If you're looking for the perfect main course to serve at any type of summer event, you can't go wrong with barbecue sandwiches. The quintessential warm-weather food is ideal for both large and small gatherings, as it's easy to customize the sandwiches to accommodate everyone on your guest list.
You can serve barbeque sandwiches at a wide range of both indoor and outdoor special occasions and events, including adults' and kids' birthday parties, graduations, bridal and baby showers, and class or family reunions. They're also perfect for summer holiday celebrations, such a Memorial Day, 4th of July, and Labor Day get-togethers.
Although barbeque sandwiches are typically associated with meat, you can also provide at least one or two meatless options for the vegans and vegetarians in the group. You may have to get a little creative when creating the menu, but there are plenty of delicious meat-free alternatives from which to choose.
Depending on the size of the party, you can either make the sandwiches yourself using your favorite barbeque restaurant for recipe inspiration, or you can have the barbeque sandwich shop do the work for you. If you go that route, place your order as far in advance as possible to ensure it'll be ready on your big day.
Here are some barbeque sandwich ideas to consider for your special event:
1. Carolina-Style Pork Barbeque Sandwiches
Carolina-style barbeque sandwiches typically start with chopped, slow-roasted pork that is tossed with a vinegar-based sauce for a zesty flavor. If you're making the food yourself, you can cook the pork in slow cookers to make sure the meat is juicy and tender by party time. Serve the sandwiches with any of your favorite picnic-inspired side dishes, such as potato salad, cole slaw, or potato chips.
If you have leftover Carolina-style barbeque, use it to top nachos and pizza, and even as a burrito filling. You can even offer these options to event guests for variety. As a meat-free option, substitute the pork with tempeh for the same bold taste.
2. Sloppy Joes
Another type of barbeque sandwich that's easy to prepare and serve is a sloppy joe, which is prepared with ground beef and barbeque sauce and served on hamburger buns. You can have the restaurant deliver several serving pans of the sloppy joe filling, along with the buns, and have guests put their own sandwiches together assembly-line style.
Potato chips and pickles are the perfect complements to sloppy joes and make a meal that is convenient for guests to enjoy as they mix and mingle. You can make sloppy joes meatless by using soy grounds or a lentil mixture instead of hamburger in the filling.