30 Recipes for a Festive Fourth of July Celebration

Impress your guests with these simple menu ideas.

June 5, 2017
Thug Kitchen, LLC

Throwing a party this holiday season? This is your ultimate guide to menu planning. 

Take the guesswork out of entertaining with these tasty, and stress-free recipes. From easy appetizers, to classic cocktails, and sweet treats, you'll be spending less time in the kitchen, and more time with your guests. Now, let's get this party started. 

More: 50 Grilling Recipes for Your Summer Cookout

Eric Schmiedl / EyeEm / Getty Images
Loaded Nachos With Queso & Guacamole

The beauty of the appetizer (or main plate, really), is in its versatility. A plate of these gorgeous nachos just screams party. 

Get the Loaded Nachos With Queso & Guacamole recipe from Thug Kitchen Party Grub.

Mitch Mandel
Lemon-Carrot Hummus

Carrot adds a subtle sweetness (and orange hue) to this lighter rendition of the classic chickpea dip.

Get the Lemon-Carrot Hummus recipe from Runner's World Meals on the Run.

More: 5 Expert Tips for Eating More Veggies at Every Meal

Beet Chips

Beets are filled with the antioxidant betalain, which gives them their color, but they're also loaded with potassium, vitamin C, and fiber, giving you that needed crunch and health factor. 

Get the Beet Chips recipe from Good Fat Cooking.

Quentin Bacon
Crisp Roasted Brussels Sprouts

How can anyone hate the Brussels sprout? Roast shredded Brussels sprouts and use them in all sorts of ways—as a tasty side dish, or a frilly topping for a bowl of grains, or even tossed with pasta.

Get the Crisp Roasted Brussels Sprouts recipe from Family Cooks.

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Christopher Testani
Warm Haricots Verts and Potato Salad With Parsley

It's only natural to crave side dishes like potato salad, coleslaw, and French fries. Enter this warm haricots verts and potato salad with parsley made with fresh, filling ingredients.

Get the Warm Haricots Verts and Potato Salad With Parsley recipe from Truly Madly Pizza.

Mitch Mandel
Chipotle and Brown Sugar Roasted Sweet Potatoes

A better way to enjoy the super starch? This sweet-and-spicy recipe will crush your crispy, starchy cravings without weighing you down. 

Get the Chipotle and Brown Sugar Roasted Sweet Potatoes recipe from The Flat Belly Diet Gluten-Free Cookbook.

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Christopher Testani
Italian Tomato-Bread Salad

The classic Tuscan salad, panzanella, has been a staple in Italian restaurants and family-style dinners for generations. But with just a little bit of crunch and some lemon zest, the simple and elegant salad gets a fresh twist. 

Get the Italian Tomato-Bread Salad recipe from Keepers.

Con Poulos
Marinated Grilled Eggplant With Mint

Perfect for a party because you can make it in advance, it also makes a great appetizer or side dish. It would be divine on an antipasto platter, too. 

Get the Marinated Grilled Eggplant With Mint recipe from Scratch.

More: 5 Expert Tips for Avoiding Vacation Weight Gain 

Mitch Mandel
Sweet Potato & Pumpkin Seed Salad

This salad, filled with a variety of flavors and textures is topped with a chili powder that provides just a touch of spice. Get your taste buds ready. 

Get the Sweet Potato & Pumpkin Seed Salad recipe from Runner's World Meals on the Run.

Mitch Mandel
Chicken & Brussels Sprouts Slaw

In this delicious recipe, Brussels sprouts, a member of the cabbage family, are thinly sliced and used like cabbage in coleslaw. The shredding blade of a food processor makes quick work of the carrots

Get the Chicken & Brussels Sprouts Slaw recipe from The Healthy You Diet.

More: 7 Ways to Fight Vacation Food Cravings

Lauren Volo
Dreamy Butternut Squash Mac 'n’ Cheese

Who doesn't love a bowl of warm, creamy mac 'n' cheese? Now you can enjoy a satisfying and mouthwatering version with zero guilt. 

Get the Dreamy Butternut Squash Mac 'n' Cheese recipe from Cook Yourself Sexy.

Thug Kitchen, LLC
Boozy Watermelon & Papaya Salad

This is the fruit salad you want to make. The watermelon and tequila lets everyone know that you're here for a good time but the papaya tells everyone that you've got classy taste.

Get the Boozy Watermelon & Papaya Salad recipe from Thug Kitchen Party Grub.

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Mexican Grilled Corn on the Cob

This is such an easy dish to put together and throw on the grill. In fact, it might become one of your favorite ways to enjoy this summertime treat.

Get the Mexican Grilled Corn on the Cob recipe from Flat Belly Diet!

Thug Kitchen, LLC
Worth-the-Mess Sloppy Joes

These saucy sammies are so good that even the pickiest eaters will clean their plates. They're also vegan and chock full of healthy ingredients—just don't tell anyone there's veggies in there and you're good to go.

Get the Worth-the-Mess Sloppy Joes recipe from Thug Kitchen Party Grub.

