Summer cookout season is here! Entertain your horsey and non-horsey guests with these fun presentations for some simple horse inspired side dishes at your next cookout.

Set the Stage with Décor

You can use old metal feed scoops as candle holders for table centerpieces. Hay or straw bales with blankets make easy extra seating. Use a water trough filled with ice to keep drinks cold. Encourage your guests to wear their favorite boots or barn wear, keeping it casual and fun for everyone involved.

Chopped Hay Salad

Start everyone off with a healthy ration of forage. You could make this more like coleslaw with light green cabbage as the “hay” for a grass hay type salad, or make an alfalfa type chopped hay salad using darker greens like kale and Swiss chard. Using your favorite salad or coleslaw recipe, cut your greens into long, thin strips to make them appear more like pieces of hay.

Sweet Feed Corn Salad

Any southwest style corn salad recipe can easily pass as “sweet feed” with the different whole ingredients such as corn, peppers, onions, and black beans. Serve your “sweet feed” in a food safe container placed inside a clean and new feed bucket or feed scoop.

Carrots and Apples

Of course the simplest of horse treats would be carrots and apples! Include these two foods in your veggie and fruit trays with dip.

Stud Muffin No Bake Cookies

Stud Muffins are a favorite treat for many horses and their human counterpart is definitely the no bake cookie! Make up a batch of chocolate peanut butter no bake cookies and roll them into balls. Serve in a thoroughly washed Stud Muffin treat tub lined with parchment paper for extra authenticity!

Chocolate Donut Holes Served on a Pitchfork

This is a hilarious way to serve up dessert at your cookout! Obviously you will want to use a brand new, never-seen-the-barn pitchfork for this. You can use just the head of the pitchfork placed on your serving table or make a stand to prop up the pitchfork tines to make sure everyone can see your display. Stack chocolate donut holes on the pitchfork and you can even sprinkle large slivers of coconut or white chocolate shavings on top of the “pile” to look like sawdust! The more realistic the better!

Have Fun!

Themed parties are when you really get to have fun with your creativity. Pinterest is a great way to find recipes and more ideas for your horse inspired cookout. Labels and presentation are what level up your dishes from regular food to “horse” food, so go all out!

Have you ever hosted or attended a horse or barn inspired cookout?


Jen and her husband, Clayton, bought their farm in August of 2018 and love living the simple country life. They share their home and farm with their dogs, cats, horses, and chickens. Jen loves learning and is always researching new things for the farm, house, animals, and natural wellness. Her favorite mantra is “thoughts are things” and hopes to inspire and empower people to create abundance and sustainability in their own lives. Follow Jen on Instagram @steelspoonfarm and read her blog at



Jen Kibler

Jen Kibler is a freelance writer, virtual assistant, and hobby farmer.

June 13, 2019