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Hello! I’m Anjali. I’m a board certified health coach, author, wife, mom and food lover from the SF Bay area (now living in Seattle, WA!); with a passion for delicious food and a desire to make healthy eating easy, tasty and fun! Learn more about me here and stay for a while!

Anjali Shah

25 Memorial Day Potluck Ideas to Wow Your Friends

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These 25 Memorial Day Potluck Ideas will help make your holiday weekend spectacular! You’ll find something for everyone, from picnic salads, chips and dips, grilled burger recipes, and more! Enjoy the holiday weekend with these stress free recipes!

Memorial Day potluck ideas: pasta salad, vegetarian chili, 7 layer dip, cauliflower salad, lemon bars, tomato cucumber salad

Memorial Day is almost here!

For me, Memorial Day is like the unofficial beginning of summer. It means lots of socializing, get-togethers with friends, picnics, sunshine, barbecues, and outdoor activities.

It’s a weekend full of fun, and in many cases the chance to bring a dish to pass to a potluck get together.

It also means lots of opportunities to indulge in those oh-so-yummy-but-not-so-healthy weekend barbecue treats! If you’re looking to enjoy Memorial Day guilt-free, but want to still be able to eat the things you love, here are a few of my tips to a guilt-free Memorial Day weekend!

5 Tips to Enjoy Your Memorial Day Potluck Guilt-Free

#1: Don’t have an all or nothing mentality.

Don’t completely “go rogue,” eat whatever you want, and tell yourself you will start over on Monday, and don’t completely deprive yourself of everything and spend the weekend avoiding every BBQ either. Everything in moderation!

#2: Make Smart Choices.

If you’re a meat eater, stick to leaner meats like grilled chicken breasts, turkey hot dogs, etc. Try to keep the cocktails to 1-2 drinks max, and drink lots of water. Avoid all the mayo-laden heavy dishes like pasta salad and potato salad. Load up on fresh fruits and veggies. And don’t graze by the table for hours – take a plate of food, eat it, and then go mingle!

#3: Get active! 

The weather during the long weekend is usually gorgeous, so if there’s a volleyball game or a frisbee game or a hike planned during your picnic or BBQ, participate! You’ll get some exercise and will have fun at the same time.

#4: Enjoy yourself.

Don’t count every calorie you eat, don’t try to stick to a super rigid eating plan. If you do happen to completely fall off the wagon, don’t beat yourself up about it. You can always get back on track the next day!

#5: Detox After the Long Weekend

Most of us probably will overindulge during Memorial Day. The best way to get back on track is to detox with this 7 day plan for clean eating. It will fill you up, you won’t feel deprived at all, and you’ll feel refreshed and back on track after 7 days.

20 Healthy Memorial Day Potluck Ideas

Going to a Memorial Day potluck? Try some of these healthier recipe ideas for lighter, but still amazingly delicious dishes that everyone at the party will love!

Appetizers and Dips

Hand lifting chip topped with 7 layer dip.

Bringing an appetizer or dip to a picnic needs to be easy to transport, and needs to hold up in the heat if your celebration is outdoors! These appetizers and dips are perfect for gathering during warm days. They hold up well in the heat, and are super tasty!

healthy guacamole recipe
Healthy Guacamole Recipe
This healthy guacamole recipe is easy and simple to make. It's a great variation on the authentic Mexican recipe. It's perfect to serve as a topping on tacos and enchiladas, or great as a dip with some chips.
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Guilt-Free, Healthy 7 Layer Taco Dip
This healthy, seven layer taco dip is a party table's best friend! Lightened up from the traditional bean dip recipes but with all of the same great flavor, you'll love how this bean dip tastes with chips, veggies or even on its own. Ready in just 20 minutes and kid-friendly too!
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buffalo cauliflower wings with a creamy cashew vegan sauce, served in a white bowl
Buffalo Cauliflower Wings with Cashew Ranch Sauce
Spicy, crispy, vegan buffalo cauliflower wings are paired with a cool and creamy cashew ranch dip! It's a simple appetizer or snack perfect for game day!
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healthy cheese dip - easy kale dip recipe with pita chips in a white bowl
Healthy Kale Dip with Cream Cheese and Smoky Onion
This healthy kale dip made with smoky onion and cheese is packed full of flavor. It's a lightened up sharing dip, perfect for pot lucks, BBQ's and parties!
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Garlic Parmesan Oven Baked Kale Chip Recipe in a white bowl
Parmesan Kale Chips
These oven baked parmesan kale chips are the perfect guilt-free snack because they have the crunch and flavor of traditional chips but are much healthier for you! Plus, this easy kale chip recipe can be made in your oven – no dehydrator necessary!
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Refreshing Summer Salads

superfood salad served in a white bowl with broccoli, blueberries, sweet Fuji apples, cabbage, spinach, dried cherries, pine nuts, and a healthy ranch dressing

