After considering a dozen various dessert recipes for my parents’ Memorial Day weekend cookout, it was my three year old niece who inadvertently made the decision for me.
When I made my red velvet birthday cake, I sent leftovers throughout the family, so everyone could have some. I’ve never seen K turn down cake before, and considering her love of blueberries, I can’t say I was shocked to hear that she liked this cake.
Well, about a week later, she asked for cake. Confused, my sister-in-law and mom looked at each other, then explained there wasn’t any cake. And K insisted, “I want some of Sara’s cake!” (I wasn’t there, I’m paraphrasing what my mom told me, as well as what my dad told me. But we all get the gist of it, right?)
So, a pint-size toddler made the decision for me – I will be making red velvet cupcakes, from one of the recipes I’ve already posted here. Because I’m not doing something new, I thought I would share some of my favorite patriotic holiday/cookout recipes of all types prior to the weekend.
Simple Fruit Salad
Sesame Chicken Pasta Salad – this dish tastes better when it’s made a day ahead of time
Pre-baked Pizza Crusts – top with your favorite pizza sauce, cheese, and toppings, then grill until cheese melts
Bacon Jam – the perfect condiment to add to burgers, sandwiches, and even hot dogs
Steak Sandwiches – simply grill the vegetables and steak, slice, and serve in sandwich form
Soft Pretzels – great for parties
Red Velvet Cupcakes – topped with white icing and blue sprinkles, they’re perfect for the holiday
Red Velvet Cake – can easily make into cupcakes – keep the blueberries and raspberries for a festive touch
Vanilla Bean Cupcakes with White Chocolate Buttercream – a food-coloring free option
Tres Leches Cake – get some fruit with your cake
Salted Peanut Butter Cupcakes – chocolate + peanut butter = all-American favorite
Key Lime Cupcakes – they may not be red, white, and blue, but they use limes that only grow in the Florida Keys, making them truly all-American
Gluten- & Sugar-Free Chocolate Cupcakes – just about anyone can enjoy these
Homemade Oreos – perfect indoors or out
Party Cookies – an all-time favorite recipe
Chocolate Chip Cookies (with nuts) – the addition of finely chopped pecans makes these cookies taste extra buttery
Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies (NY Times recipe) – start the dough a day or two ahead of time!
Hot Fudge Cookie Sundaes
Millionaire’s Shortbread – my runner up for the cookout
Chocolate Peanut Butter Rice Krispy Bars – everyone of all ages will love these
Lemon Bars – end the meal with a sweet-tart finish
Frozen Key Lime Pie – for cookouts close to home
Crumble Apple Pie – easily turn this into a double crust pie, for a less messy alternative (simply double the ingredients for the crust)