Memorial Day weekend is upon us, and even though this year will feel different than what we’re used to, we are really looking forward to the unofficial start of summer. Our celebrations will certainly be smaller, but getting outside and cooking up the classics that make us excited for the season feel more important than ever — like a much-needed win.
So let’s fire up the grill (after cleaning it), dust off your cooler, and get your favorite picnic blanket ready — we’re heading to the backyard for a BBQ! As for what to cook, there are so many good choices. You can’t go wrong with the classics, like juicy burgers, creamy coleslaw, and pasta salad, but we’re also including some dishes you might not have considered that are destined to become favorites, like tofu and veggie kebabs and grilled chicken with blackberry-corn salsa. Here are our 50 essential recipes for a delicious Memorial Day weekend.
One thing is certain: You’re going to need some snacks to get you through the long weekend. Our best advice is to whip up any one (or more!) of these dips and you’ll be in good shape. If you want to try something new, we suggest cacio e pepe popcorn. Better make it a double batch.
We all know that the sides and salads are the best part of cookouts, potlucks, and picnics. From creamy potato salads to crunchy slaws, these are the classics (some with slight variations) that you look forward to seeing in the lineup every summer.
This weekend is all about grilling out, and these are the meaty mains that are always a hit, plus a few extra ideas if you want to think outside the grill. Burgers and ribs are standard fare, but if you want to change things up, consider some ultra-crispy fried chicken or pulling out the slow cooker for a big batch of barbacoa (it makes great leftovers!).
Vegetarian Memorial Day Mains
These mains skip the meat, but rest assured that when broccoli subs, tofu kebabs, and cauliflower steaks are on the menu, they’ll be gobbled up in a flash by vegetarian and meat-lovers alike.
Our Favorite No-Bake Desserts
Absolutely no BBQ or picnic is complete without dessert. From a peanut butter cup-inspired pie and strawberry trifle to creamy lemon bars and a pan of classic, gooey Rice Krispies treats, you simply can’t go wrong. Master these no-bake favorites right now so you can whip them up all summer long.
Essential Summer Desserts
These are the must-bake summertime desserts that make this long weekend celebration even sweeter. You won’t regret turning on the oven for gooey s’mores brownies or turning your haul of ruby-red berries into an easy pie.
From mint juleps and sangria to gingery mint iced tea and lemonade, these are the tried-and-true warm-weather favorites that scream summertime. Whether you drink alcohol or not, there’s something for everyone here.