Summer is coming, summer is coming!
In addition to recognizing the women and men who have given their lives in service to our country, to whom I am forever grateful, Memorial Day weekend is also the unofficial kick-off to summer, and everything that comes along with it. Sunglasses, wine spritzers, and suntan lotion – it is, without a doubt, my favorite time of the year. This summer will be especially special as I’ll be turning 30 (eek) and having a baby (hooray!)
Anyway, Memorial Day is also one of the biggest grilling, BBQ, and picnic holidays of the season so I thought I’d dedicate a post to 20 of my favorite recipes that would be perfect to include in this weekend’s festivities. From pasta side dishes, to grilling mains, summery treats, and sweet sippers, I hope you find a recipe or two to make and enjoy this Memorial Day weekend!
Grilled Corn Orzo Salad with Chili Lime Vinaigrette: This fresh and tasty pasta side dish is smokey and tangy, with just a hint of sweet honey. Fabulous cold or at room temperature.
Grilled Potato Packs: These are one of my most favorite things to throw on the grill. Crispy, creamy potato slices with no clean up!
Judy’s Baked Beans: Still don’t know who Judy is, but her baked beans are the only ones I’ll eat. Sweet, smokey, savory – your house will smell Heavenly as these bake in the oven.
Mediterranean Orzo Salad: Light and fresh, this pasta salad filled with bold Mediterranean flavors is also good cold or room temperature.
Fruit Dip: The 80s are calling – they want their fruit dip back! It’s not hard to see why after just one taste. This creamy, silky, just-sweet-enough fruit dip was a favorite of mine growing up. You’ll absolutely devour it.
The Iowa Burger: Beef and bacon burger patties smothered in cheese, sweet corn, and smashed avocado. That’s all Iowa, baby!
Grilled Chicken with Mom’s Barley Corn Salad: My Mom makes this barley-corn salad all the time in the summer. It’s all-summer, and goes really well with grilled chicken breasts.
Clubhouse Turkey Burgers: With bacon, BBQ sauce, and cheddar cheese mixed right into the ground turkey, these burgers are packed with flavor.
Grilled Flank Steak with Salsa Verde: Marinated grilled flank steak melts like butter in your mouth after a quick sear on a hot grill. Dip in bright and zippy salsa verde for an extra kick.
Maple Grilled Salmon with Cauliflower Rice: For the seafood lovers out there! Try this quick grilled salmon with a perfectly sweet maple-orange glaze. The flavor in this dish is off the charts.
Dirt Cake: One of my all-time favorite desserts, Dirt Cake is a hit with both kids and adults. MMM MMM MMM!
Strawberry Angel Food Cake Jars: A fun twist on a classic summer dessert. Take some help from the store and use bakery-made Angel Food Cake to make assembly of these sweet treats go even faster.
Boozy Berry Cups: It’s hard to find anything wrong with fresh berries marinated in sweetened wine then served with cold vanilla bean ice cream. Elegant but SO. EASY.
Chocolate Sheet Cake with Peanut Butter Icing: This recipe comes from my Aunt who has never baked anything I wouldn’t absolutely inhale. Great to have around for an easy treat on Memorial Day weekend.
No-Bake Strawberry Lemonade Bites: Part jello, part pudding, and all awesome, No-Bake Strawberry Lemonade Bites are sweet and refreshing.
Skinny Cherry Berry Smash: A little rum, mint, and fresh berries + some elbow grease = a fun little cocktail that’s full of antioxidants.
Strawberry Lemonade Spritzers: Quite possible THE most refreshing patio drink I can think of. Perfectly fizzy and sweet.
Sparkling Peach Black Tea: Mix a batch of this sparkling, lightly sweetened tea to sip on all weekend long. It is so, so, so good.
Strawberry Mojito: The only way to make my beloved Mojito better is to add fresh strawberry simple syrup. I go crazy for these babies!
Sangria: An oldie, but absolute goodie. Make a double, nay, triple batch if you’re serving to friends!
Have a safe and happy Memorial Day weekend, everyone!