Father’s Day is a special occasion to honor and appreciate the fathers in our lives. It’s a day to express gratitude for their love, support, and guidance. And what better way to show our love than through food? Food has a unique way of bringing people together and creating lasting memories. By preparing a special meal for your dad on Father’s Day, you can create a memorable experience that will be cherished for years.

How to Plan Your Father’s Day Meal

Consider your dad’s favorite foods and preferences when planning your Father’s Day menu. Is he a meat lover? Does he enjoy seafood? Or perhaps he’s a vegetarian? By tailoring the menu to his taste, you can make him feel truly special and appreciated.

Lee’s Dad, the late Mack Clayton, who was always a snappy dresser!

7 Menus and Recipe Ideas for a Special Father’s Day Dinner

Whether Dad craves casual BBQ, classic comfort food, or an elegant dinner, we’ve got you covered. Here are 7 mouthwatering Father’s Day menus, each complete with recipe ideas, to make your dad’s day truly unforgettable.

Menu 1: Classic Father’s Day BBQ Feast

Celebrate Dad’s special day with this all-American spread featuring our melt-in-your-mouth ribs with a tangy homemade sauce, creamy potato salad, and a refreshing Caesar salad. Remember the fluffy cornbread and a decadent cheesecake to top it all off.

White platters filled with Braised Baby BBQ Sauce

Braised Baby Back Ribs with Zesty BBQ Sauce

These Braised Baby Back Ribs are fall-off-the-bone tender and the Zesty BBQ Sauce is amazingly delicious! A bit sharp, a bit sweet, a bit spicy – these ribs and sauce will make your taste buds sing!

white plate with Dorothy's PotatoPotato Salad shown next to BBQ Beef sandwich

Dorothy’s Potato Salad with Egg

Bursting with fresh, vibrant ingredients, this recipe combines the humble potato with the crispy cucumbers, peppery radishes, subtle green onions, and rich hard-boiled eggs. But what truly sets this salad apart is the secret sauce, calling for tangy yellow mustard.

glass mason jar filled with Homemade Caesar Dressing, with a spoon inside of the jar

Caesar Dressing for Salad

This Homemade Caesar Dressing is thick, creamy and full of tangy, salty flavors. Our version of this classic dressing has been successfully prepared many times, by many people, making it both time and taste tested.

Parmesan Buttermilk Cornbread is moist, tangy and super delicious! #cornbreadrecipe #easycornbreadrecipe #cheesycornbreadrecipe #quickbreadrecipe

Parmesan Cornbread Recipe

This Southern-style Buttermilk Cornbread recipe from my grandmother (Nama) is an easy to make side dish that’s always a crowd pleaser. It’s a classic recipe that has been passed down for generations, and, like most traditional Southern cornbread recipes, doesn’t contain any added sugar.

Two slices of Baked Cheesecake with the rest of the cake in the background

Aunt DeeDee’s Cheesecake with Sour Cream Topping

There’s nothing quite like the indulgent, creamy goodness of a homemade cheesecake. And when it comes to this classic dessert, Aunt Dee-Dee’s Cheesecake with Sour Cream Topping is simply divine. With a buttery, slightly crunchy graham cracker crust and an ultra-smooth filling that’s perfectly baked in a pie dish, this cheesecake is a dream come true for any dessert lover.

 Menu 2: Sizzling Steak and Summery Sides

Treat Dad to a perfectly cooked juicy steak with a flavorful sauce. Pair it with creamy corn pudding, a bright tomato and arugula salad, and a refreshing scoop of lemon almond ice cream. Brownies add the perfect finishing touch.

White plate holding one grilled ribeye steak, with a bite on a fork

Grilled Ribeye Steak with Dijon Sauce

Fire up your grill and get ready to make our time-tested Grilled Ribeye Steak Recipe! Over the years, my home gourmet mom perfected the “art of the grill” and identified the optimal mix of seasonings and cooking method to deliver tender, juicy, super flavorful grilled steaks. I’ve also included the recipe for a tangy Dijon, Caper, Green Onion Sauce to serve on the side.

cooked corn pudding in a glass dish, with a portion removed

Easy Corn Pudding Recipe

Moist, fluffy and soufflé-like, Southern Corn Pudding is perfection in every bite. Easy to prepare, too, with fresh, available ingredients – no canned corn or boxed cornbread mix. Plus, our Corn Pudding recipe dates back generations, so it’s definitely tried and true!

arugula spread on a blue platter, topped with roasted tomato halves, cheese and olives

Arugula and Tomato Salad with Balsamic Dressing

Tomatoes roasted with a mixture of fresh herbs and olive oil are the star in Arugula and Tomato Salad. These tantalizing beauties are served atop peppery arugula and surrounded by briny Kalamata olives and delicate fresh Mozzarella cheese. It’s all finished with a luscious, slightly sweet while still tangy Balsamic Dressing.

Pecan Cookie Cup with a scoop of Lemon Almond Ice Cream with berries

Lemon Almond Ice Cream

Super quick and easy, Lemon Almond Ice Cream will be your new favorite!

