The 4th of July is the country’s most popular grilling day, so it’s likely that you’ll either be throwing a barbecue or going to a friend’s barbecue this weekend.  If you’re looking for something beyond burgers and hot dogs, consider putting some of these on the grill:


Trader Joe’s has pre-made pizza dough for just over $1 a bag.  Let everyone assemble their own personal-size pizzas and toss them on the grill.  They cook up in just a couple of minutes, and you won’t believe how good the dough tastes when it’s grilled.


Use a grilling basket, or thread veggies on skewers.  Lightly toss the vegetables with olive oil, salt, and dried herbs.  A few minutes on a hot grill, and these veggies are good to go.


Marinate shrimp in olive oil, lemon, and garlic.  Cook for 2-3 minutes in a grilling basket or on skewers.  Sprinkle on heaps of fresh cilantro and serve.  Grilled shrimp is a terrific appetizer or main course.


Grilled fruit is a fabulous dessert for a barbecue.  The intense heat caramelizes the natural sugars in the fruit, intensifying the sweetness.  Try grilling pineapple slices, halved peaches, or even whole strawberries!  Serve on their own, or with vanilla ice cream

Quick to Go

Or if you’re just looking for something quick to pick up and contribute to a barbecue, consider picking up mini hamburger buns and mini hamburger patties (8 buns and 8 patties – why can’t other brands match the number of buns to patties?), any of a long list of ready-made hummus containers, or even a fresh basil plant to give the host (just $2.99 for a large, fresh plant!).