21 Summer Dinner Ideas | Skinnytaste

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These summer dinner ideas are brimming with colorful fruits and vegetables and they come together in a snap. If you’re looking for easy recipes to add to your summertime rotation, look no further!

When the weather starts warming up, the last thing I want for dinner are heavy casseroles and piping hot bowls of soup. Busy schedules (and, let’s be honest, swimsuit season) means it’s all about keeping dinner light and easy. 

If you’re short on ideas, I’ve got plenty! At the bottom of this post, I have a collection of recipes that fit the bill. But first, let’s talk about some ways I like to simplify summertime dinners.

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Shop Your Farmers’ Market

Going to the farmers’ market with a long shopping list can make the experience a lot less fun—especially early in the season when so many summer favorites like corn and tomatoes aren’t yet in season. Instead, I like to let the fresh produce inspire my meals. Buying what looks good and then planning my meals around my market haul means I can enjoy shopping!

Batch Cook

During the summer months, I love to batch cook on weekends so I have less work to do during the week. Grilling chicken or vegetables in bulk, then whipping up a bunch of dressings and sauces, can provide the base for several mix-and-match meals throughout the week. I also like to cook up a big pot of quinoa or Instant Pot brown rice and use that all week long too.

Embrace Sheet Pan Meals

Sheet pan meals are a lifesaver when it comes to easy and quick summer dinners. Simply toss your protein of choice with seasonal vegetables, olive oil, salt, and pepper on a sheet pan and bake in the oven. Finish with fresh herbs from your backyard garden. The best part? Minimal clean-up!

Don’t Forget About Salads

Summer is the perfect time to enjoy fresh, vibrant salads filled with seasonal produce. I love a no-cook dinner when the weather’s hot! Get creative with your salads by incorporating whole grains, fruits, nuts, and seeds for added texture and flavor. And don’t forget to make your own homemade dressing—this skinny cucumber ranch dressing is one of my favorites.

Keep It Simple

Summer fruits and veggies are so delicious, you really don’t need to make a big production of dinner. Just grill some chicken and serve it with roasted Parmesan green beans or grilled corn on the cob and you’ve got an easy, healthy meal on the table in minutes.

21 Fresh and Flavorful Summer Dinner Ideas

These are some of my go-to recipes to make for dinner in the summer. They’re easy, packed with summer produce, and healthy too!

Green Curry Noodles in a bowl with limes.

Green Curry Noodles

I love this recipe for green curry noodles because you can use whatever vegetables are in season. The creamy coconut sauce is delicious with just about everything!

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Orzo with Italian Sausage, Corn and Spinach
Pesto Salmon

Pesto Salmon Recipe

Three ingredients! That’s all you need to make this pesto salmon. You can cook it in the oven or the air fryer and it’s excellent paired with just about any summer vegetable.

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Creamy Zucchini Sauce

Gazpacho Soup Recipe

Gazpacho is a summer staple! When you’re in the mood for something light, hydrating, and cool, you can’t beat this classic Spanish chilled soup.

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Grilled Pesto Chicken and Tomato Kebabs
Grilled Chicken Sandwich with pickles
Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps

Asian Chicken Lettuce Wraps

These lettuce wraps are easy, quick, and customizable with seasonal summer produce. I love to add diced cucumbers and fresh mint or basil with the ground chicken filling.

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Korean-Inspired Salmon Tacos with Spicy Slaw
Caprese Chicken Skillet
Seared Scallops with Creamy Corn, Tomatoes and Chives
Summer Cavatelli Pasta with Corn, Tomatoes and Zucchini
Blackened Salmon Skewers
Giant Zucchini Parmesan
Ahi Tuna Poke Salad

Tuna Poke Salad

Why spend money on strip mall poke bowls when you can make your own at home? These taste so much better than the ones from chain restaurants!

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Foil Packet Cheesy Sausage and Peppers
Grilled Chicken Bruschetta
Grilled Chicken Caesar Skewers
steak with tomatoes, corn and black beans
These quick and easy Lemon-Chili Shrimp Avocado Quinoa Bowls are great for lunch or dinner, or make them ahead for meal prep!
Although burrata—a fresh cheese made with mozzarella and cream—is undeniably the star of this light summer salad, the juicy grilled peaches and refreshing watermelon are pretty hard to resist.
Slow Cooker Pulled Pork sandwich

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