My Three Favorite Recipes for Outdoor Entertaining

I think that now that Memorial Day has passed, it’s summertime. Right? I think this means it is time to kick off the outdoor entertaining season at our home. And the best way to do that is to share my favorite recipes for outdoor entertaining. 

Picking three recipes is way harder than it seems. So it is highly likely this may be part one of a multi-series blog post.

So let’s start with the first. This recipe is from Heather Christo’s newest cookbookPure Delicious, and it is amazing. Ok, it’s better than amazing. And it’s so simple to make.


Rosemary Chicken, Bacon and Avocado Salad
Serves 2
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Prep Time
25 min
Total Time
25 min
Prep Time
25 min
Total Time
25 min
  1. 4 thick-cut bacon slices diced
  2. kosher salt
  3. 2 boneless chicken thighs skin on
  4. 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil divided
  5. 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary leaves divided
  6. 1 head romaine lettuce hearts chopped into bite-sized pieces
  7. 1 bunch watercress
  8. 1 cup whole cherry or grape tomatoes halved
  9. 1/4 red onion thinly sliced
  10. 1 large avocado
  11. 2 teaspoons Dijon Mustard
  12. 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  1. In a large cast iron skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until crispy, about 7 minutes. Transfer the bacon to a paper towel to drain and set aside.
  2. Salt the chicken things. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the bacon fat in the pan and heat over medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons of the rosemary and the chicken thighs, skin-side down, and cook until the chicken is golden and crisp. Flip the chicken and cook unitl the thighs are cooked through, about 10 minutes.
  3. Make a bed of the romaine and watercress in a serving bowl or on a platter. Scatter the cherry tomateos, red onion, and bacon pieces on top.
  4. Slice the avocado, sprinkle the slices with salt, and arrange them on the salad. Slice the chicken and add it to the salad.
  5. To make the rosemary vinaigrette: In a small bowl, whisk together the mustard, the remaining 1/4 cup olive oil, vinegar, and 1 teaspoon rosemary until smooth. Season with salt.
  6. Gently toss the salad with the vinaigrette and serve immediately.
The next recipe I have shared here before. It’s called Grilled Salmon with Avocado. You can either grill the salmon (on two sheets of foil) or bake it in the oven. This recipe is so fresh and summery and has been a huge hit every time I serve it.

The last recipe I love to make in our outdoor kitchen. It’s a very short recipe and probably the easiest one you will ever make. It’s called Three Ingredient Chicken.


Three Ingredient Chicken
The Best 3 Ingredient Grilled Chicken – marinated in soy sauce, honey, and garlic and grilled to juicy, golden brown perfection. So easy!
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  2. 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts
  3. 3/4 cup soy sauce
  4. 3/4 cup honey
  5. 3/4 cup water
  6. 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  7. cilantro and lime for serving
  9. 1 avocado
  10. 1 cup packed parsley and cilantro leaves (combined)
  11. 1 jalapeño, ribs and seeds removed
  12. 2 cloves garlic
  13. juice of one lime (or two – get lots of limey goodness in there!)
  14. 1/2 cup water
  15. 1/2 cup olive oil
  16. 1 teaspoon salt
  17. 1/2 cup pistachios (you can sub other nuts – see notes)
  1. Cut the chicken into chunks. Place in a large ziplock plastic bag or bowl.
  2. Pour the soy sauce, honey, water, and garlic into a bowl. Whisk until incorporated. Set aside about 3/4 cup of the sauce for brushing the chicken later.
  3. Pour the remaining sauce into the bag or bowl with the chicken. Seal or cover the mixture and refrigerate as long as you can – 4 hours is a good minimum but you can go as long as overnight.
  4. When you’re ready to grill, preheat the grill on medium high for 5-10 minutes and oil the grates. Meanwhile, drain off the marinade and place the chicken pieces on skewers. Place the chicken on the hot grill, cover and cook for 3-4 minutes. Brush with reserved sauce and flip. Repeat this process until you see that the chicken is browned to your liking and fully cooked.
  5. Serve with cilantro, lime, Magic Green Sauce, or any other dipping sauces you like. We also like this with a salad and some naan or rice.
  6. To make the five minute green sauce, pulse all remaining ingredients – except pistachios – in a food processor until incorporated.
  7. Add pistachios and pulse until mostly smooth (depends on what consistency you want).
  8. Serve as a dip, spread, or sauce — or add additional water or oil to thin the sauce for use as a dressing or a marinade.

3 thoughts on “My Three Favorite Recipes for Outdoor Entertaining

  1. Yum! I laughed right out loud when I read direction #2 for the Rosemary Chicken “salt the chicken things” 😉 Thanks for great recipes and a chuckle! Love your blog.

  2. Looks delicious Leslie! Your outdoor spaces are to die for! Keep inspiring us!! ❌⭕️❌⭕️

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