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7 Side Dishes for Your July 4th Barbecue


Still planning a menu for your upcoming Fourth of July get-together? If you’re hosting an old-fashioned all-American barbecue with a big hunk o’ meat (or even hamburgers and hot dogs), you’re gonna need side dishes. Here, we’ve assembled some of our favorites. Have a happy and safe holiday!

7 Side Dish Recipes for Your July 4th Barbecue

1. Brisket Baked Beans

Brisket Baked Beans

For generations, baked beans have been a Fourth of July staple at backyard barbecues. Use the following recipe as a guide, adding your own personal touches, if desired. You can even substitute leftover pulled pork for brisket. 

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2. Creamy Horseradish Slaw with Poppyseeds

Tangy side dishes and condiments, like this ultra-flavorful coleslaw, are a welcome counterpoint to the fattiness of barbecued meats. 

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3. Smoked Potato Salad

We like to smoke the potatoes for this salad early in the day, or even the day before the party. (Store in the refrigerator until ready to assemble the dish.) Your guests will rave when they taste this salad with its smoke-enhanced flavor profile. 

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4. Grilled Watermelon Salad with Arugula and Queso Fresco

Grilled Watermelon Salad with Arugula and Queso Fresco

Watermelon, one of the harbingers of summer, becomes even sweeter when exposed to the high, dry heat of the grill. Tossed with baby arugula, salty queso fresco, candied nuts, and a refreshing ginger-lime dressing, this salad is a riot of colors and textures. Toss whole ripe blueberries on top in keeping with the holiday’s red, white, and blue theme. 

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5. Pepper Jack, Bacon, and Jalapeno Cornbread

PB&J Cornbread from Man Made Meals

From Steven’s book, Man Made Meals: The Essential Cookbook for Guys, the Raichlen version of cornbread eschews sweeteners with sugar or honey, instead folding in three of America’s favorite ingredients: pepper Jack cheese, jalapenos, and of course, bacon. Pour the batter in a cast iron skillet and indirect grill or bake in a preheated oven. 

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6. Windy City Mexican Grilled Corn

When BBQ USA was first published (2003), most Americans were still boiling their sweet corn. Today, more of us appreciate how grilling can completely transform corn on the cob. Gild the lily by slathering the corn with mayo and sprinkling it with cheese, chili powder, and fresh lime juice. 

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7. Grilled Pound Cake with Berry Salsa and Tequila-Whipped Cream

Grilled Pound Cake with BerrySalsa and Tequila Whipped Cream

Steven always advocates making an entire meal on the grill, from appetizer to dessert. Speaking of the latter, here’s one of our all-time favorites—buttered pound cake (or substitute wedges of angel food), lightly toasted, and topped with mixed berries and tequila-laced, sweetened whipped cream. (You can leave the tequila out, of course, if children will be attending your party.) 

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What are you grilling for Fourth of July? Share them with us on Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, or Instagram!

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