No-Cook Dinners for Summer: In Good Taste

by simplylife on July 31, 2011

*Have you entered to win WEBER CHARCOAL GRILL ($90 value) AND ORIGINAL BRAT HANS PRODUCTS ($70 value)?!?!

Today’s guest post comes from Maris at In Good Taste.  I discovered her blog a few months ago and was instantly hooked on her fresh meals, easy to follow recipes and gorgeous pictures!  Maris knows how to prepare everything from a quick and delicious weeknight meal to an elaborate spread perfect for entertaining.  She also has some great ideas to share about ways to eat well in the heat!…

Six No-Cook Dinners for Summer:

Two years ago, my oven broke, right around the end of July. For one reason or another my landlord wasn’t able to get the correct part to fix the oven until the end of August. At the time, I thought that my world was falling apart – what was a food-obsessed blogger supposed to do without an oven to bake late-summer fruit pies, homemade pizza crust and the occasional chocolate chip cookie?

In retrospect, if my oven had to break, August was the perfect time for it to happen. No one really wants to stand over a hot oven in August and if you have a tiny kitchen like mine, even the open flame it takes to boil water for pasta will heat your kitchen to the point where you won’t even want to eat your meal unless you can take it into the swimming pool or a cold shower. 

In short, August is the perfect time of year for cold main-dish salads, inventive sandwiches and simple fresh vegetable dishes that don’t require a lot of indoor heat.
Cold Soba Noodle Salad from Simply Life: When some people hear the word “salad” they think lettuce. When you hear “cold soba noodle salad” think of dense, crunchy cabbage and healthy soba noodles laced with a flavorful dressing and the fresh taste of cilantro. Perfect to pair with a crisp glass of white wine and evening on the patio.

 No-Cook Tomato Basil Pasta Sauce from In Good Taste: If you are craving pasta but you’re not in the mood to cook your favorite sauce over an open flame, opt for a sauce that requires no cooking whatsoever. If you don’t even want to heat your stove, serve over fresh veggies or atop crusty bread a la bruschetta.

Easy Balsamic Napa Cabbage Salad from Sarah’s Cucina Bella: A lot of people think of cabbage as a boring, bland, soggy vegetable. What many people forget is that there are a lot of different cabbage varieties – such as this fresh, crunchy version that is filling enough to stand on its own when you’re looking for a lighter dinner.

Greek Panzanella from Simply Life: Panzanella, an Italian bread salad, is one of the best salads out there for carbohydrate addicts like myself. Not only is it filling and satisfying but also nutritious – depending on the ingredients you add. This Greek version would be a perfect summer meal and doesn’t require a laundry list of ingredients.

Shrimp Salad with Dill & Cucumber from In Good Taste: Shrimp is one of my favorite things to eat in the summer. I enjoy it all-year round but because shrimp is relatively light and low-calorie, it’s a great source of protein when you’re facing swimsuit season. Instead of heating up the kitchen with a stir-fry, turn it into an inventive salad with your favorite summer herbs and vegetables.

Tangerine, Almond & Avocado Salad from The Spicy RD: While anything with avocado in it calls out to me, this salad has all of the elements of a great meal in one dish: crunchy almonds, creamy avocado and zesty citrus for a big burst of flavor.

*All photos have come from respective blog mentioned.

~What are your favorite no-cook summer meals?  
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  • Tip Top Shape

    All of these recipes look absolutely fantastic!! My favorite no-cook meals are big salads. I like ones where you throw in everything in your refrigerator. Every salad is different then and they usually taste good!

  • Sam

    No-cook tomato basil sauce is my favorite. It's been one of my go-to impressive but ridiculously easy meals since I was in college. Soba noodle salads are also great. And cucumber salads. I've made several in the last month.

  • Lauren@What Lauren Likes

    Yum! excellent recipes! cold bean salads are my summer fave 🙂

  • Junia

    two of my favorite bloggers together! whoohoo! my favorite summer no cook meals would be a avocado salad with fresh cherries. 🙂

  • EA-The Spicy RD

    These all look delicious and thanks so much for sharing my Tangerine, Avocado, and Almond salad! Love Maris' blog and healthy recipes, and now happy to have discovered yours! One of my other favorite no-cook meals is my quinoa salad (Ok, you have to cook the quinoa first, but that's quick): To the quinoa add chopped spinach, peas, red onion, pine nuts or cashews, and fresh feta. Make a dressing of golden balsamic vinegar, and olive oil. Season to taste with S & P. Tastes good warm, but even better served cold the next day!

  • Shannon ~ My Place In The Race

    These all looks fantastic! Especially the tomato basil…YUM!

  • Carolyn Jung

    A great post — especially for folks like me, who, when the weather heats up only want to eat ice cream. 😉

  • Autumn @ Good Eats Girl

    These look great! I'm going to have to try some…I love no-cook meals!

  • Lyndsey

    These all look so good and perfect for summer meals!

  • allieksmith

    Mmm no-cook dinners are the best for summer!

  • yummychunklet

    What a great collection of recipes! Great guest post!

  • Reeni

    What a wonderful collection of recipes for the dog days of summer!

  • kankana

    All the salad looks so nice and tasty. beautiful collection!

  • Hamaree Rasoi

    Wonderful looking array of recipes. Great clicks.

    Hamaree Rasoi

  • ANU

    OMG! this is awesome…I love salad and no cook dinners a lot…we usually prefer this type of dinners…which makes my work easy and helps us from eating a lot during the night…healthy!

  • Kristen (swanky dietitian)

    Great guest post! These meals look delicious!
    I try to stay away from oven cooking in the summer. These are some great ideas.

  • Three-Cookies

    The Greek Panzanella is really interesting, a nice twist to the Italian version.

  • thefooddoctor

    Hello Gina, I discovered your blog through Maris's …gald I did
    Book marking this post for sure

  • Kitchen Belleicious

    Love them all. Not sure which is my favorite but I might have to go with the shrimp and dill? Great guest post and beautiful pictures

  • Lauren at Keep It Sweet

    What great ideas! Summer is really the best time for a broken oven. I've been turning mine on as little as possible, although still too often for this heat!

  • Joanne

    Yay! So many new awesome dishes for me to try during our next heat wave!

  • bonnie at sweet life

    great collection of summer no cook meals, always welcomed!! Thanks I love Maris's blog!

  • Melissa @IWasBornToCook

    I'm a big fan of many of these, especially panzanella. Everything looks delicious!

  • savoryandsavage

    Great guest post! That shrimp salad looks especially delicious.

  • We Are Not Martha

    No cook dinners are the BEST in this heat 🙂 I want every one of them tonight 🙂


  • Juliana

    I remember seeing some of this at Maris…they all look so refreshing and tasty.
    I love all kind of salad, specially the ones that contain fresh fruit.
    Hope you have a fantastic week ahead 🙂

  • tigerfish

    I like the fact of no-cook summer meals! No-cook means raw veggie + fruits salads and smoothies for me.

  • Sarah

    Summer just decided to show up here in Seattle so this post came at a perfect time for me! Great guest post and round up!

  • WillJogForFood

    I love cold salads! I need to eat them more often 🙂

  • Jolene – EverydayFoodie

    Hmmm, my favourite no-cook summer meal is a meal at a restaurant, on a deck or rooftop with a cold one 🙂

  • Mom

    What an absolutely wonderful array of flavors, ingredients, colors, textures and tastes for every appetite! Great job combining such awesome ideas for a cool meal !!!

  • Taylor

    What a tasty-looking round up of summer meals!! I love that they are all no-cook!

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