Ask the Readers: What do you eat at the gaming table?

Potato chips Back when I started roleplaying we usually ate a lot of snacks at the game table (mostly potato chips in various flavors), drank gallons of soft drinks and coffee and in the evening we stuffed ourselves with sandwiches our GM’s mom had prepared for us.

Over the years I experimented with alternatives to salty and greasy snacks like potato chips and soft drinks. A more healthy snack are vegetables like cucumbers,  kohlrabies, peppers, carrots etc. that are great if served with a nice dip. There are hundreds of great dip recipes on the internet, but sometimes even a simple sour cream with some spices is more than sufficient. But I have to admit that this kind of snack needs more preparation and is not everyone’s cup of tea.

I know of gaming groups that also use their regular meetings to cook a proper meal together. If you have enough time this is definitely a fun activity (especially if you like cooking with your friends). But since we usually don’t have that much time, we prepare some dinner beforehand. My favorites are pizza, chili con carne, or other meals you can easily prepare a couple of hours before you actually have dinner. In my opinion having a proper meal together is an important part of my gaming sessions. The pauses are a good opportunity to chat, so that the gaming session itself keeps focused on gaming and not talking about what happened last week, the latest politics or sports events.

So, what do you eat at the gaming tables? Do you stick to snacks or is cooking with your friends an important part? Do you have any recipes to share? And would you like to read more about gaming food on Stargazer’s World? Please share your thoughts in the comments below!

Michael Wolf is a German games designer and enthusiast best known for his English language role-playing games blog, Stargazer's World, and for creating the free rules-light medieval fantasy adventure game Warrior, Rogue & Mage. He has also worked as an English translator on the German-language Dungeonslayers role-playing game and was part of its editorial team. In addition to his work on Warrior, Rogue & Mage and Dungeonslayers, he has created several self-published games and also performed layout services and published other independent role-playing games such as A Wanderer's Romance, Badass, and the Wyrm System derivative Resolute, Adventurer & Genius, all released through his imprint Stargazer Games. Professionally, he works as a video technician and information technologies specialist. Stargazer's World was started by Michael in August 2008.

9 thoughts on “Ask the Readers: What do you eat at the gaming table?”

  1. I used to have a player who brought all kinds of healthy snacks like carrots and cucumber to our table. She was kinda a health-freak, but I didn't mind. I'd rather stuff myself with groceries than gaining two pounds in one session ;D

    Nowadays, it's kinda random. Normally, we have a mix of sweets, water and fruit juices at the table. I noticed though that players tend to eat far more at the table than I as the GM do. Did other GM's notice the same thing?

  2. I don't like to eat at the gaming table, and I consequently don't often serve snacks. Players are free to bring what they like, usually salsa n chips (which last for about 0.2 seconds – maybe that's why I don't eat, way back behind my gamemaster's screen…).
    .-= Siskoid´s last blog ..Cat of the Geek #60: Mr. Bigglesworth (WoW) =-.

  3. As a game master you always have the problem that you are doing most of the talking, so you can't eat as much as the others. And being behind a GM screen hinders access to the snacks, too.

    I think next weekend I will have some healthy snacks again. 🙂

  4. To be honest…depending on the time of the day (regularly we try to meet every other saturday for lunch/brunch and game on until the dead of night) we have healthy food (most of the times cooked by all of us helping together), in the evenings we tend to get quite wasted with beer and wine (and a huge dose of french cheeses, olives and chips), although not as much as in the good old day without any responsibilities 🙂

  5. My group likes to start our games at 2pm on Saturdays. Everyone in the group brings snacks. (soda, chips, cheese, dip, crackers, etc). Around 5:30pm we start cooking dinner. Again everyone chips in.

    I will say something to the affect of "We are having tacos on game night". I will pick up the ground beef or chicken and everyone else in the party will bring something to complete the meal. It's just always kind of worked that way and has been natural for us.

    We will stop playing around 5:30 because we all collectively need a brake and will help cook or take out some terrorists on the PS3 (thank you Modern Warfare) till dinner is ready. Then will get back int he game.

    It seems that the Dungeon Master book for D&D suggests that since the DM is doing all the work setting up the game and that everyone else should be responsible for food and snacks. As much as I agree with that statement, it just has not been a practical reality for me and my group.

    I love that the Dungeon Master book talks about things like food and how a DM should be treated. Maybe the reason it doesn't work is because in general the person reading the DM book is the DM him or her self. Not the players.

    Just a thought for Wizards of the Cost.

    Great post by the way!
    .-= Youseph´s last blog ..Appholes =-.

  6. Well, food and gaming, a topic near and dear to my heart!

    When I was in school we played a lot, but on Fridays we’d get together after school and my grandma would cook for us and then we’d game until the early evening. During summer she often prepared what we in Puerto Rico call “mezcla” sandwiches (I think they call them Birthday Party sandwiches in the US).

    In college we just downed massive amounts of snacks, sweets and soda. We still drink a lot of sodas these days, although I’ve never liked drinking hard alcohol during games.

    I love to cook and sometimes cook for my players. One of my players makes a GREAT dip and we sometimes try to eat healthy, but just sometimes!

  7. While we don't do a prepared dinner, often we try out beers from the thriving Vancouver, BC and West Coast microbrew scene.


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