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Memorial Day Recipes for Grilling Out

5 minutes read May 21,2024
Memorial Day Recipes for Grilling Out

It's hard to believe that summer is right around the corner. With the unofficial kickoff coming soon, we've put together this list of four Memorial Day recipes. Each one is ideal for a cookout under the sun.

Gather your family, fire up the grill, and get ready for a wonderful holiday. Happy Memorial Day!

Easy Recipes for a Memorial Day Picnic


1. Old-Fashioned Lemonade

Start things off on a high note with classic lemonade. Just two ingredients are required for this timeless summer drink. Serve with berries or fresh mint, if desired. For a fruity twist, add a bit of strawberry or mango juice.

Borrowed from our friends at Country Living.


  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 1 ½ cups fresh lemon juice (about 10 lemons), plus two lemons, sliced
  1. In a small saucepan, combine sugar and 1 ½ cups water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the sugar dissolves, three to four minutes. Remove from heat and cool completely.
  2. In a large pitcher, combine lemon juice, 1 ½ cups sugar syrup, and four cups cold water (add remaining sugar syrup to adjust sweetness, if desired). Then, refrigerate until well chilled.
grilled bbq pork chops

2. Bourbon BBQ Glazed Pork Chops

You could use a store-bought sauce. But once you try this homemade glaze, we have a feeling you won't look back. Throw it on some grilled pork chops and you'll have a Memorial Day recipe that'll have your guests coming back for seconds.

Borrowed from our friends at Country Living.


  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • ¾ cup bourbon whiskey
  • ¼ cup molasses
  • ¼ cup cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 8 1-inch-thick bone-in pork chops (about three pounds total)
  1. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and saute for about one minute until garlic is sizzling but not brown. Add chili powder and cayenne. Cook for about one minute, stirring constantly.
  2. Add ketchup, bourbon, molasses, vinegar, sugar, mustard, and Worcestershire sauce. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened, 12 to 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Heat grill to medium-high. Season pork chops with salt and pepper. Grill, turning once, until a thermometer inserted in the thickest part registers 135 degrees, about 10 to 14 minutes. Baste with 2/3 cup glaze during the last four minutes of cooking. Transfer to a platter and baste again. Serve with remaining glaze.
grilled chicken recipe

3. Grilled Chicken Breast

Smoky, juicy, and lean, grilled chicken breast is a perfect summer protein. This recipe calls for a quick marinade to amp up the flavor. With chicken this good, you'll be adding this to your permanent roster of Memorial Day recipes.

Borrowed from our friends at Delish.


  • ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary.
  • 4 chicken breasts
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together balsamic vinegar, olive oil, brown sugar, garlic, and dried herbs, and season generously with salt and pepper. Reserve ¼ cup of the liquid for grilling.
  2. Toss the chicken in the marinade. Cover and refrigerate, marinating for at least 20 minutes and up to overnight.
  3. Heat grill to medium-high, then add marinated chicken. Grill until cooked through, about six minutes per side, using the reserved marinade for basting. Use a thermometer to ensure the chicken has reached 165 degrees at the thickest point.
grilled corn salad

4. Layered Grilled Corn Salad

Fresh, colorful, and bursting with summery goodness, this grilled corn salad is an excellent side dish. To make it extra special, search for the produce at your local farmer's market.

Borrowed from our friends at Taste of Home.


  • 10 medium ears sweet corn, husks removed (frozen corn can also be broiled for a similar effect)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
  • 3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 large tomatoes, finely chopped
  • 1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • Fresh basil, chopped (about 12 leaves)
  • 1 cup zesty Italian salad dressing
  1. Brush corn with olive oil. Grill corn, covered, over medium heat 10-12 minutes or until lightly browned and tender, turning occasionally. Cool slightly.
  2. Cut corn from cobs and transfer to a small bowl. Stir in salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. In a two-quart glass bowl, layer a third of each of the following: corn, tomatoes, onion, and basil. Repeat layers twice. Pour dressing over top and refrigerate at least one hour before serving.


We hope you enjoyed these Memorial Day recipes for an outdoor cookout. Do you have a favorite recipe of your own? Share this post on social media, tag Sun Outdoors, and let us know what it is!

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