Who else is a little tired of hot weather already? Being outside has been fun this summer, but the sun is brutal! Cooking dinner in the heat, and utilizing the stove and oven, is just something I don’t want to do every day. Instead, I’ve found some simple no-cook summer meals, from breakfast to dinner, to keep the house cool and still provide healthy food. Try these a few times a week to save yourself from the summer heat!
Quick tips for simple no-cook summer meals
Use canned chicken or other pre-cooked food: There’s nothing wrong with buying a can of chicken chunks! Same with bags of pre-cooked grilled chicken strips. It’s a little more expensive, but can help when you’re in a rush and don’t want to heat up the house.
Do some cooking prep in the early mornings: If you need to do some cooking, it’d be better to cook early in the morning, before the sun comes out in full swing. Bake your chicken or cook ground beef early, then stick it in the fridge until dinnertime. Not only does it save time, but it keeps the house cooler when you’re preparing dinner!
You can pretty much take whatever you have in the house and turn it into dinner! You can even make it fun for the kids and lay a blanket in the living room, calling it a picnic dinner. Here are some ideas to put on your plate:
- Crackers, pretzels, chips
- Cheese (cubed or string)
- Deli meat (pepperoni, salami, deli ham or turkey)
- Vegetables (carrot sticks, celery, sugar snap peas, broccoli, cauliflower)
- Fruit (strawberries, blueberries, banana, melon)
- Condiments for dipping (hummus, peanut butter, ranch)
Hard boiled eggs are good too, although those require cooking. You can always stick them in the oven early in the morning before it gets too hot outside!
I like to use different kinds of breads for wraps- tortillas, flatbreads, and even pita pockets. They’re all pretty versatile and you can stuff just about anything in them for a quick, no-cook meal. Here are some suggestions:
- Peanut butter, jelly, banana, and granola- Would make a good breakfast or lunch!
- Tuna salad
- Deli meat with lot of veggies
- Veggie wrap (Like these Rainbow Hummus Rolls!)
Salads are one of the more obvious no-cook dinners. Simply throw some veggies together and you’ve got a salad! Make sure you add some protein and fat in there to keep you full, like hard-boiled eggs or pre-cooked meat. Here are some ideas, both traditional and non-entree salads:
- Mexican Tuna Salad
- Fruit salad (Can be as simple as putting cut-up fruit in a bowl)
- Coleslaw (Like my favorite recipe found here)
- Antipasto Salad
Breakfast is a good place to have lots of no-cook meal ideas. It’s never too hot in the mornings here in Ohio, but I’d also rather have something I can just pull out and eat right away. Here are my favorites:
- Overnight oats (Like this peanut butter chocolate chip cookie dough recipe!)
- Yogurt with granola (either store-bought or homemade) and fruit
- English muffin or bagel with peanut butter and sliced banana
- Cottage cheese with fruit
I’m a huge sandwich fan. Put any kind of toppings between two pieces of bread and I’m happy! You have a ton of options when it comes to no-cook sandwiches, so here are a few suggestions:
- Peanut butter and jelly (Obviously)
- Deli meat (Ham, turkey, chicken, salami) with cheese and lots of veggies
- Tuna salad or chicken salad
I love easy summer desserts! Especially ones that you just throw together in a bowl. Most of the no-cook desserts you’ll find are pudding-like in texture, that require things like instant pudding, Cool Whip, cream cheese, and endless mix-ins. No complaining here! Here are a few recipes that look great:
Use these ideas throughout your week and don’t work up a sweat making dinner! What are your favorite no-cook summer meals? Be sure to share in the comments; I’m looking for more ideas!
Jaime is a Nutrition Coach and professional writer. She enjoys cooking easy meals, running, and learning more about food.
Jaime specializes in helping women with ADHD learn to meal plan and cook healthier meals without getting overwhelmed.