I want to make your 4th of July easy and delicious, mostly because I want to live vicariously through you.
I don’t have big plans, being that we’re in the Bay Area and I have no idea what to do around here (and currently have very few friends).
But if you have tons of friends near you and are looking for the perfect 4th of July menu, I’m going to tell you the 5 major components of an Amazing 4th of July (because I know you are dying to get my unsolicited advice).
The idea is to keep it simple and delicious, so here’s what you’ll need. . .
Ribs. Always grill ribs on 4th of July.
In my perfect Food Network world, I imagine that Gina and Patrick Neely make the best ribs. So let’s go with their recipe found here.
If you don’t have a grill (heresy! oh wait, I don’t either), then make them in the oven a la Smitten Kitchen.
Regardless of what you choose, ribs are a must.
2. Hot Dogs
Nothing says 4th of July like Hot Dogs. You can get sassy and put egg salad on them:
Or go traditional and grill up some fatty sausages and slather them in mustard! I swear Costco’s Kirkland brand hot dogs are the best for the price.
PSA: Don’t forget to grill the buns too!
3. Side Dishes
You don’t need a million side dishes, but you need some diversity. And let’s be honest… you need carbs.
This Torellini Salad is amazing. You need to include it. I’ve made it for 4th of July and other gatherings. It’s always a hit. If you’re not feeling tortellini, use rotelle pasta and you’re good to go.
This Red, White and Blue Potato Salad looks awesome.
If you don’t love mayo, you’re a liar. Make this potato salad anyway. People love mayo.
And of course, no summer meal is complete without baked beans. Normally, I would just say buy a few cans at the grocery store (because I really do think canned baked beans are delicious and I’m not ashamed), but you can also give these slow cooker ones a try.
If you don’t love beans, we can’t be friends.
Let’s also not forget to have a fruit salad or some watermelon, because fruit is a wonderful refreshing side. And potato chips. Always potato chips. Because ‘Merica!
Pie is for 4th of July!
Strawberry Rhubarb Pie with a touch of bourbon is a fine option.
You might also want to consider this Bourbon Banana Pie, because it’s simply divine.
Let’s also not forget the magic that is cake. This year, I’m sort of itching to make an American Flag cake. Too cheesy? Maybe, but doesn’t this one look good?
Beverages must be flowing on 4th of July. Beer is an obvious choice. But Gin is also a winner. Try these strawberry-basil gin and tonics
For something alcohol-free (and really hydrating, because it’s hot and hydration is important), keep a pitcher of this Coconut Mint Cooler in the fridge.
With this menu, I promise your 4th of July will be a hit. You’ll be well-fed, happy and ready to celebrate our nation’s independence.
You can also feel free to throw some cornbread into this menu mix. We could always use more cornbread.
What’s on your 4th of July menu?