The Dude Diet: Super Bowl Sunday

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Logan has spent the past five days at a Widespread Panic festival in the Dominican Republic. Needless to say, the all-inclusive nature of his stay at the Hard Rock Hotel and Resort has not been kind to the Dude Diet. While I insisted on a “don’t ask, don’t tell policy” for what I shall refer to henceforth as “Hippie Fest 2013,” I’d put money on the fact that Logan has spent the week eating “free” cheeseburgers and blowing his daily calorie-intake on Miami vices before noon. However, he has made a bet that he can lose 6% of his body weight between now and March 1, so you better believe that The Dude Diet is going to be taken up a notch this month.

The Eagles have never won a Super Bowl.

Unfortunately, Super Bowl Sunday looms large on what I’m sure Logan views as a nacho-filled horizon. For the record, football makes my eyes bleed. I don’t even know who is in the Super Bowl this year, and I don’t care. Sadly, Logan practically lives for this “event,” so I will be forced to partake in the festivities. I’ve been suffering from severe anticipatory anxiety all week. It’s not watching the game that I’m worried about (I’m perfectly capable of reading US Weekly under the table while I patiently wait for Beyonce to appear onscreen), I’m mostly dreading Logan’s game-day consumption. Last year’s experience scarred me for life.

Super Bowl Sunday is obviously one of Logan’s favorite eating days of the year, and it’s usually spent with friends at a restaurant called Hill Country Barbecue. It’s risky to put Logan around barbecue for a single meal, so you can imagine what it’s like when he has an endless supply of barbecue at his disposal for five full hours. Dude. Diet. Apocalypse. Honestly, I have PTSD from witnessing Logan shovel food into his mouth throughout last year’s game. I don’t even think he took a break at halftime. Wings and mac and cheese were consumed with reckless abandon, multiple Zantacs were popped, and meat sweats were most definitely had. It was mildly obscene.

I know that Logan is joined by the majority of dudes in his love of fattening game-day foods. I accept this, and I’m not going to tell you that you are only allowed to eat the celery garnish off the snack platters this Sunday. I just want you to reign it in a little bit. I need you to recognize that pretty much all Super Bowl snacks are bad for you. Nachos, wings, mac and cheese, seven-layer dip, queso, and all of your other deep-fried or cheese-laden favorites are not doing you or your wonderland body any favors. Therefore, if you’re going to “get dirty,” portion control is key.

I know it will be difficult, but you are going to have to think before you eat this Sunday. Stick to single servings of what you want. For example: 4 chicken wings, 6 nachos, 1 small bowl of chili. If at any point you experience one or more of the following symptoms, put down whatever greasy thing is in your hand and call it quits for the day: excessive sweating, nausea, heartburn, headache, indigestion, severe gas, diarrhea. Do not, under any circumstances, take Zantac or Pepto-Bismol and keep eating.

If you are staying home this Sunday, I would like you to consider adding a couple of Dude Diet friendly Super Bowl options to the menu. My first offering is Baked Buffalo Wings:


Dudes LOVE wings. Unfortunately, most dudes don’t recognize the shocking fat and calorie content associated with them. In fact, I have heard several dudes try to make the argument that wings are healthy because “you know, they’re just chicken!” Nice try, fatties. The ugly truth is that chicken wings are deep fried before being coated in a buffalo sauce that is 50% butter and then dipped in disgusting quantities of blue cheese dressing. It also doesn’t help that dudes tend to eat multiple servings of wings in one sitting. I’ve seen Logan crush upwards of 20 wings without breaking a meat sweat. True story.

I realize that it would be cruel and unusual punishment to ask you to give up wings on Super Bowl Sunday. Therefore, I propose that you swap the deep fried version for these Dude Diet approved baked buffalo wings. Despite the lack of deep-frying, these bad boys are still crispy and delicious, and Frank’s RedHot Buffalo Wings Sauce is a zero-calorie miracle. I have no idea how this sauce has zero calories, but I’m not asking any questions because I’m just grateful it exists. You should be too.

