Memorial weekend is almost here!

With just a few days remaining before our long weekend arrives, we’ve started to look ahead and make plans. Some of us plan to make special weekend trips to the city, country, or beach. Others want a relaxing staycation at home. Many use this extra special weekend as an opportunity to try new things, including new foods, restaurants, and experiences. And most of us in the United States use it as a time to reconnect with family and friends.

One of the most traditional ways our freedom is celebrated on this day is to have a cookout. With grills hot and ready, it is the perfect opportunity to try new recipes, grill farm-fresh ingredients, and talk over the many things our freedoms allow us to enjoy- recent games, entertainment, shopping, and food.

As we go about this day, however, there is a somberness that is often felt. Brave men and women of all ages, races, and creeds have sacrificed tremendously to allow us the freedom to do the things we love to do so much on this weekend – travel, explore, spend time with loved ones. They have made every bite of food we eat and enjoy, every friendly debate, and family feud possible. So, for those who have lost loved ones defending our country and our freedom, we send a heartfelt “thank you” and know that you’re in our thoughts on this day.

In honor of tradition and exploration, here are a few salads, sides, and dessert recipes we thought you might like to try this Memorial weekend. If there are any recipes that you would like us to add to this list, please send them to us! We’d be happy to add them or write a second part to this post. Just let us know what you would like to see added by emailing social@douglasequipment.

Fresh Salad and Slaw

As this is often the beginning of produce season, it is the prime time to start adding farm-fresh ingredients to your menu. These salad and slaw recipes use ingredients that are in season and that you can easily find at your local produce market (depending on which part of the US you live) or grocery store.

1) Cucumber Salad

Cucumber Salad

(Image via Food Network)

This dish is so refreshing! Cucumbers are primarily made of water so they are great for warm spring and summer days and they have a cool, refreshing taste that energizes you.

This cucumber salad calls for English cucumbers, red onions, salt, vinegar, sugar, and dried or fresh dill. The precise amounts of each ingredient will vary depending on how many people you will be serving.

The English cucumbers and red onions give it a crisp, crunchy texture while the vinegar and sugar combine to give it a sweet, tart taste. Find out more by reading the full recipe details.

2) Avocado Salad

Avocado Salad

(Image via Food Network)

Avocados are so popular! They seem to be included in everything. Their mild taste makes them the ideal health-food to sneak into recipes while their smooth texture makes them perfect for sauces, spreads, and smoothies.

This avocado salad enhances the avocados natural texture and taste by combining it with other farm-fresh, healthy ingredients. This avocado salad calls for vegetable oil, lime or orange juice (to keep the fruits and vegetables looking and tasting fresh for longer), minced shallot, and salt for extra flavor. The main ingredients include avocados, jicama or radishes, chopped cilantro, and cubed mango and pineapple. This creates a sweet, tangy taste.

Lightly toss these ingredients together and salt-to-taste for a finished dish. For details about serving sizes and prep times, find the recipe at Food Network.

3) Coleslaw

Coleslaw

(Image via Food Network)

This coleslaw recipe is so cute with its bright red, white, and blue colors! It’s ideal for any national holiday that celebrates our freedom because of its patriotic appearance. It also combines a variety of ingredients to create a very flavorful dish.

Its recipe requires green cabbage, red onions, crumbled and crisply-cooked bacon, dried blueberries, mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, sugar, chopped pecans, and salt and ground black pepper. The red onions, green cabbage (that appears white), and dried blueberries give it its red, white and blue appearance. The apple cider vinegar helps to preserve the freshness of ingredients while the sugar ensures that it doesn’t taste too tart or sour. The chopped pecans give it texture and the crumbled bacon enhances its flavor.

Make this recipe for yourself by reading the full recipe details at Red, White and Blueberry Coleslaw.

Hot Off the Grill Sides

Cooking outdoors is one of America’s favorite summer pastimes. There’s just something enjoyable about cooking over a fire, being outside in the open, feeling the sun and breeze on our faces. Grilling doesn’t just have to be something reserved for meats, however. These sides show that vegetables are even better grilled or roasted.

