Our Top 50 Diet Recipes for Summer
Summer Vegetable Tian
This pretty vegan layered casserole is so simple to make. Its only seasonings are salt and garlic-infused olive oil, which you make by sizzling a clove of garlic in olive oil for about a minute. This dish is lovely warm or room temperature. Serve with crusty bread as a vegetarian entree or alongside roasted meats as a side dish--don't forget a glass of chilled rosé.
Cauliflower Fried Rice with Steak
You could argue that fried rice is really all about the "add-ins," so why not skip the grain itself and save some calories with cauliflower while you're at it? If you want to make this recipe vegetarian, swap sliced mushrooms for the steak. Either way, you don't have to be on a low-carb diet to love this 30-minute dinner.
Simple Grilled Salmon & Vegetables
Grilled salmon and veggies make for a colorful and balanced seafood dinner that's ready in just minutes. The grill turns the salmon flaky and moist while tenderizing the crispy pepper and onion pieces. Round out the meal with brown rice or quinoa.
Cantaloupe & Cucumber Salad with Fresh Za'atar
This juicy melon salad is seasoned with fresh oregano and thyme, sumac spice and toasted sesame seeds for a bright summertime take on the Middle Eastern spice blend za'atar.
Goat Cheese & Fresh Herb Omelet
The secret to this easy omelet recipe is choosing a really great goat cheese. Luckily most supermarkets have great chevre--Vermont Creamery and Laura Chenel are straightforward varieties you're likely to find. If you've got access to funky local options, bust them out for this quick breakfast recipe. Aside from the goat cheese, eggs and herbs, you need just a few pantry ingredients and 20 minutes for one of the best omelets you can make.
Heirloom Tomato Salad with Tomato Vinaigrette
For this fast salad recipe, we top summer's ripest tomatoes with a bold tomato-based dressing for good measure. Serve as a light lunch with whole-grain toast or pair with grilled steak and chicken for dinner.
Bourbon Chicken Skewers
The deliciously thick, barbeque-based sauce on these chicken and zucchini skewers is flavored with bourbon and soy. Ready in just 35 minutes, this southern-inspired recipe is perfect served with brown rice and a side salad.
Fresh-Squeezed Pink Lemonade Ice Pops
These pink lemonade popsicles will keep you cool all summer long.
Crunchy Chicken & Mango Salad
This Asian-inspired dinner salad has terrific crunch, thanks to sugar snap peas and napa cabbage. Give the dressing a kick of heat by adding a bit of sambal oelek, an Indonesian hot sauce that you can find in most large supermarkets and Asian grocery stores.
Bacon & Mango Tango Sliders
With a touch of sweet from the mango, savory from the bacon, plus a creamy avocado spread, this healthy slider recipe with takes burgers to a whole new level. Double the avocado mayo and use it for your next BLT.
Easy Tomato Gazpacho
Many gazpacho recipes are thickened with bread, but this one uses just vegetables, making it a gluten-free refresher for a hot summer day. The key to any flavorful gazpacho is giving it time to rest. The flavors meld and become cohesive when the soup is allowed to sit a bit before serving.
Poppy Seed Oat Waffles with Citrus Syrup
Who says you always need maple syrup on your waffles? These nutritious and satisfying poppy seed waffles--made with fiber-filled oats--are served with a fruity citrus syrup that cooks up in no time at all.
Grilled Summer Vegetables with Shallot-Herb Vinaigrette
Enjoy the summer's vegetable bounty with this easy grilled vegetable recipe. Pile any leftovers on crusty baguette with melted fontina or mozzarella for lunch the next day.
Grilled Flat Iron Steak with Watercress Pesto
Not all pestos are made with basil--this version calls for a mixture of watercress and mint, and uses almonds instead of pine nuts. It tastes delicious served with grilled flat iron steaks.
Zucchini Ribbon Salad with Cannellini Beans & Anchovies
This simple but delicious five-ingredient salad highlights a number of elements beloved in the Occitanie region of France--white beans, olive oil, zucchini and anchovies. Use your best olive oil here, as it's essential to the flavor. You'll need a sharp vegetable peeler to make the zucchini ribbons. Serve as a side dish next to roast chicken or grilled steak, or double the salad and enjoy as an entree with a warm baguette.
Thai Wit-Glazed Grilled Chicken
This chicken's sticky, citrusy glaze is a flavor-packed combo of Belgian wit beer, coriander and orange--plus it gets a Thai-inspired spin from lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves. Use a bottle from your favorite brewery or opt for easy-to-find Blue Moon Belgian White (and have a few extra bottles on hand to drink with it!).