Close up of 2 Chewy Chocolate Brownies on a white platter

Chewy Chocolate Brownie Recipe With Unsweetened Chocolate

Rumored to be a favorite recipe of the legendary Katharine Hepburn, imagine deeply rich chocolate flavor, a fudgy texture that’s incredibly chewy, and a perfect balance of sweetness – all in one irresistible bite. Plus, this recipe relies on available/pantry ingredients and comes together so easily that you might just find yourself baking them every month, like me!

Menu 3: Quick and Easy Dad’s Day Treat

Short on time? No worries! This menu features a flavorful grilled chicken dish with goat cheese and tomatoes, a simple side of pasta (no recipe for this, just cook some fettuccini), a light spinach salad, and a delicious berry cobbler for dessert. Dad will love the taste and appreciate the effort (that didn’t take all day!).

Gold and white platter holding Grilled Chicken with Tomatoes and Goat Cheese

Grilled Chicken with Tomatoes and Goat Cheese

This Grilled Chicken with Tomatoes and Goat Cheese recipe bursts with freshness and is ready in just 45 minutes. Perfectly grilled chicken is topped with vibrant juicy tomatoes bathed in a creamy, tangy goat cheese sauce; the result is a colorful, light, and satisfying dish.

blue plate holding a serving of Easy Spinach Salad with wine glasses, forks and plates in the background

Easy Spinach Salad Recipe with Lemon Pine Nut Dressing

This Spinach Salad with Pine Nut Dressing is an excellent side dish to have in your recipe files. sometimes you need an uncomplicated dish that will add color and flavor to the plate, but not compete with the star. This spinach salad does all that, plus it’s quick and easy to prepare. And, the Lemon Dressing is bright and fresh.

Wicker basket lined with a green napkin and filled with Easy Drop Biscuits, with more biscuits on a cooling rack in the back

Quick Homemade Drop Biscuits – Easy Recipe!

Craving a warm, buttery biscuit straight from the oven? Our Easy Drop Biscuit Recipe is all you need! Crafted with pantry essentials and ready in less than 25 minutes, you’ll be well on your way to biscuit perfection.

white plate filled with a slice of Berry Cobbler, with a side of ice cream

Easy Berry Cobbler Recipe

A family favorite for over 40 years, this quick and easy Berry Cobbler Recipe takes only 5 minutes to prepare, with 5 ingredients. No batter mixing required!

Menu 4: Mediterranean Escape

Transport Dad to the sun-drenched shores of the Mediterranean with this flavorful menu. Chicken simmered with Kalamata olives and tomatoes is a taste of Greece, while the lemon rice, mixed green salad with a tangy mustard vinaigrette, anise bread, and magical lemon pudding cakes complete this delightful culinary journey.

one cooked chicken breast on a metal spatula, over a pan with more chicken and tomato-olive sauce

Chicken with Kalamata Olives and Tomatoes

These Italian-inspired Chicken Breasts with Tomato-Olive Sauce are quick to prepare for every day meals and elegant enough for entertaining, too. The flavor of the fresh tomatoes, onion, garlic and olives intensifies while cooking, resulting in a delicious, colorful sauce.

Easy Lemon Rice Side Dish

Lemon Rice is bright, creamy and easy enough for everyday, while elegant enough for entertaining. Long grain white rice and lemon zest are briefly sautéed in a bit of butter, then simmered in flavorful chicken broth. Five minutes before serving, lemon juice and cream are added. So easy, so delicious!

Mason jar filled with Dijon Mustard Vinaigrette, surrounded by its ingredients

Mixed Greens with Mustard Vinaigrette

This Vinaigrette Recipe is a variation of a classic French vinaigrette, adding mustard and garlic. The resulting dressing has bold, tangy flavors that add zest to any salad. I always keep a jar in my refrigerator, making it easy to quickly create a flavorful salad with most any greens.

three slices of Anise Bread on a red square plate; full loaf to the right

Anise Bread

This distinctive Anise Bread is different than any savory bread you’ve ever had. A crisp, brown crust flecked with sesame seeds surrounds a moist interior spiced with anise seeds. And no licorice flavor here; I don’t like black licorice and I love this bread!

Overhead view of small glass dishes filled with baked Lemon Pudding Cups

Magic Lemon Pudding Cakes

Sweet, tangy and pillowy light, Lemon Pudding Cakes are a refreshing way to end any meal. They’re made with just one easy batter that magically forms into two layers when baked – fluffy, moist lemon cake on top with creamy lemon pudding below, resulting in a dazzling amount of luscious lemony taste. The secret to the batter forming into two layers is in how it’s baked!

Menu 5: Festive Father’s Day Dinner

Celebrate Dad in style with this elegant and impressive menu. Parmesan-crusted salmon is a showstopper, perfectly paired with tender steamed new potatoes and crisp lemon Dijon green beans. For a delightful finish, a refreshing ginger blueberry lemon tart is sure to tantalize his taste buds.

overhead showing slices of Parmesan Crusted Salmon with bowl of Herb Mayo

Parmesan Breaded Salmon with Herb Mayo

Charming, delightful and crowd-pleasing, Parmesan Breaded Salmon with Herb Mayo will be the star of your next gathering. I’ve been serving this timeless recipe at my dinner parties for years. Not only is it fresh, enticing, and full of flavor, it’s also easy to prepare. All the prep work can be done the day before, leaving you to enjoy your guests!

overhead shot of white bowl holding Instant Pot New Potatoes

Steamed Red Potatoes with Herb Butter

Quick and easy to prepare in less than 15 minutes, steamed Red Potatoes are the perfect shortcut to a mouthwatering side dish. Cooked to perfection, all they need is melted butter, chopped parsley, and a sprinkle of salt to finish and serve.

