13 Simple Summer Dinners
Quick and easy dinners
Summertime and the living is easy—and your approach to mealtime should be, too. This year, instead of sweating it out in front of a scalding oven, try these no-cook (or minimal-cook) recipes for dinner. They're packed with good-for-you ingredients and tons of flavor, so even though you're spending less time in the kitchen, you won't be sacrificing a delicious meal. From a Mediterranean-inspired mezze plate to a fresh, light gazpacho, we've got the dishes that'll give you more of those summer days back without sacrificing your wholesome diet.
Sun-Dried Greek Pasta
Try this recipe: Sun-Dried Greek Pasta
With sun-dried tomatoes and fresh spinach, this dish strikes a fresh and classic Mediterranean tone.
Ingredients: kosher salt, short-grain pasta, olive oil, sun-dried tomatoes, white wine vinegar, garlic, Dijon mustard, dried oregano, kosher salt, baby spinach, red onion, crumbled feta
BBQ Black Bean and Quick Slaw Tacos
Try this recipe: BBQ Black Bean and Quick Slaw Tacos
These vegetarian tacos may be meatless but they sure don't lack for flavor. BBQ beans serve as the protein while cabbage lends a refreshing crunch, along side classic Mexican flavors like jalapeño and cotija cheese.
Ingredients: lime juice, mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar, kosher salt, red cabbage, green apple, green onions, fresh cilantro, black beans, barbecue sauce, kosher salt, corn tortillas, avocados, jalapeño, cotija cheese
Chicken Salad Remix
Try this recipe: Chicken Salad Remix
When it comes to fresh-tasting dinners, it's tough to beat a spinach salad tossed with grapes and fresh dill. Extra tip: Extend the life of fresh dill by adding a paper towel to the produce bag to catch excess moisture.
Ingredients: mayonnaise, soy sauce, fresh dill, garlic, pepper, pulled rotisserie chicken, seedless red grapes, chopped pecans
Smoked Trout Succotash Salad
Try this recipe: Smoked Trout Succotash Salad
A salad filled with refreshing summer produce like heirloom tomatoes and corn is elevated with smoked trout, a fish high in protein, B vitamins, magnesium, and phosphorus. Fresh herbs are the perfect garnish for this crunchy-meets-juicy summer salad.
Ingredients: Olive oil mayonnaise, dill, honey, cider vinegar, buttermilk, corn kernels, cucumber, smoked trout, basil, butterhead lettuce, heirloom tomatoes
Vegetable Pad Thai
Try this recipe: Vegetable Pad Thai
Give Pad Thai a healthy makeover with spiralized veggie noodles made from yellow squash. This lighter version of the classic meal still includes ingredients like lime, peanut butter, ginger, and bean sprouts, so you get the dish's same flavorful staples. Plus, with 20 grams of protein and 6 grams of fiber, you're treating your body to a great takeout alternative.
Ingredients: Peanut butter, lime juice, soy sauce, ketchup, ginger, crushed red pepper, yellow squash, carrots, peanuts, bean sprouts
Mashed White Bean-Pesto Tartines
Try this recipe: Mashed White Bean-Pesto Tartines
Mix up your usual avocado toast habit with this new savory toast recipe. It's topped with a homemade bean-based pesto, fresh herbs, and tangy cheese and might just give your avo toast a run for its money. With 13 grams of fiber and 17 grams of protein, this toast is sure to satisfy you during dinnertime.
Ingredients: Cannellini beans, garlic, lemon zest, salt, pistachios, parsley, mint, olive oil, sprouted-grain bread, Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Meze Plates With Homemade Tabbouleh
Try this recipe: Meze Plates with Homemade Tabbouleh
Make your own vegetable-based tabbouleh and tomato salad in 20 minutes flat for a dinner that's brimming with Middle Eastern-inspired flavors and fresh vegies. Cauliflower acts as the base in this grain-free tabbouleh, so this dinner has only 4 grams of saturated fat and 5 mg of cholesterol.
Ingredients: Cauliflower, parsley, mint, olive oil, chickpeas, red onion, olives, baba ghanoush, artichokes, red bell pepper, pita
Avocado Gazpacho With Shrimp
Try this recipe: Avocado Gazpacho with Shrimp
Soup isn't usually the most summer-y dinner option, but a chilled version, like this avocado gazpacho, is sure to satiate your soup craving without making you break a sweat. To make this simple recipe, blend light, fresh ingredients like cucumber and avocado in a blender and then chill. Shrimp adds protein to this dish and the avocado delivers your daily dose of healthy fats.
