• 03/21/2023

7 Sizzling Summer Dinner Party Menu Ideas

A friend group enjoys some of the summer dinner party ideas.

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Can you hear that? It’s the sizzling of meats on the grizzle, the splash of a dip in the pool and the laughter of good friends all around. Summer is about celebrating these hot days and breezy nights, especially with food and friends. Bring both together with an incredible dinner party this summer. Everything from barbecues to pool parties, to elegant summer soirees could be in your future. Check out these seven sizzling summer dinner party menu ideas to elevate your next get-together.

1. Mango Avocado Salad with Lime Vinaigrette

This 15-minute dinner stems from Vietnamese green papaya salad. Refreshing mangos paired with salad greens and snap peas create a superb harmony of creamy and crunchy textures. The dressing includes avocados and a lime sauce to drizzle overtop. 

Pair this succulent salad with grilled chicken or fish for a filling addition to any dinner party. 

2. Tomato Gnocci Kebabs

Gnocchi instantly elevates any simple pasta dish, but have you ever stuck it on the grill? Kebabs are classic summer vibes. In 30 minutes, you can grill some gnocchi, cherry tomatoes and red onion and carefully slide them onto a kebab. Pair with asparagus and a side salad to mix some greens into your dinner party.

Better yet, your guests can customize their kebabs if they choose. Want to add some grilled chicken or shrimp to the mix? Maybe your friend isn’t too fond of red onion. Easily, they can slide on and off any ingredients they choose. 

3. Bacon and Kimchi Burgers

It’s time for the quintessential summer dinner: hamburgers. This Shake-Shack-inspired burger fuses juicy beef patties with crunchy bacon and delicious kimchi. With ingredients like cabbage kimchi, sambal oelek (an Indonesian chile sauce) and melted cheese, you can elevate the simple cheeseburger into a meal your guests will never forget. 

4. Tex-Mex Hot Dogs

If you have hamburgers, you have to have hot dogs too. But let’s move away from the grill for a minute. Your oven can take the simple hot dog and transform it into a dish overflowing with tasty goodness. After boiling or tossing a hot dog in an oiled pan until cooked, line up your buns in a casserole dish. Fill with hot dogs and all your toppings. 

A crowd-favorite topping array is the Tex-Mex spread. Corn salsa, Monterey jack cheese and grilled jalapenos bring the heat, but a drizzle of lime-cilantro mayo soothes the senses. 

5. Vegetable Pasta with Walnut Pesto

This pasta is a perfect addition to a vegan group of friends. Simply pair any type of thick noodle with homemade walnut pesto flavored with basil, garlic and lemon. A dash of summer veggies makes this dish sustainable as well. Visit your local farmer’s market to see how your dinner party can rely on the natural flavors of the season. 

Vegetable pasta is one of the best summer dinner party menu ideas because it can be a sizzling main course or a cool supporting side dish. 

6. Salmon with Creamy Cucumber Salad

You might think of cooking salmon as a laborious task, but you can present this decadent dish in as little as 20 minutes. Salmon is also high in protein and omega-3 fatty acids, so it’s great for a light and healthy summer meal. 

Dollop some of this creamy cucumber salad on the side for an added flair. This cold salad is packed with fennel, English cucumber, lemon and Greek yogurt. 

7. Peach Aperol Spritz

Round out your summer dinner party with a refreshing cocktail to wash it all down. Of course, beers and wine are great, but a fancy spritz turns a cool summer evening into a night to remember. 

This peach Aperol spritz is a bubbly sangria, paring sweet fruits with tangy flavors like Aperol, averna amaro, lemon, orange and sparkling rose. With that vivid tangerine color, this cocktail makes its mark on any dinner party. 

You can also ask your guests to bring their own drink mixes or recipes or create your own array of cocktails and margaritas to sample as well. This is a great opportunity to customize and explore new flavors and options. 

Bon Appetit!

Whether you’re lounging by the pool or having a backyard picnic, these summer dinner party menu ideas are perfect for your next get-together. You can’t ask for more than good food, good friends and perfect weather, and now you can enjoy all three. Bon Appetit! 

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