Best 4th of July Recipes

Best Homestyle 4th of July Food Ideas

July 4th is nearly upon us and that means parades, picnics, barbecues, fireworks and red, white and blue themed food or NOT. If you’re looking for 4th of July Food Ideas, this collection includes everything from Summer BBQ ideas to 4th of July drinks, patriotic desserts, 4th of July side dishes and even a few fourth of July snacks. Get inspired for your holiday cookout here!

4th of july fireworks display

4th of July Food Ideas

Before you get to the grand finale — the fireworks,  you gotta eat.  In this collection, I’ve included the most popular picnic, barbecue and pot luck recipes for any summer outdoor get together, whether you’re celebrating in the mountains or by the beach, on a rooftop patio or in your own back yard, these dishes will satisfy the tastebuds and appetites of all of your July 4th revelers.

Fourth of July Snacks

Fourth of july snacks - black bean dip

This healthy, light, Black Bean Dip has a bit of heat from jalapeño peppers and a tangy punch from the fresh lime. Serve it with tortilla chips and watch it disappear. This is one of the most popular recipes on the blog — and for good reason — everyone LOVES IT.

deviled ham is a great Fourth of july snack.

A classic spread for your favorite crackers, this Savory Southern Deviled Ham should be on your list of Fourth of July snacks. Make it in advance and keep it chilled until you’re ready to serve.

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chunky guacamole in a ramekin

Everyone loves avocados and chips, right? This Chunky Guacamole is tossed in lime juice with a bit of hot sauce for a tangy dip that you can’t get enough of.

grilled shrimp cocktail is an impressive Fourth of July snacks.

Want to impress your guests? Grilled Shrimp Cocktail is drenched in a garlicky lime marinade and served with an easy, homemade cocktail sauce that will ruin you for any bland, store-bought wannabe.  

All of these easy-to-make Fourth of July Snacks will be welcome on your holiday table.

4th of July Drinks

Wash down your Fourth of July Snacks with these refreshing libations! We’ve got cocktails and mocktails to choose from and of course you could add or omit {gasp} the alcohol depending on your crowd.

A glass of watermelon water with lime and mint leaves.

This Watermelon Water is light, refreshing and don’t you just love that gorgeous red blush? Made with mint simple syrup, watermelon juice and a bit of sparkling water because — BUBBLES! Imbibe it with a splash of vodka for the grown-ups.

Guava limeade is a refreshing 4th of july drink.

Guava Limeade Summer Mocktail is completely unexpected! Made with a guava vanilla simple syrup and fresh lime juice, kids and adults alike love this one. Add a bit of rum or vodka to make it an alcoholic sip.

cara cara margaritas for 4th of july drinks selection.

Cara Cara Margaritas are another light and refreshing 4th of July drink, with fresh squeezed Cara Cara orange juice, tequila, Cointreau and a bit of sparkling water to give it fizz – this will cool you off under a sweltering summer sun.

refreshing red white and blue sangria in a pitcher.

This Red White and Blue Sangria has to be one of your 4th of July drink offerings. It has tons of patriotic colored (and shaped) fruit soaked in brandy, wine and finished with a bit of fizz. This is my cocktail interpretation of the American Flag. Cheers!

4th of July Summer BBQ Ideas

For the 4th of July, you don’t want fancy, right? You want hearty, feed-your-face Americana. So these summer BBQ ideas aren’t pretentious or frou-frou. They’re what you CRAVE.

Chili cheese dogs in a basket with all the toppings.

No, it’s not just another hot dog. This {world-famous} Chili Hot Dogs Recipe is my husband’s all-time FAVORITE. When he makes them, you can’t even see the dog or the bun for the toppings he loads onto them. I’ll leave it up to you to build your own.

Avocado Sriracha Turkey burgers are great Summer BBQ ideas.

More eat-with-your-hands 4th of July Summer BBQ Ideas: Sriracha Avocado Turkey Burgers anyone? These juicy, meaty burgers are oozing with cheese and a special sriracha aioli that takes these sandwiches to the next level.

 I grew up on Smoked Pork Butt That vinegar mop-sauce is in my blood. This isn’t a crock-pot wannabe, either. It’s legit, slow-smoked Boston butt with an unctuous smoke-kissed bark and heavenly, tender chew. I’m a purist — and strongly advocate for topping this pork sandwich with a tangy, vinegary coleslaw.  Don’t get fancy — wash it down with a beer.

tender hickory smoked ribs on a platter.

