Wedding Planning

10 Summer Party Food Recipes

10 Summer Party Food Recipes

Break out these favorites for your next barbecue or picnic date.

summer fried chicken

Fried Chicken

Looking for summer party food ideas? Whether you are staying in your own backyard or hauling a picnic basket to the park, fried chicken is a summer classic. This recipe features triple dipped chicken in order to get a thick, crunchy crust.

sesame grilled salmon

Grilled Salmon

Particularly if you live in the Pacific Northwest, salmon is as synonymous with summer as sunshine. We love this clever variation of traditional grilled salmon using sesame seeds and teriyaki flavors.

spicy grilled shrimp

Spicy Shrimp

Nothing pairs as well with a cold beer or icy margarita like something spicy. These prawns deliver just enough spice to provide an excellent complement to your cocktails without warming you up too much on a hot evening.

Italian pasta salad

Pasta Salad

We’re not sure you can actually even host a backyard barbecue or picnic without serving a pasta salad. This version is antipasto-inspired, with black olives and salami.

tropical fruit salsa

Zesty Salsa

Tortilla chips and salsa is a great snack combo because it’s easy to make and to serve. Our favorite salsas combine peppers with sweet fruits to temper the heat. This one uses three summer favorites: mango, peach, and pineapple.

deep fried pickles

Deep Fried Pickles

A carnival-fare darling, fried dill pickles are a delish appetizer (because summer party food should be fun). Serve with iced tea or beer. These pickles are definitely on the salty side (but totally worth it).

lemon green beans

Fresh Green Beans

Summer picnics are full of foods that are tough on the diet. Have that hamburger but skip the chips in favor of fresh, citrus and garlic-seasoned green beans. This dish is even more special using beans picked straight from the garden.

fresh rhubarb pie

Rhubarb Pie

Can rhubarb in late spring when it comes into season and use it for pies throughout the summer. Rhubarb pairs well with many fruits (we’re partial to peaches), but it’s also really tasty solo.

blueberry shortbread bars

Blueberry Bar Cookies

When packing a picnic basket, you should bring sturdy foods that are easy to slice and store. These blueberry shortbread bars transport well, and allowing you to enjoy fresh summer fruit without a lot of mess.

rosemary ginger cocktail

Rosemary Ginger Cocktail

With a delicate herbal flavor and a kick of gin, this refreshing cocktail is sure to wow your party guests. If you have an herb garden, use rosemary sprigs as garnish.