Party by the Pool
Invite friends and family over for slushy drinks, fantastic appetizers, and delicious grilled dishes to enjoy by the pool. With the addition of some great music, you'll have all you need to really make a splash with this summer gathering. Prep your poolside retreat with plenty of great food options and sweet treats for everyone to create the perfect memorable pool party. Read on for our favorite recipe suggestions.
Zesty Ginger-Lime Cooler
Ginger adds a spicy shot to this drink, while sweet honey rounds out the flavor.
BLT Skewers with Lemon-Chive Aioli
The classic BLT sandwich gets a makeover with these flavorful grilled skewers. Drizzled with a zesty aioli sauce, these skewers get the full BLT treatment when served over a bed of grilled romaine lettuce. Perfect for your next summer cookout, these skewers are fun, fresh, and irresistibly tasty.
This sensational spud riff on nachos is an hommage to party food lovers everywhere. Loaded with toppings and drizzled with a hot cheese dip, these totchos are ready to rock and roll right onto your plate. This dish has all of the goodness of trashy, delicious bar nachos but are made with potato tots for a warm comfort food addition. Fresh jalapeno slices and cool avocado round out this dish, leaving the end impression and flavor as simply drool-inducing.
Heirloom Tomato and Beet Salad
Heirloom Tomato and Beet Salad delivers a vibrant and delicious vegetable salad showcasing summer's sweet and juicy tomatoes.
Slushy Watermelon Mojito
Kick off the party with tall glasses of this fruity mojito. You can serve leftover watermelon as a side, or freeze in ice cube trays for a fun and colorful way to cool down other drinks.
No fiesta is complete without rounds of Frozen Margaritas. We freeze our Margaritas in an electric ice cream maker for extra slushiness.
This appetizer plate offers a roasted red pepper dip and an easy, make-ahead eggplant spread. Dress up your platter with fresh vegetables, water crackers, pita chips, and fruit.
Open-face Grilled Chicken-and-Pepper Sandwiches with Grilled Romaine Wedges
Fire up the grill for these filling Open-face Grilled Chicken-and-Pepper Sandwiches with Grilled Romaine Wedges. The chicken only requires a short marinade time of 10 minutes.
Tomato and Peach Salad with Almonds
Ripe, meaty tomatoes star in this salad.
Peaches-and-Cream Frozen Pops
Our version of the Creamsicle is silky, with distinct peachy flavor. It's a not-too-sweet pop that grown-ups will love but that's playful enough for all ages.
Roasted Garlic, Poblano, and Red Pepper Guacamole
Give traditional guacamole a flavorful twist by adding roasted peppers and garlic. Serve with homemade corn tortilla chips or, if you're pressed for time, use store-bought chips.
Grilled Watermelon and Shrimp Skewers
Grilling watermelon adds a smoky note to the fruit and gives it a slightly meaty texture that matches well with shrimp. Cooking takes only a couple of minutes, so have both sets of skewers ready before you start. You'll need 12 flat metal skewers (12 in. long) or 18 skewers (8 in. long)--or use bamboo skewers of the same size, soaked in water for 30 minutes.
Salmon, Asparagus, and Fresh Lemon Kebabs
Bring unique flavor to traditional fish kebabs with zesty lemon and savory asparagus.
Chicken-and-Bean Slaw Wraps
These no-mess roll-ups require only eight ingredients and are easily portable. Wrap each half in parchment paper to help hold the ingredients together and tie with colored raffia ribbon.
Coffee and pineapple? Yep, it's unexpected... but delicious. This caffeinated tiki-inspired mocktail offers an incredible balance of depth contributed by the cold brew coffee and orgeat and tropical brightness from the pineapple juice. You can find orgeat, a simple syrup made with almonds and orange flower or rose water, in specialty food stores or online. Keep your beverage especially cool (and full-flavored) by freezing your pineapple cubes before adding them to the drink.
