Beach Vacation Recipes for Families

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One of the biggest questions when going on vacation is “What are we going to eat?” While there are dozens of excellent options to eat out when in North Topsail, NC, if you are vacating for several days, eating out 3 meals a day is not budget friendly, and likely not that healthy either. Plus, you’ll probably crave something homemade after a while. When making meals on vacation, you still want it to feel like vacation (aka not having to put forth much effort to prepare and clean up). We’ve compiled a list of our favorite family friendly snacks, meals, and desserts that are super easy to prepare and clean up, making them perfect for a beach vacation!


Italian Pepperoni Roll Ups - recipe and photo by Tastes of Lizzy T

7 steps, simple enough to recruit help from the kids, this roll up recipe carries well down to the pool or beach. It’s something different that tastes familiar. 


Octopus Veggie Platter (GF, V, DF) - recipe and photo by Eats Amazing

A healthy dish that looks like a treat, everyone will want to take a bite out of this veggie tray. Make once and set out at snack times. If your crowd doesn’t gobble this up the first time, cover with plastic wrap, store in the fridge, and get it back out the next day.


Watermelon Feta Salad - recipe and photo by Lauren Miyashiro

Another health conscious option, this salad has refreshing and fancy feelings to us! Quickly wish the dressing, chop the fruits, and combine. This recipe is sure to hit the spot on an extra hot day.



Cheese & Tomato Croissant Crabs - recipe and photo by Eats Amazing

A little prep work is required as you will need to preorder the Googly Eye Bento Picks, but assembling is super easy. Perfect sandwiches to enjoy for a lunch down by the pool.

Homestyle Ground Beef Casserole - recipe and photo by Southern Living

Hardy recipe designed to feed a crowd, follow the make ahead directions at the bottom of the recipe to make life simpler when on vacation. 


Spicy Smoked Sausage Alfredo Bake - recipe and photo by Let’s Dish Recipes

Tried and true crowd pleaser recipe, perfect to make ahead, pack up, and heat up when ready to eat. Not a fan of spicy foods? The recipe is easy to adapt to have less heat.





Easy Sand Dollar Cookies - recipe and photo by OHMY! Creative

Just 3 ingredients, everyone will want to participate in making their own sand dollar cookie. Simple to assemble and minimal time in the oven, you’ll feel “beachy” as you nibble away.

*If you wish to make your cookies homemade, check out this Soft Brown Sugar Cookie recipe by


Hershey’s Bar Pie - recipe and photo by Hersheyland

Make ahead or assemble while on vacation, this 3 ingredient dessert is refreshingly chocolatey and delicious. After making this dessert once, it’s sure to become requested at every Summer vacation.

Under the Sea Graham Crackers - recipe and photo by Beth @ The First Year

The perfect snack that doubles as an activity for the little ones. Use as few or many ingredients as you want to make your edible masterpiece.



Ocean Water Punch (Non-Alcoholic) - recipe and photo by Brandie @ by The Country Cook

This “ocean water” is sure to give you all the beach vacation vibes! Just 3 ingredients, make a big batch, add to a pitcher, and drink throughout your stay. 

A Day at the Beach (Alcoholic) - recipe and photo by Mr. Boston

Orange juice, amaretto grenadine, and flavored run, this drink is perfect for an adults night, enjoying the views from your balcony!


Beach Bum Smoothie - recipe and photo by Tropical Smoothie Café

Refreshing chocolatey and fruity smoothie, perfect for an easy drink to prepare in time to watch the sun rise.