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!
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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 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
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
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.
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!
These oven baked 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!
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
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.
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.
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!
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!
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 with Creamy Feta Sauce
These patties are 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.
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!
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!
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.
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.
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!
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.
This delicious Cherry Crumb Pie is packed with fresh 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!
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.
If you have tried any of these tips, or have any questions, please leave me a comment below – I respond to every message I get! You can also FOLLOW ME on FACEBOOK, TWITTER, INSTAGRAM and PINTEREST to see more delicious, healthy, family friendly food!