Summer days are officially here and whether you’re off for the summer or not, this season almost always includes fun with family and friends, more time outdoors, and celebrations that often involve good food.
With the warm weather, you’ll probably find yourself looking to spend less time in the kitchen and more time enjoying other activities. Perhaps you’re going on a picnic, attending a family barbecue, or you’re simply not in the mood for the heavier comfort foods we all crave in the winter.
These recipes are perfect for summer. Many use fresh ingredients that are easier to find this time of year, a few of them are lighter/healthier options if you’re trying to stay in swimsuit shape, and just about all of them are great for sharing. Ideal for these months where your calendar seems to always be full with social events.
Enjoy these relaxing days of summer with friends, family, warm weather and good food.
Lemon buttercream sandwich cookies
Fresh lemon takes these seemingly ordinary butter cookies and makes them summery citrus delights. And while tasty on their own, the flavorful cream filling is what really sets them apart. Chewy with a soft crunch and a creamy inside, they are the perfect combination of cookie textures. Mix up a batch for your next summer gathering. Click here for the recipe.
Pineapple banana whip with coconut
With summer weather here, it seems that tempting treats like ice cream and happy hour cocktails are all around. While it’s nice to indulge occasionally, you also want to feel (and look) your best while you’re lounging poolside or hitting the beach. That’s why this treat is so perfect for summer. In addition to tasting great, this refreshing blend is good for you too! Click here for the recipe.
Slow cooker barbecue pulled chicken
Put a twist on the traditional barbecue chicken by using your crock pot to cook this tender pulled chicken. Sweet and tangy with just a bit of a spicy kick, it’ll be a crowd pleaser at your next summer party. And because there’s such little preparation required, you can enjoy yourself without slaving over a hot grill or oven. Just add all the ingredients to your slow cooker and let it do the work. Shred and pile on a toasted bun, and you have the perfect juicy and flavorful barbecue sandwich. Serve alongside corn on the cob or coleslaw for a meal that simply tastes like summer. Click here for the recipe.
Grilled banana boats
These grilled banana boats are a unique and tasty way to end your next barbecue meal. Simply slice a banana lengthwise to create a pocket that can be filled with fixings of your choice. Wrap your banana in foil and cook on the grill. In 5-10 minutes you’ll have a caramelized banana with a delicious gooey filling. Click here for the recipe.
Citrus poppy seed oat muffins
Lemon has a bright, fresh flavor that’s meant for warm sunny days. This recipe combines that flavor with orange marmalade and poppy seeds for a light citrus muffin with a slight crunch. They’re wonderful for serving at a brunch, grabbing for an on-the-go breakfast, or even bringing along as a snack for a picnic. Best of all, these muffins are full of healthy ingredients, so you can enjoy your baked goods while also feeling good about what you’re eating. Click here for the recipe.
Fruit salsa and cinnamon sugar tortilla chips
Chips and salsa, fruit salad … almost every summer barbeque or party has them. Why not go for something a little different this season! Try this recipe for fruit salsa and cinnamon sugar tortilla chips. It takes two popular snacks and combines them in an unbeatable recipe. Serve it as a snack or as a dessert. Because it’s both sweet and crunchy, it works well for either purpose. Click here for the recipe.
Arugula salad with fennel and zucchini
This recipe proves that salad doesn’t have to be boring. Even better, it doesn’t require the addition of fattening dressing or other unhealthy ingredients to be flavorful! Ingredients such as fennel, dill and zucchini freshen up a simple arugula salad. Lemon, nuts and feta round out the flavors for a bright combination that is perfect for warm weather. Click here for the recipe.
Sparkling strawberry sangria
Hot days (and nights) call for cool, refreshing drinks. This sparkling strawberry sangria is the perfect summer drink. While often made with red wine, this sangria recipe starts with white wine, keeping it light and crisp. Since it doesn’t have as high of an alcohol content as straight wine and isn’t quite as sweet as a daiquiri, it’s the type of drink you can enjoy all day long. Click here for the recipe.