If you’re throwing a Fourth of July party, you want it to sparkle, but you don’t want to spend hours in the kitchen instead of having summer fun with your guests. One of our freelance contractors admitted that the one time she made this American Flag Cake, it looked incredible; but it took so long to make that she never wanted to go near a stove again!

Fortunately, there are tons of quick and easy recipes out there that will look just as good as they taste. If you want a tried and true recipe to celebrate the red, white, and blue, look no further. Two members of our team couldn’t wait to dish about their favorite DIY treats for the Fourth, and rest assured they have sweet as well as savory covered.

Let’s get cooking! What are your fave Fourth of July barbecue and party recipes?

Jessica: Peach and Blackberry Crisp! This bright fruit crisp with a buttery crunchy topping is a yearly favorite, since it highlights some of the tastiest summer fruits – and it’s especially delicious the next morning for breakfast. I grew up on the coast of San Francisco, where we would replace the blackberry with the more local Olallieberry, which looks like a light purple blackberry but is a tad sweeter and far more fun to say. You can swap in nectarines too if those are better, but never skimp on the oatmeal or nutmeg in the crisp topping! I recommend enjoying it with vanilla ice cream or a healthy dollop of homemade cinnamon whipped cream.

Kristina: Roasted-Jalapeño Pimiento Cheese Toasts. My dad is a pretty good cook, but he also might be the world’s slowest. (Sorry, Dad! I love you!) We spent many Independence Days when I was a kid eating snacks all day long, while my father repeated his refrain of “Y’all quit eating chips – this barbecued chicken will be ready in 30 minutes!” Inevitably, I’ve come to associate the Fourth of July with my mom’s favorite snack, pimiento cheese. This recipe is smoky and creamy and way better than any pre-made dip from the supermarket. It keeps well in the cooler while the grill heats up, and it lasts for days afterward.

Thanks again to Jessica and Kristina for getting us hungry for Fourth of July fun! Our mouths are watering already.

What tasty and easy-to-prepare treats are your favorites for the Fourth? We’d love to see your recommended recipes in the comments!