Do you love to cook? Do you despise it? Are you like many of us who are somewhere in between? Perhaps you don’t mind it and maybe even love it on occasion. Other times, not so much. Nowadays, many parents are becoming more aware of the need to provide healthy food for their families. The rate of obesity and illnesses such as diabetes and cancer in the United States is alarming. Looking for easy summer time meal ideas that are somewhat healthy? This post is for you.
Who among us has not sheepishly glanced the other way while our families eat ‘crap’ for supper? Life gets busy and you don’t always feel like cooking. It’s been surface-of-the-sun hot where I live lately. We currently reside without air conditioning, which actually has its benefits, as you can read about here. However, cooking at a hot stove when the temperature in your house is nearing 90 degrees F is definitely not fun.
Healthy foods don’t always have to be cooked
Cooking meals doesn’t always make them healthy. It’s true that foods like tomatoes and onions reach their optimum health levels when cooked or processed. There are many foods, however, that are healthy when raw. Keeping certain items on hand arms you with easy summer time meal ideas in a pinch.
Fresh fruit, especially berries, is a must all year round but especially in summer. It’s also a good idea to keep some good quality cheese, nuts (if there are no allergies) and lots of veggies in stock. Growing your own food during summer can make these foods readily available. You’d be amazed at the tasty and easy summer time meal ideas you can whip up with these and a few more ingredients.
Easy summer time meal ideas that don’t make you sweat
Maybe you’ve been at the pool all day or your kids have been running from activity to activity. Do you have to figure out a meal menu while working a full-time job? The last thing you feel like doing when you get home on a hot, summer day is cooking. The meal ideas included in the following list are healthy enough to be a main course once in a while:
- Celery with peanut butter or cream cheese is something most kids (old enough to chew) like. Add raisins or bits of walnut or chives for added flavor.
- Nibbling on fresh cheese cubes and fruit is a quick, easy summer time meal that’s filling and healthy.
- Salad possibilities are limitless in summer! You can make large batches ahead of time or prep ingredients and let everyone ‘build their own.’
- You can buy Asian noodles, clams or chicken already cooked, which makes it easy to add substance to a light salad meal.
- Eggs are great, especially if you have your own chickens! One of many easy summer time meal ideas is toast (Okay, that’s almost cooking but not really!) with diced/salted avocado and fried egg on top. YUM is a great understatement for this quick and easy meal.
- Did you grow tomatoes this year or buy them locally? A simple tomato salad with pure olive oil an balsamic vinegar is delightful in summer. Add some fresh herbs or thinly sliced Bermuda onion and you’re good to go!
- Cottage cheese is a good base for an easy summer time meal because you can add all sorts of healthy toppings.
You can combine these easy summer time meal ideas. The tomato salad is a nice accompaniment to the egg and avocado toast. If you want to add sweetness to a meal, drizzle some raw honey on the celery sticks or peanut butter toast with sliced bananas. A friend of mine recently introduced me to a goat cheese log spread with drizzled honey on crackers and it was amazing!
Get creative for easy summer time meal ideas
Other foods such as yogurt can provide a healthy non-cooking supper during summer as well. A variety tray of cracker spreads can serve in a pinch when you just don’t feel like cooking. It’s okay. No one is going to call the bad parent police. In fact, I’m pretty sure you can find a bajillion cracker topping ideas on Pinterest. One quick supper fix is to top crackers with your favorite cheese (melted, perhaps?) then add sliced jalapeno. Diced sweet peppers, tuna or egg salad are options, too.
It’s summer. Take a break. I grant you permission. No one will alert June Cleaver that you haven’t baked a casserole today. If you’re too young to know who that is, you can Google it while you’re eating your grapes and cheese. LOL