Image 1The Fourth of July is my favorite holiday.

It happens during the summer, and I live for summer, so there’s that.

It happens when the produce is amazing and simple and local. So there’s that, too.

It’s all about community and the “big deal” is the neighborhood parade and fireworks on the hill.

It usually involves a picnic, and picnics are pretty much my most favorite thing that ever was.

Expectations are low. Spirits are high.

It’s the best.

Here are some ideas for your Fourth of July eats.

(All are gluten free, most are dairy free or dairy optional.)

Hot Bacon and Sweet Potato Salad

I love potato salad, but since I can’t have nightshades, I worked this one up. It’s delish and beautiful and I am already craving it.

PHD Potato Salad

If you can enjoy potatoes and you don’t have a recipe that’s been handed down from a grandmother, this one from Cookuary may be the one you hand down through generations.

Layered Salad

This gorgeous creation from WorthCooking would be a show-stopper at any gathering. If you’re looking to impress with a dish that’s beautiful and full of nutrients, look no further.

Bacon Cheeseburger Kebabs

If you’re looking for something a little different to satisfy the meat eaters, give these a go. They’re super fun for the kids to enjoy and make an easy “party” food since they’re handheld.

Plum Nut Crumble

Did I mention the amazing produce that abounds during early July? Grab some plums and make this simple dish which is a little sweet, a little salty and really, really good.

Berry Apple Tart

If you’d rather take advantage of an abundance of berries, you can go with this lovely dish from Perchance to Cook.

Plantain Brownies

These have graced our Fourth of July picnic for the past two years. They are very easy and so, so good.

Water (the FUN kind!)

Who says you have to drink soda or alcohol on the Fourth? These water recipes are festive, refreshing and super simple. (The Mason jars are a must, too!)

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That’s my Fourth of July roundup. Feel free to comment with your recipes or tried-and-true favorites!

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