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No-cook meals for summer: Top 10 recipes to beat the heat

With the heat of summer on it’s way, you might be thinking of ways that you can still enjoy simple homemade meals without, ya know, actually cooking.  Read on for my top 10 no-cook meals for summer to beat the heat, and enjoy some delicious grub for your family!

healthy summer salad with text overlay top 10 no-cook meals for summer


Hey everyone, welcome to the podcast today! I’m so excited that you are here, today’s topic is all about summer meals.  

I have lived more summers than I wish to remember in rentals with no or terrible air conditioning, and man does cooking become a drag really quickly when you’re trying to beat the intense summer heat! 

The good news is there are load of options that require little to no-cooking (and I’ll be sure to point out how you can use meal prep to help you out if you do want to do a little bit of cooking to move all your cooking to the mornings or late evenings when the heat will be a little more bearable! 

Today I want to share some of my favorite no-cook summer solutions for you to try!

Top 10 no-cook meals for summer

Charcuterie boards– I feel like the trendiness of charcuterie boards has made them seem like food for high society and not every day dinner food, but this simple dinner can allow you to keep playing outside, graze as you need to, and can actually be really fun for kids and parents alike.  Try searching for “kid-friendly” ideas and swap out expensive fancy meats for regular dairy meats and strong cheeses for your kids typical favorites.  Make it extra fun by adding in some fun treats like a fruit tip or some licorice for an extra fun surprise for yoru kids. 

Rotisserie chicken ranch wraps– Wraps are a great go-to for a simple summer meal that doesn’t require you to turn on the oven.  Try using a rotisserie chicken for a true no-cook option, or whip up a batch of shredded chicken to freeze and use all summer if you do feel up to a little cooking.  This is the only wrap on the list, but the options for chicken wraps are truly endless so feel free to explore other ideas on your meal plan this summe.r 

Sushi bowls-Sushi is a super fun treat, and we like to do sushi parties every now and again and make our own rolls, but for a weeknight meal? That’s way too finnicky.  Enter sushi rolls, this is one of my favorite no-cook meals for summer.  If you want “real” sushi rice, you may have to at least turn on the rice cooker, but you can cheat by using pre-cooked frozen rice from the store that you add the sushi rice seasoning too.  For protein try canned salmon, tuna, or even pre-cooked shrimp! 

Ceviche tostadas-If you’ve never had ceviche you are missing out! Ceviche is similar to a pico de gallo, but with shrimp in it.  The shrimp is added raw, but the lime juice works to denature the proteins in the shrimp giving it more of a cooked texture.  If not cooking the raw shrimp makes you squeamish, no worries, you can totally add pre-cooked shrimp instead, either way this cold and refreshing no-cook meal with those crisp tostada shells is sure to please! 

Turkey BLTS-A good BLT is definitely a favorite around here, even my kids love to gobble them up.  To make it no-cook, buy pre-cooked bacon from the store and use deli turkey.  If you want a real treat, try smoking a turkey in your pellet smoker and freezing it to use all summer long!  Taking the cooking outside is another tip to keep your house cool while still enjoying delicious summer food. 

Caprese sandwich-While we are on the subject of sandwiches, I’m all about anything that combines tomato and basil.  I like to think of it as grown up peanut butter and jelly.  Try it vegetarian by pairing with fresh mozzarella cheese, or add a bit more protein by adding some deli chicken or turkey. 

Rotisserie chicken cobb salad- I feel like the most obvious no-cook meal is a salad, and while I feel like they get a bad wrap, my kids, husband, and I all love to gobble them up.  The favorite around here is a classic cobb salad.  Again, to make this no cook you’ll want to use a rotisserie chicken, pre-cooked bacon, and pre-cooked hardboiled eggs.  You obviously could choose to sacrifice a little and make any of these things yourself as well. 

Italian sub sandwich-Sandwiches are such an obvious choice for a no-cook meal (and this is not the first one on this list) but for me, I get a little bored of a classic cold-cut sandwich and often want something a little fancier if I’m making it for dinner. Italian subs are an obvious choice, they are still made all from pre-cooked and purchased items, but they’re a little fancier than classic ham and cheese. Try adding a tasty vinaigrette for an extra special treat. 

Rotisserie chicken cucumber avocado salad-While we love salads for dinner, sometimes the classic lettuce or spinach salads get a little old.  For something a little different try a cucumber and avocado salad (with rotisserie chicken for protein).  

Black bean corn and rice salad-…and last but not least, while we are on the subject of unique salads, a great way to add bulk and make them a bit more filling is to mix them with grains.  This black bean, corn, and rice salad is a great option.  Eat it plain or add a tortilla and make it a wrap.  You can’t go wrong! 

I hope these 10 no-cook meals for summer help to get you out of that summer cooking rut if you’re in one and show you that there are so many options if you just get a little creative. 

Did you guys watch the home edit? My kids and I loved it, my 5 year old kept asking if we could watch the “organizing show” and, I mean, how could I say now?  I’m talking all about kitchen organization next week and how I used the principles in the show to give my home “the home edit.”  I’ll dish on what I learned, what’s worth investing in, and what’s not.  I’ll see you all in 2 weeks.  Thanks for listening, and happy planning! 

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