Frozen Fruit Skewers With Honey-Yogurt Dip
Frozen fruit skewers are a great pool-side solution for cooling down in the summer heat. Display them in clear glass vases for fun presentation at your next summer party.
A no-forks-required dish, grilled kebabs are perfect for outdoor gatherings. Your guests are sure to love these seasoned shrimp skewers. Thread the shrimp on sturdy rosemary sprigs before grilling for impressive presentation and enhanced flavor.
Tropical Fruit Salad
Fruit salad is light, sweet, and good-for-you, making it a welcome addition to your pool party spread. Simply toss honey and lime juice with your favorite tropical fruits, and add flaked coconut.
This perfect, butter pasta is super easy to make and will serve a group of kids for less than $3.00. Pack it in a school lunch (and cause some serious lunch envy), serve it as an after-school snack or add it to the spread at any summer or pool party. Hold on to a little bit of that pasta water: mixed with the butter and cheese, it keeps the pasta from being too dry.
These easy-to-prepare Lemonade Cupcakes get their citrus taste from a can of frozen lemonade concentrate. A hit at parties, let guests garnish frosted cupcakes with sprinkles and candy.
Nothing beats the summer heat like a cold slushie. We love the combination of summer watermelon with frsh lime juice.
Summer Squash Pizza
Salty Dog Slushes
The Salty Dog has no flaws, but turning it into a slush makes it the most wonderful and festive summertime cocktail ever. The bitterness, sweetness, salt, and booze come together to make a subtly sweet pink and frosty delight. You can even keep frozen grapefruit juice cubes in the freezer and whip a few drinks up to amaze friends (or yourself). If you’d like to experiment, this would also make a mighty fine granita.
Tamarind Strawberry Popsicles
These vibrant popsicles are fruity and refreshing, but deliver an unexpected depth thanks to the tamarind paste (which can be found at supermarkets such as Whole Foods and online). The tart character of tamarind fruit adds dynamic flavor complexity that nicely balances the simple comfort of fresh, peak-season strawberries. P.S.—If you happen to stir a little bit of the strawberry-tamarind puree into a glass of iced tea or lemonade, you won’t regret it.
Spicy Grilled Watermelon
This bold and beautiful grilled watermelon recipe features a kick of heat, balanced with bright lime and salty cotija cheese. With a bit of cilantro for a pop of freshness and color, this summery side dish is ready for your next cookout. For a more dynamic spice experience, we love Tajin seasoning—which can be found at most grocery stores and pairs exceptionally well with melon. If you have trouble finding it at your local supermarket, try the nearest Mexican market or order it online. You can cut the watermelon away from the rind before or after grilling and chop it into a more composed salad if desired.
For the perfect, all-purpose macaroni salad, look no further than this easy recipe. Our version of the staple summertime side dish delivers everything you love about a classic, creamy pasta salad, but with an extra touch of vibrancy. Chopped bell peppers deliver colorful, sweet crunch while cream cheese provides a tangy depth, and fresh dill lends a flavorful kick of freshness. Whether you’re heading to a picnic or potluck-style barbecue, a large bowl of this macaroni salad will always be more than welcome.
Piña Colada Snack Mix
Everyone’s favorite beach drink becomes crunchy in this snack mix filled with flavor: Sweet, rich coconut, tangy lime and pineapple, and saltiness. You’ll find dried fruit in the produce sections of most stores. We used large coconut flakes. Toss in the fat before you add salt and seasoning to ensure an even dispersal. This makes a lot, and will easily cut in half, but leftovers hold really well in a sealed bag. Serve with actual piña coladas, or your favorite beer.
Instant Pot Pork Sliders with Watermelon Barbecue Sauce
This has all the flavor and tenderness of all-day barbecue, but comes together in a few hours. The watermelon juice replaces the stock usually found in Instant Pot or slow cooker pulled pork recipes, and the rind gives the sauce from extra body. The pork’s sweetness resembles that of al pastor, so it would work just as well in tacos as it does in sliders.