How To Plan a Backyard Barbecue With Your Teen

plan a barbecue with your teenWish your teenager would spend more time outdoors this summer? Help them plan a backyard barbecue. It's a great way to celebrate a summer birthday or simply hang out at home with friends on the weekend. Here's everything you need to plan a fun outdoor bash:

  • Invitations: Send invitations a week or two in advance. Because most barbecues are a casual affair, online invites are appropriate—for example, through Facebook or
  • Supplies: Utensils, plates, and napkins are a must for a summer barbecue. It's also helpful to be sure you have enough picnic tables and/or chairs so that everyone has a place to sit when it's time to eat.
  • Party Games: Fun backyard activities—like volleyball, badminton, croquet, softball, and Bags (bean bag toss game)—will keep teens entertained while the food is cooking.
  • Drinks: Lots of cold beverages are important to have on hand because it will most likely be hot in the summer. Soft drinks, juice, and water are good bets.
  • Menu: Hot dogs, hamburgers, chips and dip/salsa, and salads are good for a crowd of kids. It might be easiest (and safest!) to have a parent be in charge of the grill, but get your teen involved by preparing some of the other food ahead of time. For dessert, serve ice cream sandwiches, or have the kids make their own S'mores. Here are two easy recipes that are sure to be a hit:
  1. The Neely's Potato Salad from The Food Network

5 large red potatoes, peeled and cubed

2 ribs celery, chopped

1/2 large onion, chopped

3 hard-boiled eggs, 2 chopped and 1 sliced

2 heaping tablespoons sweet pickle relish, drained

1/2 cup salad dressing (Miracle Whip is recommended)

3 tablespoons yellow mustard

1 tablespoon sugar

Paprika, for garnish


Boil cubed potatoes until they are tender. Drain and cool. In a large bowl add celery, onion, 2 eggs and pickled relish. Add the salad dressing, yellow mustard and sugar. Stir well. Place the sliced egg on top of potatoes and sprinkle with paprika and salt. Let the potato salad chill in the refrigerator for 2 1/2 hours or overnight. Serves 6.

  1. Guacamole

6 avocados

2-3 cloves garlic, minced

1 lime

1.5 cups onion, chopped

4 Roma tomatoes, chopped

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon cumin

1 teaspoon cayenne

3 tablespoons cilantro, chopped

Halve and pit avocados, squeeze half of lime over top and mash. Stir in spices. Add tomatoes, onion, and cilantro. Squeeze remaining lime in and mix all together.

What barbecue recipes do your teens like to cook?


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