Independence Day is a favorite holiday among Americans.
Yet coming up with a real food menu for this celebration can be challenging.
Don't you worry… we have you covered!
From traditional grilled foods to unconventional appetizers to red, white and blue desserts, this roundup of 98 real food, gluten-free fourth of July recipes will complete your menu in no time.
Celebrate this widely loved holiday with nourishing and patriotic foods. There's nothing better than gathering together with family and friends around the grill!
As always, I've included the diets these recipes are applicable for in parentheses. There's some overlap and a few recipes that are simply gluten-free but not necessarily dairy-free. These would not make the cut for Paleo or Whole30 but they're still made with wholesome, clean ingredients.
What are traditional 4th of July foods?
Time to fire up those grills! Undoubtedly, the ultimate 4th of July menu features grilled foods — everything from hot dogs and steaks to vegetables and tropical fruits.
If grilled foods aren't your thing, perhaps a hearty potato or pasta salad would satisfy your taste buds. These types of salads are filling and nutritious.
Additionally, favorite 4th of July appetizers include deviled eggs, a variety of sliders, the classic chips & dip, and a seasonal veggie tray.
Finally, what's a celebration without sweet treats? Get creative with colorful platters of red, white and blue desserts. Watermelon, strawberries, blueberries, or homemade ice cream are all great ideas.
If it's in season, it's fair game! July is a wonderful month for juicy and luscious fruits.
What are the best foods to grill on Independence Day?
You can't have a barbecue without the classic hot dog. It's no surprise that the National Hot Dog Month happens to be July according to the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council (source). Yes, that's a thing!
The good news for real foodies is that there are now many brands on the market that produce nitrate-free hot dogs. What once was a forbidden food can now be enjoyed thanks to brands such as Applegate, Coleman Naturals and Niman Ranch.
Other favorite barbecued meats are hamburgers, steaks, grilled chicken, shrimp kabobs, and various flavored sausages. Throw them on the grill, paired with a favorite side or salad, and you're good to go!
One barbecue staple particularly popular on the fourth of July is corn. For this reason, you'll often find crazy good deals on organic corn during this time of year.
Of course, let us not forget the other seasonal contenders… zucchini, bell peppers, and red onions, for instance!
Surprisingly, many fruits are also a popular treat to grill. Try grilled peaches, pineapple rings, and even grilled watermelon.
Healthy 4th Of July Grilled Meats
We'll kick off this roundup with the holiday staple: grilled meats!
This list of delicious recipes features all barbecued meats, including the all-American favorite hot dogs, hamburgers, and old-fashioned grilled chicken.
We especially love grilling sausages because there's something for everyone. From spicy to sweet, sausages make a great easy protein source.
- Greatest Grilled Chicken — Paleo, Whole30, Keto, GAPS
- Hawaiian Chicken Kebabs — Paleo, Whole30, GAPS
- Grilled Skirt Skate with Veggies — Paleo, Whole30, Keto, GAPS
- Mojo Salmon and Potatoes Kebabs — Paleo, Whole30
- Cajun Grilled Shrimp with Greens — Paleo, Whole30, GAPS
- Portobello Rosemary Garlic Burger Stacks — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb, GAPS
- Apricot Sesame Chicken Skewers with Grilled Asparagus — Paleo
- Grilled Salmon with Cauliflower Rice — Paleo, Whole30, GAPS
- Grilled Spicy Lime Pork Tenderloin — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb, GAPS
- Summer Shish Kabob Marinades — Paleo, GAPS, Grain-free
- Easy Grilled Shrimp With Mango Salsa — Gluten-free, omit quinoa for Paleo, GAPS, Whole30
Other Popular 4th Of July Meats
Image courtesy of Healthy Christian Home.
These meat recipes aren't grilled on the barbecue, but they're delicious nonetheless! Some are conveniently prepared in the Instant Pot, others in the oven.
The benefit to some of these (such as pulled pork and sloppy Joe's) is that they can be prepared ahead of time and simply re-heated before serving. Makes prepping for a large party much easier.
- Meatloaf Sliders — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb, GAPS
- Instant Pot Pulled Pork — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb
- Classic Burger – Oven-Baked — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb, GAPS
- Instant Pot Country Style Ribs — Paleo, Keto, use honey to make GAPS compliant
- Old Bay Peel-n-Eat Shrimp Cocktail Sauce — Paleo, Keto, GAPS
- Veggie Packed Sloppy Joes — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb
Grilled Fruit & Veggie Side Dishes For 4th Of July
Image courtesy of Tasting Page.
Have you ever skewered potatoes for the grill, or slapped on some watermelon slices? No? Then try something new with this category!