Strawberry-Banana FroYo Cup
Bananas and Greek yogurt make this strawberry topped dessert creamy and delicious.
Chipotle Grilled Pork Chops with Grilled Apricot Salsa
Your grill does double duty in this meal! Grilled apricots take center stage in a zesty salsa which tastes delicious with the chipotle flavored grilled pork chops.
Melon-Mango Ice Cream
This homemade ice cream is a tropical pleaser. Still part of a diabetic meal plan, it's made with fat-free half-and-half and buttermilk instead of whipping cream.
Lobster Niçoise Salad
Steamed lobster is a luxurious swap for tuna in this otherwise-classic, veggie-loaded Niçoise salad. In a pinch--or if you don't want to deal with a giant pot of boiling water on a steamy summer day--many supermarkets have freshly picked lobster meat at their seafood counter or in the freezer case. Serve with a warm baguette for lunch or dinner.
Easy Salmon Cakes
If you are trying to boost your intake of omega-3s, try this simple favorite. It is a great way to use convenient canned (or leftover) salmon. The tangy dill sauce provides a tart balance.
Honeydew Smoothie Bowl
Blending frozen melon with just enough liquid yields an almost ice cream-like texture. Make this a traditional, pourable smoothie by adding a touch more liquid before whizzing everything together. It's a cool way to start off a hot and humid day.
Peach Caprese Skewers
Fresh peaches liven up a classic caprese salad in this super-fast snack. Make this recipe for one or make a bunch for a party appetizer.
Chicago-Style Carrot Dogs
Whether you're vegan, vegetarian or none of the above, these plant-based "dogs" are magically delicious--period. This recipe makes these vegan hot dogs Chicago-style, but feel free to doctor them up any way you like. Break with convention and add shredded cabbage, sprouts and cilantro, for example.
Grilled Dijon Scallops and Squash
A simple honey-mustard dressing seasons both the squash and scallops in this quick-and-easy grilled recipe, ready in just 25 minutes.
This tropical dish is made complete with Jamaican Jerk Seasoning. Pork, rice, and beans combine with pineapple and red onion in a delicious honey-lime vinaigrette.
Iced Coconut Latte Pops
When you don't have time to make ice coffee, grab a latte popsicle from the freezer and keep your cool.
Pretzel-Pistachio-Crusted Tofu Salad
Pretzels and Pistachios create a crispy crust for tofu, perfect to top this fresh salad.
Grilled Peaches with Honey-Balsamic Syrup
Grilling fruit caramelizes the natural sugars and concentrates the flavors. Served with a balsamic syrup and crushed gingersnaps, this warm, 20-minute peach dessert recipe offers an incredible combination of flavor and texture in each bite.
Sweet Corn Polenta with Bell Pepper & Tomato Salad
Serve this simple vegetarian side dish warm or room temperature alongside grilled meats and a stacked summer salad. A flash under the broiler leaves these slices of corn-studded polenta golden on the outside and soft on the inside; an herby, smoky tomato-pepper salad acts like a salsa to be spooned over the top.
Avocado Toast with Burrata
Burrata (cream-filled fresh mozzarella cheese) takes this avocado toast recipe to the next level for a decadent, yet weekday-friendly breakfast.
Shrimp and Mango Adobado Salad with Grilled Corn-Avocado Salsa
This recipe is a reinvention of a classic dish. Remember when salsa was made only with tomatoes? This lively corn-red-onion-avocado-pepper salsa goes with grilled shrimp and mangoes, which are briefly immersed in a snappy grapefruit-lime juice marinade.
Corn Risotto with Tomatoes & Spinach
Corn and tomatoes make this risotto taste like summer itself, but you can stir in almost any vegetables that your family likes. Make this simple entree vegetarian by swapping in vegetable broth or "no-chicken" broth for the chicken broth.
Ginger Chicken Kabobs
To snip cilantro or any fresh herb in a flash, put the leaves in a glass measuring cup and use kitchen shears to snip them into tiny pieces.
Cantaloupe Smoothie Bowl
Water-packed frozen cantaloupe acts like ice cubes in your blender; the smaller the dice, the easier it will be on the blades. Make this a traditional, pourable smoothie by adding a touch more carrot juice or water before whizzing everything together.
