Holiday Dishes That Take the Labor Out of Labor Day


In this Labor Day season of family cookouts and unofficial end-of-summer get-togethers, many of us have relaxing at the top of our priority lists. Food has found its way into the center of America’s celebration of the hardworking laborers who keep our country going. As a mother of two, I’d like to make Labor Day a chance for my little ones to enjoy their parents, extended family and friends all together at this year’s gathering. So, instead of spending all day preparing food, I plan to reclaim my time from the kitchen on this upcoming holiday.

These six simple and delicious dishes require just 65 minutes of prep time and a mere 20 minutes of attentive cooking – giving you more time to relax and still serve a feast that tastes and looks like you spent all day preparing it. You won’t have to miss out on the BBQ … just the “sweating over the grill” part.

What’s a BBQ without some type of pasta salad and slaw, right? These two incredibly easy side dishes can be made in a variety of ways to satisfy your specific tastes. How about a quick but tasty pesto pasta salad with fresh, Michigan-grown cherry tomatoes and mozzarella cheese? Or, a simple, sweet and tangy coleslaw to top the pulled BBQ chicken sliders – like they do it down south!

A great timesaver is cooking your slab of ribs or pulled BBQ chicken for sliders in your secret weapon: the crockpot! This saves hours of time, because the crockpot does the work while you catch up on beauty rest for the next day’s festivities.

Great side dishes are essential for a successful family cookout. Mix up a nice, seasonal fruit salad with heirloom tomatoes, to pull summer’s best flavors together in one bowl. This dish will bring beauty to the spread and it provides a healthy and delicious option.

For dessert, warm up the grill and caramelize some glazed doughnuts from your favorite bakery! Eat them `a la mode with your choice of ice cream or create an unbelievable ice cream sandwich! Drizzle it with chocolate syrup for an extra sweet treat.


The plan is to enjoy this day by spending more time with family and less time in the kitchen. I took the liberty of deciding this for all of us! For the full recipes and more, please visit


1 Comment

  1. I absolutely loved those fresh and innovative recipes! I’m so tired of the same old fare of baked beans, weenies and burgers ! So excited to try something new. The article was very well written, and gave me a new approach to working smarter and not harder!