One of the best things about grilling is that you can cook other foods alongside your meat. Just be sure to keep a close eye as they may cook much more quickly!
Line up grilled chicken along with some vegetable kebabs for an easy 4th of July picnic. If seafood is your thing, grill some salmon and pair it with Mexican street corn for a fun twist.
- Grilled Potato Skewers with Ranch Dressing — Paleo, Whole30, Vegan, GAPS
- Grilled Pineapple — Paleo, Whole30, GAPS
- Mexican Street Corn — Gluten-free
- Grilled Peaches with Mascarpone — Primal, GAPS
- Grilled Watermelon Salmon Salad — Gluten-free, Primal, GAPS
- Vegetable Kebabs with Cilantro Chimichurri — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb, GAPS
- Grilled Romaine with Balsamic Vinaigrette — Paleo, omit corn to make GAPS compliant
Hearty 4th Of July Picnic Salads
Image courtesy of The Organic Kitchen.
This list showcases traditional salads that are hearty and nutritious.
Think pasta salad and summer squash gratin. Yes, the gratin isn't much of a salad but it still makes a great picnic food.
Why? Because it's filling, easy to prepare and delicious.
- Healthy Probiotic-Rich Potato Salad — Paleo, Whole30
- 10-Minute Spaghetti Squash Salad — Paleo, AIP, Whole30, Keto, GAPS
- Cauliflower “Potato” Salad — Paleo, Whole30, Keto, GAPS
- Healthy Pasta Salad with Salami & Artichoke Hearts — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb, GAPS
- Macaroni Salad — Gluten-free, Dairy-free
- Simple Potato and Asparagus Salad — Paleo, Whole30
- Summer Squash Gratin — Grain-Free, Primal
- Easy Traditional Overnight 7-Layer Salad — Keto, Primal, GAPS
- Cauliflower Mac and Cheese — Low Carb, Primal, GAPS
- Apple Chicken Salad — Paleo, Low Carb, GAPS
- Easiest Broccoli Salad — Paleo, GAPS
- Russian Probiotic Potato Salad — Paleo, Whole30
Refreshing & Easy 4th Of July Green Salads
Image courtesy of Calm Eats.
What's a picnic without one or more refreshing green salads?
Coleslaw and broccoli salad are always good choices because they generally stand up well to heat.
Fresh green salads tend to fare better when the dressing is kept separate and used only when plated. Keep that in mind when serving and arranging the salads on the picnic table.
- Arugula and Strawberry Salad with Cayenne Lemon Vinaigrette — Paleo, GAPS
- Creamy Curried Cranberry Coleslaw — Low Carb, Primal, GAPS
- Greek Tomato and Cucumber Salad — Low Carb, GAPS
- Tangy Red Cabbage Coleslaw — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb, GAPS
- Paleo Broccoli Salad — Paleo, Whole30, sub raisins for cranberries to be GAPS compliant
- Cabbage and Cucumber Salad — Paleo, Whole30, Keto, GAPS
- Avocado Cabbage Slaw — Paleo, Whole30, Keto, GAPS
- Zesty Low-Carb Jalapeño Cabbage Coleslaw — Paleo, Whole30, Keto, Whole30, THM:S
Easy 4th Of July Appetizers
Image courtesy of Prepare & Nourish.
These delicious appetizers make great finger foods the entire crowd can enjoy! Deviled eggs are a typical favorite but anything with a kick such as the Jalapeño Poppers is favored too.
- Bacon Cheddar Jalapeño Cornbread — Gluten-free
- Antipasto Caprese Bites — Paleo, Whole30, Keto, GAPS
- Spicy Bacon Jalapeño Deviled Eggs — Paleo, Whole30, Keto, GAPS
- Bacon Avocado Jalapeño Poppers — Keto, GAPS
- Bacon Wrapped Asparagus — Paleo, Whole30, Keto, GAPS
- Plantain Cornbread — Paleo, GAPS
- Cilantro Lime Deviled Eggs — Paleo, Whole30, Keto, GAPS
- Greek Salad Bites — Low Carb, Primal, GAPS
- “Dorito” Popcorn — Dairy-free, Gluten-free, Vegan
- Avocado Deviled Eggs — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb, GAPS
- Fermented Jalapeño Deviled Eggs — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb, GAPS
The Best Chips & Dip For 4th Of July
Image courtesy of A Girl Worth Saving.
Set out a bowl of homemade tortilla chips and fermented pico de gallo and you'll know where everyone will congregate.
This list, although short, has some of the best dips. All healthy and incredibly flavorful.