4) Grilled Ranch Potatoes

Grilled Ranch Potatoes

(Image via Delish)

Potatoes are so good! Especially grilled! They make a great carb for a healthy meal. They are a starch, but they keep people feeling full for longer. This reduces food cravings and increases energy.

The grilled ranch potato recipe calls for baby potatoes (of course!), extra-virgin olive oil, lemon (to maintain freshness), ranch seasoning, salt and pepper. Once they have been prepared, don’t forget to drizzle your favorite Ranch dressing and to sprinkle fresh chives over them. It gives this dish additional flavor and an extra visual layer, making them all so appealing.

Find the full recipe at Delish.com.

5) Grilled Zucchini with Garlic and Lemon Butter

Grilled Zucchini

(Image via Bon Appetit)

Just the name of this dish makes us feel hungry! Somehow grilling zucchini brings out all it’s naturally delicious flavor! We love it.

This recipe calls for zucchini, butter, unsweetened lemon juice (maintains freshness), lemon-pepper seasoning, garlic powder, dried oregano, curry powder, and Parmesan cheese. So flavorful!

Thanks, Bon Appetit, for sharing the recipe!

6) Cheese-Stuffed Grilled Peppers

Grilled Peppers Stuffed with Cheese

(Image via Food & Wine)

We love this! It combines two personal favorites to create an entirely new and creative dish. Not sold on it? Give it a try and you will be!

Calling for ricotta cheese, cream cheese, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, salt and ground pepper (to taste), Anaheim or Cubanelle peppers, bell peppers, poblano chiles, and extra-virgin olive oil, it gives you a variety of tastes, textures, and flavors. The peppers and chiles are stuffed with the cheeses to create a spicy, creamy, somewhat crunchy, roasted side. For full instructions, specifically about how to stuff the peppers full of cheese, please see Cheese-Stuffed Grilled Peppers.

Patriotic Desserts

These desserts are awesome because they combine sweet, delicious flavors with beautiful, patriotic colors! Red, white, and blue everything, they are sure to please your family, friends, and other guests that you might be having over for your weekend get-togethers.

7) Red, White and Blue Trifle

Red, White, and Blue Trifle

(Image via Everyday Good Thinking)

The first dessert, but the seventh recipe, we will discuss is the Red, White and Blue Trifle. If its name didn’t give it away, it’s made of three layers of cake, whipped topping, and berries. You can use any white/vanilla cake mix or make it from scratch if you like, then (after baking it), you’ll begin to layer the cake and ingredients. It goes cake-whipped-topping-fruit, cake-whipped-topping-fruit, etc. until all its layers are complete. Find the full details, and mouth-watering pictures, at Red, White and Blue Trifle.

8) Red, White and Blueberry Cheesecake Yogurt Cupcakes

Red, White, and Blueberry Cheesecake

(Image via Skinny Taste)

We love the taste of yogurt and fruit together so this easy-to-make recipe has us thinking about adding it to our own Memorial Day weekend plans. With vanilla wafers, cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, vanilla Greek yogurt, egg whites, all-purpose flour, strawberries, and blueberries, this tasty dessert can be yours! It has a sweet taste, but the tartness of the berries ensures that it’s not overwhelmingly so.

Try it for yourself by making the recipe found at Skinny Taste.

9) Red, White, and Blue Brownie Parfait

(Image via Delish)

Sweet! This recipe calls for heavy cream, granulated sugar, cream cheese, diced brownies, raspberries, and blueberries. The raspberries and blueberries have the perfect amount of tartness to contrast with the sweet taste of the brownie and the creamy texture of the heavy cream and cream cheese.

While not necessarily healthy (are desserts really supposed to be? We suppose you could use dark chocolate brownies to make it more health-conscious), this dessert definitely does have a light taste. It’s refreshing, cool, and creamy. The brownies add texture, but all the ingredients come together for a delicious dessert.

Learn how to make yours at Red, White, and Bue Brownie Parfait.

We hope you have enjoyed reading about these recipes. We hope you try them! And love them! If you do give them a try, let us know what you think on any of our social media pages. We love to hear from you!

Have a great Memorial Day Weekend!