Hello, summer meals … goodbye stove! In honor of higher temps and easy-breezy days, we’ve found the best summer dinner ideas that don’t involve cooking, complicated ingredients, or a lot of time. So bust out the fresh ingredients and get inspired by simple salads, colorful summer rolls, and the other tasty ideas below.

Bagel Toast

When it’s too hot to contemplate cooking, a bagel bar is the way to go. There are a million delicious ways you can layer them up, and the results can be as hearty and healthy as you want. Get inspired to make your own over at The View from Great Island.


Kiddie Cobb Salad

Here’s a win-win idea from Mom’s Kitchen Handbook: skip the over-complicated summer meal and get the kids to eat more greens. They’ll love this cobb salad, which sports delicious add-ons like avocado, smoked turkey and egg. Best of all? This is one of those summer recipes that don't require any appliances! For the recipe click here.

Mozzarella and Tomato Salad

When you need a summertime meal, keep it simple! Combine fresh mozzarella and tomatoes for an easy peasy, kid-approved salad. For the quick how-to, (courtesy of Chef Brendan Collins), click here.

Crunchy Confetti Slaw

If you want a summer meal that’s bursting with color and flavor, look no further than this idea from Boulder Locavore. It sports a strawberry-peach balsamic dressing and it’s the perfect dish if you want to spend less time in the kitchen and more time catching summer rays. Head here for the recipe.

Gouda Rollups

These rollups from Arla are a great way to change-up a lunch routine or give your usual summertime dinner a new spin. Use your favorite cheese, add in some extra veggies for a healthy kick, and you’re good to go! For more info, click here.

Antipasto Salad

Psst! Looking for a salad that won’t trigger your picky eater’s veggie radar? This recipe from Dinner at the Zoo is loaded with meat, cheese, olives and, yes, veggies, so it’s got a range of tasty ingredients. You can even top it off with a homemade Italian style dressing! Get the recipe here.

Super Easy Kebabs

Summertime is grilling time, which is a great way to avoid heating up the house with the stove or oven. Kebabs are the perfect customizable meal and you can always use the leftovers in salads or wraps. Get the recipe here.

Rainbow Summer Rolls

Want to add color to your summer menu? This idea from The View from Great Island is the answer. It’s full of fresh ingredients and you can even use pre-cooked shrimp and your kids’ favorite veggies. Get the recipe here.

Southwestern Veggie Hummus Wrap

This delicious wrap idea from Chelsea’s Messy Apron is super flavorful and even includes hummus and a bunch of good-for-you vitamins and minerals. Eat it straight-up as a summertime salad or just have a tasty wrap for dinner! Get the recipe here.

Best Ever Chicken Salad

Psst! The secret to this chicken salad from How to Feed a Loon—besides fresh and simple ingredients—is that it uses rotisserie chicken. It makes the prep work extra easy and the result extra delicious. Enjoy as a sandwich or on top of a bed of lettuce! Get the recipe here.

Greek Salad

For a summer dinner everyone will love, why not go the classic route of sweet tomatoes, crisp cucumber and tangy feta? This salad is a cinch for picky eaters—just arrange it on the table salad-bar style, which allows each family member to create their own unique dish. Snag the recipe here.

—Abigail Matsumoto



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