Recipes from the family farm to your backyard.

Firing up the grill is an American tradition. The farm families who produce the food so many people enjoy at backyard cookouts want to share some of their favorite grilling recipes, as well as an appreciation for how food gets from the farm to the table.

Farmers like Amanda Folkens, from Iowa, Danell Kalcevic, from Colorado, and Nicole Small, from Kansas, have joined with more than 70 other farmer volunteers across the country in the CommonGround program as a way to talk with home cooks about how food is grown and raised. 

“On our farm, animal care is top priority, as it is for thousands of other family farms in the U.S.” said Amanda. “By keeping our animals indoors, we make sure they are protected from predators, disease and bad weather.” 

To learn more about family farms and facts about your food, visit

Here are some of Amanda, Danell and Nicole’s favorite grilling recipes. 



Safe Minimum Internal Temperatures

145°F  Beef, pork, veal and lamb (roasts, steaks and chops)

160°F  Ground meat  

165°F  Poultry (whole, parts or ground)       


Things to Know Before You Shop the Meat Case

— There’s no need to pay extra for poultry or pork that’s labeled hormone-free. USDA prohibits farmers from using hormones to raise chicken and pigs.

— Nearly all beef cattle, whether raised organically or conventionally, spend the majority of their lives on pastures eating grass.

— Purchasing organic, grass-fed and free-range meats does not make them safer to consume. These labels refer to how the animals are raised, but all meat and poultry can contain bacteria that could cause illness.

— Most cases of foodborne illness can be prevented with proper processing, handling and cooking of food to destroy bacteria.


Grilled Hawaiian Ham Sandwich

By Amanda Folkens

Serves: 1


            1          tablespoon brown sugar

            1/2       tablespoon seasoning pepper

            1 to 2   1/4-inch thick ham slices (about the

                                    same thickness as the bread)

                        Cooking spray

                        Pineapple slices (can be fresh or


            2          slices sourdough bread                       


Preheat grill for high heat. 

Mix brown sugar with pepper to create a rub mixture.

Using your hands, massage the rub onto both sides of the slices of ham. Ham slices should be completely covered (front and back) with brown sugar mix.

Place ham slices on sheet of lightly greased foil, then place onto grill.

On separate sheet of greased foil, lay pineapple slices out, uncovered.

Cook for 6 to 8 minutes or until brown caramelization appears around edges of ham and pineapple.

Remove ham and pineapple from heat and assemble onto toasted sourdough bread.


Beef Rack of Ribs

By Danell Kalcevic

Serves: 4 to 6


                        Salt (to taste)

            1          tablespoon black pepper (to taste)

            1          tablespoon seasoned garlic salt

                                    (to taste)

                        Cayenne pepper (optional)

            1 to 2   racks of beef ribs (number of racks

                                    based on number of people)

            1          tablespoon yellow mustard

            1/3       cup brown sugar

                        One bottle of favorite barbeque


The night before serving, prepare rub for beef ribs (salt, pepper, seasoned garlic salt and optional cayenne pepper). Sprinkle both sides of ribs and then rub vigorously. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.

In the morning, place on medium temperature grill and spread yellow mustard and brown sugar on each side of the ribs. Grill for 5 to 8 minutes until each side is slightly browned and caramelized.

Remove ribs from grill and slice with sharp knife. Place individual ribs in a crock pot on low. Add one bottle of your favorite barbeque sauce. Let simmer 6 to 8 hours.


Country Barbecue Potatoes

By Nicole Small

Serves: 4 to 6


            2          pounds small red potatoes

            2          tablespoons butter, melted

            1          teaspoon honey

            3          teaspoons seasoned salt

            1/2       teaspoon salt

            1/4       teaspoon garlic powder

            1/4       teaspoon pepper


Preheat oven to 450°F.

Coat 9 x 13 baking pan with nonstick spray.

Cut potatoes into small to medium–sized pieces and put in pan.

Melt butter and honey, and then drizzle over potatoes. Sprinkle with seasoned salt, salt, garlic powder and pepper. Toss well to coat.

Bake, uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes, or until potatoes are tender and golden brown. Stir potatoes at least once.




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