Summer dinner ideas | Easy meals for summer nights :: WRAL.com

Summertime is a great time to get together with family and friends for a delicious dinner. There are many different types of food that can be prepared for a summer meal. With hot days beating down, spending as little time in the kitchen as possible is a win. Unless you fire up the grill on your back patio and cook directly over open flames. Here are some great summer dinner ideas to get you started! And many of these summer weeknight and weekend dinner ideas are kid-friendly!

grill | The quintessential dinner idea

Grilling - Summer dinner ideas

It should be no surprise that grilling is a summer dinner tradition. It’s the perfect way to cook food outdoors and enjoy the weather. There are endless possibilities for recipes when it comes to grilling. Hamburgers, hot dogs, chicken, steak, and vegetables are great grill choices.

When grilling, it’s important to make sure the food is cooked evenly. One way to do this is by using a grill basket. This will help prevent the food from sticking to the grill and ensure that everything cooks evenly.

You’ll especially want to cook meats evenly, look at using a kitchen thermometer. These can be as basic as dial thermometers or as advanced as a premium 4-probe meat thermometer that uses Bluetooth so you can control it right from your phone.

Another key element to grilling is which fuel the grill requires. Here are some of the grill fuel options and what they bring to the table::

  • When using a charcoal grill, briquettes work well for most foods, but if you’re looking for a smokier flavor, you can use lump charcoal instead.
  • Charcoal grills are great, but if you want the versatility of being able to smoke as well, a Kamado is a great choice.
  • Gas is another grill option. Food cooked on a gas grill tends to have a cleaner taste to it, but you might get a little bit of the gas taste too.
  • Pellet Grills are a great alternative to gas or charcoal. And similarly to a Kamado, you can also use them to smoke.

Finally, don’t forget about the sauces! A good BBQ sauce or marinade can really elevate your grilled meal.

Need some good recipes? Now to worry! WRAL has you covered! Check out these great grilling recipes you can try:

easy pastas

Orzo

Pastas are a great summer dinner idea because they’re easy to make and can be dressed up with lots of different toppings. Plus, there are so many different types of pasta to choose from, so you can find one that everyone in your family will love.

One favorite is this simple Il Palio’s Pasta Carretti. It only takes about 15 minutes to make and only requires a few simple ingredients.

Another great option is this spinach pasta with sun-dried tomato cream sauce. It’s a bit more forgiving, but it’s still really easy to make and tastes amazing.

Not sure what kind of pasta dish you are looking for? No problem! Here are 5 of the simplest recipes. to cook on summer nights.

Still not satiated on pasta? Here are a few more ideas:

Picnic sandwiches

Il Palio's Calabrian Hot Chicken Sandwich

Picnic sandwiches are the perfect summer dinner idea. Not only are they easy to make, but you can customize them to your liking. For example, if you’re in the mood for something savory, try adding some ham or cheese to your sandwich. If you’re craving something sweet, go with a PB&J or a fruit salad. No matter what you choose, picnicking is always a fun way to spend an evening.

Here are a couple of ideas for summer sandwiches including some that might let your inner gourmet chef out:

Salads

Summer in a Cup

Salads are a perfect summer dinner idea. Plus, salads can make for great side dishes too. They’re light, refreshing, and can easily be made to fit any dietary need or preference. There are endless possibilities when it comes to creating salads, so you can always find a new recipe to try. Plus, they’re easy to customize for each person’s taste.

If you’re looking for a healthy and satisfying meal or side, reach for a salad. You can include all sorts of fresh vegetables, fruits, meats, and cheeses. And don’t forget the dressing room! There are countless delicious dressings to choose from, or you can make your own.

Salads make a great meal for any time of day. They’re perfect for a quick lunch on the go or a leisurely dinner at home. So next time you’re looking for something new to try this summer, give salads a go!

Here are a few great salad recipes that will hit the spot this summer.

side dishes

Squash Casserole with Parmesan

Side dishes are an important part of any meal, and they can be especially important in the summertime when the main dish might be a light salad or grilled chicken. Here are some ideas for side dishes that will pair well with your summer dinner:

Desserts

Surry County Sonker

There are many different types of desserts that can be made for a summer dinner, including ice cream sundaes, pies, and cakes. This Surry County sonker should be on the top of your dessert list.

Drinks

chopped strawberries

Be sure to have plenty of cold drinks available for you, your family, and friends! Here’s an easy recipe for an aqua fresca that is sure to put smiles on everyone’s face! And here’s a WATERMELON version!

What summer dinner ideas do you have?

Summer picnic - Summer dinner ideas

Summertime is the perfect time to enjoy delicious dinners with friends and family. There are endless possibilities when it comes to recipes and menus, so get creative and have some fun. Whether you’re grilling out, cooking up a storm in the kitchen, or taking advantage of seasonal produce, there’s something for everyone. So get ready to enjoy some unforgettable meals this summer!

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