Summer BBQ Recipe Ideas

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Healthy Summer BBQ recipe ideas for your main dish, sides and dessert!

Summer is all about sun, fun, and food! So why not celebrate the warmer weather in style!

I curated a great selection of summer dishes for your next BBQ that are not only healthy, but taste yummy, too!


These are all 17 Day Diet approved and won’t be an issue if you’re looking to either maintain or lose weight during the summer months.

Plus, I’ve updated this post with a few more Healthy Summer BBQ Ideas, so keep reading!

These ideas range from main dishes to side dishes to desserts! There’s something for everyone!

At the very end of this post, I’ve included a list of all the recipes so can quickly review and choose which recipes you want to add to your BBQ lineup!

Healthy Recipe for your Next Summer BBQ along with all the yummy recipes so your next party is easy!

Summer BBQ Main Dishes

Here are a few different options to choose from. Depending on the cycle you’re on, feel free to swap out a protein (use beef rather than chicken).

If you’re grilling, rather than use the oven or stove top for some of these recipes, fire up your grill and have fun.

If a recipe calls to make meatballs, make patties instead if it fits into your BBQ plans a bit easier.

Tahini Chicken Skewers

There’s nothing better than a little crispy chicken on a stick!

These Tahini Chicken Skewers are a perfect addition to your summer grilling rotation. The Tahini Sauce is super easy to make or you can simply buy a store bought version to speed up the process.

Serve these yummy kebabs with my Carrot Fries with Ranch Dressing, and you have yourself a perfect Summer meal on the grill!

Chimichurri Steak Kabobs

If you’re on Cycle 2 of the 17 Day Diet, then this is the kabob recipe for you to try!

My Chimichurri Steak Kabobs have an upgrade in flavor with the yummy chimichurri sauce. 

However, if you’re on cycle 1 or don’t care for beef, you can easily make this sauce and serve it with chicken kabobs. Super easy and very versatile for many protein types.

Load up your chimichurri beef skewers with your favorite vegetables

Chicken Caesar Kebabs

These Chicken Caesar Kebabs are not only healthy, but a different way to serve ingredients you’d normally find in the form of a salad.

These are quick and easy, and also an elegant touch to a Summer BBQ.

Chicken Caesar Kebabs perfect for all cycles of the 17 Day Diet (and beyond!)
Photo Courtesy of Stephanie G.

Chicken with Mexican Dry Rub and Fruit Salsa

This Chicken with Mexican Dry Rub and Fruit Salsa recipe is a year-round favorite! However, if you’re looking to fire up the grill, this can easily be cooked outdoors!

The secret to this dish? The fruit salsa, of course! If you’re an onion fan (not me!!), then feel free to add in your favorite onions to this salsa!

This is the yummy tomato and avocado salsa that pairs with the Chicken with Mexican Dry Rub.

You can also add onions, jalapenos or bell peppers to this fruit salsa.

Fruit Salsa with Mexican Chicken Rub


Bang Bang Chicken Kebabs

If you haven’t tried these Bang Bang Chicken Kebabs yet, what are you waiting for? 

These would be the perfect addition to your Summer BBQ line up!

Bang Bang Chicken Kebabs are so yummy and good for you too!


Grilled Lemon Sriracha Shrimp

This Grilled Lemon Sriracha Shrimp is a perfect Cycle 2 recipe when you’re looking to add a bit of surf to your turf! 

The sriracha gives this shrimp dish just a tab of kick (it’s not too spicy). The lemon brings a bit of freshness to this dish!

Perfect for either an indoor or outdoor grill!

Grilled Lemon Sriracha Shrimp

Chicken or Beef Shish Kabobs (Peruvian Anticuchos)

This Chicken or Beef Shish Kabobs (Peruvian Anticuchos) is a family recipe from Peru where my dad grew up most of childhood. When I grew up, my dad would make this recipe for our family all the time!

For this recipe, I have ideas for different protein and veggie options so you can make this dish your family favorite!

Plus, the marinade is to die for, so head on over and get this bookmarked for your next BBQ party!

Veggie Kabobs on the grill - Peruvian Anticuchos
Veggie Kabobs on the grill – photo courtesy of Marty F.

Cilantro Lime Grilled Chicken

There’s something really yummy about cilantro and lime together. If you’re a fan of cilantro, you’re going to love this Cilantro Lime Grilled Chicken recipe.

It’s really easy to make and will be a great healthy addition to your Summer BBQ party!

Serve your cilantro lime grilled chicken as kebabs for a summer BBQ party!

Greek Turkey Meatballs with Yogurt Tzatziki Sauce

If you’re using your grill, this Greek Turkey Meatballs with Yogurt Tzatziki Sauce recipe can be easily converted by making patties instead of meatballs. This recipe will make four patties, so go for it!

The sauce is healthy and adds a nice zing to your meal!

Low Carb Greek Turkey Meatballs with Yogurt Tzatziki Sauce


Chicken Feta Spinach Patties

Here’s another great Chicken Feta Spinach Patties recipe you can use for either your outdoor grilling adventure, or play it safe and use a frying pan.

You can easily make this with ground turkey, beef or even lamb! 

The idea here is to have a bit of fun!

