Today on Twitter We Help Plan Your Best 4th of July Menu

July 1, 2014 | By | Comments (50)
Fourth of July Menu Ideas

Photo: Jennifer Davick

If you’re planning a Fourth of July get-together, you’ll want to join us in the Twitter-verse today for our Test Kitchen Twitter Chat. Not only will we be chatting food and packing essentials, but we also have four Rubbermaid gift cards to give out.

Use them to shop from the brand’s latest line of coolers to get your pimento cheese and Southern brews from point A to B. We’ll share expert tips on how to best pack your culinary loot, as well as must-make recipes for summertime hangs.

Test Kitchen Twitter Chat

Join us today, July 1, at 1:00 p.m. EST. I’ll be answering all your Fourth of July menu and cooler-packing questions. Just Tweet @Hannah_Hayes or @Southern_Living and hashtag your questions with #TKCHAT.

To enter to win one of our $250 The Home Depot gift cards, tell us what you’re packing in your cooler this weekend in the comments below. The most delicious four win! Official rules.


  1. Rachel Lewter

    I’m packing home smoked Pulled Pork BBQ, with my homemade original Sweet & Spicy BBQ sauce. My side dishes are home grown potatoes made into a Creamy Potato Salad, fire grilled home grown corn on the cob with REAL butter. To end our perfect meal, we have made from scratch Pound Cake topped with, from the garden, Blackberry sauce. Yep, another meal in Paradise.

    July 31, 2014 at 7:27 am
  2. Lisa

    Packing fruit and veggie tray. Seasoned chicken to grill..cocktails and butterfingers dessert.

    July 3, 2014 at 7:35 pm
  3. Bonnie McGee

    Braised Short Ribs in Wine (thank you Justin), Mashed Potatoes with Roasted Garlic, Half and Half Milk, Butter with tons of Mozzarella Cheese (then baked), Homemade Buttermilk Biscuits, Quinoa Salad, Creamy Chicken Spread on Tiny Rolls, and Peanut Butter and Chocolate Pie. Of course everything is from scratch since I AM from the South and proud of it. Yum…Yum.

    July 2, 2014 at 7:39 am
  4. Christine Hicks

    Firecracker Franks (hot dogs with jalapeno-lime slaw). Cornfetti salad (corn, tomatoes,cucumber,sweet onions). Blue corn tortilla chips with John Phillip Salsa. Boston Pops baked beans. Sparkler sparklin’ punch (fruit punch, sparkling water, grape juice ice cubes). Mini red,white, and blue trifles: layered strawberries, angel food cake, and blueberries topped with whipped cream and star fruit. Petit fours of July: pound cake cubes, white icing, red, white, and blue sprinkles. Happy 4th everybody!!!

    July 1, 2014 at 10:31 pm
  5. Brian K Beam

    Packing it for a friend’s neighborhood party. Supplies for Beer Can Chicken: 2 Whole Chickens, Sweet Potatoes, Onions, Peppers, 4 Third Shift Amber Lagers and Seasonings. Beverages: Firefly Sweet Tea Vodka and Fresh Squeezed Lemonade to make Arnold Palmers.

    July 1, 2014 at 9:42 pm
  6. Lenny Mathis

    RJ Rockers Son of a Peach beer
    Oven roasted chicken salad
    Garden fresh cold pasta salad
    Watermelon slice (soaked in vodka)

    July 1, 2014 at 8:06 pm
  7. Mary Zelli

    Independence Day will hopefully be my first time on the boat with dear friends this summer. We’ve not had good boating weather to date so it will be a double celebration of getting together with these friends and wakeboarding on the River. Food, fun, good laughs and time together is on the social menu.
    Now for the food menu. I’m thinking antipasto pasta salad with homegrown tomatoes from the farmer’s market in town, olives, artichoke hearts, provolone cheese, celery, carrots for color and crunch, onions for zip and salami to make it truly Italian. For the dressing, a simple oil and vinegar with salt and pepper will be light and fresh. A side of watermelon chunked up with blueberries will be quite refreshing. For the cookie monster in me some chocolate chip cookies will satisfy that 4 o’clock sweet tooth. Of course there will be lots of water to stay hydrated, iced tea, beer to celebrate a good “turn” wakeboarding and wine for the sunset cruise.
    Sunset cruise we may have some shrimp cocktail, hummus and veggies and watch the sun go down as the winds die down before the explosions of fireworks later on that night. Perfect day and how lucky can a person be? Happy Independence Day to all!!

    July 1, 2014 at 7:59 pm
  8. Jenn H

    BBQ ribs, potato salad, grilled corn, and brownies. Yum-O!

