What’s Independence Day without a cook-out? To help you keep things simple this holiday, we've collected our favorite July 4th BBQ ideas that will hit a home run with the whole family. Celebrate Independence Day in the most delicious way possible with these classics!
BBQ Grilled Chicken
Barbecue chicken is a summer crowd pleaser, and it’s easy to make. If you want to make it special, try whipping up this recipe for homemade barbecue sauce from the Food Network. For best results, make sure the grill is preheated before putting the chicken on. Use a meat thermometer to make sure the internal temperature of the meat reaches 165°F. This simple step will keep you and your family healthy.
Burgers are pretty simple fare, but there are a few tricks you can use to make sure this classic lives up to its potential. First, look for quality beef that’s 80% lean, 20% fat. Don’t use premade patties as they’ll have less flavor than homemade burgers. When you’re forming the patty, aim to make it 3 1/2 to 4 inches wide, and gently press your thumb into the center. This indentation prevents the patty from puffing up in the center when grilling. You should also season your patty, adding at least a bit of salt to each side before grilling. For your July 4th BBQ make this classic your own by offering a variety of toppings, such as onions, lettuce, tomato, and sautéed mushrooms.
Grilled Corn on the Cob
The best corn on the cob isn’t boiled, it’s grilled. If you want to bring out the corn's simple sweetness, try grilling it in the husk. Pull the husks down halfway and remove the silk. Next, pull the husks back up and soak the ears for 10 minutes in a bowl of cold water with a teaspoon of salt stirred in. Grill for 15 to 20 minutes in a closed grill, turning the ears every 5 minutes. You can also spice up corn on the cob with Mexican-inspired or cheddar-bacon corn recipes. For Mexican grilled corn, remove the husks and grill. Remove the cobs from the grill and, while they are still warm, slather them with a mixture of sour cream, mayonnaise, lime juice, fresh cilantro, smoked paprika, and salt. For cheddar-bacon corn on the cob, remove the husks and rub the cobs with a mixture of butter and ranch seasoning. When the corn is almost done grilling, sprinkle with shredded cheddar cheese and allow the cheese to melt. Top with a drizzle of ranch, chives, and diced bacon.
For perfect ribs, start early. Before cooking, rub the ribs with seasonings. Use a mixture of 1/4 cup of brown sugar, 2 tbsp of chili powder, 1 tsp each of salt, black pepper, and oregano, and 1/2 tsp each of onion powder, cayenne pepper, and garlic powder. Let them sit in the refrigerator overnight before baking in a tightly covered roasting pan with 1 cup of chicken broth and 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar at 250°F for 2 hours. After baking, take the remainder of the liquid, and simmer in a pot with 1 cup of barbecue sauce until the mixture has been reduced by half. While the sauce is simmering, grill the ribs for about 5 minutes on each side until lightly charred. Cut, toss in sauce, and serve.
Grilled Hot Dogs
Great for the last-minute cookout, hot dogs are an easy staple. Heat your grill to high and grill until the hot dogs are golden brown on all sides. Make your hot dogs unique by setting up a toppings bar. Try making your own relish or creating chili cheese dogs by topping them with hot chili and shredded cheddar cheese. Other great toppings include sautéed onions, peppers, and diced bacon.
For your July 4th BBQ try cooking up a couple of these tasty classics to keep things simple but flavorful. You can enjoy great food and still have plenty of time to enjoy relaxing with family and friends.
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