What a Nutritionist Eats at a Football Stadium, VIP-Style

Cardinals University of Phoenix Stadium

Cardinals University of Phoenix StadiumAutumn. The time of year that brings falling leaves, chilly evenings, and my husband’s favorite time of year – football season. While I consider myself a Packer (sans cheese head hat) and Badger fan, I couldn’t tell you the name of one single player on either team. I might recognize a name, though. What I love most about the sport is the camaraderie among spectators, and most importantly, the game day food. Recently my sister invited me to tag along at a Cardinals’ home game in her friend’s skybox on the loft level. Yes, it’s nice to have a sister who travels in this kind of social circle. Of course I agreed to go.

Cardinals cheerleadersOne of my favorite things about VIP tickets is not having to wait in line. Even better, a loft level ticket includes a personal greeting from two cute Cardinals cheerleaders. This day they donned pink in support of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

Popcorn in Cardinals stadium sky boxA huge bucket of popcorn awaited us, plus scary red tortilla chips and three kinds of salsa. I skipped the popcorn because it was cold and not as good as that served hot at my gym’s movie theater for kids. I plunged into the chips and salsa immediately, one of my favorite snacks, though I could do without the artificial food coloring. But I get it. Red. Yay. I portioned out an appetizer plate.

Wet bar In Cardinal stadium loftThe bloody Mary’s and tequila on the rocks were flowing. This Zing Zang bloody Mary mix was the best one I’ve ever tasted. A party in a bottle, of which I sipped one glass.

Vegetable tray at Cardinal stadium skyboxFirst came the veggie tray, filled with a vibrant assortment of fresh vegetables and ranch dressing. I nibbled on a couple of zucchini slices.

Mac and cheese and barbecued ribs at University of Phoenix stadium loftThen a team of servers brought in the hot food. First came macaroni and cheese and miniature mastodon-size ribs.

Buffalo wings at University of Phoenix stadium loftFootball and chicken wings are like peanut butter and jelly. Here they prepared them with three different sauces. I portioned out a dinner plate with a small scoop of mac and cheese, two ribs, two Buffalo wings with a modest puddle of blue cheese dip, and a few pieces of vegetables.

Mini hotdogLater in the game, I selected a mini hot dog and squirted on mustard and ketchup.

Ice cream brownie sundae at Cardinals stadium skyboxThe piece de resistance. A 3-foot tall stainless steel martini glass filled with nearly 10 scoops of ice cream including vanilla, strawberry, and chocolate.

Ice cream sundae toppings at Cardinals stadium skyboxThey didn’t forget to include every topping known to man. After my sister dished a scoop for me (I secretly wanted more), I topped it with chocolate cookies, jimmies, gummy bears (I don’t recommend it – too cold), peanuts, and toffee.  Sadly people picked off all of the brownies on top, but then, wait! At the very end, I noticed that they also lined the bottom of the dish. I chose two pieces.

Lauren and I at Cardinals stadiumMy sister is my buddy and we love sharing good food experiences. She is a good home cook and “gets it”. I can’t wait until our next extravaganza on Thanksgiving!

Estimated calories: 1,100 (food), 115 (bloody Mary)

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  1. Tanya says:

    Hooray for VIP football games! I got a chance to watch a Texans game from a luxury box last season and it was great! The food was similar to what you showed – which for me as a vegetarian, was not the best selection, but oh well! They wheeled around a “Cold Stone”-type ice cream cart in the 3rd quarter which I certainly helped myself to! Sounds like you had a great time at the game!

    Did you say that your gym has a movie theater in it?? Wow!

    1. Hi Tanya,
      Hmmm….eating vegetarian would have been tricky. Love the idea of the ice cream cart! At my gym, it’s more like a theatre room. Movie theater, not quite:)

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