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30 Essential Fourth of July Side Dishes

Every hero needs a sidekick. That's why we've rounded up all of the essential sides for your Fourth of July picnic. These salads, slaws, veggies and more complement whatever star you throw on the grill.

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Watermelon Feta Flag SaladTaste of Home

Watermelon Feta Flag Salad

Our family celebrates the Fourth of July with a watermelon salad that resembles the flag. Here’s an all-American centerpiece that’s truly red, white and blue. —Jan Whitworth, Roebuck, South Carolina

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Grilled Mushroom KabobsTaste of Home

Grilled Mushroom Kabobs

Earthy grilled mushrooms taste like flame-kissed goodness. The balsamic vinegar adds just enough tanginess to the savory side. —Melissa Hoddinott, Sherwood Park, Alberta

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Jalapeno Popper Street Corn	Taste of Home

Jalapeno Popper Street Corn

One of the best things about summer is fresh sweet corn, and this recipe is a definite standout. We love its creamy dressing, crunchy panko coating and spicy jalapeno kick. If you're really feeling wild, sprinkle these with a bit of cooked and crumbled bacon! —Crystal Schlueter, Northglenn, Colorado

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Patriotic Gelatin SaladTaste of Home

Patriotic Gelatin Salad

Almost as spectacular as the fireworks, this lovely salad makes quite a "bang" at our July Fourth meal. It's exciting to serve, and our guests loved the cool fruity and creamy layers. This salad really added to my patriotic theme. —Sue Gronholz, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin

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Mom's Tangy Potato SaladTaste of Home

Mom's Tangy Potato Salad

This chunky potato salad is a great dish for a family picnic or on a night when you're grilling out. The homemade dressing makes it extra delicious. —Michelle Gurnsey, Lincoln, Nebraska

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Caprese Salad KabobsTaste of Home

Caprese Salad Kabobs

Trade in the usual veggie platter for these fun kabobs. In addition to preparing these for get-togethers, I often make these as snacks for my family. And because assembly is so easy, the kids often ask to help. —Christine Mitchell, Glendora, California

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Creamy ColeslawTaste of Home

Creamy Coleslaw

For me, this is the best coleslaw recipe because a package of shredded cabbage and carrots really cuts down on prep time. This creamy coleslaw recipe is great for potlucks or to serve to your family on a busy weeknight. —Renee Endress, Galva, Illinois

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Colorful Spiral Pasta SaladTaste of Home

Colorful Spiral Pasta Salad

Tackle gatherings to go with a bright pasta salad. This tricolor toss-up with broccoli, tomatoes, olives and a hardworking dressing is the easiest one you could take. —Amanda Cable, Boxford, Massachusetts

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Nutty Broccoli SlawTaste of Home

Nutty Broccoli Slaw

My daughter gave me the recipe for this delightful salad. The sweet dressing nicely coats a crisp blend of broccoli slaw mix, onions, almonds and sunflower kernels. Crushed ramen noodles provide even more crunch. It's a smash hit wherever I take it. —Dora Mae Clapsaddle, Kensington, Ohio

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Summer Buzz Fruit SaladTaste of Home

Summer Buzz Fruit Salad

For picnics, cookouts and showers, we make a sweet salad of watermelon, cherries, blueberries and microgreens. No matter where I take it, it always delivers on the wow factor. —Kaliska Russell, Talkeetna, Alaska

 

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Barley Corn SaladTaste of Home

Barley Corn Salad

A terrific alternative to pasta salad, this colorful side dish adds refreshing herb flavor to corn, barley, and red and green peppers. Bring it to your next get-together and see how fast it disappears! —Mary Ann Kieffer of Lawrence, Kansas

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Slow-Cooker BBQ Baked BeansTaste of Home

Slow-Cooker BBQ Baked Beans

I was under doctor’s orders to reduce the amount sodium I was eating, but I just couldn't part with some of my favorite foods. After many experiments I came up with this potluck favorite—now everyone's happy! —Sherrel Hendrix, Arkadelphia, Arkansas

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Spring Pea & Radish SaladTaste of Home

Spring Pea & Radish Salad

Winters can be very long here in New Hampshire. I always look forward to the first veggies of spring and making some lighter dishes like this fresh salad. —Jolene Martinelli, Derry, New Hampshire

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Patriotic Potatoes with Mustard SauceTaste of Home

Patriotic Potatoes with Mustard Sauce

Show your true spirit with a bowl of red, white and blue potatoes dressed with bacon and sour cream. They’re tops in my hit parade of patriotic dishes. —Julie Murphy, Peachtree City, Georgia

