Great Summer Recipes

My Favorites - and Yours!

Chocolate Crunch Peanut Butter Ice Cream Cake. Linda Larsen

At the start of every season, I like to browse through my recipe collection and look for some of my all time favorites. Summer in my neck of the woods means hot, humid weather with pretty frequent thunderstorms, gardening in my flower beds and pots, and trying to keep cool! My best summer recipes reflect all of these wonderful things.

Enjoy these recipes and bookmark them so you can refer back to them often this summer.

And be sure to get outside and plant! I always plant tomatoes, green peppers, and lots of herbs including basil, chives, and tarragon.

Best Summer Recipes

  • Italian Bread Salad
    Boboli pizza crusts are cubed and used in this excellent salad recipe. If you'd like more crunch, toast the cubes before tossing them with the other salad ingredients.
  • Chicken Melon Salad
    When you find really sweet, ripe melons, be sure to make this easy five ingredient salad recipe. I like to buy individually frozen boneless chicken breasts, bake them according to the package directions, then cut them into big chunks for this salad.
  • Mexican Chicken Salad
    This recipe has a long list of ingredients, but many are seasonings, and this salad is partially prepared ahead of time.
  • Lemon Chili Chicken
    These very flavorful chicken breasts are delicious cooked on an indoor grill or on an outdoor gas or charcoal grill.
  • Shrimp and Snap Pea Salad
    This fresh and easy salad recipe is a winner. You could make it with cooked salmon or chicken if you'd like.
  • All-American Burgers
    These super moist and juicy burgers start with the freshest ground beef you can find. Mine must be topped with melted American cheese, mustard, lettuce, and tomato.
  • Pasta Cobb Salad
    Cobb salad is a delicious recipe, but I've made it better by turning it into a pasta salad.
  • Easy Tartufo
    These little ice cream balls covered in chocolate are a wonderful dessert. Serve a few in a dish topped with whipped cream and savor life.

Main dish salads are a summer staple. I like the fact that I can make them in the cool of the morning or after dark, and keep them in the fridge for a few days. We eat them until they are gone, which also saves lots of kitchen time! I like using the best of summer's produce and herbs in these salads. I also make sure to have some canned staples on hand so I can still prepare good meals even if the power is off.

Grilling is a major part of summer. I use marinades a to tenderize meat and add flavor. Grilling main dish salads is also fun and the texture and temperature contrast is wonderful. And dinner packets wrapped in foil cooked on the grill are some of the best meals ever; and cleanup is nil.

No cook desserts also use the best of summer produce and help cool us down when it's just too hot. Just bringing a frozen dessert out of the freezer in a billow of cold air makes me feel cooler.

Picnics are an important part of summer; pack these easy recipes and have fun.