Runza sandwiches are a staple at Nebraska football games.
Screenshot from YouTube, Steven Branscombe via Getty Images

Runzas: A Nebraska Game Day Special Every College Football Fan Should Try


Nebraska's football season is already down the drain, but that doesn't mean you still can't have fun at Memorial Stadium. You can hangout with family members, catch up with old friends, bask in the fall weather and chow down on a Runza.

Non-Nebraskans have no idea what a Runza is, but let me explain its significance to Nebraska football: You've heard of liquid courage. Well, a Runza is savory courage, because lord do we need something to make watching the product on the field easier.

That being said, what the hell is it, Grobeck? Glad you asked.


The Runza Sandwich: a Nebraska Staple

Runza sandwiches are a popular concession items at Nebraska football games.

Screenshot from YouTube

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Unlike a hot dog, a Runza is a sandwich. The difference is the fillings -- ground beef, cabbage and onions -- are inside the bread. And who makes Runzas? That would be Runza, the marquee fast-food establishment of Nebraska with additional locations in Colorado, Kansas and Missouri. There are more flavorful Runzas like cheese, Philly style, cheeseburger, southwest and more for the adventurous types, but you'll only find the originals (the beef, cabbage and onion) at Husker games in Lincoln.

The preparation process for a Nebraska game day is long and tedious. For a 2:30 p.m. kickoff on Saturday, preparation starts at 5 a.m. the Friday before. This also includes transportation to the stadium as well as packaging. All in all, roughly 12,000 to 15,000 are produced and they're usually sold out by the start of the second quarter.

Never doubt a Nebraskan's love for Runza.


At this point you may be asking yourself "What's so special about a Runza?" Glad you asked. If you don't live close to a Runza restaurant you can order frozen Runzas to your doorstep to try for yourself. Or you can go to a game at Memorial Stadium. The Runzas at Memorial taste different, though. In a good way. It's equivalent to the difference between a hot dog you grill up and a stadium hot dog. Stadium hot dogs are the play when you're watching a game.

If you do find yourself at Memorial on a fall Saturday, it's important to order the Nebraska quadfecta: The Runza of course, followed by a slice of Valentino's pizza (another Nebraska staple), some stadium popcorn and a Pepsi. Nebraska fans will redirect their boos from the field to you if you don't. It's a state law.


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