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Ellen Silverman
New Mex Carne Asada Tacos With Sliced Cucumbers

Serve this with easy black beans and Spanish rice and top with your favorite salsa. You can make these with corn tortillas if you like, but they'll need to be eaten right away.

Get the New Mex Carne Asada Tacos With Sliced Cucumber recipe from Back to the Kitchen.

Thug Kitchen, LLC
SoCal Gourmet Carrot Dog

We get that hot dogs are fairly standard fare at cookouts, but as a crunchy superfood, carrots are a stellar alternative. Wrapped in a bun and covered in veggies and spices, they're serious gourmet eats. 

Get the SoCal Gourmet Carrot Dog recipe from Thug Kitchen Party Grub.

More: Are These Diet Trigger Foods Hiding in Your Kitchen?

Mitch Mandel
Meat and Grain Burgers

After a long run, recover with a low-calorie burger. The recipe combines ground meat with cooked whole grains for a moist, flavorful burger that is high in fiber

Get the Meat and Grain Burgers recipe from The Runner's World Cookbook.

Mitch Mandel
Bacon-Tomato Zucchini Pasta

You don't need traditional grain-based pastas when you can use good old zucchini. This aromatic, light pasta is brought to life even further with the addition of bacon.

Get the Bacon-Tomato Zucchini Pasta recipe from The All‑Day Fat‑Burning Cookbook.

More: 20 Side Dishes for Your Summer Grilling

Mitch Mandel
Chicken Breasts Stuffed with Millet, Dried Fruit, and Pecans

In this fancy recipe, a Mediterranean-style stuffing gets spooned into pockets in chicken breasts, which get pan-fried until golden and then finished off in the oven.

Get the Chicken Breasts Stuffed with Millet, Dried Fruit, and Pecans recipe from Dr. Kellyann's Bone Broth Cookbook.

Mitch Mandel
Brown Butter Sautéed Carrots

Yes, butter. Believe it, because it's OK to love butter again, and these carrots are just what the doctor ordered.

Get the Brown Butter Sautéed Carrots recipe from Eat Clean, Stay Lean.

More: 15 Easy Kabob & Skewer Recipes for Summer Grilling

Quentin Bacon
Vegetarian BLT

Believe it now: It is possible to have a BLT without the bacon.

Get the Vegetarian BLT recipe from The Family Cooks.

Getty Images
No-Bake Mini Lemon ‘Cheesecakes’

When you have a craving for lush, lemony cheesecake, give this treat a try. The surprise is that these mini-bites don't contain any dairy

Get the No-Bake Mini Lemon 'Cheesecakes' recipe from The Healthy You Diet.

More: 8 Secrets to Making Your Family Eat Healthy

Tina Rupp
Melted Ice Cream Pops

It's always devastating when you turn your back for just a few minutes too long and go back to find that precious container's sweet creams have turned to slushies. Don't worry—we won't let them go to waste.

Get the Ice Cream Pops recipe from Ice Cream Adventures.

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No-Bake S'More Fun Brownies

Just thinking about that first sticky bite is enough to make me tie on my hiking boots. Since these bars don't need to be baked, they're easy to make in the great outdoors.

Get the No-Bake S'More Fun Brownies recipe from Fat Witch Brownies.

More: 7 Fatty Foods That Blast Belly Fat

Tina Rupp
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cake

Here, we take it to the next level. This cake is chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream on steroids. 

Get the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cake recipe from Ice Cream Adventures.

Nicole Hill
Tone It Up Sweet & Sassy Lemonade

There's no reason to miss out on everyone's favorite summertime sipper. With a few sugar swaps, you can make a better lemonade that won't leave you with post-refreshment regret.

Get the Tone It Up Sweet & Sassy Lemonade recipe from Tone It Up.

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Tina Rupp
The Sangria Recipe Your Guests Will Go Nuts Over

This tea-based sangria is a crowd favorite. Loaded with antioxidants and vitamin C, the White Horse is the perfect balance of naughty and nice.

Get The Sangria Recipe Your Guests Will Go Nuts Over recipe from Wise Cocktails.

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Blackberry-Mint Love Cocktail

If you find yourself with bundles of leftover fruit, head on over to your bar cart and get to work. This blackberry punch adds a hint of mint that'll give the fruity drink a fresh aftertaste you guests will love. 

Get the Blackberry-Mint Lover Cocktail recipe from Tart and Sweet.

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Dorling Kindersley: Jodi Moreno / Getty Images
Lemon Lavendar Squares

The flavor and scent will make your kitchen smell like a dream. 

Get the Lemon Lavendar Squares recipe from The Beekman 1802 Heirloom Dessert Cookbook.

Rusty Hill / Getty Images
The Easiest Summer Fruit Pie

Top it off with some fresh whipped cream and the pie will be gone by the morning. Use this crust to make sweet and savory pies.

Get the The Easiest Summer Fruit Pie recipe from Scratch.

More: 10 Dessert Recipes That'll Satisfy Every Craving

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