Football Party Ideas for the Sober Living

Football season has already started, and some are now gearing up with their team shirts and hats. During a season of such high spirits, how can one stay sober? Here are some ideas if you want an alcohol-free football party.

One of the great things about America is how we love our sports teams. One of the most popular professional sports in the country is football, and for many, football games represent cooler weather, comfort foods, holidays, parties, drinking, and the excitement of cheering for the winning team. For many, it’s more than the game, it’s all it stands for and the traditions built around Sunday afternoon football games that hold the love.

Because of all it is to us, it’s also a serious trap for many who want to avoid drinking alcohol. Football parties and games seem full of ads for alcoholic beverages, and most fans are walking advertisements for different beer brands. So, how does one stay sober during this time, even when they’re committed to overcoming an addiction to alcohol? The Dilemma of Staying Sober During Football Parties

The main ingredients of football parties are a bunch of high-calorie snacks, a rack of beers, a wide-screen TV, and a crowd gathered to have a good time. This can be very problematic to those who want to stay away from alcohol because drinks can be readily accessed.

In other instances, friends and family may pressure you to drink in “celebration” if your favorite team has won. The environmental and social pressures of being at football parties make a person in recovery very vulnerable. However, there is a way to modify football parties to make it family-friendly, sober living friendly, and enjoyable to all.

Here are some of great football party ideas you can do at home.

Alcohol-Free Football Party Ideas

Mexican food night with sparkling cider

Who doesn’t love Mexican food? They’re quick, affordable, and easy to prepare. Simply prepare the common ingredients in large containers to create your own Mexican spread. For example, prepare flavored rice, black beans, guacamole, shredded chicken, ground beef, Pico de Gallo, cheese, and other toppings in separate aluminum trays.

After spreading your ingredients, place hard taco shells, soft taco shells, nachos and tortilla wraps at the beginning of your buffet. People can pick their own ingredients and if they want to make tacos, tortillas, burritos, or a Mexican bowl. Mexican food tastes great with sparkling cider to celebrate with your friends and family. The refreshingly sweet and fizzy drink can be a great way to still enjoy the games and while staying sober.

As an additional bonus, you can also create your own churros from this recipe to complete your Mexican feast.

Backyard barbecue party with ginger ale

Backyard parties give a laid-back vibe that most people want if they’re spending cool afternoons outdoors. Barbecues can be even more satisfying with alcohol-free drinks such as ginger ale for a contrast of sweet, tangy, and savory.

To make your own backyard barbecue party, make sure that you have enough outdoor sitting. If you have a doorway to your patio area, you can simply open it up to accomodate more guests indoors and outdoors. You can ask your friends and family to bring in the grill meats that they would like, or you can be a generous host and prepare them on your own.

The best and easiest ones to make are hotdogs, sausages, burgers, pork chops and beef ribs. For pork chops and beef ribs, you can make them tastier by soaking them in a marinade of barbecue sauce, minced garlic, smoked paprika, brown sugar, vinegar, and olive oil. This makes a sweet-savory combination that’s just perfect with sides such as mashed potatoes, corn, or coleslaw.

Games usually start in the afternoons, so you can start grilling around that time and entertain your guests until the evening.

Football cookie swap

Who says that football is just about heavy snacks and fizzy drinks? Here’s another great ideas for the moms and youngsters who want to be part of the football party season. You can invite your friends and family for a football-themed cookie swap.

A cookie swap is done by baking medium to large batches of cookies, usually around 10-20 pieces each, and trading them with friends and family for their cookies. By the end of the party, you will be getting an assortment of cookies for your family to enjoy.

Some nice ideas for a football themed cookie swap are football-shaped sugar cookies, jelly-filled cookies with your favorite team color, or gingerbread football players. This can be a fun idea to start working on if you have kids so they can also participate.

Video game night

Football isn’t just confined to watching it on TV. You can play a football-themed game as a starter to have fun with your friends and family. You may already have a console at home, or if not, you can ask a friend to host the venue if they have a console.

Playing video games can help bring a sense of excitement and anticipation if you have guests who have different favorite teams. Although the football games won’t actually depict the scores in the NFL, it will at least bring consolation to those who want to make their favorite team to win.

Pizza football party with cola drinks

When all else fails, you can never go wrong with pizza. If you’re thinking of ways to enjoy a football party without making too many preparations, you can easily ask for a delivery pizza for your family and friends. Don’t forget to add fizzy drinks to keep you refreshed. For a healthier alternative, you can substitute cola products with flavored sparkling water mixed with stevia.

If you want something from scratch, you can make your own football-themed pizzas by using your toppings to get creative. For example, you can make your favorite team player’s number using pepperoni slices. You can even go as far as creating a football pizza art by using various colors of toppings such as olives, bell peppers, mushrooms, and cheese.

Alcohol-Free at a Football Party? Yes, It’s Possible!

These are just a few suggestions to make a sober football party, but the possibilities are endless. With just a little creativity, you can easily make a fun football party sans the alcoholic beverages. Doing this can ensure that football season can turn from a triggering moment to a time that can easily be incorporated into your relapse prevention plan.

Medical disclaimer:

Sunshine Behavioral Health strives to help people who are facing substance abuse, addiction, mental health disorders, or a combination of these conditions. It does this by providing compassionate care and evidence-based content that addresses health, treatment, and recovery.

Licensed medical professionals review material we publish on our site. The material is not a substitute for qualified medical diagnoses, treatment, or advice. It should not be used to replace the suggestions of your personal physician or other health care professionals.

Sunshine Behavioral Health Facilities


Chapters Capistrano


Monarch Shores


Mountain Springs


Willow Springs


Lincoln Recovery

Find out more about our admissions process