A light and refreshing summer salad always receives a warm welcome at any Memorial Day picnic. These recipes are full of fresh flavors, and also makes for an excellent dish for any vegetarians attending. You’ll find creamy dressings, paired with crunchy greens, and even a few classics like a lightened up potato salad, and a gluten-free pasta salad!

roasted cauliflower salad with spinach and chickpeas and kalamata olives, served on a white plate
Roasted Cauliflower Salad with Spinach and Chickpeas
This recipe makes cauliflower the star, roasted to perfection and tossed with a warm dressing, along with some chickpeas for protein, spinach for some greens, and kalamata olives for a nice tangy bite.
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feta salad with lentils, cucumbers, tomatoes, corn in a bowl
Simple and Fast Lentil and Feta Salad
This simple and quick Lentil and Feta Salad is made with cucumbers, juicy grape tomatoes, red onion, corn, and bell pepper for a high protein, nutrient-packed salad hearty enough to make a meal!
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recipe for grape salad with avocado and cojita cheese in a white bowl
Easy Recipe for Grape Salad
This refreshing recipe for grape salad brings sweet and savory together to create the perfect side dish! With a bit of added kick from the addition of jalapeño peppers and creaminess from the avocado and cojita cheese, the sweetness of the grapes are nicely balanced.
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superfood salad served in a white bowl with broccoli, blueberries, sweet Fuji apples, cabbage, spinach, dried cherries, pine nuts, and a healthy ranch dressing
Superfood Salad with Healthy Ranch Dressing
This Superfood Salad is going to be your new favorite dish! It’s filled with broccoli, blueberries, sweet Fuji apples, cabbage, spinach, dried cherries, pine nuts, and a healthy, homemade ranch dressing. Ready in just 15 minutes, it's the perfect healthy lunch or light dinner!
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The Perfect Healthy Potato Salad in a white bowl topped with sliced green onions
The Perfect Healthy Potato Salad
This healthy potato salad is a classic side dish for for a summer party or barbecue. Check out how to make this traditional, creamy potato dish a little healthier with a few tricks. You won't know the difference!
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tomato avocado cucumber salad in a white bowl
Tomato Avocado Cucumber Salad
This tomato avocado cucumber salad recipe is super simple. It’s full of fresh veggies, summer tomatoes, chickpeas, feta and spices. No cooking required: just chop your veggies, toss and serve.
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Gluten Free Pasta Salad with Olives and Herbs
If you are looking for an easy, make-ahead dish, then this Gluten Free Pasta Salad with Olives and Herbs could be for you!
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 Grilling Recipes

Black bean burger on plate topped with veggies and feta dressing - Memorial Day potluck ideas

Heat up the grill, and get ready to make some mouth-watering burgers that are veggie friendly, and even some vegan friendly skewers and kebabs! These recipes will be enjoyed by veggie and meat-lovers alike!

falafel burgers pictured against a marble background, topped with tomatoes and lettuce and a feta sauce
Lentil Falafel Burger Recipe with Creamy Feta Sauce
This lentil falafel burger recipe is made from tiny, quick cooking beluga lentils. Sweet potato is the sneaky ingredient that beefs up these patties and gives them a slightly sweet flavor. Spices like cumin, sumac, and oregano take you straight to the Mediterranean. It's finished with a creamy feta sauce!
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Homemade vegetarian black bean burger on whole wheat bun, topped with baby spinach, tomato, onion and served with home fries on the side
Black Bean Quinoa Burgers
These vegetarian black bean quinoa burgers are easy and quick to make, so they are perfect for a healthy weeknight meal. 
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Southwestern Pinto Bean Burger Recipe
This is one of those leftover pinto bean recipes I would have never thought of but now can't live without! These pinto bean burgers really hit the spot when you're craving that Southwestern, Tex-Mex flavor. But beware, you won't want to go back to frozen veggie patties after these!
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tofu skewers on a blue plate
Tofu Skewers with Ginger Soy Marinade
These healthy Tofu Skewers are an easy meal that can be made in under 30 minutes! Each kabob has tofu, peaches, onions, zucchini, and a sweet and salty ginger soy marinade that pulls all the flavors together!
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Crockpot and Instant Pot Recipes

