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: 3.75 stars
1
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.

Easy Peach Cobbler Dump Cake

This peach dump cake serves up a fluffy, tender vanilla cake that's studded with juicy, sweet peaches. This peach cake is so simple it's sure to become a favorite summertime dessert. Using a box of organic cake mix makes the recipe prep even easier.

Japanese Cucumber Salad

Rating: 4.4 stars
5
This Japanese-inspired cool, crisp salad is as elegant and well balanced as it is simple.

Watermelon, Cucumber & Feta Salad

Rating: 4.8 stars
5
Here's a healthy salad recipe to make at the height of summer when watermelon and cucumbers are at their juiciest and most flavorful. Feta adds the perfect creamy, salty, tangy edge, and mint makes this salad taste even brighter. This is one easy side salad you'll want to serve at all your summer BBQs.

Lemon Squares

Rating: 2.5 stars
2
Lemon squares are so delicious, but classic lemon square recipes tip the scales with their calories and saturated fat. Our healthy lemon squares recipe shaves almost 200 calories and more than 5 grams of saturated fat per lemon square. For a variation, use lime juice in place of the lemon juice.

Mini Blueberry-Lemon Cheesecakes

This muffin-tin mini cheesecake recipe is an adorable, healthy dessert that's the perfect cute size. If making 2 dozen seems like overkill, the recipe can easily be cut in half. If you avoid gluten, use gluten-free graham crackers to make the crust.

Creamy Avocado & White Bean Wrap

Rating: 4.55 stars
34
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.

Chicken Caesar Pasta Salad

This scrumptious and healthy salad combines elements of Caesar salad, pasta salad and chicken salad for an easy weeknight dinner that comes together in less than 30 minutes (and most of the prep can be done ahead). Use your blender to whip together the tangy buttermilk-based dressing, which would also be great on a salmon or chickpea salad.

Cucumber & Avocado Salad

Rating: 5 stars
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.

No-Cook Black Bean Salad

Rating: 4.33 stars
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.

Watermelon & Goat Cheese Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette

Rating: 5 stars
2
In this watermelon and goat cheese salad, the contrasting flavors and textures of crisp, sweet melon and creamy, tangy goat cheese are magical partners. Top with sliced grilled chicken to make it a meal.
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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!

Black Bean Quesadillas

Rating: 4.64 stars
21

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.