Let’s take a little drive down memory lane to the drive-in movie theater! If you’re lucky enough to still have a drive-in nearby, then you know it’s basically a summer ritual to load up the car with easy appetizers and candy, then settle in for a double feature.
I live just 15 minutes from a classic drive-in, the McHenry Outdoor Theater in McHenry, IL. We almost lost our drive-in to the switch to digital, but thankfully the theater was saved when they won a Honda contest, and received a digital projector. Let me tell you—locals were VERY excited that a landmark business was saved! I’m so glad I can still enjoy the drive-in.
Chowing down is a HUGE part of my drive-in tradition, going back to when my mom would load up bags with movie candy like Snow Drops, chocolate-covered raisins and M&Ms and bring us to see the summer blockbusters. At our drive-in, you can also buy typical fare like hot dogs, hamburgers and nachos at concessions.
In general, food is an important element of the drive-in experience. Remember the intermission cartoons of concession foods? The hot dog would do flips, and other snacks perform tricks like a little circus to persuade you to eat them. They still show these at the McHenry Outdoor.
It’s great to splurge on junk food, but sometimes you want to save some money (and your stomach). Since most drive-ins let you bring in your own food, why not take it up a notch and bring in some real appetizers?
We rounded up our most fun and travel-friendly easy appetizer recipes so that you can gear up for your next visit.
Not Just Hot Dogs Doing Flips: 12+ Drive-In Movie Eats
- BBQ Bacon Cheeseburger Nachos
- Easy Homemade Mac and Cheese Balls
- Chicken Parmesan Pull-Apart Bread
- Muffin Tin Corn Dog Bites
- 10 Easy & Cheap Homemade Candy Recipes
- World’s Best Homemade Cracker Jack Popcorn
- 11 Easy No-Bake Cookies and Dessert Bars
- Almond Joy Bark