When we were young, summertime stood for a break from school, sleeping in until noon, and spending hours by the pool with an ice pop in each hand. Nowadays, it’s a lot harder to appreciate this season when you’re just trying to make it through the day without getting sweat stains on your favorite top. When you finally get through your front door, just barely surviving the sun’s wrath, the last thing you want to do on a sweltering evening is turn on your stove and prepare a hot meal. Preheat your oven to 450? Not happening.
To help us break free from our heat-induced culinary comas, we asked our Top 100 Mom Food Bloggers to share their favorite no-bake recipes. From gourmet ice cream to salads overflowing with seasonal produce, these dishes will have your taste buds tingling in no time. So when you can’t stand the heat, there’s no need to get out of the kitchen! Just whip up one of these refreshing recipes, enjoy a relaxing evening with your family, and let your inner-child remind you exactly why summer is so enchanting.
— Caitlin Morton
Chilled Watermelon “Chaat” Salad 1 of 16
This refreshing salad incorporates cooling watermelon, cucumber and cilantro, with a dash of spicy and tangy chaat masala for a uniquely Indian twist. It's perfect as an unusual side dish for barbeque parties.
— Michelle Peters Jones, The Tiffin Box
Green Ice Pops 2 of 16
Cherries over Ricotta 3 of 16
One of my absolute favorite summer treats is fresh cherries over ricotta. You simmer pitted sweet cherries (freshly picked if you can find them) in some Port wine until the liquid turns syrupy, and serve them over some fresh ricotta, perhaps with a few cracks of black pepper. Delicious, and not too sweet!
— Tammy Donroe, Food on the Food
Guacamole 4 of 16
We have several "no bake" dishes, but I would have to say that my favorite is our guacamole recipe. When I'm too tired to cook and it's too hot to turn on the stove, there's something deliciously satisfying about eating fresh guacamole with a pile of tostada chips.
— Veronica Smith, Muy Bueno Cookbook
Strawberry Basil Ice Cream 5 of 16
Gazpacho 6 of 16
I first met gazpacho at university — a friend of mine used to make it with cherry tomatoes out of her garden. My recipe uses tomato puree and honeydew melon, but you can add whatever veggies you find in season now. There's a direct relationship between the freshness of the produce you add and how awesome this tastes, so head to the market, stock up, and gazpacho away!
— Amanda Niehaus, Easy Peasy Organic
Frozen Chocolate Bananas 7 of 16
Chopped Salad 8 of 16
I love a nice chopped salad, and during the summer we can use lettuce, baby kale, green beans, pea pods, and tomatoes from the garden. I chop the lettuce into fine shreds, throw in my favorite salad ingredients, and top it all with homemade ranch dressing. The kids serve themselves and can't help but accidentally eat a few veggies!
— Anna Thomas Bates, Tallgrass Kitchen
Key Lime Pie Ice Cream Sandwiches 9 of 16
Hands down, my favorite summer treats are these key lime pie ice cream sandwiches. You make the simplest lime ice cream (seriously: this recipe calls for just 5 ingredients), and sandwich it between graham crackers. Heaven.
— Stacie Billis, One Hungry Mama
Watermelon and Tomatillo Salad 10 of 16
I dreamed up this recipe one summer when I was playing with the sweet flavors from the watermelon and the tart punch of the tomatillo. The vinaigrette with jalapeÃ±o and mint round it up, and the crumbled feta balances it nicely with its teasing saltiness.
— Patricia Jinich, Pati's Mexican Table
No-Bake Peanut Butter Pretzel Chocolate Chip Granola Bars 11 of 16
I love making these no-bake granola bars. They are so easy to make, and you don't have to heat up the house! Plus, that sweet and salty combo is totally irresistible.
— Maria Lichty, Two Peas and Their Pod
Ambrosia Salad 12 of 16
Lavender and Honey Berry “Fools” 13 of 16
I would have to be a fool to try and bake during the summer. So when the heat hits here in California, you can bet I'm whipping up some of these lavender and honey berry "fools"!
— Louise Mellor, Geez Louise
Frozen Oreo Cupcakes 14 of 16
Jícama-Tortilla Salad with Peach Dressing 15 of 16
The summer months can get grueling here in Texas. When I really need to beat the heat, I love making my jÃcama-tortilla salad with peach dressing. The bright colors and seasonal flavors are sure to put you in a summery mood!
— Vianney Rodriquez, Sweet Life
Creamsicles 16 of 16