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5 Patriotic 4th of July Menu Ideas

Need some inspiration for your 4th of July menu? We'll help you plan the perfect summer BBQ, family potluck, patriotic picnic, pool party or fireworks spread!

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Classic Summer BBQ: Red, White & Blue Potato Salad

Tossing the cooked potatoes with stock and wine right after you drain them infuses them with flavor. The liquid absorbs like magic. —George Levinthal, Goleta, California

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Classic Summer BBQ: Burger Americana

Go on a burger road trip in your own backyard. Grill the patties and load them sky-high with your favorite toppings. For instance, peanut butter and bacon make them southern style; coleslaw and tomatoes, a northern version. —Susan Mahaney, New Hartford, New York
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Classic Summer BBQ: Sweet Macaroni Salad

A sweet out-of-the-ordinary dressing makes this macaroni salad special. My aunt gave me the recipe and it has become one of my favorites. I occasionally leave out the green pepper if I know that people don't like it, and it still tastes great. —Idalee Scholz, Cocoa Beach, Florida
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Classic Summer BBQ: Strawberry Watermelon Lemonade

The nutrition department at my local hospital inspired me to create this refreshing summer sipper. I tweaked their recipe slightly to create this drink full of sweet-tart flavor. —Dawn Lowenstein, Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania
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Classic Summer BBQ: Jersey-Style Hot Dogs

I grew up in northern New Jersey, where hot dogs with grilled potatoes were born. It's a combo you’ll love. —Suzanne Banfield, Basking Ridge, New Jersey
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Classic Summer BBQ: All-American Pie

With apples, cherries and blueberries, this patriotic slab pie even tastes American. If the day doesn't call for stars and stripes, feel free to use any shaped cookie cutters you like for this awe-inspiring potluck dessert. —James Schend, Culinary Deputy Editor, Taste of Home
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Family Potluck: Matt's Jerk Chicken

Get ready for a trip to the Islands. You may think jerk chicken is complicated but, really, all it takes is time. Throw on some tunes, grab an icy drink and prepare to be transported. Have a smoker? You can smoke the chicken first and finish it on the grill. —Jenn Hall, Collingswood, New Jersey
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Family Potluck: Macaroni Coleslaw

My friend Peggy brought this coleslaw to one of our picnics, and everyone liked it so much, we all had to have the recipe. —Sandra Matteson, Westhope, North Dakota
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Family Potluck: Root Beer Pulled Pork Sandwiches

My husband is a huge fan of pulled pork sandwiches, so my sister shared this incredibly easy recipe with me. At potlucks and family dinners, nobody can get enough of this root beer-braised version. —Carolyn Palm, Radcliff, Kentucky
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Family Potluck: All-American Sheet Cake

My sweet and tangy sheet cake piled with fresh whipped cream and juicy fruit is so good, you might just want to eat it for breakfast. —James Schend, Pleasant Prairie, Wisconsin
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Family Potluck: Watermelon Feta Flag Salad

Our family celebrates the Fourth of July with a watermelon salad that resembles the flag. Here’s an all-American centerpiece that’s truly red, white and blue. —Jan Whitworth, Roebuck, South Carolina
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Family Potluck: Maryland Corn Pops

Fresh-picked sweet corn is a big thing in Maryland. Here’s my homespun version of Mexican street corn that brings in local bay flavors. —Kristie Schley, Severna Park, Maryland
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Patriotic Picnic: All-American Bacon Cheeseburgers

Where can you get a juicy burger that is so superior to drive-thru fare? Right in your backyard with this delicious bacon cheeseburger recipe. —Jackie Burns, Silverdale, Washington
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Patriotic Picnic: Red, White and Blueberry Pie

This creamy pie gets dressed up with berries to make a showstopping display at any Fourth of July party or summer get-together. It's as pretty as it is tasty! —Kimberly McFarland, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma
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Patriotic Picnic: Patriotic Potatoes with Mustard Sauce

Show your true spirit with a bowl of red, white and blue potatoes dressed with bacon and sour cream. They’re tops in my hit parade of patriotic dishes. —Julie Murphy, Peachtree City, Georgia
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Patriotic Picnic: Red, White and Blue Frozen Lemonade

