Dinner Party Menu:
Right here, you'll find some great ideas and recipes for a dinner party menu on the grill. But you'll find lots more great recipes and ideas on some of my other pages, including:
- Recipes for a Summer Dinner Party
- Summer Party Food and Theme Ideas
- Cold Appetizer Recipes
- Barbeque Recipe Ideas
- Picnic Food and Recipes
My Summer Grilling Dinner Party Menu
Recipe: Create Your Own Gourmet Burgers on the Grill
As far as backyard grilling food goes, burgers are the easiest to adapt to any taste. The basic burger recipe below is simple and adaptable. But you can really make it your own by adding a ton of different mix-ins and toppings.
Some fun combination and ideas for building your own gourmet burgers for a dinner party menu on the grill are:
- Lamb Burgers with Cumin, Coriander, Mint, and Tzatziki
- Beef Burgers with Brie, Prosciutto, and Sweet Tomato Chutney
- Spicy Pork Burgers with Chorizo, Aioli, and Manchego Cheese
- Lamb Burgers with Feta, Sundried Tomatoes, and Cucumbers
- Beef Burgers with Camembert, Herbs, and Roasted Apple Slices
- Turkey Burgers with Spinach, Sesame Oil, Ginger, and Soy
Basic recipe (below) makes 4 burgers.
1 pound 80% lean ground beef (or lamb, turkey, or pork)
1/4 C. stone ground mustard (or combination of mix-ins of your choice)
2 tbsp. minced white onion
3/4 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper
4 Kaiser rolls
Instructions: 1. Simply blend all the ingredients (except the rolls) together, including up to three mix-ins.
2. Split it out evenly to make 4 patties.
3. Grill over a medium heat until burgers reach 160 degrees F (or cook until well done for turkey bugers). Serve with lettuce, tomato and onion.
Note: Have some vegetarians sampling your dinner party menu? Grill up some gourmet veggie burgers!
Beer Can Chicken on the Grill Recipe
If you're going to be spending the day in the backyard, grilling food for your guests, the burger recipe above might be enough on its own. But it's also good to give people a choice! Especially when that second choice is as easy as this beer can chicken recipe on the grill.
Beer can chicken has become a really popular item on dinner party menus for the grill... it's definitely a good option if you want an additional menu item without a lot of fuss. It comes together in no time at all. Plus, it's flavorful, moist, and a lot of fun to make.
This recipe has more flavor if you marinate the chicken in your dry rub overnight. But it's good even if you can't!
Recipe makes 1 chicken.
1 good quality canned beer
1 4-5 lb. chicken, whole
Your favorite BBQ Dry Rub Recipe
Instructions: 1. Rinse the chicken and pat it dry inside and out.
2. Season it liberally inside and out with your favorite barbecue rub. If you've got time, cover it loosely and let it sit in the fridge overnight.
3. Preheat the grill.
4. Open the beer and drain half (pour it in a glass enjoy!).
5. Place the chicken with its cavity over the beer can and set it on your grill (using the legs and the beer can to balance it).
6. Put the bird in an area where it receives indirect heat for 80 minutes or until the meat reaches 165 degrees.
Sweet Hoisin Corn on the Cob Recipe
This fun backyard grilling food idea uses Hoisin sauce to give your corn a sweet Asian flair. Totally delicious! Works especially well if you've chosen Asian flavors, such as sesame, ginger, and soy, for your gourmet burgers.
Recipe serves 6.
5 tbsp. butter, softened
1 tbsp. Hoisin sauce
2 tsp. chili oil
1 tsp. parsley
6 ears of corn
Instructions: 1. You can cook your corn one of two ways. The first way is to husk the corn completely, then put the ears on the grill over a medium heat. Brush the softened butter with the herbs over the corn while it cooks.
2. Alternatively, open up the corn husk but leave it attached to the ear. Coat the ear with the softened butter and herbs. Now, pull the husk back up over the ear of corn to "steam" it on the grill.
3. Use a piece of cooking string to hold it together if need be. Turn the ear, giving it a spray with water on each turn so the husk doesn't burn (and in turn leave a burnt flavor in your corn).
4. With either method, the corn should be done in about 15 minutes. Remember to let the husk cool for about five minutes to avoid getting burnt. One of my favorite recipe ideas for a dinner party menu on the grill.
Marinated Grilled Vegetable Skewers Recipe
A bowl filled to overflowing with freshly roasted vegetables is always a delight. Want to make your this backyard grilling food idea SUPER easy? Place your sliced vegetables in a grilling basket and coat lightly with olive oil and whatever spices you like.
But this marinated version on skewers is so wonderful, and goes beautifully with the corn recipe on this page.
Makes 4 large skewers.
1/2 C. thickly sliced zucchini
1/2 C. chunked red bell pepper
1/2 C. chunked yellow bell pepper
1/2 C. thickly sliced yellow squash
1/2 C. wedged red onion
16 fresh mushrooms
16 large cherry tomatoes
1/2 C. olive oil
1/3 C. soy sauce
1/3 C. lemon juice
2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tbsp. honey
2 tsp. dried oregano
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper (optional-- only if you like heat)
Instructions: 1. Place all your veggies in a large mixing bowl or resealable plastic bag.
2. In a separate small bowl, combine the marinade ingredients.
3. Pour over veggies and marinate at least 30 minutes, up to 2 hours.
4. Soak skewers one hour in water.
5. Preheat the grill to medium heat.
6. Place your veggies on the skewers, dividing them evenly. Reserve the marinade.
7. Grill veggie skewers directly on oiled grill rack for about 15 minutes, till crisp-tender. Brush occasionally with reserved marinade.
Cold Marinated Veggie Variation: Don't have time or space to make your veggies on the grill? Turn your veggies into a cold salad, instead.
If you know you're tight on time, this is a good element of your dinner party menu for the grill to make ahead of time. In this case, you can take carrot slices, chopped Brussels sprouts, broccoli, asparagus, and cauliflower and turn them into a cold salad by simply adding some chunks of provolone, mozzarella, salami, ham, and a little vinaigrette fast, easy and very appealing!
Strawberry Watermelon Summer LemonadeWhat would your summer dinner party menu for the grill be without some great drinks to go along with it? I love this Strawberry Watermelon Lemonade recipe. It's sweet, it's tangy, kids love it... and if adults are looking an alcoholic drink to sip while you're in the backyard grilling food, it also tastes great with a splash of vodka or whiskey.
But you'll also want to provide a good variety, so look for some more cold drink options for your guests. Think fruity ice tea, iced coffee, frozen smoothies, snow cone cocktails and lots and lots of cold beer and soda on ice!
Dessert: Strawberry Cheesecake TrifleThis trifle is one of the easiest summer dessert recipes you'll ever put together. The ingredients are all simple to find, and you don't have to make anything homemade if you don't want to (though you certainly can if you like). But it's rich, creamy, tangy, fresh, and totally delicious.
This is also a convenient recipe to add to your dinner party menu for the grill, because it can also be made ahead of time. That way, you don't have to worry about whipping up dessert while your guests are waiting.
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