    July 1, 2014 at 7:36 pm
  9. Stephanie

    I’m packing grilled veggies for me- sweet summer corn, asparagus with balsamic vinegar and red peppers. For my meat loving husband, I’m packing barbequed chicken. We’ll both enjoy homemade potato salad and lemonade from freshly squeezed lemons.

    July 1, 2014 at 4:32 pm
  10. Darrel Rose

    I am packing potatoe salad, turkey burgers,cole slaw, and raspberry ice tea

    July 1, 2014 at 3:57 pm
  11. Helen

    I am packing homemade zucchini bread,home made bread and butter pickles, potato salad, antipasto, italian sub’s and brownies.

    July 1, 2014 at 2:18 pm
  12. Sandyc

    BBQ corn on the cob pasta salad

    July 1, 2014 at 2:01 pm
  13. C Williams

    This weekend I will be packing my block ice in zip lock bags so that my marinade chicken and turkey breast, ice tea drinks, veggie potato salad and ice cream will remain chilled until we get to the park. It is going to be so much fun!

    July 1, 2014 at 1:40 pm
  14. Rachel Kane

    Fruit, steaks, chicken salad, watermelon 🙂

    July 1, 2014 at 1:35 pm
  15. Kathy

    First, Ice then chicken salad and watermelon ☆

    July 1, 2014 at 1:34 pm
  16. Lacey

    Drinks, pimiento, grilling sides, you name it. Can’t wait for the holiday!

    July 1, 2014 at 1:34 pm
  17. Maureen G

    We are taking 2 coolers: one for beverages of all kinds and one for potato salad ears of corn, burgers and hot dogs.

    July 1, 2014 at 1:27 pm
  18. Laurie Belcher

    Pecan pie, chicken salad sandwiches and potato salad.

    July 1, 2014 at 1:23 pm
  19. Pat Britt

    My own Ribmaster will fit as many baby backs as possible on the Weber. We’ll have the usual beans, slaw & potato salad plus corn dip and no doubt, rotel dip, too. Should I rinse out the ice cream freezer!?

    July 1, 2014 at 1:07 pm
  20. Page boothby

    Rib eye steaks, my late grandmother’s potato salad, nice big summer salad, homemade peach ice cream, Sangria.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:55 pm
  21. Jennifer Burns

    Sweet Georgia peaches from The Peach Truck, Mrs.Grissom’s smoked gouda pimento cheese, growler of Yazoo beer, Porter Road Butcher hot dogs and bratwurst.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:54 pm
  22. Donna Donahue

    Finger sandwiches, garden salad and watermelon!

    July 1, 2014 at 12:54 pm
  23. Ashley K

    I’m packing what I consider the highlights of summer…southern corn casserole, mini tomato tarts with fresh tomatoes, and pasta salad with feta, pinenuts, olives, and tomatoes. Oh and beer…beer is a definite highlight of summer cookouts!!

    July 1, 2014 at 12:52 pm
  24. Melanie

    Fresh Salsa, BLT’s and yummy brownies for my son who is returning from Italy after a 6 month study abroad program!

    July 1, 2014 at 12:51 pm
  25. Matthew K

    I’ve got 19 lbs of Boston butt and three split chicken breasts in the smoker, and we’ll have six packs of Natty Greene’s Buckshot and Southern Pale Ale. It’s going to be a great weekend, we just need a cooler to put it all in!

    July 1, 2014 at 12:50 pm
  26. Adrienne

    It’s not a summer family gathering without homemade peach ice cream and deviled egg salad sandwiches.

    Throw in a green bean (blanched) and new potato salad (lightly dressed in oils), and it’s a portable feast.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:44 pm
  27. Gwenn Henderson Eyer

    I’ll be packing my mama’s perfect potato salad and pork steaks.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:42 pm
  28. Heather B.

    Avocado and Greek yogurt chicken salad
    Broccoli & cauliflower salad w bacon, cheddar & golden raisins
    Mediterranean pasta salad w artichokes, orange bell peppers, mushrooms, tomatoes, feta, and creamy Parmesan dressing
    Fruit salad
    Blackberry cobbler

    July 1, 2014 at 12:42 pm
  29. Kelsey

    Potato salad with greek yogurt and grilled BBQ chicken drumsticks, with blueberry-peach pie for dessert!

    July 1, 2014 at 12:37 pm
  30. Chelsea Clarey

    Papaya chunks in lime juice to whet the appetite, then a mustard-y chicken salad with dried cranberries. The chicken salad will be generously slathered on a simple homemade bread, for which I will share the recipe because it’s so easy and gets all kinds of compliments:

    3 cups warm water
    1 1/2 Tbsp kosher salt
    1 1/2 Tbsp active dry yeast
    6 1/2 cups flour

    (You can also add 1 1/2 teaspoons of any herbs after the yeast, but it doesn’t really need it for most purposes.)

