10 Great Recipes for Your Labor Day Cookout

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Labor Day is just around the corner, and your guests are going to want to see these 10 foods on your table! Typically anything “Red, White and Blue” would be cute enough, but this year it’s time to break away from what looks great and set something out that tastes phenomenal. Make your Labor Day Cookout stand out with these 10 recipes that will wow anyone:

1. Fresh Tomato, Basil and Feta Macaroni Salad from KalynsKitchen.com


3 tbsp. white balsamic vinegar

1 tbsp. double-thick tomato sauce

Black pepper to taste

5 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil

2 cups fresh chopped tomatoes

1 cup sliced green onion

1 cup fresh chopped basil (½ for cooking, ½ for garnish)

2 cups macaroni

½ cup crumbled feta


Mix together white balsamic vinegar, tomato paste and pepper. Whisk in the olive oil small amounts at a time, then add chopped tomatoes, basil and onions. Leave this marinade for an hour or two to mingle the flavors. 45 minutes before you would like to serve the pasta salad, boil the macaroni until it is barely tender. Drain but do not rinse macaroni! Let it sit for about 15 minutes. When it cools down a bit, mix in the dressing then let it sit for 15 minutes more. Before serving, add the basil garnish and crumbled feta. Enjoy!

2. Bacon Ranch Grilled Jalapeños from InsideBruCrewLife.com


4 oz. cream cheese

2 tbsp. ranch powder

2 tbsp. crumbled bacon

½ cup cheddar cheese

12 jalapeño peppers

(makes 12 poppers)


Start by cutting off the stems of the peppers and removing the seeds/membranes. Rinse the jalapeños and dry them off with a paper towel. Churn the cream cheese and ranch powder until smooth then stir in the bacon and shredded cheese. Completely fill the peppers with the filling then place in a grill basket on the grill. Grill for about 25 minutes around 375 degrees – voila!

3. Chili-Lime Mango Margarita from LittleFerraroKitchen.com


1 cup frozen mango

1.5 oz. tequila

1.5 oz. sweet and sour

1 oz. triple sec


For the rim:

¼ cup kosher salt

¼ cup sugar

¼ tsp cayenne, 1 lime


Blend all the margarita ingredients together until smooth, add the chili-lime rim and garnish with the lime!

4. Apple Avocado Salsa with Honey Lime Dressing from Diethood.com


2 diced tomatoes

1 halved, seeded peeled and diced avocado

¼ cup red onion, diced

1 seeded and diced poblano chile

2 small Granny Smith apples, cored and diced

1 tbsp. fresh parsley

Black pepper to taste

For the dressing:

2 limes (juiced)

2 tbsp. honey (or more for sweeter dressing)


Combine all salsa ingredients in the order listed above. In a separate bowl, mix the lime and honey dressing. Pour the dressing over the salsa, chill for 15-30 minutes then enjoy!

5. Southwestern Quinoa Salad with Creamy Avocado Dressing from Diethood.com


2 cups water

1 cup quinoa, cooked

1 can drained, rinsed corn kernels

1 can drained, rinsed black beans

2 diced tomatoes

For the dressing:

½ avocado

½ cup plain yogurt

1 tbsp. lemon or lime juice

1 tsp soy sauce

2 tbsp. olive oil

salt and pepper to taste


Prepare the quinoa by boiling 2 cups of water, add in 1 cup of quinoa then reduce heat to simmer for 15 minutes. For the dressing, combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Place quinoa on a large plate and top with black beans, corn and tomatoes and serve with dressing on the side!

6. Patriotic Pies in a Jar from TheNerdsWife.com


4 refrigerated pie crusts

12, 4 oz. small mason jars

1 can cherry pie filling

2 ½ cups fresh blueberries

1/8 cup sugar

¼ tsp cinnamon

½ tsp corn starch


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and cut 2 pie crusts into quarters. Push the dough into the jars and make sure the thickness of the crusts are even throughout. Fill half of the jars with cherry filling. In a bowl, combine the blueberries, sugar, cinnamon and corn starch – then fill the rest of the jars with this filling. Top the jars with the left over pie crusts (get creative!) and bake uncovered for 10 minutes. Once top crust begins to brown, cover with foil and bake for an additional 30 minutes. Top with whipped cream for the Red, White and Blue effect!

7. Drunken Melon Balls from HoustonPress.com


7 cups melon balls (any assortment of melons)

3 tbsp. sugar

1 cup white rum

1 tsp lemon zest

½ tsp lemon juice

1 tbsp. lime zest


Scoop out small balls of melon until you have about 7 cups worth and put them in a large bowl. Dissolve 3 tablespoons of sugar in the rum and add the lemon juice. Pour the rum over the melon balls and toss lightly to coat thoroughly. Sprinkle the balls with the lemon and lime zest, then refrigerate for at least one hour before serving. The longer you let the melon sit, the more the melons will soak up the rum!

8. Bacon Wrapped-Brown Sugar Smokies with Dipping Sauce from AllRecipes.com


¼ cup mayonnaise

¼ cup barbecue sauce

2 tbsp. brown sugar

1 pack bacon

1 pack lil’ smokies sausage links


Cook the lil’ smokies about halfway, then wrap in bacon (keep the bacon in place with a toothpick!) and finish cooking. In a bowl, mix the mayo, BBQ sauce and brown sugar until the sugar has thoroughly dissolved. Serve as a great twist on the classic Piggies in a Blanket!



9. Oven-Fried Green Tomatoes (Gluten free and low carb!) from KalynsKitchen.com


6 green tomatoes, sliced about ½” thick

¾ cup Honeyville Blanched Almond Flour

2 tsp Old Bay Lemon and Herb Seasoning

2 well-beaten eggs

½ cup ranch dressing

1-2 tsp Sriracha Rooster Sauce


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray a baking sheet with non-stick spray. Place eggs in a bowl, and in another bowl mix the almond flour and Old Bay seasoning. Place half the almond flour mixture in a separate bowl (yes, you’re looking at 3 bowls right now). Dip each tomato slice into the egg then the almond mixture (making sure it sticks to the tomato). Place each slice on the baking sheet and bake them for 35-40 minutes, turning carefully once. Mix the Sriracha and ranch dipping sauce while they bake. The tomatoes will be done when each side is slightly browned and they are cooked through. Serve hot!

10. Strawberry and Blueberry Cheesecake Icebox Cake from LifeLoveAndSugar.com


2 3.4 oz. packages of cheesecake flavored pudding

4 ½ cups milk

2 15.25 oz. boxes of golden Oreos

1 lb. package of washed and sliced strawberries

1 pint blueberries

12 oz. Cool Whip


Make both cheesecake pudding packs using the 4 cups of milk, then set aside. Put the remaining ½ cup of milk in a small bowl and dip the Oreos in it quickly, then line the bottom of a 9×13 pan (make a single layer). Spread half of the cheesecake pudding on top of the Oreos and add a single layer of strawberries over that. Spread half of the Cool Whip over top of the strawberries, then make another layer of milk-dipped Oreos on that. Top Oreos with the remaining cheesecake pudding and add a layer of blueberries (save about 1/3 cup). Top with the remaining Cool Whip. Chop the remaining strawberries and add those to remaining blueberries, garnishing the top. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours (of overnight) then serve it up!