Chicken Feta Spinach Burgers are a great low carb grilling recipe if you're trying to lose weight

Greek Chicken Souvlaki with Yogurt Sauce

This Greek Chicken Souvlaki with Yogurt Sauce recipe is super easy to make. Plus, the marinade can be used on whole chicken breasts year-round if you’re not wanting to grill.

This recipe is definitely a keeper and your entire BBQ party will love this!

Greek Chicken Souvlaki with Yogurt Sauce

BBQ Side Dishes, Appetizers and Salads

Here are a few ideas for side dishes, depending on which cycle you’re on.

If a recipe calls to bake the veggies, perhaps using skewers on the grill might be an option.

Carrot Fries with Ranch Dressing

When you’re craving potatoes, reach for it’s lower carb cousin instead!

My Carrot Fries with Ranch Dressing is to die for! The thinner you cut them, the crisper they get.

These carrot fries pair well with many of the main dishes on this list, so you can go wrong adding these to your summer line up!

Even better news – I have air fryer instructions over at the recipe so you don’t even have to turn your oven on during the summer heat!

Crispy Carrot Fries are a game changer for weight loss. They are a little sweet, but definitely less starchy than potatoes!

Italian Roasted Vegetables

This Italian Roasted Vegetables recipe is YUMMY! I love the combination of sweet roasted garlic, the plump tomatoes and the juicy mushrooms.

When you eat a sample of all the veggies in one bite, it’s divine! (OK, it sounds like I have a big mouth…maybe I do!)

This recipe can be easily grilled using skewers.

If you’re on Cycle 3, you can also add in zucchini, or small potatoes!

Italian Roasted Vegetables


Cauliflower Nachos

This Cauliflower Nachos side dish would be perfect with your grilled meat! 

Normally, cauliflower is kind of boring by itself. Not this recipe! You’re taking all of your favorite nacho toppings and giving your boring cauliflower a bit of pizzazz!

Did I just say pizzazz? Yes, I did!

Can you say YUM???

Cauliflower Nachos

Peach Caprese Salad

You have to take advantage of summer fruit while it’s still in season and this Peach Caprese Salad is the perfect addition to your BBQ.

Peach combined with cheese is out of this world! YUM!

Peach Caprese Salad is a slight twist on the classic!

Shrimp Cocktail

This is my mom’s Shrimp Cocktail recipe and it is a perfect appetizer for your next summer bbq. Plus, it’s super easy to make!

If you’re in Cycle 3, add in chopped avocado for a bit more flavor. Otherwise, leave it out.

Regardless how you make it, this appetizer is a summer favorite!

17 Day Diet friendly Shrimp Cocktail - perfect appetizer for a Spring or Summer Day!

Summer Slaw with Apples

I love fruit in my salad. This Summer Slaw with Apples is so yummy and refreshing.

A perfect salad for your next BBQ!

This Summer Slaw with Apples is a perfect refreshing dish on a hot day!


Crunchy Sweet Apple Chicken Salad

You can skip the chicken if you want this strictly as a side salad.

Either way, this Crunchy Sweet Apple Chicken Salad recipe is a great refreshing cold salad for your next family BBQ.

Crunchy Sweet Apple Chicken Salad


Cool Cucumber and Strawberry Salad with Vinaigrette

This is a cool and refreshing salad – it’s almost perfect for dessert, too! This Cool Cucumber and Strawberry Salad with Vinaigrette is so easy to make, it’s almost ridiculous!

The cucumber in this salad makes it light and summery!


Cool Cucumber & Strawberry Salad with Strawberry Vinaigrette - pin for the recipe!


BBQ Low Carb and Low Sugar Desserts

I personally love a great fruit salad for a sweet treat – use your favorite cycle 1 friendly summer fruits while they’re in season, such as red grapes, strawberries, blueberries, peaches and plums.

If you’re in Cycle 3, add in some kiwi, apricots and maybe a banana or two. If you’re not sure which fruits are allowed in each cycle, check out the 17 Day Diet Cycle Food lists to find out which fruits are approved.

Low-Fat Low-Carb Mini Cheesecakes

If you’re looking for something savory with maybe a strawberry (or blueberry) on top, consider these yummy mini cheesecakes (cycle 1 friendly)

These Low-Fat Low-Carb Mini Cheesecakes are so light, yet so filling. You only need a few to satisfy your sweet and savory cravings!

Low-Fat, Low-Carb Mini Cheesecakes perfect for the 17 Day Diet!

Ann’s Creamy Fruit Freeze (Frozen Yogurt)

Who says you can’t have healthy frozen yogurt while on a diet?

Give Ann’s Creamy Fruit Freeze a go and let me know how much you love it!

This recipe is easy customizable to use your favorite fruit – strawberries, blueberries, blackberries. The possibilities are endless!

Ann's Creamy Fruit Freeze is a low carb treat

Faux Chocolate Pudding

If you’re craving a bit of chocolate to end your BBQ on a high note, this Faux Chocolate Pudding is healthy and will hit the spot!

You can certainly jazz it up a bit and add your favorite Summer fruit as toppings – any berry will do the trick!

If you’re still looking for another great dessert for your Summer BBQ, make sure you checkout my complete list of Healthy Dessert Recipe Ideas.

OK, here’s a list of all of my favorite Summer BBQ Ideas!

Summer BBQ Recipe Ideas

Here are my favorite healthy Summer BBQ Recipe Ideas including main dishes, side dishes and dessert!

Wanna Chat? Tell Me Your Thoughts!