I love a good summer potluck.
The weather is nice, the vibes are high and instead of making every dish, I get to enjoy something that each guest has to offer!
Some people stock the cooler with drinks while others are exclusively food people. Me? I’m one of the food people.
Have a summer potluck coming up? Here are a few of my favs that are total crowd-pleasers.
My Go-To Starters and Sides
This yummy and refreshing side dish is a recipe from my mother in law. It’s so easy and has the right balance of texture, creaminess, and sweetness.
And that’s why I like to make it all season long!
This family recipe includes some of the classic ingredients like chopped fruit and marshmallows.
But I also took some liberties with it and added a few touches that you won’t find in a classic ambrosia salad recipe.
First, I used plain nonfat Greek yogurt instead of sour cream to cut some calories and add some protein. I also included blueberries because they’re in season!
Check out the full recipe HERE.
This is one of my newer recipes and oh my… it’s a must-try!
This salad really delivers on flavor. And it makes a big batch, too… great for a crowd!
The dressing is super creamy and I love the crunch of the fresh veggies throughout.
You can learn how to make it HERE.
While pizza may seem like a main dish, this cold Ranch pizza is the perfect appetizer.
It also kind of incorporates another popular summer potluck pick—veggies and dip—so you’re covering more bases than one!
I know this has been around for a while, but I recently added this recipe to my blog!
It’s honestly SO easy to make, and you can change up the toppings based on your personal preference.
I like to top mine with chopped carrots, onions, peppers and broccoli, but feel free to make it your own!
Click HERE for the full recipe.
If there’s one classic side people expect to see at a BBQ, it’s baked beans. But these aren’t just your regular baked beans… they’re made with a Just Jill twist!
With every bite you’ll get a heaping spoon of flavor. The beans also include crispy bacon — really adding to the texture.
Find the recipe HERE.
Dips always seem to go the fastest at any party.
They’re easy to munch on and if you ask me, it’s really hard to get them wrong… so they’re typically a pretty big hit.
And a “big hit” is exactly what this sausage cheese dip recipe is!
The name of this dip might fool you. It’s actually made with turkey sausage and reduced-fat cream cheese and cheddar. So, it’s lighter than most hearty potluck dips!
But flavor is something it doesn’t lack. And you can serve it with chips, veggies or even crackers!
HERE are the instructions you can follow to make it for your next summer party.
Not all salads have to be boring.
And when there’s likely to be a few salads at your summer potluck, you want yours to stand out!
Enter my street corn salad with avocado and peanuts.
This salad is hearty—meaning you can have it as a side or even as your main dish. And when I say it’s PACKED with flavor, I’m not overexaggerating.
The Cotija cheese is kind of like a mild feta which is why it pairs perfectly with some of the more bold flavors like jalapeno and onion.
Plus, it includes avocado, corn and peanuts which will all keep you full!
Take a look at all of the ingredients HERE.
Main Dishes for a Summer Potluck
It seems like even the pickiest of eaters love chicken which is why I love this shredded chicken recipe.
I also love that this chicken can sit atop pizza, can be used for tacos or can be eaten alone. The options are endless!
I have a bunch of simple recipes on hand but this one might be one of my easiest.
Why? All you have to do is dump your ingredients in a pot, let it sit for a few hours, pull apart your chicken and you’re good to go!
Don’t believe me? HERE is the recipe.
One of my other popular summer potluck recipes also includes chicken. But this one is in the form of a “bake.”
My buffalo chicken bake is basically a lighter version of your classic buffalo chicken dip.
Thanks to light Ranch dressing, reduced-fat cream cheese and reduced-fat cheddar cheese, this recipe is lower in calories AND fat.
Find the recipe HERE.
Let’s face it. Timing doesn’t always work out right, and if you find yourself a little behind schedule, offer to bring the meat for grilling!
The Ultimate Burger and Hot Dog Collection is offered in the Just Jill Shop and it comes with 8 prime burgers and 8 gourmet beef hot dogs for a total of 6 pounds of meat.
And if you want to change things up, check out our Chicago Steak and Cheese Sandwich Kit. That ooey-gooey cheese atop tender meat… yum!
The Best Summer Potluck Desserts
I won’t lie. 80% of the time, you’ll find me at the dessert table. A little bite here… a little bite there… might as well try everything!
But when I’m in charge of desserts, my fudgy chocolate sheet cake is one of my go-tos.
The other name for this cake is Texas Sheet Cake. Why? It can feed a crowd!
The base isn’t overly sweet, but when you add the fudgy frosting, these chocolatey squares are upgraded to a whole new level.
I also love that this cake is sturdy enough that you can cut it into squares (kind of like a brownie). Perfect for serving and walking around.
HERE is the full recipe.
Chocolate is always a hit.
But if you’re looking for another flavor that’s a hit during the summer, it’s lemon!
My lemonade chiffon dessert is still one of my most popular recipes. And if you haven’t tried it, it’s soon to become one of your FAVORITES!
I first tried it almost 30 years ago when my mom and I went on a road trip. We were served this light and delicious dessert and I never stopped thinking about it!
Luckily, I snagged the recipe and now, I can share it with you! Find all of the ingredients HERE.
So whether you’re bringing a starter, a salad, a main or a dessert, I hope you’ll bring one of these recipes to your next summer party!
From my home to yours,