It’s not summer without a rack of ribs and these amazing Tender Hickory Smoked Ribs are the ultimate in carnivorous pleasures. All it takes is a good rub and a patient constitution to get perfectly smoked ribs for your 4th of July cookout.

4th of July Side Dishes

What you serve WITH  the burgers, dogs, and ribs is just as important as the main dish. These 4th of July Side Dishes are classics with a twist. A stand-out potato salad, dressed up pasta salad, easy cheater’s baked beans and yes, corn on the cob – made on the grill in their own husks. Trust me, you want these side dishes on your buffet!

bacon and egg potato salad is a tasty 4th of july side dishes.

Bacon and Egg Potato Salad is smoky and tangy — and SO MUCH BETTER THAN STORE-BOUGHT.  Sorry, was I yelling? The key is a bit of vinegar on the hot potatoes. Trust me, it’s other-worldly.

red white and blue salad.

This fresh summer salad is red, white and blue AND green! Summer Glow Salad with Blueberries and Cherries from Tricia at Rhubarbarians is a welcome, healthy dish for your 4th of July celebration.

not your average pasta salad, this 4th of july side dish is a winner.

No mayo on this pasta salad! Instead this Antipasto Pasta Salad is dressed with a tangy vinaigrette. Pops of briny kalamata olives and pepperoncini peppers add even more flavor. Folks can’t resist this one.

corn and tomato salad.

This Summer Corn and Tomato Salad from my friend, Sarah at Champagne Tastes is the perfect light, healthy side dish for your 4th of July celebrations!

These tangy Baked Beans from Scratch are made with canned beans (no soaking required) and ready-made barbecue sauce. If I’m honest, I could eat the whole dish myself, but the family wants me to share. Hmph.

this pearl couscous salad is a summer favorite.

Pearl Couscous Salad with zucchini, cranberries and pine nuts are dressed with a zingy citrus dressing. Thanks to Dawn at Girl Heart Food for sharing her gorgeous recipe.

grilled corn on the cob is a great 4th of july side dish.

Grilled Chipotle Lime Corn doesn’t last long at our family gatherings and I’m betting it won’t last at yours, either. Remove the silk from the corn cobs, but leave the husks intact (I’ll show you how) then season the corn with a chipotle lime butter and grill them next to your burgers, chicken and the like.

Patriotic Desserts

Round out these 4th of July food ideas — I give you Patriotic Desserts.  I admit, I’m not much for literal translations in food, but these desserts have the colors and flavors of summer.  I’ve got also included some good one’s from my blogger friends!

mixed berry galette is a beautiful patriotic dessert.

This Heavenly Mixed Berry Galette uses juicy, ripe summer berries and folds them into a flaky crust for the ultimate in summer comfort food. Garnish with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla for a very red-white and blue finish to your holiday meal.

blueberry crisp in a bowl.

This Easy Blueberry Crisp from Greg at My Wife Can Cook is finished with a spoonful of vanilla ice cream or freshly whipped cream for a heavenly patriotic dessert.

strawberry rhubarb pie is another patriotic dessert.

You know it isn’t summer without an Old Fashioned Strawberry Rhubarb Pie. This one with a lattice crust lets the oozy-ripe berries peek through, giving diners a glimpse of what’s to come.

key lime blueberry swirl ice cream.

I just don’t have enough good things to say about this Blueberry Swirl Key Lime Ice Cream. It’s tangy, sweet, luscious and happens to be my daughter’s summer favorite. You might need a double batch… I’m just sayin’…

watermelon "cakes" are light and refreshing.

These Mini Watermelon “Cakes” From Basil and Bubbly aren’t cakes at all. Instead, they’re fresh light rounds of fresh fruit with whipped cream and fresh berries. 

This patriotic dessert just needs a scoop of vanilla - homemade blueberry pie.

The ultimate patriotic dessert for me is Homemade Blueberry Pie. That luscious fruit filling and flaky (ok, it’s store-bought — don’t judge) crust. Does it get any better? By the way — I don’t trust people who can cut a piece of pie and it looks perfect. It should ooze and flow. That’s how you know it’s the real deal.

toasted marshmallow milkshake.

Ok, this one isn’t red white and blue, but this Toasted Marshmallow and Oreo Milkshake from Carmy at Carmy – Run Eat Travel is exactly the kind of indulgent, summertime treat that would be welcome at any holiday celebration!


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One Comment

  1. Love every single one of these!!