BBQ for 35 guests

Even though we’re not living in the States we couldn’t let the Fourth of July pass without some sort of celebration.  The weekend after the 4th we invited all of our Australian friends over for a belated Fourth of July bbq.  In total we had 35 guests (27 adults and 8 kids).  Our friends were great sports and showed up wearing red, white, and blue.   We served some of our favorite American food –  chili dogs, corn on the cob, watermelon, and potato salad.  For dessert we got a fire going in our firepit and introduced everyone to s’mores.   To me nothing says 4th of July more than s’mores.  It was especially sweet this year to get to introduce s’mores to all of our Australian friends.

Here are the links to the recipes I used, the quantities of what we served, and my recommendations for where I think you could scale back for future bbq’s.


 Fourth of July BBQ

serving 35 guests 


- Appetizers -

  • French onion dip & potato chips…I made one serving of the french onion dip and we went through 3 bags of chips.  It was the perfect amount.
  • Hummus & crackers…I served 1 large container of hummus and 2 boxes of crackers.  If I had to do it again I would have left out the hummus & crackers as we had plenty of the onion dip and chips.
  • Watermelon

- Main Course -

  • Chili Dogs…We had 40 extra large hot dog buns, 60 beef sausages, and 4 batches of chili dog chili.  We cut the buns and sausages in half so they were more manageable.  It really helped the food go a long way.  The chili recipe was the star of the BBQ.  It was absolutely delicious.  If you’re doubling the chili recipe watch out for the spice.  In the 4 batches I used 1/2 the amount of chili powder and cayenne pepper that was required and the chili still had a lot of heat.
  • Potato Salad…I went with Ina Garten’s potato salad recipe because we have dill in our herb garden that was ready to be harvested.  I made 3 batches of this potato salad and I probably could have gotten away with just 2 batches.  We had a LOT of potato salad left over.
  • Corn on the cob…We served 20 ears of corn, with each ear cut in half.  Since our grill was full of the sausages I decided to boil the corn.  It was my first time boiling corn so I followed this recipe and it turned out delicious.
  • Green Salad…We just put together a simple green salad with cherry tomatoes, red onion, shaved parmesan cheese, and toasted pine nuts.  We served dressing on the side so the salad didn’t get soggy.  I believe we used 4 bags of lettuce, 2 containers of tomatoes, and 1/2 of a red onion.  One thing I learned about this salad is I served it in a steep bowl, which made the toppings go really fast.  So we were left with lots of lettuce at the bottom of the bowl and no toppings.  Next time I’m going to serve salad in a bowl that has a wider mouth.

- Dessert -

  • Sugar cookies…I experimented with Sweet Sugar Belle’s sugar cookie recipe.  These cookies were definitely not needed, but I had so much fun making them.  It was my first time trying to pipe and flood the cookies and I can’t wait to make another batch.  The piping and flooding takes awhile so this is not a great recipe to do when you’re trying to make all the food for a party.  However, for special occasions or perhaps as a do-ahead party project these cookies are a festive addition to any party.
  • S’mores…I kept it simple and went with graham crackers, marshmallows, and hershey’s chocolate bars.  We went through 1 1/2 bags of marshmallows, 12 chocolate bars, and 1 small box of graham crackers.

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