Football, Food, and Festivals of Fall

Football, Food, and Festivals of Fall

Written by Heather

Topics: Eats & Sweets

For as long as I remember, fall has been my favorite time of year. The colors, smells, flavors, and weather make me smile.

Some friends and family gather for a football tailgate
With CavMan

When I was in Australia, one of the the things I missed the most was autumn. Now, I’m missing Australia but LOVING living in Virginia at the most wonderful time of the year.

Over the last two months, I’ve been able to combine two of my fall favorites — attending college games and baking for the tailgates!

First, I found a recipe for Blue Moon Cupcakes on Pinterest and figured beer in a cupcake sounded like football food.

Blue Moon Cupcakes

I liked the orange flavored cupcake and marshmallow flavored icing. Maybe I over baked them, but the cupcake was on the dry side — if I made them again I’d use a simply syrup. You’d never know Blue Moon was in them if you hadn’t made them, but it was still a fun recipe to try.

For the next tailgate I made maple bacon cupcakes — something I’ve wanted to make since I first saw a recipe several years ago. There were plenty of recipes to choose from, and I somehow decided on this one. I opted to ice half of the cupcakes with the frosting in the recipe and half with a “sunny side up” egg — an idea I snagged earlier this year from a UK recipe magazine.

Vanilla frosting, butterscotch candy, black sugar
Maple bacon cupcakes

The cupcake itself was okay but the maple frosting was epic. Foodgasmic. And I browned butter for the first time to make both the batter and the frosting.

Maple bacon cupcake

When I’m not going to football games, I spend my Saturdays eating healthfully, right? Usually yes — unless the Virginia state fair is on.

My friend Evan invited me to join him for a day of eating deep fried treats at the fair. We went in mighty ambitious but had to stop earlier than planned. This was for the best. And no, I did not eat all of the food pictured below :-)

VA state fair, deep fried everything

Deep fried Oreo
Deep fried Oreo

Deep fried Reese’s Cup
Deep fried Reese's Cup

Pumpkin funnel cake — wicked greasy!
VA State Fair, pumpkin funnel cake

It took a solid week for my body to forgive me after the fair! And I’m trying to treat it right so I can occasionally indulge in things like:

— The sweet potato bread french toast I made for my family this weekend.
— These “Everything Fall” cupcakes that will take a couple of days to complete. If you like cupcakes, check out the food blog of that recipe — amazing!
— And pumpkin cinnamon rolls.

When I’m not taking a couple of bites of a sweet treat I’ve made (and making someone else eat the rest!), I’ve been enjoying things like this pumpkin pie smoothie. I use So Delicious coconut milk and yogurt to make it dairy free.

The savory gal in me has enjoyed cooking with acorn and butternut squash for the first time. I’ve had roasted veggies for dinner once or twice a week for a few months now! My fave combo? Sweet potato, butternut squash, and onion — with a little olive oil and spices of course.

Do you have some favorite fall recipes to recommend? I have a long list of things I want to make stored on Evernote and Pinterest but can never have enough suggestions :-)

23 Comments Comments For This Post I'd Love to Hear Yours!

  1. Deidre says:

    The twice baked potatoes in the enchanted broccoli forest are DELICIOUS.

  2. Sally says:

    You are killing me. KILLING ME! Fall is my favorite season at home, too. And, while China has a pretty decent fall (when the smog isn’t trying to kill me), it’s nothing like fall in Western New York. Plus, I miss all the fall foods like apple cider and those little donuts that you HAVE to eat with apple cider… and, now, of course cupcakes. Like I said. You’re just KILLING ME here.

    • Heather says:

      Oooh, you just reminded me that there’s a doughnut food truck with apple cider here and I still haven’t stopped by!

      Next time you’re home (or when I win the lottery and can come visit you), we’ll get together for an epic day week of baking and watching reality TV on the couch.

  3. Gav says:

    How can the Fall not be Fantastic and Foodgasmic with all the colors, Food, Football and Festivals?

    The things you’ve cooked/baked have been amazing and very very tasty :-). I loved sharing the Food with you when there, it meant we could try so many other things.

    Pumpkin being the Fruit of the Fall…I enjoyed and enjoyed sharing the pumpkin beer, pumpkin soup and pumpkin cheesecake with you :-)

    There’s lots of F’s here and F is for FUN :-)!

    Another great post, I love you’re posts and writing style <3

    • Heather says:

      I can’t think of a thing I’d cook/bake that you wouldn’t like, but we did agree that the wrap the other day was a fail — at least they did a great soup and sandwich! Thanks for the positive feedback :-)

  4. Nicole says:

    Those “sunny side up” cupcakes are so creative! And the maple bacon icing sounds amazing. :) Looking forward to baking some delicious treats with you this spring!

  5. Jayne says:

    Your pictures of cakes never fail to make me salivate!!!

    • Heather says:

      Thanks Jayne :-) They were super fun to make, eat, and photograph. I have a long list of recipes asking to be made next O:-)

  6. Jaime says:


    I wish I could say FALL is my FAV season, but the truth is in HOUSTON we really don’t get a FALL… we get a SUMMER and then SHORT WINTER. Yeah things in Houston are strange. Damn though that is what I miss about home some horrible fat food that can kill you…lol!!!

    • Heather says:

      You miss what you can’t have :-) Sometimes in Oz I missed the variety of healthy options I had at home (mostly gluten free stuff) and since being back, I’ve had a challenging time balancing healthy and unhealthy eating O:-)

  7. Amanda says:

    God, I’m so hungry now. Lol. I didn’t have the chance to go to my local county fair this year, and I was BUMMED. I always look forward to fried food on a stick.

    And those cupcakes? They all look amazing!!

    • Heather says:

      I’d never tried the fried cookies and candies before — just the funnel cakes! I *so* wanted to try the deep fried Kool-Aid (what in the world?!) but my body refused after a few bites of the other things we bought.

      Thanks for the comment on the cupcakes — with the exception of the maple frosting, I think they look better than they tasted :-)

      • Gav says:

        I disagree 😛 the cupcakes were really good, when we tried one the previous day before frosting it was great.

        I think the cupcakes got overshadowed by the maple frosting. :-)

  8. Laura says:

    First, I thought the state fair sign said “Deer Fried Reese’s”. I was wondering what that was… but I should have know that everything at the fair is deep fried! I absolutely LOVE making cupcakes so this is awesome! My mom just bought a new cupcakes book for me, and while I’m trying to eat healthy for now, I might just have to make something soon! Btw, the SC State Fair had Fried Ice Cream Bacon Cheeseburgers this year. Did you see any of those? It just keeps getting crazier and crazier!

    • Heather says:

      Fried Ice Cream Bacon Cheeseburgers?! I saw a cheeseburger sandwiched by donuts but nothing like that! I think every year the fair vendors see how they can outdo everyone from the year before. This year it was Kool-Aid!

  9. Kyle says:

    On one hand…ew to all the fried food. On the other hand, OMG, deep fried Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup?! I could definitely enjoy a bite or two of that :)

    And that bacon cupcake, SO COOL!

  10. Erik says:

    We’ve got pretty good fall here in Michigan, too. I just wrote a post this week about my wife & I’s visit to a local cider mill- there isn’t much more fall than that!

  11. Annie says:

    Don’t get mad at me for saying it because I am loving being back in Oz but your last two posts have actually made me miss the States in the fall!!!!

    • Heather says:

      Do you like fall?

      I REALLY missed it last year and the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas was also challenging at times. Glad I could send a little autumn love your way! Give Sydney a huge hug from me!

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