What’s not to love about an outdoor celebration? Spending time with family and friends, enjoying the sunny outdoors, and watching the fireworks are timeless traditions we look forward to every Fourth of July. When planning your menu for the day, consider putting a personal twist on tried-and-true recipes. Make room for these classic must-haves on your Fourth of July menu to ensure the delight of your guests and to keep them wanting more.
Cold, Refreshing Beverages
There’s something so timeless about a cooler packed full of ice and frosty cans. Keep it stocked with beer, of course, but make sure you’ve got a variety of sodas and other soft drinks in there for those who don’t drink alcohol. You can keep two separate coolers on hand for hard and soft beverages if you’d like.
A cold pitcher of lemonade is a classic on its own, but it also serves as a canvas for your creativity. Blackberry, raspberry, and strawberry all complement the tartness of lemonade. Toss the berries in on their own, or juice them and make ice cubes!
A Selection of Salads
A delightful bowl of leafy greens is a bountiful summer offering, but it’s not the only salad with a place at your Fourth of July buffet.
Potato salad is practically mandatory and provides a great deal of room for experimentation. Try different combinations of herbs and condiments to add flavor.
Pasta salad, especially when made with the classic tricolor rotini, adds color to your table. It’s another opportunity to get creative with dressings. You can go Greek or Italian—or stick with a simple vinaigrette.
What would a Fourth of July fete be without corn on the cob? Cook it on the grill alongside your burgers and hot dogs and serve it with plenty of butter, salt, and pepper. This cookout staple is, of course, best eaten with your hands.
The sides don’t have to stop there, though. Stack a few kebab skewers with pearl onions, cherry tomatoes, and brussels sprouts, and grill them, too. Grilled veggies are a prime addition to any salad.
Chips and Dips
While your loved ones are waiting for you to serve the main course (see below), provide them with an array of snacking options. Bags of tortilla chips are easy to pick up at the store, but you can also consider whipping up some homemade dips.
Guacamole is a tasty classic and it’s easy to customize. Make sure you’ve got plenty of lime and cilantro, and adjust the spice levels according to your guests’ tastes. Salsa and pico de gallo are also easy to make yourself or pick up at the store.
A good French onion or spinach artichoke dip provide delicious alternatives for those who aren’t into all the spiciness. You can even add any leftover avocado from your guac to the spinach artichoke dip for a creamier texture.
Burgers and Hot Dogs
These are absolute must-haves for your main course. They are your grill’s guests of honor. Choose high-quality meat and cook it with the utmost care; consider Wagyu ground beef as an alternative to the basic ground chuck you would find at the grocery store. Lone Mountain Wagyu’s wide selection of beef products will provide superior taste and add a touch of luxury to your cookout. If any of your guests don’t eat meat, grill up some portobello mushrooms and look for sausages made with soy or tofu.
Provide your guests with an ample supply of condiments. Ketchup, mustard, and relish are staples, but keep onions, tomatoes, and peppers on hand, too. Lightly toast your buns for a more pleasant texture, and if anyone wants cheese on their burger, try brie! Its gooey texture makes it a perfect topping for a juicy burger, and it complements the luxurious taste of Wagyu beef.
Old-Fashioned American Pies
What better way to celebrate our country’s independence than by indulging in some of its signature cuisine? If you want your menu to be as American as apple pie, you may want to play up that apple pie as a main dessert. Keep a gallon or two of vanilla ice cream on hand to scoop on the side, and make sure there’s more than enough for everyone.
If apple’s not your fruit of choice, go for a cherry pie or peach cobbler. Either way, that scoop of vanilla ice cream is a perfect topping for a classic dessert.
Red, White, and Blue Desserts
Remember those firecracker ice pops from your childhood? They’re still available at the store, but making your own variety has more creative potential. Use an ice pop mold and experiment with flavors like cherry, blueberry, and lemon. You can even incorporate real chunks of fruit into your creation!
If your tastes lie elsewhere, red velvet cupcakes are a delicious canvas for patriotic buttercream colors and sparkly sprinkles. Finish them off with American flag toothpicks and serve.
Once the party settles down and the sun begins to set, get a campfire going (or simply remove the cooking grate from your grill) and set out your ingredients for s’mores. Kids and adults alike can enjoy making their own gooey desserts.
For extra oomph, set out some fun ingredients like peanut butter, sprinkles, and whipped cream. S’mores are perfect with their classic three ingredients, but creativity thrives when faced with limits. There’s nothing stopping you from dipping a marshmallow in melted chocolate and crushed-up graham crackers, or dipping your creation in some salted caramel dip. Celebrate our nation’s freedom by giving yourself the freedom to think outside the culinary box.
As you plan the perfect Fourth of July shindig, fulfill your guests’ expectations for classic cookout fare while adding your own creative flair! From drinks to sides to homemade desserts, make room for these classic must-haves on your Fourth of July menu that are sure to please. Look to Lone Mountain Wagyu for that element of luxury on the grill, and as you celebrate our country’s independence, celebrate top-notch food and beloved friends.