I feel like Summer brings a refresh. Come summer, the things I crave to eat and cook shift drastically. Give me all the great fresh salads, anything grilled, and lots of corn! When I think of summer dishes, I think of fresh farmer’s market finds all the fruit and easy simple dishes. There’s something so easy and effortless about summertime cooking.
Sometimes all you need is a grill to cook an entire meal. Or nothing at all and simply use fresh amazing ingredients and mix it all together. To get inspired for your next summer get-together from backyard BBQs, to 4th of July celebrations, or just simple healthy and delicious weeknight dinners, these are some easy summer recipes to try. I’ve bookmarked these in hopes to whip them up myself.
From summer salads, side dishes, grilled meats, and more, I’ve got all the easy summer recipes to try this season. If you’re a vegetarian, pescetarian, or ready to try some new ingredients, I’m sure one of these dishes will be a hit!
The vegetable of choice for summer BBQs is always, hands down, corn. I grew up eating corn on the cob all the time but as an adult, I have grown to love grilled corn. Mexican grilled corn is even better, but let’s get back to this salad. A cold summer salad of grilled corn, tomatoes, onions, a little jalapeño, and some fresh herbs and you’ve got my attention. Plus, this makes for a great taco topper if you ask me!
Whenever I see a kale caesar salad on a menu, it scares me a little bit. Kale is one of those vegetables that I feel has gotten a bad rep but you just have to figure out how you like it cooked/prepared. It’s always such a good combination of cheesy salty dressing with hearty greens that are always super filling. Add some grilled shrimp to it and you’ve got a perfect summer meal. This one from Camille Styles is stunning. I’ve been wanting to try to recreate it at home, but you know, lazy. But then I stumbled onto this simple and totally approachable recipe for a kale, avocado caesar.
My type of salad right here! Soba noodles are one of those things I’ve always wanted to try making at home. They’re one of my favorite things to eat out, but I for some reason am so intimidated by this dish at home. This summer recipe full of delicious fresh veggies has me ready to tackle this dish! I also love the idea of grilling the corn to add in versus boiling it for extra summer flavor.
Grilled Stone Fruit Panzanella Salad
A panzanella salad is an Italian classic and I feel like is always overlooked. A panzanella salad is full of big crunchy croutons mixed with fresh veggies and a simple dressing. It’s one of the best salads you can make. The croutons start to soak up the dressing and absorb all the great flavor. For summer, adding grilled stone fruit like this recipe puts a fresh summer spin on it. This also has me convinced that adding fruit to your salad is always a good idea. Plus, look how colorful it is.
Never would’ve thought to grill a green bean, but here we are and Gaby has convinced me otherwise. This grilled green bean salad with avocado and fresh dill (an underutilized herb in my opinion) looks divine. Great to serve alongside a steak dinner, or grilling shrimp to go with it too. A fresh, easy, and healthy weeknight dinner for sure!
Anytime I see anything Lemon Pepper Chicken, I jump right on it! I love anything that’s served on a stick and has been grilled to perfection. It’s nice that everything is all in one easy kabob. Vegetables, protein, it’s all delicious. Throw it all over some flavorful lemon rice and you have the perfect summer dinner that’s healthy and easy! This grilled chicken recipe will be a summer favorite and perfect as leftovers for the week.
I am a sandwich girl. More importantly, I am a warm sandwich kind of girl. Grilled veggies are a must for summertime. Toss them in a delicious flavorful quick marinade and toss them on the grill or cast-iron skillet if you’re like me and live in a high rise. Grab all your favorite summer veggies like summer squash, peppers, and zucchini. The burrata gets all nice and melty on this sandwich making it one epic meal if you ask me.
A great pasta salad to make for a potluck is this BLT and avocado pasta salad. It has a lemon pesto tahini dressing that’s got lots of fresh basil flavors throughout. It’s crunchy, fresh, and a bit smoky from the bacon. A delicious and easy side dish to make for guests. Just add grilled chicken for a fully complete meal! And bonus points for this being an easy dish to whip up ahead of time to make summer entertaining a bit easier for you.
Can’t have a list of great summer recipes without some sort of burger. A turkey burger topped with gooey cheese and fresh guacamole sounds like the perfect combination to me. Go crazy and make this from scratch, or get some help from store-bought items to make life a little easier. Either way, this is a great lighter option than a heavy beef burger.
Summer afternoons are not complete without a super easy and delicious smoothie. Rosalynn’s recipes always look so delicious and easy and this smoothie is calling my name. But it’s the cup of rum in these that makes them truly perfect for a summer afternoon on the patio. And how can you not love this pretty pink hue? Fresh watermelon, coconut milk, and rum is all you need. Is it time for me to finally buy a Vitamix?
Margaritas are a go-to drink for me and my girlfriends. A summer menu just wouldn’t be complete without a refreshing cocktail to wash it all down with. Margaritas are my go-to choice for summer drinks because they’re refreshing with the zest of lime. Adding in strawberries, or really any fruit you like will work, making this a touch sweeter and a bit more colorful. Another flavor combo to try, is watermelon jalapeño for a sweet and spicy combination that never fails.
While you’ve got your grill (or Traeger) running, might as well use it to make dessert, right? These mini cast iron skillet chocolate chip cookie s’mores are so damn cute and delicious. A big regret not topping this with ice-cold vanilla ice cream though. You live and you learn. Use store-bought cookie dough to make this super quick and easy. Add them to your grill when you sit down for dinner, and when you’re all done and ready for something sweet, these will be waiting for you. I can’t recommend them enough.
I grew up eating a fruit and berry tart just like this and it is always my favorite thing to make and see at a summer get-together. A standard berry tart gets a whole new twist with the addition of almond extract in the cream cheese tart filling. I’m such a fan of almond extract so this has me eager to try this summer. I love a simple berry tart and this one is calling my name! Bring this to your next BBQ and people will love you forever. It’s also absolutely beautiful!
What are y’all cooking up in the kitchen this Summer? As always, thank y’all for stopping by and reading. I will see y’all back here next time.