Oval white dish filled with Lemon-Dijon Green Beans with Caramelized Shallots

Lemon Green Beans with Dijon Mustard

Indulge your taste buds with these oven-roasted green beans coated with a luscious blend of tangy olive oil, zesty lemon juice, and bold Dijon mustard. The pièce de résistance? Crispy caramelized shallots sprinkled on top, infusing each bite with a deeply rich sweetness and a bit of crunch.

Gingersnap crusted tart filled with creamy lemony filing and topped with blueberries

Ginger Blueberry Lemon Tart

This show-stopping Lemon Ginger Blueberry Tart starts with a gingersnap-rum crust that’s filled with a creamy, lemon-y mixture and topped with fresh blueberries. Yum!

Menu 6: Spring Shrimp Bake, A Feta & Tomato Delight

Welcome Dad with this light and flavorful menu. Oven-baked shrimp with juicy tomatoes and briny feta cheese is paired with a simple spinach salad, while herb bread adds a touch of rustic charm. Finish the meal on a sweet note with a classic blueberry cake topped with a crumbly, buttery topping.

3 white small baking dishes holding Baked Shrimp with Tomatoes and Feta

Oven Baked Shrimp with Tomatoes and Feta

Flavorful Italian plum tomatoes, briny capers, garlicky shrimp and tangy feta cheese come together in this Oven Baked Shrimp dish. Succulent shrimp are coated in a garlic butter sauce, nestled in a seasoned tomato sauce base and topped with crumbled feta, creating a melted layer of cheesy goodness.

wooden bowl holding a serving of spinach salad with raisins and peanuts and dressing on the side

Easy Spinach Salad Recipe With Zesty Curry Dressing

Are you on the lookout for a simple yet sensational salad recipe? Look no further, because we have the perfect dish for you! This quick and easy spinach salad recipe features a zesty curry dressing that will elevate your salad game to new heights.

Quick Herb Bread Recipe

This quick bread recipe is a family favorite, passed down to me by my mom. It uses a combination of whole wheat and all-purpose flour to provide both fiber and structure, and cornmeal to add natural sweetness – eliminating the need for refined sugar. To finish off the flavor profile, a touch of honey is added. The dried herbs and fennel included in the recipe create an unusual and complex, yet satisfying taste in this delicious bread.

Blueberry Cake on a cake stand with a slice of cake

Blueberry Delight Cake with Crumb Topping

Fresh, juicy blueberries are nestled in a moist cake batter and topped with a cinnamon and nutmeg flavored topping.

Menu 7: Italian Comfort, Pappardelle with Savory Veggies

Sometimes, comfort food is the way to Dad’s heart. This menu features a hearty dish of pappardelle pasta tossed with savory eggplant and mushrooms. A refreshing spinach salad with a unique curry dressing adds a touch of intrigue. Crusty French bread and a ginger cake bursting with warm flavors round out this satisfying meal.

mound of pappardelle pasta covered with mushroom and eggplant sauce

Quick Pappardelle with Mushrooms and Eggplant

A super easy pasta dish to prepare on a busy day, Quick Eggplant and Mushroom Pappardelle from my husband Robert is a crowd-pleaser! A bit sweet, a bit spicy, a bit earthy – it has a mouth-watering combination of flavors.

wooden bowl holding a serving of spinach salad with raisins and peanuts and dressing on the side

Easy Spinach Salad Recipe With Zesty Curry Dressing

Are you on the lookout for a simple yet sensational salad recipe? Look no further, because we have the perfect dish for you! This quick and easy spinach salad recipe features a zesty curry dressing that will elevate your salad game to new heights.

Light blue cake stand holding a Sticky Ginger Cake

Sticky Ginger Cake

Intensely flavorful and super moist, Sticky Ginger Cake isn’t your typical gingerbread – and it’s super easy to prepare, too. The warm, earthy flavor of ginger is combined with molasses, cinnamon and allspice, resulting in a deeply spiced, scrumptious cake. A two-ingredient lemon-sugar glaze is the perfect finish!

Note: this post was first shared in June 2010 with only one menu. In 2024, I expanded it to include 7 menus.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

collage of recipes that are contained in the 7 menus for father's day dinner

Share This With The World


About the author

Hi, I'm Lee.

I am inspired by my mother, Sally’s, love of cooking and entertaining to gather friends and family together over great meals and conversation. In fact, I held my first dinner party at the age of 16. Throughout the years, I’ve provided recipes, menu advice and cooking tips to friends seeking uncomplicated and delicious ideas for home entertaining.

Sign up for recipes, tips & more!
Join the club

Latest Posts