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Bow Tie & Spinach SaladTaste of Home

Bow Tie & Spinach Salad

With pasta salad, it’s easy to change up ingredients. We like to add grilled chicken and pine nuts, and sometimes we substitute black beans for the garbanzo beans. —Julie Kirkpatrick, Billings, Montana

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Fresh Heirloom Tomato SaladTaste of Home

Fresh Heirloom Tomato Salad

This tomato salad is a summertime must. The standout dressing takes these tasty ingredients to a brand-new level. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen

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Slow-Cooker Sriracha CornTaste of Home

Slow-Cooker Sriracha Corn

A restaurant here advertised Sriracha corn on the cob, but I knew I could make my own. The golden ears cooked up a little sweet, a little smoky and a little hot—perfect if you ask my three teenage boys! —Julie Peterson, Crofton, Maryland

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Orzo Vegetable SaladTaste of Home

Orzo Vegetable Salad

Heading to a potluck and need something to share? Tangy lemon dressing over cool orzo and vegetables is everything you want in a light side dish. —Terri Crandall, Gardnerville, Nevada

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Juicy Watermelon SaladTaste of Home

Juicy Watermelon Salad

This fruit salad has such a surprising yet fabulous mix of flavors that friends often ask for the recipe. Combine seedless watermelon varieties in yellow, red and pink for a colorful twist. —Heidi Haight, Macomb, Michigan

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Loaded Potato SaladTaste of Home

Loaded Potato Salad

Get a load of this: sour cream, bacon, shredded cheddar, green onions and more come together to give you all the richness of restaurant potato skins at your next picnic. —Monique Boulanger, Greenwood, Nova Scotia

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Basil Grilled Corn on the CobTaste of Home

Basil Grilled Corn on the Cob

Corn on the cob is a comforting and cherished Midwest dish. It's amazing when grilled, and my recipe adds a few unexpected ingredients to make it taste even more like summertime. —Caitlin Dawson, Monroe, Ohio

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Bacon Macaroni SaladTaste of Home

Bacon Macaroni Salad

This pleasing pasta salad is like eating a BLT in a bowl. Filled with crispy bacon, chopped tomato, celery and green onion, the sensational salad is coated with a tangy mayonnaise and vinegar dressing. It’s a real crowd-pleaser! —Norene Wright, Manilla, Indiana

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Jen's Baked BeansTaste of Home

Jen's Baked Beans

My daughters wanted baked beans, so I gave homemade ones a shot. With mustard, molasses and a dash of heat, I made these beans absolutely delicious. —Jennifer Heasley, York, Pennsylvania

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Broccoli SlawTaste of Home

Broccoli Slaw

Here's my favorite twist on broccoli salad. It's so easy to make and has an irresistible tangy crunch. —Konny Thomas, Citrus Heights, California

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Turkey and Pasta Ranch SaladTaste of Home

Turkey and Pasta Ranch Salad

This easy pasta salad is loaded with fresh veggies, and the classic ranch dressing makes it appealing to kids. —Julie Peterson, Crofton, Maryland

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Fruit Kabobs with Cream Cheese DipTaste of Home

Fruit Kabobs with Cream Cheese Dip

These fruity kabobs are so refreshing on a warm day. They're also a quick and easy meal for get-togethers. —Kathleen Hedger, Godfrey, Illinois

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Red, White & Blue Potato SaladTaste of Home

Red, White & Blue Potato Salad

Tossing the cooked potatoes with stock and wine right after you drain them infuses them with flavor. The liquid absorbs like magic. —George Levinthal, Goleta, California

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Apple Walnut SlawTaste of Home

Apple Walnut Slaw

A co-worker shared this slaw recipe with me. Now it's a favorite at my house, too. Apples, walnuts and raisins are a fun way to dress up coleslaw. —Joan Hallford, North Richland Hills, Texas

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Greek Couscous SaladTaste of Home

Greek Couscous Salad

Bright flavors and crisp raw veggies make a satisfying salad that's hearty enough to be a full meal. —Teri Rasey, Cadillac, Michigan

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Contest-Winning Roasted Red Potato SaladTaste of Home

Contest-Winning Roasted Red Potato Salad

“My love for Southwestern flavors led me to create this party-perfect dish. I’ve been experimenting with smoked paprika for a while and discovered that it’s an ideal addition to this recipe.”—Kelly Faust, Louisville, Kentucky

Katie Bandurski
Katie is an Associate Editor for Taste of Home, specializing in writing and email newsletters. When she’s out of the office, you’ll find her exploring Wisconsin, trying out new vegetarian recipes and combing through antique shops.

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