Throughout 1996, Green Day toured to support their fourth album, Insomniac. After becoming homesick from being away from so long, the band cancelled their late European leg of the tour to spend time at home with their families. During this time the band continued to write and had written about three dozen new songs by the start of the 1997.
The band made the decision to continue working with producer Rob Cavallo, and began recording for Nimrod in March 1997 at Conway Studios in Los Angeles, California. The album took four months to record and was completed by July. Billie Joe Armstrong told Billboard that he credited the lengthy recording time to playing too much foosball and pool during sessions. The band would also mess around a lot and drank heavily during their stay at the Sunset Marquis Hotel because they were frustrated about having to record from noon to two in the morning. Eventually, Cavallo hired his father and manager, Pat Magnarella to supervise the band.
Hitchin' a Ride was released as the album's lead single on September 22, 1997. The song reached number one on the Canadian RPM Rock/Alternative charts and top ten on the United States Billboard Mainstream Rock and Alternative Songs charts.
Good Riddance (Time of Your Life) was released as the second single to Nimrod on October 17, 1997. The song was written in 1990 about Armstrong's girlfriend moving to Ecuador, but he didn't show the song to the band until the Dookie sessions in 1993. The song however, didn't fit the album, so Armstrong saved it for the Nimrod sessions. The track reached top ten in Australia, Canada and the United States.
The third single, Redundant was released on May 26, 1998. It was written by Armstrong about his relationship with his wife, which at the time was beginning to fall apart with the pair arguing with one another constantly. He wrote the song from two perspectives, the first being his passion for Adrienne and the second about the repetitiveness of their relationship. It charted at number two in Australia.
Nice Guys Finish Last was released as the final single on March 23, 1999. It featured in the movie Varsity Blues and earned a nomination for best song from a movie at the 1999 MTV Movie Awards.
Nimrod debuted at number ten on the Billboard 200 and remained on the chart for seventy weeks. The album was certified double platinum in the United States on March 16, 2000. The album reached number four in Canada and certified double platinum on July 6, 1998. The album debuted at number twelve in Australia and peaked at number three. It was certified triple platinum in 2000.