When you invite friends over to cheer for their favorite team, you’ve got to feed them, of course. To ensure you won’t miss the kickoff, keep these tips in mind.

Prepare food in advance: When planning your menu, opt for dishes that can be made ahead of time, such as a chili or stew. Consider using a slow cooker, which will keep the dish warm for serving. Hearty hero sandwiches will score points with your guests.

Fix finger foods: When it comes to appetizers and desserts, the less fuss (and fewer forks), the better. For starters, chips and dips are always a winning combination. And for the finish, brownies and bar cookies are easy to serve and eat – just bake them in advance and cut into squares before your guests arrive.

Think potluck: Don’t want to cook everything yourself? Just prepare the main course, then ask guests to bring complementary appetizers, sides and desserts. And match the talent of the cook to the difficulty of the dish. Have non-cooks provide bread or drinks.

Serve buffet style: No one wants to sit around the table on game day! Arrange the food on a buffet (close to the television) so guests can help themselves during breaks and half-time. Set appetizers and other snacks on coffee tables so no one has to take their eyes off the game.

Offer refreshing drinks: Beer is the No. 1 choice on game day. For something different, serve guests pint glasses filled with black and tan, the British pub drink that pairs a layer of stout with pale ale. Have plenty of non-alcoholic beverages on hand, as well.