Grilled Portobello-Chicken Row Salad
This beautifully displayed grilled chicken salad recipe is a feast for the eyes! Fresh kale and romaine lettuce leaves are topped with grilled mushrooms, bell peppers and red onion and juicy grilled chicken. Fresh basil, Italian cheese, walnuts and balsamic vinaigrette finish the dish. Arrange on a large platter to serve for an impressive dinner.
Grilled Lime Chicken & Steak with Herb & Arugula Salad
This recipe involves one of our favorite make-ahead hacks: let the chicken and steak marinate in reverse. In this recipe, you'll pour a punchy, citrusy dressing over the meat right after it leaves the grill, so it soaks up the bright vinaigrette as it cools. Better yet, reverse-marinating keeps the grilled meat from drying out, even when kept in the fridge overnight.
Grilled Ancho Chicken Breasts & Apricot Salsa
In this healthy grilled chicken recipe, ancho chile powder adds a rich, mild flavor to lean chicken breasts. If you can't find ancho chile powder, feel free to use mild chili powder in its place. A vibrant salsa with avocado and grilled apricots, nectarines and/or peaches completes the pretty picture. Grilling not-quite-ripe stone fruit is a mouthwatering way to bring out its natural flavor and sweetness--plus, the fruit is grilled right alongside the chicken, making for a quick recipe.
Grilled Blackened Shrimp Tacos
Give juicy shrimp tacos a Cajun flavor spin with spices and a quick sear on a hot grill. An easy avocado mash adds creaminess to cool off the spicy kick.
Spinach & Strawberry Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing
Homemade poppy seed dressing pairs beautifully with tender spinach, crunchy almonds and juicy berries for a fantastically refreshing and easy spring salad. To make ahead, whisk dressing, combine salad ingredients and store separately. Toss the salad with the dressing just before serving. To make it a complete meal, top with grilled chicken or shrimp.
Broccoli, Chickpea & Pomegranate Salad
Simple steps give this broccoli salad recipe a more nuanced flavor: soaking the onion tempers its bite and toasting the cumin enhances its aroma. Serve alongside grilled chicken, pork or fish.
Lemon-Pepper Linguine with Squash
Thinly sliced zucchini and summer squash bulk up this easy vegetarian pasta recipe. Saving a bit of the starchy pasta-cooking water to toss with grated cheese, herbs and bright lemon at the end is the secret to a fast, silky no-cook pasta sauce.
Strawberry-Rhubarb Cobbler with Granola Streusel
Tart rhubarb and sweet strawberries turn tender in their own juices beneath a brown sugar and oat crumble topping. This spring-inspired dessert comes together quickly without pie crusts to unroll; the tender fruit cooks quickly to make this a great last-minute dessert option too. Serve warm for the most luscious texture.
Grilled Corn Salad with Chili-Miso Dressing
Serve this Asian salad with grilled steak, chicken or firm white fish like halibut. You can also double the recipe and bring it to your next potluck. If you can find tatsoi, a peppery Asian leafy green, use it instead of mild-mannered spinach. Store-bought Thai sweet chili sauce and umami-packed white miso build fast flavor in this easy summer salad.
No-Cook Black Bean Salad
A classic black bean salad is a must for picnics and potlucks. This vegan version gets its creaminess from blended avocado. Any mix of salad greens will work well, but try arugula if you want to give this hearty salad a peppery kick.
Watermelon Fruit Pizza
This refreshing fruit dessert pizza recipe swaps classic cookie crust with a healthier watermelon "crust." Topped with yogurt sauce, your favorite berries and mint, this fresh dessert can easily be doubled for a party or halved for every day.
Speedy Crab Cakes
Shallow-fry these easy crab cakes on the stovetop to get the perfect crisp crust without the greasy mess of deep-frying. Serve these cakes with Citrus-Arugula Salad (see associated recipe).
Three-Way Marinated Chicken
You'll never be bored by grilled chicken again after trying these three flavorful marinades.
Korean Turkey Burgers with Kimchi
Korean chile paste (also known as gochujang) blended into the ground turkey makes this turkey burger recipe incredibly moist and flavorful. Top these healthy turkey burgers with kimchi--a fermented mixture of cabbage and other vegetables--which can be found near other refrigerated Asian ingredients or near sauerkraut or pickles in well-stocked supermarkets or natural-foods stores.
Cilantro-Jalapeño Shrimp with Mango-Jicama Salad
Instead of serving boring burgers and humdrum hot dogs at your next barbecue, try these zesty shrimp skewers! Your guests will be transported to the islands with each bite of spicy shrimp and citrus-dressed mango-jicama salad.