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Healthy Recipe Ideas for the 4th of July

Perusing patriotic holiday dishes? Find menu ideas for every meal of the day here, including star-spangled snacks and beverages!

Wondering what to serve for the 4th of July? Planning a party or meeting everyone’s food expectations on a holiday can be exhausting. Luckily, there are many health-conscious, patriotic recipes you can use to fill your plate.


Read on to find recipes for each meal, including red, white, and blue-themed snacks and beverages. As a note, each recipe in this article has either been designed by a dietitian, or vetted by me (a registered diet tech). In other words, you can rest easy knowing you’re making a healthier choice by choosing from the recipes below!


Breakfast

Breakfast really is an important meal, and can kick-start healthy choices throughout the day. Plus, you don’t have to wait for family parties or activities to consume something star-spangled!


Yogurt Bites

Image courtesy of Love and Marriage Blog.

Although yogurt bites likely won’t provide enough nutrients on their own, they can be a great addition to your breakfast meal. Instead of heating up the kitchen, creating these tasty bites will help keep things cool. Plus, Greek yogurt provides enough protein to keep you feeling full and fueled until lunch. You can also save the leftovers for snacks — they are kid-friendly, too!


Patriotic Parfait

Image courtesy of Skinny Ms.


Many yogurt parfaits are naturally patriotic, thanks to the vibrant colors of blue and red berries. Interestingly, these colors also indicate the presence of nourishing vitamins. As mentioned above, layering yogurt also ensures you’ll get closer to your protein goals for the day.


Red, White, and Blue Baked Oatmeal

Image courtesy of Kroll’s Korner.


Cooking for a health-conscious crowd? Baked oatmeal is the way to go! It’s an unexpected choice that packs protein, fiber, and nutrients in every bite. For extra nutrition, you can easily add a scoop of collagen or protein powder in.


Lunch

This afternoon meal is often overlooked, yet is a crucial component to keeping away an afternoon slump. Even if you’re planning on a bigger evening entrée, remember to enjoy something light, refreshing, and filling for lunch.


Star-Spangled Berry Salad

Image courtesy of Modern Honey.


A berry salad with fresh spinach can give you a mid-day boost with plenty of nutrients. Feta cheese and slivered almonds add protein, and give the salad a firework-worthy taste! Instead of the ½ cup sugar contained in the poppy seed dressing of this recipe, opt for an alternative or natural sweetener (instead of an artificial one).


Patriotic Caprese Salad

Image courtesy of Freutcake.


Another salad that will keep you cool is a caprese salad. This is a great option if you’re looking for a lighter lunch, but still want to feel full until your next meal. It’s also lighter on the leafy greens (which is often more appealing to kids). Easily turn this salad into kabobs with a balsamic vinaigrette dipping sauce, too!


Appetizers & Snacks

Snacks are an important part of meal planning, especially if you’re entertaining. Enjoy these sweet and savory options, many of which allow for guests to customize items to their preference.


Flag Fruit Platter

Image courtesy of Passion for Savings.


Perks of this patriotic platter include customization! You can mix and match fruit as you please, and can swap out chocolate-covered pretzels for yogurt-covered ones (if you’re looking for something on the healthier side). This platter offers something savory without going overboard on the sugars, meaning you’ll have plenty of room left for dinner and dessert.


Star-Spangled Skewers



Searching for another slightly sweet appetizer? These red, white, and blue skewers can be arranged in a number of ways, from customizing the type of fruit to altering the way it looks visually. With minimal supervision, these skewers can also be a kid-friendly activity that keeps the little ones occupied while you’re making the main meal.


Red, White, and Blue Nachos

Image courtesy of Allison’s Allspice.


Thanks to blue corn, no food dyes are needed for this recipe (although you’ll want to check your chip’s label to be sure). Cutting the tomatoes into the shape of stars will give your nachos some extra flair.


American Flag Layered Taco Dip

Image courtesy of Bitz & Giggles.


This dip is not only visually fun, but offers a patriotic twist on the seven layer dip. It’s perfect if you want a savory appetizer alongside your meal. Made with beans, cheese, and guacamole, it will fill you up with healthy fats and proteins (but not too much to ruin your meal).


