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What to make for the 4th of July

What to make for the 4th of July


July 4th

Our Independence Day was an important moment in history, not just for us, but for the world.  It is a time people get together to commemorate our freedoms and each other.  This day has become tradition to celebrate with large cookouts, demonstrate patriotism with your favorite foods and decorations, maybe see a parade, and cap the night off with enjoying your local fireworks show. 

The 4th of July is one of my favorite holidays to go all out on foods and crafty recipes.  If you’re like me, you are probably already thinking of all the fun things you can make.  The part I look forward to most is enjoying refreshing summertime cocktails for 4th of July while socializing with my family and friends.  I always have cool appetizers prepared and ready to enjoy with our drinks.  After some witty banter with my friends and a few family July 4th activities, I will bring out my crowd stopping appetizers and patriotic desserts.  I will have the grill going so my hubby can make burgers, dogs and chicken made to order as well.  Although, I always felt the day will be made with iconic cocktails, appetizers, sides, and desserts.

Cocktails & Beverages

The 4th of July Drinks menu can add a lot of pizzaz to your day while enhancing the overall décor of your environment as well.  From tropical beverages to 4th of July jello shots, let’s just say, what’s Independence Day without a couple good refreshing drinks.  Of course, there will always be beer, but having different drink options will make a world of a difference, especially when hosting guests.  So, bring out your glassware, cocktail mixing set, and ice maker, let’s make some drinks.

  • Red, White, and blue cocktails – Let’s begin with an easy one. Use seltzer combined with any of your favorite juices and Spirit.  Dip the lip of your glass in lemon juice and then dip it in colored salt, sugar, or I know some people use pop rocks.  Go red for the juice and blue for the “salted” rim.  The great thing about this is it doesn’t have to be alcoholic making it a family friendly beverage as well.
  • Red Wine Slushie – This is a guest favorite I always make. There are a few different recipes to choose from and takes about 5 minutes to prepare.  If you like sweet wine and berries, you will love this.
  • Blue Lagoon – The most common recipe calls for vodka, but I prefer to use coconut rum mixed with blue curacao and lemonade instead. Add a cherry and moon slice of pineapple for garnish.
  • Virtually any tropical cocktail – Very refreshing in the summer heat and colorful.

4th of July Appetizers

Appetizers are the yin to your cocktail’s yang if you know what I mean.  They compliment each other and people love keeping busy with cute bites of fun food while they enjoy their drinks and enjoy the day.  I generally recommend cold appetizers because you can have them prepped in the refrigerator, but it is good to have a couple of other options.  Let’s look at a few of each.

  • Blue tortilla chips with watermelon tomato salsa, and white dip (I make creamy garlic, but it can be anything you like). I also recommend making a guacamole using ingredients like chipotle peppers to give it a nice zing and more color.
  • Cold salads – explore different salad options, one basic option and one a bit fancier should do the trick for the day. I plan on making a watermelon caprese appetizer and a country style corn salad.
  • Spicy fried chicken wings – the trick is, I use my air fryer to make this and save the BBQ grilling for later.  Its an easy set and forget with a timer.  Plus, they’re still deliciously crispy on the outside with a tender inside, even if they cooled off a bit.  These are a July 4th
  • Hot brown party sandwiches – I had this once at a restaurant party and have been making this ever since. I recommend using sweet rolls though as it makes the perfect combination of flavors between the turkey, bacon, tomato, and splendid drizzle of a brown sugar-garlic butter coating.
  • Party Poppers, deviled eggs, or cheese and crackers are some other choices to consider. Also, don’t forget to round out your 4th of July snacks and appetizers with classics like chips and pretzels too.

4th of July Desserts

On Independence Day, I don’t wait for the main course to enjoy our red, white, and blue desserts.  I will bring a few out to display and enjoy shortly after the appetizers.  I will save the remaining desserts and 4th of July cake to serve after the main course, or BBQ.  A good standing mixer is the only sane way of accomplishing a good dessert.  I don’t know how people bake without one.

Fourth Of July

1st Round of Desserts

  • Candy melt covered bananas – Super easy to make. Freeze a few bananas, attach a stick, and dip it in patriotic colored candy melts.  Top it off with sprinkles.
  • Patriotic rice crispy treats – This is a simple idea that kids will love.
  • Berry and fruit parfait – A delicious yet slightly healthier option.
  • Themed cookies – Easy to do 4th of July cookie shapes of your choice. Shapes like stars will be most noticeable, but feel free to make flags, rockets, or whatever else your creative mind can think of.

2nd Round of Desserts & Cake

  • Strawberry, Blueberry, and vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt with brownies.
  • American Flag Cake – The star of the show. This can be made in a variety of ways.  From cake balls to cupcakes, to the more laborious layer cakes, there is no shortage of recipes.  See what interests you the most.  My kids love the American Flag Ice Cream cake I make and it’s not too stressful, taking about 30 min of actual working preparation time.

4th of July BBQ

Our journey through 4th of July foods now brings us to our main course, the BBQ.  When it comes to BBQ, there is no need for being extra as the classic hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken, and grilled veggies are perfect.  We already have been a little over the top displaying all our other delicious 4th of July recipes on display, so there’s no need for gourmet BBQ.  If you’re hosting kids, it may be easier to grill your own homemade pizza as an alternative.  Kids love pizza, it’s very American style, and easy to make with an outdoor portable pizza grill that will probably impress your friends.

As far as 4th of July side dishes, even though many of our appetizers can double as a side dish, I still recommend using the air fryer to make few different types of fries, spicy and regular.  A good coleslaw goes a long way and is great with just about all food.  If you’re not going to be grilling burgers, you can make cheeseburger egg rolls which the air fryer can take care of for you as well.

Happy 4th of July!

I hope that my 4th of July menu ideas helps you in your effort to throw the best Independence Day party for your family and friends.  I go crazy for this and enjoy making this party for my family, and I think you should do however much will bring you guys’ joy.  The most important thing is to have fun and be with the people you love.

4th of July
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