Ingredients: Club soda, rice vinegar, tarragon, tomatillos, salt, avocados, jalapeno, shrimp, olive oil, grape tomatoes, orange bell pepper, cilantro, cucumber
Layered Mexican Chicken Salad
Try this recipe: Layered Mexican Chicken Salad
Have your tacos in salad form with this crunchy and savory meal. With mix-ins like black beans and guacamole, this dish delivers plenty of calcium, iron, and protein and will keep you feeling full.
Ingredients: Plum tomatoes, red onion, cilantro, cayenne pepper, lime juice, olive oil, black beans, romaine lettuce, rotisserie chicken, corn, tortilla chips, guacamole, sour cream, cumin
Ponzu Grilled Salmon With Golden Beet Couscous
Salmon is rich in heart-healthy fats and protein, plus it tastes divine with this tangy, Asian-influenced sauce. Couscous adds fiber, and this recipe even sneaks in a little vitamin A-rich spinach.
Ingredients: Olive oil, shallots, golden beets, Israeli couscous, salt, spinach, oranges, brown sugar, soy sauce, sake, limes, cornstarch, crushed red pepper, salmon, cooking spray
Filet Mignon With Roquefort and Red Leaf
Try this recipe: Filet Mignon With Roquefort and Red Leaf
This salad provides a rich flavor with the deliciously pungent cheese and filet mignon. You’ll also get iron, protein, and plenty of veggies in each bite.
Ingredients: Yukon Gold potatoes, olive oil, thyme, rosemary, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, garlic, shallot, honey, sugar, canola oil, sea salt, black pepper, yellow onion, filet mignon steaks, red leaf lettuce, tomatoes, Roquefort blue cheese
Beef, Okra, and Potato Kebabs
Try this recipe: Beef, Okra, and Potato Kebabs
Throw these on the grill for a smoky, low-cal meal. Okra may seem like an odd veggie to put on a kebab, but it is rich in vitamin A and absorbs the savory grilled flavor perfectly.
Ingredients: Fingerling potatoes, parsley, horseradish, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, olive oil, black pepper, salt, red bell pepper, okra, shallots, sirloin steak, yellow squash, cooking spray
Jamie Oliver’s Summertime Tagliarini
Try this recipe: Jamie Oliver’s Summertime Tagliarini
The blend of pine nuts, lemons, and cheese creates the perfect savory sauce in this divine pasta. You’ll get nutty and tangy flavors in each bite, plus plenty of calcium. Try adding roasted zucchini for a boost of veggies.
Ingredients: Pine nuts, lemons, parsley, olive oil, Parmesan cheese, pecorino cheese, black pepper, sea salt, tagliarini
Sesame Seed-Crusted Salmon Burger With Yogurt Sauce
Try this recipe: Sesame Seed-Crusted Salmon Burger With Yogurt Sauce
This Asian-inspired recipe takes a step away from traditional burgers. Heart-healthy salmon is combined with Japanese breadcrumbs, ginger, sesame seeds, and soy sauce for a flavor-packed burger under 500 calories.
Ingredients: Salmon, baby spinach, panko, lemons, ginger, soy sauce, sesame seeds, salt, black pepper, Greek yogurt, dill, garlic, olive oil cooking spray, whole-wheat hamburger buns
Try this recipe: Heirloom Gazpacho
This tangy soup is delicious and packed with vitamin C. It works great as an appetizer, but you can also combine it with some Hearty Multigrain Bread and a summer salad like this Strawberry and Arugula Salad With Crispy Prosciutto for a complete meal.
Ingredients: Heirloom tomatoes, garlic, sugar, sherry vinegar, olive oil, sea salt, black pepper, yellow and orange bell peppers, basil, large shrimp
Soft Tacos With Spicy Chicken
Try this recipe: Soft Tacos With Spicy Chicken
These spicy, tender tacos will satisfy your craving for South of the Border flavors. And because oregano, cilantro, and chiles add big flavor, not big calorie counts, you can enjoy them with chips and guacamole.
Ingredients: Chicken breasts, salt, black pepper, bay leaf, oregano, chipotle chiles, red onion, white wine vinegar, olive oil, dark beer, corn tortillas, cilantro, salsa
Grilled Shrimp "Souvlaki"
Try this recipe: Grilled Shrimp "Souvlaki"
This Greek dish combines seafood, veggies, and plenty of fresh herbs for a delicious, fiber-packed Mediterranean meal.
Ingredients: Large shrimp, lemons, olive oil, dill, oregano, Greek yogurt, garlic, cucumber, pepper, cherry tomatoes, whole-grain flatbreads, red onion, romaine lettuce