4th of July Recipes

Find healthy, delicious 4th of July recipes for parties and picnic including appetizers, salads and drink recipes. Healthier recipes, from the food and nutrition experts at EatingWell.

Staff Picks

EatingWell Flag Cake

Rating: Unrated
3
Though this stunning red, white and blue American flag cake screams “Fourth of July Cake,” it's such a good dessert you'll want to make it for Memorial Day and other summer holidays too. We made this flag cake recipe healthy, with less saturated fat and calories than traditional versions, by replacing some butter in the yellow sheet cake with oil. Plus, for the cream cheese frosting, we replaced some of the cream cheese and butter with low-fat Greek yogurt.

Mixed Berry Hand Pies

What better way to take advantage of summer's bounty of berries than to enclose a mixture of berries in flaky pastry and bake up these delicious turnovers--the perfect handheld dessert for picnics and backyard parties. A dusting of sugar on top of the hand pies creates a crispy crust and eliminates the need for frying.

Japanese Cucumber Salad

Rating: Unrated
20
This Japanese-inspired cool, crisp salad is as elegant and well balanced as it is simple.

Italian Vegetable Hoagies

Rating: Unrated
25
This delightfully easy, and somewhat messy, sandwich packs a punch with sweet balsamic vinegar, artichoke hearts, red onion, provolone cheese and zesty pepperoncini. We love it for dinner as well as lunch. If you're packing the hoagies to take along, keep the ingredients separate and assemble right before eating to avoid soggy bread. Serve with tomato and cucumber salad.

No-Cook Black Bean Salad

Rating: Unrated
3
A classic black bean salad is a must for picnics and potlucks. This vegan version gets its creaminess from blended avocado. Any mix of salad greens will work well, but try arugula if you want to give this hearty salad a peppery kick.

Cucumber & Avocado Salad

Rating: Unrated
1
This healthy cucumber-avocado salad takes just five minutes to prep. Lime juice and fresh herbs boost the bright flavors in this crunchy and creamy salad that's a perfect side dish for grilled chicken, fish or steak. This recipe calls for an English cucumber, which doesn't have to be peeled, but regular cucumbers work well too--just peel them before slicing.

Loaded Garden Pizz'alad

Rating: Unrated
1
Here a garden salad packed with lettuce, bell pepper and avocado rests atop a provolone cheese pizza. And it's all drizzled with tangy homemade ranch dressing. We recommend a knife, fork and plenty of napkins to dig into this pizz'alad! Using bread flour gives the pizza crust a crisp and sturdy structure, but all-purpose flour works well in its place. For a gluten-free pizza crust variation, see Tips.

Creamy Spinach Dip

Rating: Unrated
6
Try this light spinach dip made healthier with reduced-fat cream cheese, nonfat yogurt and low-fat cottage cheese instead of full-fat cheese, mayonnaise and sour cream. It will save you a whopping 84 calories and 10 grams of fat per serving when compared to traditional versions. Serve it with pita chips and crunchy vegetables or spread it on a sandwich.

Black Bean Quesadillas

Rating: Unrated
64
In a hurry? These satisfying quesadillas take just 15 minutes to make. We like them with black beans, but pinto beans work well too. If you like a little heat, be sure to use pepper Jack cheese in the filling. Serve with: A little sour cream and a mixed green salad.

Creamy Avocado & White Bean Wrap

Rating: Unrated
89
White beans mashed with ripe avocado and blended with sharp Cheddar and onion makes an incredibly rich, flavorful filling for this wrap. The tangy, spicy slaw adds crunch. A pinch (or more) of ground chipotle pepper and an extra dash of cider vinegar can be used in place of the canned chipotles in adobo sauce. Wrap these up to take as a healthy and portable lunch for work.

Crab Roll

Rating: Unrated
10
This healthier take on a lobster roll uses crab because it's usually easier (and less expensive) to buy. But by all means use lobster if you prefer. Serve with coleslaw and an ice-cold beer.

Quick Pickled Beets

Rating: Unrated
4
For these easy pickled beets, you only need to let them marinate in the pickling mixture for about 30 minutes to get great flavor. Marinating them longer just enhances the taste. Try them in place of cucumber pickles as a condiment or as a vegetable side dish for roasted chicken or beef.

Inspiration and Ideas

No-Bake Berry Flag Cake

This pretty and patriotic treat takes just 20 minutes to prepare. Something else to celebrate for the 4th of July!

Classic Deviled Eggs

Is it even really a party without deviled eggs?

Creamy Cucumber, Radish & Tomato Chopped Salad

Rating: Unrated
4

A mix of cool, crunchy vegetables gives this healthy salad satisfying bite for a perfect potluck side.