Here we are at this intersection of circumstances that together indicate, strongly, that I am just not going to be cooking much this summer.
It’s summer, and warm weather has finally settled in. We’re super short on time, especially because we’re busy prepping our house to show to prospective buyers. And let me tell you, I am just plain done cleaning and re-cleaning and re-re-cleaning the kitchen to perfection only to mess it up again every time I cook up another meal.
“Is it bad if I just don’t use the stove for the next month or so?” I asked my guy. He’s in. Dinner-wise, we’re thinking two things: lots of no-cook, fresh, super easy meals, and tons of grilling. (Stay tuned for recipes on both fronts, but today, I’m focusing on the no-cook. If you’re eager for grilling ideas, be sure to see this wonderful round-up over on Oh My Veggies.)
One of the bonuses of doing round-ups is that you can gather all the ideas you would have collected anyway, but you can also publish your list to share with readers. Kind of like having your cake and eating it too. Except cake requires baking in the oven and getting batter on the countertops and, NO! Not going to happen right now. Not in my kitchen!
I’ve prepped a little, knowing these crazy times lie ahead. I cooked and froze quinoa, rice, and beans (and stocked up on canned beans, too). I roasted up a batch of red peppers, and they’re sitting in the fridge in all their scarlet glory, just waiting for some delicious application or another.
Meat-wise, I like the idea of just grabbing a rotisserie chicken from the store and adding it to salads and wraps as my carnivores desire, or stocking up on cold cuts.
And so here are 47 no-cook summer dinner ideas for when we’re short on time, or the weather is sweltering, or you’re tired of doing a gazillion and one dishes when you should be out soaking up the last evening bits of warm summer sun, or when you are going to shut yourself into a room and scream into a pillow if you have to scrub the uncleanable stove pan things one more time. Or, you know, all of the above, all at once.
Tofu & Spring Rolls
I love the idea of both chilled tofu and spring rolls. And maybe even both together. In fact, I think I might just make a Frankenstein no-cook dinner out of all four of these recipes.
- Chilled Tofu with Scallions and Soy Sauce - Fifteen Spatulas
- Hiyaykko (Japanese Cold Tofu) - The Kitchn
- Spring Roll Bites - White on Rice Couple
- Super Power Spring Rolls with Almond Butter Dipping Sauce - Iowa Girl Eats
Sandwiches & Wraps
Throw a few chopped veggies on the side and you’ve got the quintessential quick meal.
- Chickpea Salad Sandwich - Olives for Dinner
- Roasted Red Pepper Sandwiches
- Creamy Greek Salad Sandwich Wraps with Optional Chicken
- Collard Green Burritos with Almond-Lime Dipping Sauce - Dishing Up the Dirt
Dips, Spreads, & Antipasto
Add a loaf of French bread, an assortment of crackers, and some fresh fruit and you have the most delicious summer meal pretty much ever.
- Seven Layer Hummus Dip - Domestic Fits
- White Bean & Kale Pesto Dip
- No-Cook Summer Antipasto with Cannellini Beans - The Perfect Pantry
- Summer Vegetarian Antipasto from Leftovers, Odds, & Ends - Herbivoracious
- Tapas Plate with Marinated Chickpeas - Love and Olive Oil
- Cheese Plate 101 - Ezra Pound Cake
- Kopanisti (Greek Feta & Pepperoncini Spread)
Salads, Salads, Everywhere!
The obvious choice – but for a reason. Salads bring endless possibilities, and they’re the perfect refreshing, cool no-cook dinner for sweltering summer nights.
- Spiced Carrot Chickpea Salad - Love & Lemons
- Lemony Butter Bean, Avocado, and Baby Arugula Salad
- Kale Salad with Apricots, Avocado, and Almonds - Warm Vanilla Sugar
- Fig & Bleu Cheese Salad - The Little Kitchen
- Fresh Corn, Tomato, and Zucchini Salad - Recipe Girl
- Zucchini Ribbon Salad with Sweet Corn and Avocado - Two Peas and Their Pod
- Summertime Chopped Salad - How Sweet It Is
- Chopped Greek-Style Salad with Red, Yellow, and Orange Bell Pepper - Kalyn’s Kitchen
- Artichoke Salad with Spinach, Feta, and Sugar Snap Peas - Greek Vegetarian
- Strawberry Feta Salad
- Spring Berry Salad with Lemon Verbena Vinaigrette - Oh My Veggies
- Kalyn’s Favorite Antipasto Chopped Salad - Kalyn’s Kitchen
- Peach and Arugula Salad with Balsamic Vinaigrette - In Sock Monkey Slippers
- Tomato-Mozzarella Salad with Sweet Peppers and Parsley - Three Many Cooks
- The Signature Salad - Brown Eyed Baker
- Heirloom Tomato and Arugula Salad - Dishing Up the Dirt
- Layered Raw Taco Salad for Two - Oh She Glows
- Summer Corn Salad - 101 Cookbooks
- Fresh Corn Salad with Mango - Heather Christo Cooks
- Greek Salad with Sundried Tomatoes, Feta, and Olives - Family Fresh Cooking
- Parmesan Celery Salad - 101 Cookbooks
- Zucchini Pappardelle with Shaved Pecorino - The Well Floured Kitchen
Soup in a (Cold) Snap
I remember when the idea of cold soup used to make me, well, shiver. Not anymore. Give me a good gazpacho and I’m happy as a clam – and cool as a cucumber.
- Gazpacho - The Wicked Noodle
- Cucumber Wasabi Gazpacho - From Away
- Green Zebra Gazpacho with Cucumber and Avocado - Kalyn’s Kitchen
- Watermelon Jalapeno Gazpacho with Feta - Simple Nourished Living
- Peach Gazpacho - Savory Simple
- Mango & Almond White Gazpacho - White on Rice Couple
- Chilled Cucumber Soup - Country Living
- Chilled Cucumber Avocado Soup - Tartelette
Breakfast for Dinner
It’s not just for pancakes anymore!
Just say aaaah.
- Summer Berry Salad - Not Without Salt
- No Cook Egg-Free Peanut Butter Cup Ice Cream - Chocolate Moosey
- Raw Vegan Coconut Brownies - Food Doodles
- Raw Trail Mix Energy Cookies - Food Doodles
- Strawberry Granita with Candied Mint Leaves - Domestic Fits
- Mexican Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding - Oh My Veggies
- Skinny Vanilla Bean Cheesecake Popsicles
- Cardamom Horchata - Savory Simple