- Easy Instant Pot Garlic Hummus — Gluten-free, Dairy-free
- Corn and Black Bean Dip — Gluten-free, Dairy-free
- Purple Tomatillo Salsa — Paleo, Whole30, GAPS
- Bean-Free 7-Layer Dip — Paleo, GAPS
- Chunky Guacamole with Homemade Tortilla Chips — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb, GAPS
- Strawberry Salsa — Paleo, Low Carb, GAPS
- Lacto-Fermented Tomato Salsa — Paleo, Whole30, Low Carb, GAPS
- Fermented Tex-Mex Salsa — Paleo, Whole30
Refreshing Drinks For 4th Of July
Image courtesy of Desserts For Two.
Wash down that grass-fed steak with something restorative and flavorful!
Some of these invigorating drinks are fermented and therefore contain a bit of probiotic action. This is great for those who are doing a healing diet such as GAPS!
Others are a little less involved with just two ingredients. Yet all are cooling on a hot summer's day!
- 5-Minute Probiotic Mixed Berry Switchel — Paleo, GAPS, AIP
- Cranberry Apple Switchel — Paleo, GAPS
- Beet & Citrus Sangria Mocktail — Paleo, GAPS
- Cranberry Pomegranate Citrus Mocktail — Paleo, Vegan, GAPS
- Strawberry Ginger Switchel — Paleo, GAPS
- 2-Ingredient Hibiscus Punch — Paleo, Low Carb, GAPS
- Lacto-Fermented Strawberry Lemonade — Paleo, GAPS
- Herbal Tea – Homemade Kool-Aid Alternative — Paleo, Low Carb, GAPS
- Fruity Coconut Water Slushies — Paleo, GAPS
Healthy Sweets For 4th Of July
Image courtesy of Low Carb Yum.
Most sweets, thanks to the natural red, white and blue colors of seasonal fruits, are in the category just below this one.
However, a few made the cut for favorite 4th of July desserts that don't sport the patriotic colors.
Some of these recipes have been modified to accommodate Paleo and Whole30 folks. However, if you're not dairy-free, use regular cream or milk of choice.
- 3-Ingredient Mixed Berry Kefir Popsicles (probiotic & kid-friendly!) — GAPS, use coconut yogurt or kefir for Paleo and Whole30
- Homemade Chocolate Magic Shell — Paleo, Low Carb, GAPS
- Mixed Berry Crumble Pots — Low Carb, Keto, GAPS
- No-Bake Cheesecake — Low Carb, Keto, use honey to make GAPS compliant
- Baked Oatmeal Cake with Berries — Gluten-Free, Vegan, Sugar-free
- Homemade Popsicles with Protein & Other Nutrients — Paleo, GAPS
- Naturally Sweetened Real Food S'Mores Bars — Paleo
- The Best Chocolate Chip Cookies — Paleo
- Blueberry Compote Ice Cream — use honey to make GAPS compliant
- Fudge Popsicles — Paleo, Primal, use honey to make GAPS compliant
Red, White & Blue Recipes
Image courtesy of Savoring Today.
Finally, the cream of the crop. The recipes that highlight this wonderful American holiday.
For your convenience, I kept these recipes separate no matter what food category they belonged to. You'll find red, white & blue appetizers as well as other patriotically colored foods.
All these recipes are free from food coloring and natural flavors. Instead, the natural hues of fruits and vegetables become the star of these dishes. Therefore, you'll find strawberries or grape tomatoes for the red, blueberries or purple potatoes for the blue, and mozzarella balls for the white.
- Watermelon Salad with Feta Cheese — Low Carb, GAPS
- Watermelon Blueberry Salad — GAPS
- Red, White & Blue Potato Salad — Paleo, Whole30
- Red, White & Blue Berries and Cream — Paleo, Low Carb, GAPS
- Real Food Patriotic “Jello” Cake — Paleo, AIP, GAPS, Low Carb, Dairy-free
- Paleo Flag Fruit Tart — Paleo, Vegan
- Healthy Berry Breakfast Parfait — Paleo, Low Carb, GAPS
- Red, White and Blueberry Fruit Tart — Gluten-free, Refined Sugar-free
- Instant Pot Easy Strawberry Compote— Paleo, Low Carb, GAPS
- Paleo American Flag Pie — Grain-free, Refined Sugar-Free, Dairy-free
- Red, White & Blue Patriotic Popsicles — Low Carb, GAPS
- Mascarpone Mousse and Berries — Low Carb, Keto
- Berry Patriotic Chia Seed Pudding — Paleo, Low Carb, GAPS
- Berries & Marshmallow Skewers — Paleo, GAPS
- Frozen Watermelon Pops — Paleo, Whole30, GAPS
- Layered Watermelon Cake with Coconut Cream Frosting — Paleo, GAPS
Happy Independence Day! What are your favorite fourth of July recipes for a crowd? Do you grill or prefer to cook indoors instead?
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