    Mix ingredients in order; if it doesn’t make a soft, wet, cohesive dough, add just a touch more water. Let it rise 3 hours. Refrigerate anywhere from 1 hour to 2 weeks (don’t cover it too tightly). Form into orange-sized loaves and let them rise on a greased cookie sheet while the oven heats up to 450 F. Bake 25 minutes. Serve.

    Graciously wave away questions about your delicious authentic sourdough from one side and anecdotes about French bakeries from the other; murmur something about family secrets.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:37 pm
  31. Julie currie

    Grilled chicken/steak kabobs with pineapple, tomatoes and sweet peppers and a soy ginger marinade

    Grilled veggies: summer yellow squash, zucchini. onions

    Fresh fruit bowl chilled

    Caramel brownies

    July 1, 2014 at 12:33 pm
  32. Irene (@semi_evilgurl)

    Grilled corn salad, cucumber salads, BBQ Beef ribs lathered with lots of bbq sauce, refreshing watermelon lemonade, and a peach cobbler to top it off!

    July 1, 2014 at 12:32 pm
  33. Susan Hatcher

    My husband was trying to enter and didn’t realize my eMail address was already showing when he tried to enter. Please delete one with my name.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:31 pm
  34. William H.

    We are having beer butt chickens, corn on cob and baked beans. Brownies for dessert.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:28 pm
  35. Susan Hatcher

    Burgers, dogs, corn salad, lettuce, tomatoes, onions and baked beans. No bake cookies and fruit. And iced tea.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:26 pm
  36. Carol S

    Hamburgers/hot dogs,Macaroni Salad,Green salad,watermelon,Flag cake with blueberries & strawberries

    July 1, 2014 at 12:24 pm
  37. Katrina Carr

    mini pecan pies, fruit salad, corned beef sandwiches, fresh squeezed lemonade

    July 1, 2014 at 12:24 pm
  38. Renee

    I am packing chicken, chips and peach cobbler

    July 1, 2014 at 12:22 pm
  39. Andrew Brotherton (@brothertona)

    Cold beer

    July 1, 2014 at 12:21 pm
  40. Tracey Bloom

    Red,white and blue cupcakes to double as sparkler holders. Fire and Ice salad (watermelon&jalepeno). BBQ chicken. Bacon potato salad. Strawberry lemonade.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:19 pm
  41. Sarah Johnson

    This weekend I’m planning a simple but classic menu:

    -Teensy Tomato Sandwiches: White Bread, Duke’s Mayo, Heirloom Tomatoes, Salt&Pepper
    [Avocado, Benton’s Bacon & Farmer’s Market Lettuce on the side for those who want to make a BLT, or an LGBT(haha)]

    -Red, White, & Blue Kebabs: Strawberries, Blueberries, & Banana chunks on a stick

    -Simple Roasted Green Beans: Green beans coated in olive oil, roasted, Salt&Pepper

    -Watermelon Moon Farm Tea: Peach Tea, Raspberry Tea, Orange Juice (plus Vodka if you’re feeling frisky)

    -Cherry-Bourbon Ice Cream!

    July 1, 2014 at 12:16 pm
  42. Casey

    Pimento cheese, fried chicken and a growler from my favorite local brewery!

    July 1, 2014 at 12:14 pm
  43. Jennifer Essad

    @4jlessad – fried chicken/ribs potato salad coleslaw bake beans and chocolate chip cookies and apple pie

    July 1, 2014 at 12:11 pm
  44. Chelsy Phillips

    Watermelon Sangria, fried chicken and the perfect potato salad are all going to be on my menu this weekend!

    July 1, 2014 at 12:11 pm
  45. Jill W

    Flavored water, fruit, and turkey sandwiches!

    July 1, 2014 at 12:09 pm
  46. Cathy Purslow

    Weiners. Watermelon.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:09 pm
  47. Julie Davis (@finntannermom)

    Chicken Salad and lots of water

    July 1, 2014 at 12:09 pm
  48. Amanda Mathis

    My famous tomato pie! Perfect for the 4th.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:08 pm
  49. Susan Hatcher

    I’m packing pasta salad, cole slaw, and lemon pies. Ribs will be going on the grill. Thanks for chance to win.

    July 1, 2014 at 12:07 pm
  50. Bailey Kathryne

    I’ll be packing a delicious green chile Mac n Cheese recipe that is packed with flavor for kids and adults to enjoy!

    July 1, 2014 at 12:07 pm

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