4th of July Cookout Recipes With a Twist

The traditions of a Fourth of July holiday celebration are tried and true: burgers, brews, and fireworks. While that’s certainly a way to do it, it’s certainly not the most creative way, either. If you’re looking to do something a little different this time around, look no further than some creative dish ideas that go beyond the basics.

Star-Shaped Pigs in a Blanket

Before the big meal, you’re going to need some appetizers, and why not use this starter dish to get your guests into the holiday mood? Pigs in a blanket are a popular way to whet your guests’ appetites at a cookout, but they lack that certain Independence Day spirit. Rather than go with the regular pastry-wrapped sausages, spruce up this pre-meal snack by making some star-shaped pigs in a blanket instead.

Fully Loaded Baked Potato Salad

The salad and baked potato are two staples of the summertime cookout, so why not kill two birds with one stone and mash them together? The fully loaded baked potato salad will allow you to present a salad for the table, but with its tantalizing ingredients, no one will eat this solely out of guilt for eating healthy. There are some vegetables in there, somewhere…

Spicy Apple Butter BBQ Pork Cupcakes

If pigs in a blanket is a little modest and you’d rather stretch your cooking skills, consider this tricky appetizer alternative. It might take your minute to wrap your head around this one, but once you get a good look at (and a taste of) some spicy apple butter BBQ pork cupcakes, you’ll know there’s no going back. Just don’t try tongue-tied trying to explain its name to your guests.

Patriotic Burgers

It’s a cookout; you pretty much have to have burgers. Well, if you have to do it, you might as well do it right with some patriotic burgers. While not immediately apparent, these burgers, topped with red onion, white ranch dressing, and bleu cheese, are a perfectly subtle way to add some Fourth inspiration to this cookout favorite.

Smoked Beef Short Ribs With Cherries

For another main course of your Independence Day celebrations, surprise your diners with this clever twist on smoked ribs. Rather than make use of barbecue sauce, this rib recipe calls for cherries, currants, and charred onion. They’ll be your standard sweet ribs, but with a bit of a twist. It’ll take a bit of work, but the end result should be just experimental enough to be tasty and memorable. Just don’t think you can get away without making dessert!

American Flag Cake

There’s no better way to cap off a successful Fourth of July cookout than with some excellent dessert. However, just like the fireworks display you’ll be watching later, you’ll want your cookout festivities to end with a bang, not a whimper. Look no further than the impressive American flag layered cake, which truly has to be seen to be believed. Serve this up and everyone gets a flag. Your guests won’t be able to help taking pictures, making you the star of the party.

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