In addition to these guilt-free wings, I suggest you try a Chipotle Steak Quesadilla this Sunday:


Please do not misunderstand the name of this recipe. I am not telling you that you can go to Chipotle and get a steak quesadilla. The “chipotle” in the title refers to the type of chili pepper used in the steak marinade.* If you are looking for something to replace your nachos or other Dude Diet-sabotaging Mexican food this weekend, this quesadilla is it. It’s made on low-carb tortillas and packed with vegetables, spicy chipotle skirt steak, and just enough melted cheese to keep you from complaining. Trust me, you’ll love it. The chipotle steak is also great on its own or in a salad, and the marinade is equally awesome for chicken or pork.

If you need some other Dude Diet friendly snack ideas, I recommend making bite-size turkey meatballs or whipping up some quinoa cakesBaked sweet potato fries will also keep you from going off the deep end, as will guacamole (in moderation) with baked pita chips. And I’m sure I don’t need to say this, but please drink light beer. No excuses. Happy Super Bowl Sunday, people. God bless the Dude Diet.

*I’m sure you knew this, but I can’t take any chances. Some of you dudes are nutritionally dumber than you seem.

Baked Buffalo Wings: (Serves 6)

3 lbs chicken wings
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
½ cup Frank’s RedHot Wings Buffalo Sauce
Fat-free Ranch Dressing (optional)


Preparing your wings:

*Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

-Remove and discard the wing tips (cut them off at the joint).


-Separate the wings into flats and drumettes. This is the annoying, but pretty simple. Bend the wing backwards at the joint until the bones separate, then use a pair of kitchen scissors to cut between them.


-Place the wings in a large bowl with the olive oil and salt. Toss to coat.

-Arrange the wings in a single layer on a large foil-lined baking sheet. Bake for 20 minutes and then flip the wings over. Bake for another 20 minutes until golden brown and crispy.


-In a small pot, heat ½ cup Frank’s Wings Sauce. Place the cooked wings in a large bowl, add the heated sauce, and toss to coat. Serve the wings hot. Feel free to put them on a fancy platter with some fat-free ranch dressing and celery sticks if you’re into that.


Chipotle Steak Quesadillas: (Serves 6, makes 3 full quesadillas)

6 low carb vegetable tortillas (I like Tumaro’s Gourmet Tortillas)
1 ½ cups Mexican blend shredded cheese, (you can also just use cheddar or Monterey Jack if you prefer)
1 small red onion, chopped
½ each red, green, and yellow bell pepper, chopped
4 tsp olive oil, divided
Freshly ground pepper
1 flank steak, approximately ¾ lb
For the steak marinade:
Juice of ½ lime
1 canned chipotle in adobo, finely chopped
1 tbsp adobo sauce from the chipotle can
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp cumin
¼ tsp garlic powder


Preparing your quesadillas:

-Start by marinating the steak. In a small bowl, combine the lime juice, chopped chipotle, adobo, salt, cumin, and garlic powder.


-Pour the marinade over the steak in a plastic bag, making sure that the meat is well-coated. Refrigerate for at least 20 minutes. (If you are extremely organized, you could also do this the day before.)


-When the steak has finished marinating, heat a grill pan over medium heat. When hot, remove the steak from the marinade and place in the pan. Cook for approximately 7 minutes on each side for medium rare. Remove the steak from the pan and allow it to rest for 10 minutes before cutting it into ½ inch cubes.


-Heat 1 tsp olive oil in a large pan. Add the chopped onion and peppers with a pinch of salt and fresh ground pepper. Sauté for 5 minutes until the vegetables are just tender. Remove from the heat and set aside.


-For each quesadilla: Sprinkle ¼ cup cheese on a tortilla, add 1/3 of the vegetable mixture and 1/3 of the cubed steak. Top with another ¼ cup cheese and the second tortilla.


-Heat 1 tsp olive oil in a pan for each quesadilla. When hot, carefully add the quesadilla and cook for about 3 minutes on each side, remove from the pan, and slice the quesadilla into 6 triangles. Top with pico de gallo or a little fresh guacamole and get after it.


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