Award Worthy Side Dishes for a Labor Day BBQ
Labor Day signals the end of the summer season and is celebrated with friends and family. Most people enjoy a BBQ and drinks together as they share vacation stories or chat about life. Nothing brings people together like good food and cold drinks, right? Whether you are hosting a gathering or attending, you can’t show up empty-handed - and your sides should be so good, everyone asks for your recipes!
If you are sporting a pregnant belly, you may be craving something specific, so be sure to bring a dish that you will love! If toddlers will be at the party, consider slicing up some fruit, bringing frozen peas, or making a baked mac and cheese without the fancy cheeses and spices.
These side dish recipes are hard to choose from, and all may become staples in your kitchen.
Labor Day Side Dishes
The Salty Side Dish has a cowboy caviar that can be eaten as a meal within itself. Just grab a spoon and go to town! You can dip approximately 1,000 chips in this, or top your BBQ meat with it. Turn the leftover meat into tacos, nachos, burritos, or shredded over diced potato hash - all topped with the cowboy caviar. Seriously, make extra and portion it for the week. You won’t be sorry.
Her recipe makes 6 servings (Tripling it is recommended, of course).
- 1 can, 15 oz, black beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 can, 15 oz, pinto beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 cup corn (frozen or canned is fine)
- 1/2 cup chopped tomato
- 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
- 1/3 cup diced orange peppers
- 1/3 cup diced red peppers
- 1/3 cup diced yellow pepper
- 1/3 cup diced red onions
- 1 jalapeño, seeded and diced
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
- juice of 1 lime
From Valerie’s Kitchen has an orzo salad that will fit perfectly with your BBQ. It’s light and addicting - it must be the combination of the roasted pine nuts, feta cheese, and orzo. (Although, those roasted red peppers seal the deal.) You are making a homemade lemon honey vinaigrette (drinkable, basically) and tossing it all together. There won’t be any leftovers with this side dish.
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons honey
- salt and pepper
- 2 cups orzo pasta
- 6 cups chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 cup roasted red peppers, blotted dry and chopped
- 1 cup coarsely chopped baby spinach
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
- 3 tablespoons thinly sliced green onions
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 cup crumbled feta cheese
- 1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted
Tastes Better From Scratch prepares a simple broccoli salad that will have you begging for more. You can whip it up at the last minute, which is always a great side dish option. You’ll need to chop a bit, and cook your broccoli and bacon, but that’s as hard as this recipe gets.
- 2 heads fresh broccoli
- 1 cup mayonnaise or plain Greek yogurt
- 2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
- 8 slices bacon
- 1/4 cup red onion
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries (or raisins)
- 1/2 cup almonds
You can swap the almonds out for sunflower seeds, pine nuts, or pecans. Add small cubes of cheese, use raisins or other dried fruit, and use any type of onion you like! (Also, more bacon is always okay.)
Basil and Bubbly has the greatest Mac & Cheese for your BBQ. It’s claimed to be the ‘perfect southern baked’ version of the dish! It’s basically a cheese heaven on your fork. If any leftovers make it, go ahead and just add your BBQ meat right into the mac & cheese for lunch the next day. In less than an hour, you’ll have a dish people will be begging to know how to cook. You’ll want to double the recipe though, because you won’t be able to serve the first - half-eaten - version you bake.
- 16 ounces macaroni
- 1/3 cup butter
- 1/3 cup flour
- 1/2 tsp white pepper
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
- 3 1/2 cups 2% milk
- 8 ounces medium cheddar cheese shredded
- 8 ounces extra sharp cheddar cheese shredded