Now that Memorial Day has officially come and gone, it’s time to start breaking out all of our favorite summer recipes. From juicy, grilled meats to easy bring-along sides to sweet, chilled desserts, there are so many tasty reasons to love summer. Whether you’re planning to attend a barbecue or you’re hosting one yourself, we’ve got just the recipes you need to make your backyard bash a memorable event.
It’s important to make sure your guests don’t get too antsy waiting for dinner to finish cooking. Satisfy their appetites with one of these unforgettable appetizers.
Bread Bowl Dip: I don’t know about you, but one of my least favorite parts of any party is the massive clean-up effort when it’s done. That’s the beauty of this dip recipe—there’s one less bowl to clean at the end of the night!
Cheesy Crab Cups: If you’re a seafood fan, then these cheesy bites are a must-have offering at your backyard barbecue. Just as tasty as those crab rangoons you always order from your favorite Chinese restaurant, you’ll be finding excuses to whip up these easy bites.
Southwestern Chicken Salad Spirals: Bring your deli salad specialty to the appetizer table with these easy-to-make bites. This no-bake appetizer is perfect for the summer ’cause you won’t have to heat up the house to pull ’em all together.
Looking for more appetizer ideas? Then make sure to check out our collection of 40 Party-Pleasing Appetizers!
Manning the grill can be a daunting challenge when you’ve got hungry guests chomping at the bit. Don’t worry—just cook up one of these fabulous meaty dishes, and we can guarantee everyone will be singing your praises!
Gooey Country Ribs: Your barbecue isn’t quite complete without a meaty stack of ribs waiting to be devoured. Make sure to have some extra napkins handy ’cause it might get a little messy!
Texas Gold Steak Skewers: Our Texas Gold Steak Skewers are a great way to add a southwestern flair to your meal. Skewer recipes work well for big backyard barbecues to allow everyone to walk around and mingle as they enjoy their food.
Fiery Onion Cheeseburgers: This isn’t just any ol’ burger. Nope, it’s a cheeseburger you’re gonna remember. You’ll love the flavorful combination of sweet onions and chili powder—certainly not something you’ll wanna miss!
Check out even more of our favorite burger variations in our collection of Our 20 Best Burger Recipes.
Potluck Side Dishes
While you may not be hosting many barbecues this summer, we bet you’re heading out to one at some point. Make sure you don’t arrive empty-handed!
Refrigerator Layered Salad: Salad goes well on the side of just about any main course from ribs to burgers to steak and everything in between. You can make this dish ahead of time, so you don’t have to worry about rushing through it on your way out the door.
Summer Potato Salad: No picnic or backyard barbecue is complete without a deli salad, and this summer version is one of the best we’ve got. We’ve thrown in a couple of other veggies to give it some texture and color. We know you’ll love the addition!
Amish Broccoli Bake: Vegetable side dish casseroles are always a huge hit during summer potlucks, and this one might be our most popular. Plus, if you end up having leftovers, you can serve some up at the dinner table the very next night!
Looking for more potluck side dishes for the summer? Make sure to check out our collection of Party Pleasers: 57 Easy Potluck Recipes.
You really just wanna go to these potlucks for the dessert, don’t you? They’re always the stars of the show anyway! If you want to bring a dish that’ll stand out from the crowd, then one of these potluck desserts will do the trick.
Pineapple Freezer Cake: Freezer cakes are so trendy during the summer, and once you’ve made your first, you’ll see exactly why. We’ve added a tropical twist to this icebox cake recipe that’ll have your friends and family clamoring for a piece!
Lime Margarita Bars: Dessert bars are a popular choice for potlucks ’cause they’re so easy to transport and share among a large crowd. These Lime Margarita Bars use a salted pretzel crust to replicate the salted rim of a margarita glass. Don’t you just want to try a bite?!
Pot of Gold: Gelatin molds are here to say and make for a refreshing treat at the end of a long, hot day. If you’ve always wondered how to make a gelatin mold of your own, be sure to take a peek at this popular dish!
We’ve got even more fabulous sweets in our collection of Top 10 Summer Potluck Desserts!
What’s your favorite kind of food to eat at a backyard barbecue? Let us know in the comments below!