This patriotic drink is as pretty as it is delicious. With cherries, blueberries and lemon juice, we created a striped lemonade that is perfect for a Fourth of July celebration. —Shawn Carleton, San Diego, California
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Patriotic Picnic: Crispy Star Pops

These patriotic pops are a hit at our annual Fourth of July get-together. Serve them as an after-picnic dessert. Or slip them into cellophane bags, tie on ribbons and give them as favors. —Colleen Sturma, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
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Patriotic Picnic: Red, White and Blue Summer Salad

Caprese and fresh fruit always remind me of summer. In this salad, I combine traditional Caprese flavors with summer blueberries and peaches. I also add prosciutto for saltiness, creating a balanced, flavor-packed side dish. —Emily Falke, Santa Barbara, California
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July 4th Pool Party: Walking Tacos

These Walking Tacos are perfect for an on-the-go dinner, a campfire meal or an easy game-night supper. The ingredients go right into the chip bags! —Beverly Matthews, Richland, Washington
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July 4th Pool Party: Summer Salad by the Lake

I came up with this recipe to show appreciation to all the teachers at my son’s school. The dish had to be as special as the teachers, who always go the extra mile for their students. I think this salad did the trick! It's hearty, earthy, sweet and loaded with nothing but good stuff. —Ramya Ramamurthy, Fremont, California
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July 4th Pool Party: Berry White Ice Pops

Nothing says summer like an ice pop. Kids and adults alike love this fruit-filled version. —Sharon Guinta, Stamford, Connecticut
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July 4th Pool Party: Hot Dog Sliders with Mango-Pineapple Salsa

For parties, we shrink down lots of foods, including these quick hot dogs, to slider size. Pile on the easy but irresistible fruit salsa for a burst of fresh flavor. —Carole Resnick, Cleveland, Ohio
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July 4th Pool Party: Oatmeal Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches

If you’re tight on time, you can use store-bought cookies, but I highly recommend making these oatmeal chocolate cookies from scratch. The dessert sandwiches are pure fun. Sometimes I decorate the sides of the sandwiches with colorful jimmies, too. —Diane Halferty, Corpus Christi, Texas
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July 4th Pool Party: Summertime Watermelon Punch for a Crowd

I attended a patio party years ago where the hostess had a clever watermelon “bowl” with a scalloped edge and filled with this punch. It was the hit of the party, and she was kind enough to share the delicious punch recipe with me. —Joan Hallford, North Richland Hills, Texas
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Festive Fireworks Spread: Creamy Red Pepper Veggie Dip

I received this, my go-to veggie dip recipe, from a college roommate. Thick and creamy with just a touch of sweetness, it's always a winner. —Lynne German, Woodland Hills, California
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Festive Fireworks Spread: Cobb Salad Sub

When we need a quick meal to share, we turn Cobb salad into a sandwich masterpiece. Sometimes I substitute tortillas for the bread and make wraps instead. —Kimberly Grusendorf, Medina, Ohio
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Festive Fireworks Spread: Caprese Salad Kabobs

Trade in the usual veggie platter for these fun kabobs. In addition to preparing these for get-togethers, I often make these as snacks for my family. And because assembly is so easy, the kids often ask to help. —Christine Mitchell, Glendora, California
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Festive Fireworks Spread: Bomb Pop Cookies

The sound of the ice cream truck has even my husband running out to the curb with money in hand. Our neighborhood has a big potluck on the Fourth of July, so I decided to make cookies that resemble Bomb Pops. These were a big hit! —Darlene Brenden, Salem, Oregon
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Festive Fireworks Spread: Potluck Antipasto Pasta Salad

I love trying new recipes, and this one for Italian pasta salad tops all other varieties I've tried. With beans, cheese, sausage and vegetables, it's a hearty complement to any meal. —Bernadette Nelson, Arcadia, California
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Festive Fireworks Spread: Mini S'mores

Want to sink your teeth into s’mores all year long? Here’s the answer! Just combine marshmallow creme, chocolate and graham crackers for an awesome bite.—Stephanie Tewell, Elizabeth, Illinois

Katie Bandurski
As Senior Shopping Editor, Katie connects Taste of Home readers with the best gifts, deals and home products on the market. An avid foodie and a holiday enthusiast, Katie is an expert at cultivating meaningful moments. When she’s out of the office, you’ll find her exploring Wisconsin, trying out new vegetarian recipes and watching Christmas movies.