My Favorite Summer Recipes

If you’re anything like me, you can’t contain your thoughts to what is currently in season.  If you’re like me, you’re always thinking at least one season ahead.  Well, good news, readers–summer arrives this weekend!  (Maybe not technically, but we all know Memorial Day is the start of the summer.)  It’s time for warm weather, pool parties, backyard barbeques, and these yummy recipes.  I hope you’ll love them as much as I do!

To start things off, how about a nice refreshing glass offresh honey lemonade?

As a teacher, I have the luxury of making a real breakfast almost every summer morning.  M and I both loved these ricotta-lemon pancakes with fresh berries.  I know I won’t mind getting up with him each morning just to make him (okay, us) a big stack of these for breakfast.  

Another winner for summer breakfast or afternoon snacks are these juicy strawberry scones.  I’ve never met a person who didn’t love them!

Just in time for your first summer get together, let’s dig right in to this beer-braised barbequed chicken.  The flavor is tangy and rich and the sauce gets all over lips and fingers, just like any good barbeque sauce does.

One of my favorite things about going to cook outs and barbecues (there is a difference!) is the variety of side dishes.  I love to take small portions of each one so I can really taste what everyone has offered up!  If you’re looking for a stellar side dish, try this summer orzo salad.  It has a wonderfully different taste from the vinegar and fresh herbs, the dressing is free from mayo or sour cream, and it’s actually at its best when served at room temperature–perfect for a summer time picnic or party.

Summer weather generally leaves me looking for recipes I can make without having to run the oven for a long time.  That said, some recipes are so worth it.  This summer zucchini and tomato tian is one of them.  By treating the vegetables very simply, it really lets their gorgeous peak flavors shine through.

Something about eating fresh corn right of the cob just scream summer to me.  In this recipe, I’ve dressed up simple sweet corn with a touch of lime-cilantro butter, though I think just about any adaptation of citrus and herbs would be great.

As a kid, one of my favorite things about summer was having fruit salad with every single meal.  As an adult, I’ve found it gets even better.  One taste of this summer fruit salad with sambuca and you’ll instantly be craving more.

Another sweet childhood summer memory is stopping by Sonic for a cherry limeade (with their awesome crushed ice!) on the way to the lake.  To this day, nothing quenches my thirst and cools me down quite like a cherry limeade.  Last summer, I took that memory and turned it into a fun and delicious frozen cherry limeade pie.  

Don’t let summer pass you by without enjoying plenty of frozen treats.  With its beautiful color and light, fresh taste, this raspberry gelato is sure to please.

This all-American berry bundt cake is another crowd please just made for cook outs and potlucks.  Just slice and top with powdered sugar for a delicious down home dessert.

Summer was just made for pies, don’t you think?  Last summer, I made a couple of real winners.  It all started with my ultimate pie crust, Martha Stewart’s perfect pate brisee with one small adaptation from America’s Test Kitchen.  I’ve had considerable trouble with pie crusts in the past and this one comes out light, flaky, and tender every time.

Using that crust as a base, I made this bumbleberry pie.  The brightly colored filling is a real showstopper and the taste backs it up.  Topped with a scoop of homemade vanilla ice cream, it’s pure perfection.

I volunteered to make thisblackberry-blueberry pie last summer.  It reminded me of long, lazy summer days with friends and family.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. Nikki
    May 25, 2011 / 9:58 pm

    Thanks for this list, Kelsey! I have to try those strawberry scones!!

  2. Rosita Vargas
    May 25, 2011 / 11:09 pm


  3. Mary Ellen
    May 26, 2011 / 1:47 am

    Great post! That zucchini and tomato tian looks amazing.

  4. sliceofsouthern
    May 26, 2011 / 6:18 am

    Wow! with a list of awesome dishes like this I don't know which one to make first….guess I'll have to try them all!

  5. That Girl
    May 27, 2011 / 3:25 am

    Now I REALLY can't wait till summer!

  6. Natalie
    May 27, 2011 / 5:00 pm

    funny–I was just looking at lemon ricotta pancake recipes this morning! Might have to make some this weekend :)Love that cherry limeade pan–we were big fans when I made it! Also, made those banana walnut choc chip bars the other night–SO GOOD!have a great weekend!

  7. Kelsey
    May 30, 2011 / 3:20 pm

    Natalie–Don't you love it when you find someone with similar tastes in recipes? I've made several of your picks and have loved them all!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *