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Whether you’re hosting a backyard BBQ for friends and family or just want to whip up some crowd-pleasing dishes, these Labor Day cookout ideas have something everyone will enjoy.
From juicy burgers and flavorful brats to colorful side dishes, salads, desserts, and drinks that’ll make your day shine with gorgeous colors, this round up has all of the ideas you need for an unforgettable Labor Day celebration.
So don your chef hats, fire up those grills, kick back with some refreshing beverages in hand – it’s time for an epic Labor Day Cookout!
Labor Day is the perfect time to fire up the grill and celebrate the end of summer with friends and family. We’ve rounded up some delicious recipes that will leave your guests happily satisfied after their visit.
From mouthwatering mains like smoky chicken sandwiches and picnic salads to tasty sides, there is something for everyone on this menu. So grab those tongs, break out the lawn chairs, and fire up the grill – it’s time for a fun-filled cookout!
There are many reasons why you’ll want to try these easy Labor Day cookout ideas. Here are just a few:
Delicious: These ideas for Labor Day cookout recipes are all sure to please even the pickiest eaters.
Easy to make: Most of these cookout ideas are simple to follow and don’t require a lot of time or effort.
Versatile: There’s something for everyone on this list, whether you’re looking for classic American fare or something more unique.
Seasonal: These cookout ideas are perfect for the end of summer, when fresh produce is in season.
End Of Summer Last Hurrah!
Labor Day cookouts, picnics, and family gatherings hail the ending of summer as we transition into Fall weather and kids return to school. Here are some mouthwatering ideas for labor day cookout success.
This strawberry crunch cake has two layers of tender, moist strawberry cake filled with a light and fluffy frosting and then coated in a crunchy strawberry cookie crumble. Each bite is packed with sweet flavor and texture, making it an irresistible dessert.
These Traeger jalapeno poppers are stuffed with a creamy, gooey cheese filling and wrapped in bacon. A quick finish of maple syrup adds a delicious sweetness to the smoky bacon and brings them to a whole new level of flavor.
These poppers are perfect for game day snacking, tailgates, and any other celebration. They're easy to make and you can prep them ahead of time, then pop them on the grill when it is close to party time. Serve them on their own or with an array of dipping sauces, such as ranch dressing, marinara, or blue cheese dressing.
This Baba Ganoush is a traditional Lebanese recipe. It is a creamy and flavorful eggplant dip that makes a healthy side dish or appetizer.
Roasting the eggplant in the oven frees you up to prep the other ingredients. However, if you want a smokier flavor, light a fire on the grill and char the eggplant over open flames. The second option requires a bit more patience and hands-on time. Either method will give you delicious results.
A smokey dry rub infuses a ton of flavor into the tri tip before it gets grilled. It is incredibly easy and makes an amazing dinner. If you give the rub plenty of time to sit on the tri-tip it will develop the flavors more and tenderize the meat.
Instant Pot country-style ribs come out tender and juicy in half the time they would take in the oven or on the grill. Cook them until they are tender, yet firm, or cook them until they fall apart and shred with a fork. Finish them off in the air fryer or broiler to get the BBQ sauce thick and sticky.
This smoked London Broil gets marinated in a delicious marinade that doubles as a savory flavoring for gravy. The marinated beef gets smoked over low heat to get a smoky flavor, then finished with a higher blast of heat.
Serve it with mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables, or your favorite side dish for an easy weeknight meal. The leftovers also make a great steak sandwich or salad.
This spicy crispy chicken sandwich is a homemade version featuring a crisp, Panko-coated chicken breast with a creamy chipotle aioli and crunchy pickled onions. It will rival your favorite restaurant sandwich and is so easy to make at home.
This salad version of Mexican street corn is served in a cup for easy-to-eat street food and is actually called esquites. It's perfect for summer BBQs or picnics and makes a great side dish or main course.
To get that authentic street corn flavor, we cook the corn kernels in a hot skillet to give them a charred, smokey flavor. Next, we mix them with a creamy dressing, Mexican cheese, and colorful bell peppers. The result is a flavorful salad that will be a hit at your next party or potluck.
Simple ingredients shine in this strawberry popsicles recipe! They have a concentrated strawberry flavor and are so easy to make at home.
We added strawberry jam to make the strawberry flavor pop and it gives the popsicles a smoother texture. There is also an option to roast the strawberries, which will concentrate the flavors.
If you want to make the strawberry popsicles go further, add some yogurt to the popsicle molds and make twice as many. These popsicles are a perfect healthy dessert. Weight Watchers and Slimming World friendly.
This Mixed Berry Pie takes advantage of juicy berries and a flaky, all-butter pastry crust. It is filled with a combination of raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries and baked in a deep dish pie dish.
We have options to thicken the pie with cornstarch, tapioca, or instant clear jel (which is the best choice if you plan to freeze the pie).
You can use fresh or frozen fruit, however, read the notes if you use frozen fruit as you will need extra thickener. If you find fruit in the Farmer's market, you may need to add a bit of extra thickener since that fruit is often picked at its peak and tends to be juicier.
This is the Best Coleslaw for Pulled Pork, made with shredded carrots, white and red cabbage plus green onions all mixed with a creamy, tangy dressing. This is the perfect coleslaw to pile on a pulled pork sandwich or as a side dish at your backyard BBQs.
A slow-roasted, juicy Reverse Sear Cowboy Steak is perfectly cooked to medium-rare with a rich, flavorful crust. The tender steak is finished with a basting of garlic herb butter to add extra richness!
This crowd-pleaser apple slab pie has a tender all-butter crust lining a 10x14x1-inch baking sheet and is filled with a sweet-tangy mix of sliced apples, sugar and spices. The apples are covered with another crust, sprinkled with coarse sugar and baked to perfection.
Thai Pork Satay is one of the most favored street foods in Thailand! Bits of pork marinated in a mix of garlic, ginger, soy sauce, and sugar along with whatever the cook decides to add to create a sweet and savory flavor. The marinated pork is threaded on skewers and grilled over hot coals. Street vendors usually serve these grilled pork satay skewers with sticky rice and a dipping sauce.
This fresh strawberry pie with jello is an easy no-bake dessert. A layer of chocolate ganache covers the graham cracker crust, and the juicy strawberries and sweet jello finish it with just the right amount of sweetness.
Raspberry Chipotle BBQ Pork Ribs are first oven roasted low and slow, then glazed with our homemade Roasted Raspberry Chipotle Sauce and finished on the BBQ grill. They are savory-sweet with a little heat, tender and incredibly flavorful
Fire Up The Grill And Get Cooking!
These are just a few of the many great recipes you can make for your Labor Day cookout. With so many delicious options to choose from, you’re sure to find something everyone will enjoy.
Tips for Success
Plan ahead: Don’t wait until the day of your cookout to start cooking. Make sure you have all of your ingredients and supplies ready to go.
Use fresh ingredients: Fresh ingredients will make your food taste its best. If possible, buy your ingredients from a local farmer’s market.
Don’t overcook your food: Overcooked food can be dry and tough. Cook your food to the correct temperature to ensure that it is juicy and flavorful.
Have fun! Cooking for a cookout should be enjoyable. Relax, take your time, and enjoy the process.
Hi, I’m Kelly! and I have a love affair with herbs & spices! I’m all about creating easy, delicious, and budget friendly meals that have three aspects: flavor, aroma, and texture.
You can see my recipes at my Smells Like Delish blog. →