It doesn’t get any better than a summer cookout. Or does it? We have to agree that while the summer cookout is one of our favorite pastimes, it’s even better with the back drop of a sunset over the lake.

Whether hosting a Fourth of July get-together or enjoying a relaxing family weekend at the lake, we’ve got a menu packed with grilling favorites and summer flavors. These recipes are quick and easy, and some can even be made ahead, leaving more time for you to enjoy being on the water with family and friends.

apc 14895Giant Cheddar-stuffed Burgers

Makes 4 servings

2 pounds lean ground beef

2 teaspoons steak seasoning

4 slices sharp Cheddar cheese

4 sesame seed hamburger buns

Toppings: lettuce leaves, tomato slices, bacon


1. Combine ground beef and seasoning in a large bowl until blended. Shape mixture into 8 patties; place 1 cheese slice on each of 4 patties. Top with remaining 4 patties, pressing edges to seal. Cover and chill at least 30 minutes.

2. Grill, covered with grill lid, over medium-high heat (350°) 7 to 9 minutes on each side or until beef is no longer pink. Serve burgers on buns with desired toppings.


apc 14835Grilled Succotash Salad

Makes 8 servings

1 (16-oz) package frozen butter beans

4 ears of fresh corn, husks removed

1 large red onion, cut into thick slices

1 large red bell pepper, cut into thick rings

1 cup mayonnaise

¼ cup chopped fresh basil

2 garlic cloves, pressed

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon pepper

1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

1.Cook butter beans according to package directions; drain and cool completely.

2. Meanwhile, preheat grill to 350° to 400° heat. Grill corn, covered, 15 minutes or until done, turning every 5 minutes. At the same time, grill onion and pepper, covered, 5 minutes each side or until tender. Cool all vegetables completely.

3. Cut kernels from cobs. Discard cobs. Chop onion and peppers.

Stir together mayonnaise and next 5 ingredients. Stir in corn kernels, onion and peppers. Cover and chill 2 to 8 hours or up to 3 days.


TomSalad0185WDMarinated Tomato Salad

Makes 8 servings


¼ cup red wine vinegar

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

3 pounds firm-ripe assorted tomatoes

¼ cup chopped fresh mint

¼ cup chopped fresh basil

Salt and pepper to taste


  1. In a small bowl, whisk together vinegar and oil. Slice tomatoes 1/3 inch thick. Arrange in layers in an airtight container, drizzling vinegar mixture and sprinkling with herbs, salt and pepper evenly over each layer.
  2. Cover and chill at least 30 minutes or up to 2 days. Bring to room temperature before serving.


Beverage0188WDSparkling Summer Breeze

Makes 10 servings


1 (64-oz) bottle Cran-Lemonade, chilled

2 cups sparkling water, chilled

1 teaspoon lime juice

Raspberries, lemon and lime slices, mint leaves


  1. Stir together the first three ingredients. Serve over ice and garnish as desired.



apc 14851Easy Mixed Berry Cobbler
Makes 6 servings

4 cups fresh assorted berries
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 large egg
1 cup sugar
1 cup flour
6 tablespoons butter, melted
Vanilla ice cream, if desired

1. Preheat oven to 375°. Place berries in a lightly greased 8-inch baking dish; sprinkle with lemon juice. Stir together egg, sugar, flour and butter in a medium bowl until mixture is smooth. Spread over fruit.

2. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly. Let stand for 15 minutes. Serve warm with ice cream.

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