the recipe.
Cook time: 15 min.

A bowl of guacamole surrounded by tortilla chips
(Silvia Razgova / For The Times)

Buffalo Chicken Wings With Blue Cheese Dressing

Frank’s RedHot sauce is the not-so-secret ingredient in this classic chicken wing recipe that can be made mild or extra hot.
Get the recipe.
Cook time: 1 hour

A plate of chicken wings next to a bowl of white sauce, a container of upright celery sticks and a football-shaped mug
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

Oven-Baked Nachos

Lots of seasoned beef and melty cheese cover store-bought tortilla chips in this minimal-effort recipe designed to make enough for a party.
Get the recipe.
Cook time: 45 min.

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A tray of nachos next to bowls of guacamole, sour cream and shredded lettuce
Oven baked nachos recipe by Ben Mims.
(Ben Mims / Los Angeles Times)

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