A delicious summer barbecue needs these key ingredients

Summer Barbecue, photo by Cristine Struble
Summer Barbecue, photo by Cristine Struble /

Ready for a delicious summer barbecue, don’t forget these key ingredients.

With the grill ready and the refrigerator full, a delicious summer barbecue is on the menu. Although everyone has a favorite recipe, dish or treat, a few key ingredients can make this food feast the ultimate experience. Are you ready to get grilling?

When it comes to planning a delicious summer barbecue, there are generally six key areas, snacks, main dish, side dish, dessert and after dinner. By breaking the barbecue into these parts, any event, both big and small, can be easily manageable.


First, snacks are always necessary. No one wants people standing around the grill or table wondering when dinner will be served.

Potato chips are always a great option to have at the barbecue. Whether you like a plain Lay’s or prefer the spicy Krakatoa Chips, it’s always good to have chips around. Plus, any leftovers can be enjoined with the meal.

Other snack options that people enjoy are guacamole, salsa and even some hummus. And, don’t forget that cheese plate, although some people might make a meal out of that cheese plate.

Main dish

While some people might like a smorgasbord of barbecue options, it can be better to choose just one main dish. Why try to make ribs, chicken and burgers? Since these three dishes cook differently, it means spending too long in front of the grill. If anyone has learned anything from Top Chef, the duo plate can have you packing your knives.

If you are just getting into grilling, start with baby steps. Watch some Food Network shows, read some cookbooks or even watch YouTube. Just like any skill, learning the craft will make you a better griller.

One good piece of advice, start simple. A beer can chicken is easy and always delivers big flavors. Plus, you get to drink part of the beer before cooking the chicken. Some people consider that a win.

Lastly, you do not have to cook everything yourself. Yes, ordering some ribs from Sonny’s BBQ is ok. Not everyone has the ability to cook ribs low and slow for hours.

Side dishes

Just like Thanksgiving, side dishes are just as important as the main dish. Whether it is potato salad, baked beans or grilled corn, there are many options for the table.

When it is comes to side dishes, semi-homemade ideas can make your life easier. Yes, why not add some spices to those canned beans for your own flavor. Even just a touch a paprika to a store bought potato salad can make a difference.


Every meal needs a sweet ending. From s’mores to ice cream, there are a variety of sweet treats to be enjoyed.

When it come to dessert, don’t stress. The intricate, plated desserts are meant for a different occasion. Put out a cooler of Drumsticks or a plate of cookies and sit back and relax.

After dinner

After a big, delicious summer barbecue, some people might have eaten too much food. It can be hard to pass on the second rack of ribs or the extra scoop of potato salad. Unfortunately, heartburn can happen.

From your family dinner to a hosted summer barbecue, considering having some heartburn relief option in the house. Personally, the Alka-Seltzer Heartburn Relief Gum is close to the table in my house.

While many people grab gum after a meal, this Alka-Seltzer Heartburn Relief Gum also helps to relieve that heartburn feeling. It is the best of both worlds, fresh breath and a calm tummy.

It is time to light up the grill and enjoy a delicious summer barbecue. Whether you serve an old favorite or try something new, the food and fun will be memorable.

Related Story. Smart grilling tips to keep your summer barbecue safe. light

What is your favorite food at a summer barbecue? Are you excited to grill this summer?