5 Fun and Frugal Super Bowl Party Ideas

Super Bowl Party Ideas

Ok, I’ll admit it. I LOVE the Super Bowl and am always looking for Super Bowl party ideas. I love the Super Bowl so much that it is my second favorite day of the year behind Thanksgiving. While I don’t think it’ll become a national holiday like some have suggested, it’s clear that many people love the Super Bowl. With it being less than two weeks away now, I know many are starting to look for Super Bowl party ideas.

Whether they’re watching it for the game, the half time show, or the commercials, you’d be hard pressed to find anyone who at some level does not like to watch the Super Bowl. Even if they don’t, who would not like to go to a Super Bowl party? Super bowl parties are usually rife with nice and greasy junk food, football gear, fun and friends. I know, not the best combination to strive for, but hey, life is meant to be fun at times too. The great thing about some of these Super Bowl party ideas, is that they work for party ideas in general, as some are food-related (MMM…food!) and some of the games could possibly be applied to other sporting events.

Pizza Can Go With All of Your Super Bowl Party Ideas

I don’t know how much is spent on pizza during the Super Bowl, but it’s bound to be a lot. We love pizza, and it often seems to go hand in hand with watching football on TV so why not have it while watching the Super Bowl. You can always order pizza in and split the cost amongst your friends (if you do, make sure to allow PLENTY of time to have it delivered), but there are other options available if you want to go another route.

One of my favorite Super Bowl party ideas that I have seen is to make your own pizza party. The host can provide the dough, sauce and cheese and everyone else attending can bring their own toppings. This can help bring down the cost, plus you might get to enjoy something new. If making your own pizza is not on your list of Super Bowl party ideas, you can also have guests bring their favorite pizza either from home or from their favorite pizza place.

Rate the Commercial

Who does not enjoy watching Super Bowl commercials? It seems as many people watch for the Super Bowl commercials as they do the actual game itself. True, not all of them are good, and some are just an absolute waste of money. However, there are some that stick out as memorable and are great from an advertiser’s perspective.

If you’re looking for Super Bowl party ideas that keep the non-football fan entertained, you can have friends rate the commercials to see what everyone likes the best. This can be done either informally, or have them write down their favorite ones and vote on it at the end of the night. This is fun, free and can involve even those who could care less about the game and are only watching so they can see the Super Bowl commercials.

Pick a Player

Ok, this might not be the most frugal of Super Bowl party ideas, but it’s fun nonetheless. Your part in this fun game is to write down all of the key players’ names and put them in a hat. Each person who is at the Super Bowl party will put in a certain dollar amount into the pot. It can be as much or as little as you want, the point really is not the amount of money, but it’s making the Super Bowl a little more engaging while also adding a little competition into it. Each person who puts into the pot will draw one of those names and at the end of the Super Bowl, the winner who drew the winning MVP will get the pot. I’ve played this at a number of Super Bowl parties and it’s cash that can go straight in to the bank account at the end of the night. :-)

Pass the cup

Similar to the “pick a player” game, “pass the cup” is not the most frugal of Super Bowl party ideas, but is still fun and can still be done on the cheap. How this game works is that you start with an empty cup and the first person will put a dollar in it. Again, the amount you choose to work with is insignificant. That person has to name some sort of football play, like safety, for example. The cup gets passed around with each person putting in the said amount until a safety occurs. The person who is holding the cup when the safety occurs wins the money in the cup and they then name another play and the game starts over again. One thing to keep in mind, with either of these games, is to communicate them before your Super Bowl party so your friends can get cash out of their checking account in the case they would like to participate.

Super Bowl Potluck!

I know, I am a PF blogger and this is a post about spending money and eating junk food! It’s all in moderation, right?! Who has gone to a super Bowl party and NOT had food? If you have, then I guess I need to be looking for other Super Bowl party ideas. One thing to keep in mind for a Super Bowl potluck is that a Super Bowl party is all about finger foods. You don’t want to bring something extravagant and not have it be eaten. The great thing about a potluck is that you can divide up the food in order to keep cost per person down and each person can bring a specific finger food. This will bring variety and a little fun to the event as you can try numerous finger foods and possibly get good finger food ideas for your next party.


What are some of your favorite Super Bowl party ideas? Do you watch the Super Bowl for the game itself, or solely for the commercials? Who’re you wanting to make it there this year?


Photo courtesy of: Pixlboom


*Updated from original on January 28, 2013

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About the author:

I'm the founder of Frugal Rules, a Dad, husband and veteran of the financial services industry. I'm passionate about helping people learn from my mistakes so that they can enjoy the freedom that comes from living frugally. You can connect via Twitter / Facebook.

64 comments on “5 Fun and Frugal Super Bowl Party Ideas

  1. Sounds like some great ideas! My wife has a post related to the Super Bowl going up tomorrow as well. We had a super bowl party last year and they can be fun, but honestly the most fun is Viking’s playoffs games (or “near” playoff games like our last game of the season where it was win and in). We hosted people at our place for that last game of the season and it was a ton of fun, especially because we won ;)
    DC @ Young Adult Money recently posted..Why Email is Better than Talking on the PhoneMy Profile

    • That was a pretty good game at the end of the season, I am still surprised that they benched Ponder though for the playoff game…he must’ve been really hurt not to play.

