Monday, August 9, 2021

List: Ten simple and delicious barbecue dishes that everyone will love.

One of my favorite parts of the Summer are the backyard barbecues.  They're easy to plan and they don't involve standing over a stove for days to prepare for the large family dinner.  As much as I love a good barbecue, I sometimes get bored serving the same food every time.  I like to be spontaneous and change up the menu periodically.  That being said, I started making a list big surprise of my favorite barbecue dishes for easy reference when I'm looking for that change!

unique bbq backyard cookout ideas and recipes

Top ten simple & delicious barbecue dishes.

1.  Fried Zucchini Sticks
While I admit that this completely contradicts everything that I said above specifically in regards to standing over the stove, it's one of my favorite dishes to surprise guests with at our barbecues.  It's as simple as it gets.  All it takes is cutting some zucchini into spears, breading it, and then frying them until they're crispy.  While it's best served fresh, it can be made ahead of time and then reheated in the oven.

The typical protein at a bbq consists of hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken, or even sausage.  Assuming your guests care for fish, this salmon recipe is a great surprise!  It's a simple recipe that involves marinating the fish and then throwing it on the grill skin side down.  While the original recipe calls for cooking it in the oven, there's nothing stopping us from using the grill.

3.  Baked Macaroni & Cheese
When I think BBQ I think macaroni salad or potato salad.  I rarely think macaroni and cheese, but who's to say that we can't serve it in place of pasta salad?  It was rhetorical, but the answer is nobody!  My aunt makes the best mac and cheese.  She recently shared the recipe and we served it on the 4th of July.  It was a hit with the adults but a complete slam dunk with the kiddies!

4.  Sausage and Peppers
Another dish that's relatively inexpensive and simple to make is sausage and peppers.  I surprised some of my guests with this dish at my son's birthday party and was shocked when TWO different people asked me to make it for them on their birthday.  By shocked I really mean flattered..  One day I'll have to share my recipe, but on a high level, I coin and cook the sausage separately from the sautéed peppers and onions.  Then I mix the two together and bake.

I shared this recipe last year and it's still one of my favorites to serve at a barbecue.  It's as simple as cooking a few cups of rice in the rice maker and then cooking the beans separately in a pan with lots of seasonings.  Mix the two together and you have an easy, delicious, and filling side dish to serve your guests.

If we are making hamburgers or steak, I take a trip to Costco to buy a couple of barrels of their giant stuffing mushrooms.  Then I make this easy legit only requires 5 ingredients and delicious side that pairs really well the proteins served in the backyard barbecue.

We are famous in my family for growing lots of Japanese eggplant also know as ichiban in our vegetable garden.  Everyone loves this unique vegetable so much that they get super excited when I surprise serve it at a backyard barbecue.  If you slice the eggplant longways and then grill it for 2 minutes on each side, it's a simple and amazing dish.  If you're looking to step it up a notch, click the recipe above for cooking it with tomatoes and basil for the ultimate veggie side dish.

8.  Artichoke Heart Quiche
We have some amazing quiche recipes in my family.  One of my favorite ones is filled with artichoke hearts (NOT the canned and marinated ones), fresh mozzarella cheese, eggs, and various other seasonings.  It can be made in advance and is served like a pie.

Some of my favorite desserts to serve at a barbecue include fruit salad, chocolate pudding pie, or a Friendly's Wattamelon Roll.  Sometimes to change things up a bit, we'll serve guava and cheese.  We use canned guava because we don't know where to get fresh ones and cream cheese.  It's a simple dessert that is exceptionally nice when outside on a hot day.

10.  Grilled Vidalia Onions
This was one of my favorite Summer dishes growing up.  I love it so much, that I still continue to make this despite my husband's protests.  Slice a few large vidalia onions into large medallions.  Then stick a kebob stick through the entire medallion so that the onion can be flipped and turned without falling apart.  Then brush a mixture of olive oil, salt, pepper, and dried oregano on each side.  Finally, grill on each side until the onion is crispy.  It's so simple and SO delicious!

What are your favorite BBQ dishes?


  1. I think that tzatziki goes best with any bbq, not that I ever eat bbq, it is like eating cancer LOL My country is famous for grilled meat things especially 'pljeskavica' (our burgers) and our world famous 'cevapcici'. I don't eat that nastiness, though, just give me some potatoes and I'm good to go.

    1. I'm afraid of tzatziki. My ex (who was Greek) LIVED on that stuff, but I could never get accustomed to it.

      I have heard of the char on the grills going onto the meats and causing cancer. We use disposable grill covers that are made of aluminum to eliminate that. Is that what you're talking about? The last thing we need is another carcinogen in our bodies!

    2. Just make it with sour cream, garlic and dill, it is better than with yoghurt.
      Anything made through smoking is cancerous as smoke is a product of burning, basically a dead thing and thus you bring dead cells into your body as well. Not if you eat it occasionally of course.

  2. A lot of unique ideas, Jax! I’m going to try your salmon recipe. We usually have the same old sides for big bbq parties, probably because we had picky eaters to feed in my husband’s family. Usually I’d make party potatoes, pasta salad, green salad, maybe a black bean salad and strawberry shortcake or ice cream pies.

    I’ve never bought a fresh artichoke because they look like a pain! Have always used the jarred ones. I think I’ve only had fresh guava in Maui.

    1. Let me know if you like it! So many people compliment it and then get shocked at what it really is. lol A black bean salad sounds delicious. We usually do rice and beans, but this sounds like a healthier option. What do you put in it?

    2. I’ll send you a Pinterest link

  3. Fried Zucchini Sticks I’d be all over! We eat so much zucchini but I’ve never been able to successfully grow it in my garden.

    1. They are SO YUM and so simple to make. We tried to grow them one year, but when the vine started covering the lawn, my husband ripped it out. Nothing is allowed to mess with his grass!

  4. Omg, I made the salmon and it was absolutely delicious! Thank you!

  5. I think our special tomatoes sauce (spicy tomatoes salad - we call it in Turkish "Ezme") goes well with these bbqs. Also fried onions, red and green peppers, tomatoes go well with any bbq.


Spread a smile with a comment!