Real barbecue, during which tough cuts of meat cooked long and slow until they fall into delicious tenderness, is a grand American tradition, but so too is the BBQ party, a gathering in a backyard or a park or a beach (or a parking lot or a rooftop!) where food is cooked outside, shared, and eaten in a most casual of fashions.
In recognition of this fine American practice, I've pulled together BBQ party recipes, menus, and ideas from around About.com to offer the best recipes for popular BBQ party items for you to create your own menu, from a simple affair of grilled burgers and hot dogs to a traditional clam bake. Let the fires begin!
The Menus | The Steaks | The Burgers | The Pork | The Dogs | The Chicken | The Kebabs | The Fish | The Shellfish | The Clam Bake | The Cole Slaw | The Potato Salad | The Salad | The Corn | The Side Dish | The Appetizer | The Dip | The Salsa | The Drink | The Dessert
These themed menus can do the planning for you or just provide inspiration or a jumping off point for your own creation:
- Santa Maria BBQ is a California tradition involving tri-tip steak, beans, salsa fresca, green salad, and garlic bread
- Korean Backyard BBQ Menu includes steak and chicken wings, as well as rice and cucumber soup
- Texas Barbecue involves smoked brisket, ribs, beans, and plenty of ice tea
- South American Grilling includes Patagonia-Style Tenderloin
- Whole Animal Roasting, cooking whole pigs or lambs, is a delicious tradition in many cultures
- Thai BBQ gets you sweet and spicy all at once
- Hawaiian Luaus are a fun theme for any summer gathering
- Kosher Grilling Menu for July 4 or anytime this summer
- Low-Carb Summer Holiday Menu centers on grilled meats
- Classic July 4 BBQ includes all the crowd favorites
No matter what kind of BBQ party you throw, be sure to check out these fabulous 10 Summer Party Tips (my tip is to buy way more ice than you ever think you could ever use). Keep things economical with these Tips for Summer Parties on a Budget.