    • It’s actually for the entire game…$3.7 – $3.8 million for a 30 second ad this year. It is a crazy number. But, speaking as an advertiser, you’re getting over 100 million people to see it at once. If you run a good ad it can be great for business. Then again, it could be a terrible one that no one likes.

  2. Great post, John! I love the “Rate the Commercial” game – we’ll be doing that one for sure! We do like football, but food, family and the commercials are definitely our most prominent reasons for gathering on Superbowl Sunday. We’ll be saving money on Superbowl food this year by making lots of homemade dishes (get great recipes at our website) and picking up the many on-sale items this week. Go, Ravens! (or 49ers. Or whoever. Doesn’t really matter to us :-) )
    Laurie @thefrugalfarmer recently posted..Prosperity: For Better, or for WorseMy Profile

    • Thanks Laurie! I love the game, but that is second to all the fun you can have during the game. It’s one of those few days that calories don’t count, right?! ;)

    • As do I Eddie! I have to admit that I am just a little jealous that you get to see it in Vegas. I imagine that would be quite fun. I am looking forward to our trip to Vegas next year, so I guess you’ll just have to have fun there for me this week. :)

    • I think a lot of people have seen the commercials. Often times they’re better than the actual game. That’s a great point about having an open kitchen so those cooking can see the game as well.

    • I am the same way Joe. I’ll miss out on a play or two to be able to see some of the commercials. Lol at your connection! My Mom actually went to High School with Hillary Clinton, just one year behind her.

  3. I think both of the Harboughs are pretty arrogant, so I’m not sure that I can root for either of them. If I had to pick though I think I’ll pull for John (Ravens).

    I love the idea about putting money into a hat and everybody drawing names; I’ve never thought of anything like that before! I just focus on the game and make sure to take in all of the commercials. I’ve found that being with a bunch of people distracts me too much and I’d rather be able to pay attention. :)
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    • I’ve heard that about Jim, but not John. I’ll probably be pulling for the Ravens as well. Being a life long Cowboys fan I can not, in good conscience, cheer for the 49er’s.

      I normally like being able to pay attention when watching a football game on TV. I hate watching them with other people, however the Super Bowl is like a big party to me. Maybe it has more to do with the fact that my ‘Boys have not been there in what seems like forever.

  4. The super bowl is the only day of the year that my family gets to eat nachos for dinner. I bake them in the oven with all kinds of stuff. They are wonderful, but not very healthy,When football season started this year, our daughter asked if we were having nachos that night for dinner. No, you gotta wait till the END of the season! Chili in the crock pot is another thing I’ve seen done well at Super bow parties.
    Kim@Eyesonthedollar recently posted..Work Less, Live More-Transition to Part Time WorkMy Profile

    • Mmmm….Nachos! :) Chili is always a good one as well. I think there are two days in the year where calories don’t exist…Thanksgiving & Super Bowl Sunday. ;)

    • I have to admit that going to one is usually better as I hate to deal with all of the clean up. If you go to one you can help out, but it’s much different being in your own house.

    • Thanks Shannon! I look forward to the commercials as well, especially being in advertising myself and seeing how well put together some of the ads are.

    • Lol! I was thinking the same thing about me & the Cowboys! I’ve always hated the years that they only have one week in between the two, it makes it end all too quickly for me.

  5. A potluck is a great idea. I always feel bad when someone throws a party like this and has to cover all of the costs. It should be more like squares where the person in charge gets a cut of the action. Enjoy the game!
    Justin@TheFrugalPath recently posted..Special Sunday Link LoveMy Profile

  6. I think the parties in Atlanta will be smaller this year seeing that the Falcons fell short in the NFC Championship. So that should help save some money on parties here. I can’t root for either team, but especially Baltimore, as I – a born and raised Buckeye – am still annoyed at Art Modell for moving them from Cleveland. The “new Browns” have not been the same since.
    Brian @ Luke1428 recently posted..Reading Worth Your Time (1/26/13)My Profile

    • I would agree Brian, it’s a shame they did not make it…though having the brothers face off is a neat story line. I really don’t care, but being a Cowboys fan, I can’t in good conscience pull for the Niners.

    • It’s been a few years ourselves with having the little ones it makes it a bit more difficult. We have done the same thing as you the last few years.

    • Thanks! That’s exactly what I was thinking. Making all of the dough could be a hassle if you have a lot of people. One other option would be to use the Boboli pizza crusts ad they’re pretty reasonable in price and fairly decent in taste.

    • Thanks! I don’t think we have any plans either this year as chance would have it. We just usually end up making a few snacky foods and enjoy…after all the calories don’t count on Super Bowl Sunday…right?! ;)

  7. Unfortunately I will be working early the next morning so I have to go to bed pretty early. Hopefully I’ll be able to catch the first half. These are great ideas and I would definitely implement them if we were going to watch it. One thing that my wife does plan on doing is DVR’ing the entire superbowl only to fast forward to the commercials!
    Brick By Brick Investing | Marvin recently posted..How To Use Bear Put SpreadsMy Profile

    • That stinks! I always hate when that is the case for me. At least with your wife DVR’ing it you can watch all the commercials too later if you wish.

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