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Food to Have at Your Southern Style BBQ

Like the U.S., South Florida is a melting pot of people, culture and customs. From catered events to backyard BBQs, food plays a central role in the festivities. There are a number of must-have dishes served, but cultural and regional influences from the diverse Florida population have added new nuances to traditional favorites.

Main Event

Meat takes center stage at a BBQ and each griller typically has their own BBQ sauce recipe. Favorite meats for the grill are ribs, pulled pork and chicken.


Try some corn on the cob, wrapped in aluminum foil with a generous helping of butter and left to cook on the grill. Another favorite is bell peppers stuffed with a mixture of cream cheese, cheese and bacon. Rice can be added if desired. No southern BBQ would be complete without fried okra, fried green tomatoes and collard greens. Potatoes are typically cut into chunks and grilled with any combination of spices.

Select Sides

Mac & cheese is a well-known comfort food. The southern version is marked by cheese – and plenty of it. Each cook has a preferred blend of cheeses for a delicious and filling side dish. Baked beans are a staple at southern BBQs. Onions, bacon, and rum or whisky may be combined for a unique taste treat. Individuals will also find deviled eggs that includes paprika to bacon bits.


Coleslaw, potato salad, and macaroni salad are essential. Coleslaw can be made with green or red cabbage. Potato salad encompasses potatoes, boiled eggs, onion, and mayo. It may contain a pinch of sugar, green peppers, pickles, celery, and mustard, depending on the cook’s individual recipe. Substitute macaroni for potatoes and the rest of the ingredients are similar for macaroni salad.


Cornbread, biscuits or both may be offered for eating as-is or making pulled pork sandwiches.


From key lime pie, lemon meringue and pecan pie, the pastries play an integral role. Ambrosia is often called a salad, but typically served as a dessert. It combines whipped cream, oranges, cherries and pineapple for a delicious treat. Coconut is often included.


Guests will be able to wash all that delicious food down with a tall glass of lemonade, sweet tea or a soft drink.

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