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20 Last-Minute Spectacular 4th Party Eats

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Spontaneous is your middle name. Maybe even your first name. Point being, you just now decided to throw a 4th bash, and just now realized that involves a little more than texting 30 of your closest friends. 

Fortunately, you’ve got a secret weapon: the list below, with all the morning/afternoon/evening red/white/blue food/drink ideas your party could ever need.


1. 4th of July Chex™ Mix

4th of July Chex™ Mix

Need nibbles for the snack table, the parade, the picnic, or under the fireworks? Bag up a few batches of these crowd-pleasers, with the perfect mix of luscious candy and crunchy Chex™ cereal.


2. Flag Fruit Pizza

Flag Fruit Pizza

Time to make a patriotic pizza! This sweet high-flying treat has a crispy crust under banana and berry stripes, so you can use it for a brunch, a dessert, or anytime hors d'oeuvre.


3. Red White and Blue Burgers

Red White and Blue Burgers

A gourmet take on the classic cookout, with bleu cheese adding luscious flavor on top of roasted red peppers. Great for satisfying a bunch of red-blooded American appetites.


4. 4th of July Super Slushies

4th of July Super Slushies

Make ’em boozy or virgin, make ’em ahead of time or on the 4th, make ’em big or small, but for Pete’s sake, you can’t NOT make these layered bevs for the holiday.


5. Fireworks Pie Fries

Fireworks Pie Fries

Summertime is about food on a stick. But in these awesome finger-food treats, the stick IS the food. Luscious, sprinkle-accented pies are great for a buffet and let everyone enjoy their own tiny slice of heaven.


6. Cilantro Grilled Corn

Cilantro Grilled Corn

If you’re into street-truck corn, you’ll recognize the familiar charred flavor that gives grilled corn its rock-solid hold on food-lovers’ hearts. Just the right blend of garlic, herbs and buttery yum.


7. Grilled Ribs with Cherry Cola Barbecue Sauce

Grilled Ribs with Cherry Cola Barbecue Sauce

Ask any pitmaster and they’ll all tell you the same thing: The secret to a great grill is in the sauce. We’re offering up a secret ingredient that makes all the difference, so you can prep these ribs ahead of time and be a hero in under 15 minutes.


8. Old West Grilled Bean and Burger Foil Packets

Old West Grilled Bean and Burger Foil Packets

Howdy, cowpoke. This here’s how to rustle up a mighty fine meal-in-a-packet. If any city slickers complain about a little gravy mess, oblige them by offering corn bread to sop up the delicious drippin’s.


9. Blackberry BBQ Sauce

Blackberry BBQ Sauce

Make it ahead of time, and let the sopping commence on the day of. Creating your own BBQ sauce is super simple when you use ketchup as a catch-all base. Adding blackberries with perfectly blended spices = to die for. Ten times over.


10. Seasoned Grilled New Potatoes

Seasoned Grilled New Potatoes

Whoever came up with foil packets for the grill is pretty much our most favorite person ever, except for whoever invented potatoes, and the genius who first added garlic and butter. The net-net: we salute all three in one recipe!


11. Red, White and Blue Shortcake Stars

Red, White and Blue Shortcake Stars

A sweet treat for a 4th breakfast or dessert under the stars, this recipe offers up super-simple shortcake dressed up with dried cherries, fresh blueberries and more.


12. Red, White and Blue Candy-Topped Brownies

Red, White and Blue Candy-Topped Brownies

Talk about flavor fireworks—and super easy. This recipe offers a genius shortcut to fast-tracking your party’s dessert onto the “done” list.


13. Bacon, Pineapple, Chicken Kabobs

Bacon, Pineapple, Chicken Kabobs

Toss tradition out the window and celebrate Independence Day inspired by our youngest state: Hawaii. Every bacon-wrapped chunk of these kabobs is a deliciously flavored sensation, and you’ll love having any leftovers for tossing into a salad. Who are we kidding? There will be no leftovers.


14. Watermelon Gin Cocktail

Watermelon Gin Cocktail

The lovely artisanal flavor of this watermelon cocktail comes from a sprig of tarragon, making your friends savor every delectable sip. And then demand seconds, of course.


15. Coconut Blue Hawaiian

Coconut Blue Hawaiian

Blender drinks turn up the heat under any party, and these slushy treats are among the best of them: pineapple and coconut flavors blended into red-and-blue delights. Aloha!


16. Blueberry Hard Lemonade

Blueberry Hard Lemonade

Guess what’s NOT hard? Making your own hard lemonade from scratch. Fresh lemon juice, smurshed (yes, that is a word) blueberries, and gin blend together for a grand old oh-say-can-you-see celebration.


17. Red, White and Blueberry Salad

Red, White and Blueberry Salad

Hey, you gotta toss a little healthy into the mix—but you can still make sure it’s a salute to the holiday. This salad adds red watermelon, white jicama and blueberries to keep the Fourth party fueled and fun.


18. Red, White and Blueberry Pasta Salad

Red, White and Blueberry Pasta Salad

A great solution as a light main entrée, a vegetarian option, or a side for grilled meats. Old Glory colors are mixed into a super-easy Suddenly Salad™—the best news is, you’ll be suddenly ready to feed the whole gang.


19. Star Brownies

Star Brownies

Brownies cut in the shape of a star, then jazzed up with frosting and star sprinkles. It’s the chocolatey treat that will send everyone’s happy factor into the wild blue yonder.


20. Boozy Watermelon Punch

Boozy Watermelon Punch 

And finally, the star of the show: a naturally sweet, perfectly punchy, serve-it-by-the-pitcher watermelon cocktail that will keep glasses raised (and the party roaring) well past the end of the fireworks. God. Bless. America.

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