Fourth of July is an amazing time of year when we get to hang out with our favorite people while eating our favorite foods. Everyone has their favorite must-haves when it comes to their summer holidays, so here’s a few of my family’s favorites that would be an amazing addition to any 4th of July spread. 

Sides and Salads

Every good gathering has a ton of sides and salads. While I love a good grilled protein, I’m also obsessed with all the yummy sides. Some may see them as a plate filler, but for me it’s another way to pack in a whole lot of yummy flavors.

Italian Pasta Salad

Italian pasta salad

You may see pasta salad and think carbs. I totally get it! But, if you stuff it full of veggies and some good lean ham…look what happens! I won’t lie, it’s still carbs. But for fewer carbs to lighten-up your holiday indulgence, try this Italian pasta salad. You’ll have a happy family and happy macros. 

Watermelon Cucumber Salad

watermelon cucumber salad

This watermelon cucumber feta salad is so fresh and VIBRANT! A perfect side for all of your summer barbecues and 4th of July spread. It’s so easy to throw together, but still interesting, delicious, and beautiful enough for entertaining.

Sautéed Summer Herb Salad

sauteed herb salad

I tend to crave certain flavors at different times of the year. Now that we are in the thick of the summer season, I’m reaching for all the fresh flavors I can get. This sautéed summer herb salad has all of the flavors of summer while being super quick and easy to prep which makes it a perfect addition side salad to bring to any gathering. 

Sweet Summer Corn and Cucumber Salad

corn cucumber salad

There are two things that I find myself wanting to add to just about every salad…corn and basil. I CANNOT get enough of the dynamic duo. I mean, it’s sweet summer corn… and BASIL! If you are looking to try a non-green salad that will hold up during the heat of a summer BBQ, this sweet summer corn and cucumber salad is what you’ve been searching for! It’s a nice alternative to a typical leafy green salad and is full of so many fresh summer flavors. 

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Gather Around the Grill

Grilled proteins are the star of any summer holiday gathering, especially on the 4th of July. It’s where people gather while the kids are hanging out. And there’s something about the char of the grill that just makes it feel like a core summer memory. 

Bacon Cheeseburger with Secret Sauce 

Bacon cheeseburger

There is just something about biting into a classic burger: the ooey-gooey cheese, drippy sauce, and the crunch of the toasty bun. Now, there’s a time and a place for lettuce-wrapped, perhaps a substitution for grilled chicken, but sometimes it needs to be an ordinary cheeseburger wrapped in gluten. (Or gluten-free if you must.) Given how delicious this bacon cheeseburger with secret sauce is, you are never going to believe that it’s actually macro-friendly. But it is. It’s a great way to enjoy your holiday eats without worrying about how your body is going to feel the next day.

BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich with Cilantro Lime Slaw

pulled pork sandwich

Okay, I know I said grilled protein is the highlight of every 4th of July spread, but I had to include pulled pork. This BBQ pulled pork may be cooked in the Instant Pot, but it has all the traditional BBQ vibes. Plus there’s BBQ in the name so it counts. Serve up this BBQ pulled pork sandwich with cilantro lime slaw with your summer sides. It’s for sure one of my family’s all time favorite summer meals.

Honey Chipotle Grilled Chicken

honey chipotle grilled chicken

This quick and easy honey chipotle grilled chicken requires a simple chicken prep, whisking up the marinade, grilling, and done! It’s easy enough for a busy weeknight, but delicious enough to be the star of your 4th of July spread.

Sweet Garlic Spiced Grilled Flank Steak

grilled flank steak

I love meals like this that feel restaurant-worthy, but are the EASIEST! The easiest plus yummiest makes me wonder why we do anything else! It’s the winning formula- duh. Plus it’s super impressive for entertaining. For this sweet garlic spiced grilled flank steak, just mix up a quick marinade and throw it in a bag with your flank steak. When your friends and family come over to celebrate, throw it on the grill! 

BBQ Soy Ginger Chicken Thighs

BBQ chicken thighs

We cook so many breasts and tenderloins over here. But THIGHS. You guys. Where have I been? It is one of those cuts of meat that is foolproof. So juicy and hard to mess up. Which is why these BBQ soy ginger chicken thighs are perfect when you’re entertaining in case you get caught up in all the Fourth of July fun.

Sweet Celebration

Desserts may not be macro-friendly, but every holiday party needs a sweet finish. We’ve been good all day so enjoying a few treats at the end of the night is the perfect end to the 4th of July. 

Best Brownies Ever


I don’t know what could possibly be better than seeing a big plate of the best brownies at a summer BBQ gathering. Full disclosure, they are NOT macro-friendly. But in my opinion, I wouldn’t trust a brownie that was macro-friendly. I say live big and indulge in these brownies! They are our favorite brownies from scratch ever.

Chocolate Chip Cookies

chocolate chip cookies

It may sound simple to bring a plate of cookies to a 4th of July party, but these chocolate chip cookies are anything but ordinary. They are crisp on the edges and gooey chewy in the middle. Seriously SO GOOD! Everyone will be talking about these cookies and the fact that you brought them.

American Flag Sheet Cake 

American flag cake

If you’ve been hanging out with me for a while, you know I’m OBSESSED with the salted sweets. Everything Brooke makes is amazing! We especially love her coconut cake. If you are feeling super festive and in the mood for something super delicious you need to make this American flag sheet cake for your 4th of July spread. You can do it up to look like a flag or even stack it up for any summer get-together. 

4th of July Spread 

I can’t wait to see your 4th of July day spread so make sure you tag me @lillieeatsandtells in your holiday food posts. Make sure you are following me on Instagram and TikTok to see what my family is serving up. If you liked these recipes, check out my cookbooks. They are full of simple and delicious recipes that make healthy eating easy. 
Disclosure: I only recommend products I would use myself and all opinions expressed here are my own. This post may contain affiliate links that at no additional cost to you, I may earn a small commission. Read the full privacy policy here.

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About the Author

Hello. My name is Lillie. I’m not a registered dietitian, or a macro coach, or a public figure or culinary genius. I’m a mommy of four who FOUND macro-counting and fell in love with this balanced approach to food...

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