5 Things Not to Bring to a Tailgate Party

Cream Puffs

Yes, they let you show off your pastry-chef chops (or those of the local bakery or deli). But egg-rich pastries with moist, creamy fillings are ideal breeding grounds for Salmonella and Shigella, two types of bacteria that can wreak havoc with your insides, and worse. These foods aren't the best travelers, either. A few hours in a cooler can turn a shrimp salad puff into a leaky, soggy mess.

If you want to show off your creativity, choose materials with a sturdier structure. Start with your favorite snack cracker. Or stamp out stars and diamonds from rye or sourdough bread with cookie cutters. Top them with a variety of cold cuts, cheese, vegetables and a garnish and secure with a toothpick.

Mix and match colors and flavors to honor your gridiron heroes. American cheese and a green olive is a natural color combo for Green Bay Packer fans. Swap a black olive for the green, and voila, you're a Pittsburgh Steelers stalwart.

And what's a party without desserts? Next in the lineup: something for the sweet tooth.

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