The sun is beginning to blaze as enter the dog days of summer. If you're breaking a sweat, we're here to help cool you down with top summer recipes. Soon, you'll be sipping on smoothies, giving the oven a much needed rest, and firing up the grill to make summer foods. Get some ideas below.
Grilled Corn and Avocado Salad
This is such a refreshing and delicious salad—and versatile too! Whip some up and eat it as is with a drizzle of dressing, layer some on top of a fresh grilled fish filet, use it as a dip for chips, or enjoy it as a base for chicken or steak. You can grill corn on the cob and cut it off the husk for added smokey flavor, but if you're in a rush, frozen will do just fine. This is one recipe you'll want to make all summer long.
Mimosas are already a cool and refreshing cocktail. These sorbet mimosas (!) make them even icier and more delicious. The great thing here is that you can choose the flavor. Stick with orange for traditional orange mimosa flavor. Use peach for a spin on a bellini. Even mix and match berry sorbets for a whole new cocktail. You can drink these for brunch or at a picnic in the afternoon. It's the perfect cocktail that will cool you down and taste delicious while it's at it.
BLT Pasta Salad
Ever made bacon on the grill? If you want to keep temperatures down in your kitchen, now's the time! We wouldn't suggest putting the bacon directly onto the grill grates because the grease will make a mess and cause serious flare-ups. Instead, you can use a high-heat proof pan (think 600 degrees) and cook it on there. That way, you can leave the oven idle and take the heat outside where it's already sweltering. The pasta will need to be boiled, so that's the only downside. However, if you make a big batch it'll last a long time and you won't need to cook or cause your kitchen to become overheated for a while.
Strawberry, Watermelon, And Chia Seed Smoothie
Chia seeds are a super food. They're packed with antioxidants, swimming with fiber, and have hardly any carbs of calories. Combined with strawberries and juicy watermelon, this is a seriously healthy smoothy. All you'll need is a blender, fruit, seeds, a few other ingredients, and a glass. You can add things like a mint leaf or a fruit slice gummy candy as a garnish or drink it as is. Even make this frozen by adding ice to the mix.
This cloud-like dessert will be one of your go-to summer desserts. With Cool Whip, marshmallows, crushed pineapple, and pudding, it's sweet, juicy, and light as air. You can amp up the summer appeal by hollowing out a pineapple or melon and using those shells as serving bowls. This makes a fantastic standalone dessert or side dish at picnics, so however you eat it, people will love it.
Cilantro Chicken and Strawberry Salsa
We've heard of mango salsa, but strawberry salsa is entirely new! Since strawberries will be ripe for the picking by June, you can head to the patch and bring some fresh berries home. Sun-ripened is always more flavorful and nutritious than store-bought, so if you can we highly recommend picking yourself! Then, you'll need to gather the rest of the supplies, fire up the grill, invite friends over, and enjoy this tremendously flavorful dish outdoors.
Lemonade stands tend to pop up on every corner during the summer. Make yourself an adult lemonade stand with this sangria recipe! You can use any white wine you like (something crisp is best), frozen lemonade, and then any fruit you love too. Darker fruits will stain the mixture, but if you aren't looking for a lemonade color, then who cares? If you are hosting a picnic and needed a big alcoholic punch for the party, try this. Most everyone loves lemonade, and adding fruit and wine to the mix will make them adore it even more.
Grilled Teriyaki Wraps
This is one refreshing wrap. Grilled teriyaki chicken rests on a bed of grilled pineapple and lettuce. Yum! You can really customize this with your favorite ingredients, but since teriyaki is sweet, you can put it with practically anything. Make your own marinade or use store-bought and allow the chicken to soak up the juices for at least three hours before grilling. Trust us, it'll be so much more savory and delicious that way. Since these sandwiches contain protein and veggies, they're really a complete meal, but you could always serve them with pasta salad or another side dish for more variety.
Fruity Cheesecake Salad
This doesn't require a springform pan or an oven! That's a double-win in the hot summer months. Instead, you'll need to wash fresh berries and mix them with this creamy mix. The chef of this particular dish used cream cheese and non-dairy creamer, but you can use real cream, extracts, and anything else that sounds good to you. Here's a tip: toasted coconut flakes or chocolate chips would make this amazing.
Chocolate Coconut Popsicles
Frozen treats don't have to be bad for you. These chocolate coconut popsicles are actually healthy (if you choose a lower fat coconut milk option)! If you're on a Paleo diet, they even work for you. Just combine coconut milk, cocoa powder, vanilla extract, and honey. Pop them in the freezer, wait a few hours, and then you'll have something ice cold to suck on. You could also add mint extract or almond to amp up the flavor. Just nix the coconut if you use mint and use cream or almond milk instead.
Pizza On The Grill
Pizzas and brick ovens are a traditional match-up—not in summertime though! Since pizzas need to cook at 400 degrees or higher, that's way too much heat for your kitchen during a heat wave. That's why a grill is such a great stand-in for this popular meal. The grill even adds something the oven can't—loads of charred, smokey flavor. The key to being successful with whatever pizza you make is to go light on the toppings and to cook one side of the dough first. Otherwise, it could get soggy and fall through the grates and no one wants that!
Ice Cream Cupcakes
Ice cream cupcakes are an absolutely genius substitute for cakes that need to be baked. While this person did bake cupcakes and layer ice cream on top, we suggest buying cake from the store and using it as a layering piece. That way, you won't have to get sweaty in the kitchen. Whether you choose mint and chocolate like this person or other flavors like vanilla and strawberry, you can make a ton of personal sized ice cream cupcakes in a snap. If you're having company, these can be made days and even weeks ahead. They'll cut down your stress and provide you with an easy dessert you can pop out of the freezer and onto plates.
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