The grill tends to bring our family closer together during the summer and makes cooking so much more fun.

Cooking in our wide-open backyard while the kids play squealing and our dogs run around it such a different experience than cooking in our small kitchen during the cold winters. The smells and sounds are invigorating, plus I can cook while practicing cartwheels with my 7-year-old, watching my 5-year-old’s swing performance, and playing baseball with my 3-year-old.

Tonight, before we all piled on one couch with popsicles in hand (the best summer treat) to watch the Summer Olympics Opening Ceremonies, we headed outside to create a traditional summer family dinner with pork ribs, corn on the cob, zucchini, and baked beans – all on the grill.

I broke out my new Barbecue! Bible, which I love, because it breaks down all the different types of flavorings for meat and how to use them in detail. Since I can’t do anything by-the-book, I slightly altered a recipe for a rub. Plus,  I found a simple sauce to flavor the vegetables that I wasn’t even looking for, but couldn’t pass up.

Our meal took an unexpected turn when we realized I may have added too much Cayenne Pepper to the rub. Suddenly it became a challenge to see who could go the longest without the relief of a drink of milk after taking a bite of their pork rib. Embarrassingly enough, my 3-year-old son got the Gold Medal in this event.

What brings your family closer together for meal times? And how did your family get ready to cheer on this year’s U.S. Olympic Team?

Ragin’ Cajun Rub Recipe


  • 1/2 Cup Sea Salt
  • 1/4 Cup Paprika
  • 3 TBSP Fresh Ground Pepper
  • 1 TBSP Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 TBSP Dried Thyme
  • 1 TBSP Diced Onions
  • 1 TBSP Garlic Powder
  • 1 TBSP Honey Barbecue Sauce


Mix all ingredients together until blended well. Place your meat in a freezer bag. Pour in the Ragin’ Cajun Rub. Shake until the meat is covered and refrigerate at least 8-24 hours before cooking your meat on the grill or bake in the oven.

This rub works well with chicken, pork, or turkey.

Garlic Butter Vegetable Baste Recipe


  • 8 TBSP Butter
  • 3 Cloves Minced Garlic
  • 1/2 TBSP Fresh Ground Pepper


Melt butter, then mix in other ingredients until well blended.  Add to vegetables before cooking or while cooking as a baste.

In Good Cents is a Table Talk Contributor, sponsored by the  Indiana Family of Farmers. While I was not compensated for this post, I was provided with tools to enjoy some delicious summer food for inspiration. For more information, please read our terms & conditions and disclosure policy.

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