American Flag Cheese Tray

Image courtesy of The BakerMama.


If you’ve been following me for a while, you know my love of charcuterie boards! I truly believe they are the perfect appetizer, with options for everyone to choose from. This patriotic tray is sure to be a hit, especially since it was made by the lady who literally authored a book on beautiful snack boards.


Dinner

Dinner is often the focus of family gatherings or parties among friends, and on the 4th of July, you have an opportunity to make the meal extra special. Patriotic hues are hard to come by during dinner, so make sure to take advantage of these tasty dishes!


Red, White, and Blue Flatbreads

Image courtesy of epicuricloud.


Patriotically-colored dinners are few and far between, so these flatbreads are an obvious choice. They are fun to prepare if you have little hands or family friends on deck. If you have an outdoor pizza oven, you may not even have to leave your backyard party to prepare dinner!


Patriotic Pulled Pork with Pickled Peppers

Image courtesy of Savory.


Try saying that five times fast! These pulled pork sandwiches pack a powerhouse of nutrients into the entree. With protein from the pulled pork and cheese, gut-friendly nutrients from vegetables like pickled peppers, and the option to substitute whole wheat buns for regular bread, these sandwiches are sure to be a crowd-pleaser.


Beverages

Need something to sip alongside your main meals? Let these drinks keep you hydrated and happy during the holiday.


Star-Spangled, Fruit-Infused Water

Image courtesy of the view from great island.


Using a star-shaped cookie cutter for fruit can turn a boring beverage into something spectacular! Fruit-infused water is about as healthy as you can get, since soaking the fruits in water adds extra nutrients to this low-calorie drink. It’ll keep your guest cool and hydrated, too (in addition to looking pretty).


Star-Spangled Spritzer

Image courtesy of Lulus.


If you’re looking for something a bit boozy for the holiday, try this patriotic spritzer. It contains under 5 fl oz of wine, meaning it falls within the recommended limit for an alcoholic drink. If you’re keeping the party sober (or just looking for a good mocktail), try substituting apple beer, ginger beer, or lightly flavored sparkling water for the wine.


Dessert

Every party needs something sweet to cap off the event. The following desserts can be modified easily, and made more healthy with a couple simple swaps. Alternatively, choose to serve these indulgent treats in a mini size — they’ll look cute and be less calories!


White Chocolate Mousse (with Red & Blue Berries)

Image courtesy of Kroll’s Korner.


This fancy-looking dessert is easy to make, but will blow the socks of your guests. Since this dessert does contain plenty of sugar, cream, and chocolate, you’ll want to be mindful of portion sizes when you indulge. A quick tip to instantly make it healthier? Serve it in mini dishes for a reduced calorie version!


Red, White, and Blue Berry Crisp

Image courtesy of Minimalist Baker.


Berry crisp practically screams summer, so there’s no better time to enjoy this dessert than the 4th of July. Since this recipe is made with minimal amounts of more natural sweeteners (like maple syrup and coconut sugar), it can be better for guests watching their blood sugar. Plus, it’s grain-free and vegan, making it the obvious choice for guests worried about avoiding certain allergens.


Oat Flour Flag Cake

Image courtesy of Detoxinista.


Looking for a twist on the classic flag cake recipe? Although this cake does rest firmly in the dessert category, there are some small changes that make it a little bit healthier. For example, using coconut sugar instead of regular sugar helps to lower the glycemic index. The oat flour also helps make the cake a bit more blood sugar-friendly, thanks to a boost of protein and fiber.


Fruity Flag Pops

Image courtesy of Detoxinista.


Here’s another winning recipe from Detoxinista for the 4th of July! These homemade “bomb pops” are sure to be a crowd-pleaser, especially among young party-goers. The best part? They’re made with natural sugars, colors, and fruits instead of artificial additives.


The Final Word on Healthy 4th of July Foods

Nearly any dish can be made “healthy” with a couple of simple twists on the classic recipe. Thanks to brightly-colored berries and patriotic patterns, many nutritious foods can be used to create festive red, white, and blue dishes. Fueling with healthy foods throughout the big day can keep you awake, alert, and feeling full until fireworks.






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