3 no-cook meals perfect for hot summer days

When the temps are high, the last thing anyone feels like doing is turning on the stove. And while I’m pretty sure I could make a meal out of chips and salsa, my husband and daughter require a little more substance to their dinners. So what is a (literal) hot mom to do? Rally the troops and throw together an easy, no-cook dinner that still manages to pack plenty of flavor.

Here are a few of our favorites.

Pickled Tuna Salad Sandwich (via Mom Junction)

Who says sandwiches are strictly a lunch food? A classic like tuna packs a ton of protein and can easily be mixed and matched with chips, fruit or salad to make a complete meal. Kids not into fish? A build-your-own sandwich bar featuring different cheeses, meats, veggies and condiments is easy to throw together, too.

Ingredients:

1 can tuna, 6 oz

2 Tbsp. pickle relish, sweet or dill

1 hard boiled egg, chopped

1 Tbsp. mayonnaise

8 slices bread

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Add the tuna, egg, and the pickles in a bowl. Mix them gently.

Add the parsley and mayo to this mix and season it with salt and pepper.

Spread the mix evenly on four bread slices for four sandwiches.

Cut them diagonally and serve.

BBQ Chicken Salad (via Dinner at the Zoo)

Most of the ingredients for this meal are probably already in your fridge and pantry (minus the jicama, but I honestly don’t think it’s that essential to the recipe). Grab pre-cooked chicken from the market and get to assembling this ultra easy and tasty summer salad.

Ingredients:

3 cups cooked chicken cubed

1/2 cup barbecue sauce

6 cups romaine lettuce chopped

3/4 cup ranch dressing

1 cup corn canned or thawed from frozen

1 15-ounce can black beans rinsed and drained

1 cup tomatoes seeded and diced

1 cup jicama diced

1 cup Monterey Jack cheese shredded

1 avocado diced

1/2 cup green onions thinly sliced

1 1/2 cups tortilla strips

Directions:

Place the lettuce in a large bowl and toss with 1/2 cup of the ranch dressing. Toss the chicken in the barbecue sauce and place it on top of the lettuce. Arrange the corn, beans, tomatoes, jicama, cheese, avocado, green onions and tortilla strips over the lettuce. Drizzle with the remaining 1/4 cup of ranch dressing and serve.

Caprese Zoodles (via Delish)

I know that most kids aren’t fooled into thinking “zoodles” are the real deal, but they’re still pretty tasty nonetheless. Don’t own a spiralizer? Many grocery stores sell pre-cut zucchini, squash and carrot noodles, making the dish even easier to assemble. If you’re missing the carbs, add some fresh Italian bread on the side to bulk up the meal a bit.

Ingredients:

4 large zucchini

2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

2 c. cherry tomatoes, halved

1 c. mozzarella balls, quartered if large

1/4 c. fresh basil leaves

2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar

Directions:

Using a spiralizer, create zoodles out of zucchini. Add zoodles to a large bowl, toss with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Let marinate 15 minutes. Add tomatoes, mozzarella and basil to zoodles and toss until combined. Drizzle with balsamic and serve.

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