No Utensils Required: 7 Totally Tasty Handheld 4th of July Foods


June 17, 2021 | Food Lion
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Fireworks, food and family time - three things we all look forward to as the 4th of July holiday rolls around. But, as we enjoy our snacks and meals and celebrate together with the people we love most, it also means that there could be quite a few dishes to clean at the end of the day. Save some cleaning time and make the most of your Independence Day holiday by preparing handheld 4th of July foods.

From appetizers and dinners to desserts, the seven dishes we’ve listed in this blog don’t require utensils to eat them. And that means less cleaning time! Sounds pretty great, right? Keep reading to get a little inspiration for your summer holiday meal with handheld 4th of July foods.

4th of July Appetizers

Jalapeno Popper Pigs in a Blanket on blue plate, jalapeno pepper, red white and blue napkin, wood table

Jalapeno Popper Pigs in a Blanket

Pigs-in-a-blanket is a starter that’s made its way into many of our hearts and is usually enjoyed while watching sports games at home, holidays and other festivities. They’re easy to make and oh-so-tasty. But, for this handheld 4th of July food idea, we aren’t making the classic flavor. Nope! This recipe is cheesy and zesty.

To make these Jalapeno Popper Pigs-In-A-Blanket, you’ll need the usual ingredients - crescent rolls and hot dogs (or little smokies) - in addition to these five items:

  1. Jalapeno peppers
  2. Cream cheese
  3. Cheddar cheese
  4. Monterey Jack cheese
  5. Salt

After about 30 minutes of prepping and cooking, you’ll have almost three dozen snacks to share with family and friends.

Strawberry Basil Bruschetta on white plate with fresh strawberries, wood table

Strawberry Basil Bruschetta

How about a fresh bite for an Independence Day appetizer? If that sounds good, then this recipe for Strawberry Basil Bruschetta may be the perfect handheld 4th of July food for your holiday meal. Made with just five ingredients, including a baguette, cream cheese, balsamic vinegar and, of course, strawberries and basil, this starter is simple to put together and packed with flavor.

Want to make a few different flavor combinations with your bruschetta? Swap out the strawberries for things like tomatoes and cucumbers. Or, for a more filling appetizer, top your baguette slices with ham or prosciutto.

4th of July Dinners

Tex-Mex Hot Dog with tortilla chips on white plate, fresh tomato and green onion in background, light wood table

Tex-Mex Hot Dogs

It’s true - you’ve probably had ketchup and mustard on your hot dog, and more than likely chili and cheese as well. But have you ever tried classic Mexican toppings such as corn, black beans, tomatoes, onion, sour cream and cilantro? With this 4th of July food idea, you can give this tasty flavor combination a try during your holiday festivities.

Not sure what to pair with these Tex-Mex Hot Dogs? We have a few ideas below!

Serve this 4th of July food with sides like:

Grilled Pizza Burgers on wood paddle, serving bowls of pepperoni, mozzarella cheese, and marinara sauce, fresh basil leaves, white wood table

Grilled Pizza Burgers

Burger or pizza for your Independence Day dinner? With this Grilled Pizza Burger recipe, you don’t have to choose! Juicy burgers with Italian flavors, topped with mozzarella cheese, pepperoni and tomato sauce, this handheld main dish is cheesy, savory and sure to become your new favorite way to enjoy burgers.

You can also add your family’s go-to pizza toppings, like mushrooms, onion, fresh basil, olives and so on.

Serve this 4th of July food with sides such as:

Apricot Pineapple Ribs on white plate, serving bowl of BBQ sauce, fresh pineapple, cup of pineapple juice, red placemat, wood table

Apricot-Pineapple Ribs

Burgers and hot dogs are both delicious and iconic main dishes for summer barbecues. But, if you want to try something different, how about a rib recipe instead? This handheld 4th of July food is tender and sauced with a sweet and tangy mixture of BBQ sauce, pineapple juice, apricot preserves, minced onion, Dijon mustard, soy sauce and honey.

Things like coleslaw, french fries and potato chips all taste great with these Apricot-Pineapple Ribs, as well as the three sides we listed below.

Pair this 4th of July food with sides like:

4th of July Desserts

Red white and blue ice cream cone cupcakes, red white and blue sprinkles, red ribbon around ice cream cones, USA flag in background

Red, White and Blue Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes

You now have some handheld recipe inspiration for Independence Day appetizers and entrees. However, no holiday meal is complete without something indulgent and festive. We’re talking about 4th of July desserts - like these Red, White and Blue Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes!

Start by trimming your un-iced cupcakes to fit in flat-bottomed sugar cones. Although we used red, white and blue cones, you can certainly use the traditional variety and plenty of red and blue sprinkles to keep your treat looking festive.

Once each ice cream cone is stuffed with a cupcake, spread a thick layer of frosting around the cupcakes to resemble ice cream. You can also use a piping bag to apply the frosting and then smooth with a butter knife or spoon. And if you want to make this dessert even more Independence Day-ready, mix up a little blue frosting (and red too) with food coloring and alternate using red, blue and white on each ice cream cone cupcake.

Finally, top your treats with sprinkles and colored sugar.

Red white and blue cake donuts topped with blueberries and strawberry slices on white plate, fresh strawberries and blueberries in serving bowls, cake donuts, white wood table

Festive Red, White and Blue Cake Donuts

With this dessert recipe, you can transform red velvet cake mix into a red, white and blue dessert the whole family will love to enjoy for the Fourth of July. These freshly festive donuts are tender, scrumptious and glazed with a sweet cream cheese frosting, then topped with blueberries and strawberries. Sounds pretty delicious, right?

You can also use vanilla or strawberry cake mix if you prefer. Now, check out our recipe portal to get the complete list of ingredients and step-by-step directions to make these Red, White and Blue Cake Donuts!


The countdown until Independence Day has begun! Which of these handheld 4th of July foods will you choose to make for your festivities? A zesty crescent roll appetizer? How about some sweet and savory ribs? No matter what you decide to make from this list, we’re confident it’ll be a big hit with your friends and family (and save you cleaning time after your celebration comes to an end). So, grab your grocery shopping list, and start adding what you need for the holiday. Then, head to your neighborhood Food Lion, where you’ll find the ingredients you’re looking for at low prices! You can also pick up some festive baked treats from the Bakery department to save a little time.

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