One bowl of Instant Pot vegetarian chili

Crockpot and instant pot recipes are great for potlucks! You can prepare the recipe at home, bring it with you, plug it in, and it will warm and be ready to enjoy throughout the picnic!

vegan white bean soup served with avocado and greek yogurt in a white bowl
Vegan White Bean Soup (Slow Cooker Recipe)
This slow cooker vegan white bean soup is loaded with veggies and a rich smoky flavor. It's a hearty yet light, and an easy weeknight meal.
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easy healthy italian chickpea soup recipe served with bread and parmesan cheese
Italian Chickpea Soup with Tomatoes and Rosemary
This easy Italian Chickpea Soup is healthy, nutritious, comforting and easy to make. It can be made on the stove top or in your Instant Pot (or slow cooker).
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The Best Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili served in a white bowl topped with green onions and cheese
The Best Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili
This recipe blew my husband, the veggie-chili-skeptic, away. He no longer responded with “this isn’t chili,” but instead said “this is really good!” He even went back for seconds. It’s got the deep flavor of traditional meat chilis, but is much healthier and vegetarian friendly.
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Healthy Vegetarian Chili Mac (Instant Pot Friendly!)
Instant Pot Vegetarian Chili Mac is the perfect recipe when you need dinner in a hurry. Healthy and full of flavor, this hearty meal can easily be made vegan or gluten-free! Recipe also includes stove top instructions.
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Cookies, Pies and Brownies

vegan gluten free lemon bars on a white plate with a bite taken out of a bar - Memorial Day potluck ideas

Bringing dessert to a potluck is always so much fun because let’s be honest, everyone loves digging into the desserts throughout the entire picnic! These Memorial Day potluck ideas are easy to transport and will feed a crowd!

vegan gluten free lemon bars stacked on a white plate
Gluten Free Lemon Bars with Coconut Custard
With a sweet, tart coconut milk lemon curd filling, and almond flour crust, these Gluten Free Lemon Bars are the perfect dessert for picnics, bake sales, and more! Naturally sweetened, these bars are vegan friendly.
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healthy chocolate chip cookies stacked on a cutting board, with one cookie broken for a closeup inside and milk in the background
Secretly Healthy Chocolate Chip Cookies
Sinking your teeth into one of these healthy chocolate chip cookies is so satisfying and delicious. With only 100 calories per cookie, they are sweet, chewy, and the perfect dessert for all occasions! 
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cherry crumble pie against a white background, top view
Cherry Crumb Pie
This delicious Cherry Crumb Pie with frozen cherries is packed with fruit and is topped with a crumble made from almonds and oats. This is a great dessert for any get together: for picnics in the summer to Halloween to Christmas!
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gluten free brownies stacked on top of each other against a white background
Delicious Flourless, Gluten Free Brownies!
There is nothing more decadent, fudgy, and delicious than these Gluten Free Brownies. They are made with simple ingredients and yield an unforgettable brownie that you will want to make time and time again. 
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Keto Peanut Butter Cookies dipped in chocolate and nuts, on white plate
Keto Peanut Butter Cookies
These super simple Keto Peanut Butter Cookies require only 6 simple ingredients. They're low-carb, sugar-free, and a total treat!
View this recipe

I hope you found some delicious and healthy potluck ideas to share with your friends and family for this Memorial Day!

More Healthy Vegetarian Recipe Ideas!

Memorial Day potluck ideas: 7 Layer dip, cauliflower salad, vegetarian chili, pinto bean burgers, peanut butter cookies, superfood salad

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8 responses to “25 Memorial Day Potluck Ideas to Wow Your Friends”

  1. It looks like you had a very delicious (and fiberlicious!) Memorial Day weekend! So many great recipes to choose from!

  2. i’m going to a wedding tomorrow night where the bride used to be the food editor for bon appetit! so ready to grub!

  3. These are great tips and the recipes look delicious. I saw a healthy eating suggestion somewhere on the internet about hard-boiling an egg, removing the yoke and putting quacamole in it. I think your recipe would be great for that. It would give a hard boiled egg a little zing don’t you think?

    • Thank you so much Sue!! I’m so glad you like it 🙂 Btw – I LOVE your idea about the hardboiled egg with guacamole – that reminds me of when I made an egg white scramble with avocado – it was absolutely delicious! It’s kind of like a healthy version of deviled eggs. Love it!

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