Summer Dinner Recipes
Fresh and Healthy

Free Summer Dinner Recipes to take advantage of sun-kissed garden produce! Try our family favorites, then make them uniquely "yours."

summer picnic salad recipe

Summer Picnic Salad

This bountiful summer salad recipe is a whole meal in one dish, including protein (tuna), carbs (potato) and vegetables. You can boil the green beans ahead of time and chill them in the refrigerator.

summer barbeque chicken

Barbeque Chicken

Everyone needs a fantastic bbq sauce recipe. We really, really like this one, and it's easy to make. The chicken looks beautiful, too.

summer zucchini skillet dish

Zucchini Skillet Dish

An easy to make zucchini recipe - a favorite of mine since my teen years. Very flavorful. You can also serve it as a soup by adding more liquid.

summer canadian bacon and tomato sandwich

Canadian Bacon and Tomato Sandwich

Surprisingly simple. You'll look forward to garden tomatoes just to make this sandwich. Canadian bacon could also be replaced with ham.

summer bruschetta

Bruschetta

Pamper yourself and feel like you're eating at a restaurant. This has to be one of my personal favorite summer time recipes.

summer basil cream salad

Basil Cream Salad

Refreshing, natural, and beautiful. Enjoy your fresh herbs in this salad. It's a simple but decadent salad dressing.

Formula for making a healthy summer dinner

Vegetable:
Choose one or more

Carb:
Choose one

FRESH GREEN BEANS

Trim stem end off green beans and rinse. Boil for 5-10 minutes until softened but still crisp. Drain. Drizzle with olive oil or a pat of butter.

FRESH CARROTS AND DIP

Combine a ranch dip mix with 1 cup sour cream and 1 cup plain greek yogurt. Serve with carrot sticks.

PEAS

In a microwave safe bowl, place 1 cup of frozen peas and a pat of butter or a drizzle of olive oil. Cover and microwave for 90 seconds.

SWEET CARROTS

Dice carrots into bite size pieces. Boil for 5 minutes. Drain. Add carrots back to saucepan with a pat of butter, 2 T. brown sugar and 1 t. honey. Heat through and serve.

SIMPLE SALAD

Top lettuce with a drizzle of good quality olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

CARAMELIZED BAKED BEANS

Mix in 1 Tablespoon ketchup and 1/4 cup brown sugar into baked beans. In a greased pyrex dish, bake at 350°F for 45 minutes.

SOURDOUGH BREAD

Toast and lightly butter.

ITALIAN BREAD

Slice and toast a good crusty-type bread. Serve with individual bowls of good quality olive oil for dipping.

ENGLISH MUFFIN

Toast 100% whole wheat english muffin. Lightly spread with butter or peanut butter.

CORN ON THE COB

Boil corn for 4 minutes. Butter your corn by rolling it in a buttered slice of bread. Salt and pepper.

CORN

Microwave canned corn in a microwave safe bowl for 2 minutes.

BAKED POTATOES

Wash potatoes thoroughly and prick all over with a fork. Bake at 400°F for 60 minutes. Serve with 1 T. butter, salt and pepper.

Summer is a perfect opportunity to add new, healthy dishes to your routine. Even if you're just buying produce in the grocery, it tastes better during the growing season.

Want flavorful garden produce, but don't have much space? When we lived in an apartment, we grew tomatoes in pots. If you have any outdoor space, you can have the incredible taste of summer without a lot of work. Herbs also grow well in sunny, porch areas. On my screened-in porch, I have one large pot that grows basil, parsley and chives. At the end of the summer, make extra herbs into pesto and freeze.

Co-op gardens and farmer's markets are always great choices when you're looking for fresh, local fruits and vegetables.

Be courageous - try new vegetable dishes. A friend once told me they tried lots of new foods, and if they didn't like the recipe, they weren't obligated to make it again. That was the inspiration I needed.

Also, we have a rule with our kids that they just have to eat one bite. They continually try new foods, and they can always eat cheese and crackers!

Your Olive Oil makes a big difference!

Using a GREAT olive oil completely changes your recipes. After visiting Napa Valley in California, we got hooked on California olive oil. (They are so much better than anything in my local grocery store.) This is our favorite brand and the only one we use. We order it any time of year, and the taste is wonderful (not bitter).

Lift your mood and lower your weight with Summer Dinner Recipes.


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