Skip to content

50 Best Healthy Summer Recipes

We have everything you need for cookouts and backyard grilling.
PIN Print

Fresh-squeezed lemonade. Hot dogs and hamburgers. Corn on the cob. Apple pie. There are so many foods that just scream summer—and we don't blame you if you want to try them all. Whether you're excited about making the most of summer produce or you're ready to start grilling all season long, we have you covered.

We've rounded up some of the most delicious summer recipes you have to try before the season ends. You'll never ask "what's for dinner?" again. And if you love cooking, sign up for our newsletter to get daily recipes and food news in your inbox!

Potato Salad

Potato salad

Potato salad is an iconic side dish for cookouts, so you need to have a reliable recipe on hand. You can't go wrong with our classic version, which features Dijon mustard and chopped pickles.

Get our recipe for Potato Salad

Pickled Cucumber Salad

pickled cucumber onion salad

If you want an incredibly easy side to go along with your grilled meats, this cucumber salad is it. One and done!

Get our recipe for Pickled Cucumber Salad

Your ultimate restaurant and supermarket survival guide is here!

Blueberry Peach Cobbler

Healthy blueberry-peach cobbler
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Nothing says "summer" like a fresh-baked cobbler, topped with ice cream. Instead of going for apple pie, try this treat made with juicy peaches instead.

Get our recipe for Blueberry Peach Cobbler

Crab Cakes with Mango-Avocado Salsa

Paleo crab cakes
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Taking a break from poultry and red meat? Crab cakes make for a delicious summer dinner! The mango-avocado salsa really completes the dish, too.

Get our recipe for Crab Cakes with Mango-Avocado Salsa

Rosé Kombucha Float

bubbly rose kombucha float
Courtesy of Health-Ade Kombucha

All of those delicious summer meals need the perfect drink to accompany them! If rosé is the official drink of summer, this float is its sophisticated cousin.

Get our recipe for a Rosé Kombucha Float

Chicago-Style Hot Dog

chicago hot dog

Why settle for boring ketchup and mustard when you could make a loaded Chicago-style hot dog instead?

Get our recipe for a Chicago-Style Hot Dog

Corn on the Cob

cooked corn with salt and butter on a plate
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

It wouldn't be summer without this bright vegetable! This recipe uses a cast-iron pan to get the perfect sear.

Get our recipe for Corn on the Cob

Old-Fashioned Milkshake

three types of milkshakes with red straws
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

When it's blazing hot outside, drinking a milkshake is a delicious way to cool down. Whip up one of these old-fashioned milkshakes and pretend you're at an old-school diner.

Get our recipe for an Old-Fashioned Milkshake

Cheese Fries

Cheese fries
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Recreate the magic of boardwalk food at home with this easy recipe! Fries are just better in the summer.

Get our recipe for Cheese Fries

Mac and Cheese

Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Mac and cheese is the perfect side dish for a plate of barbecue or a hamburger. Our recipe uses Greek yogurt for added tang.

Get our recipe for Mac and Cheese

Banana Pudding

Low-calorie banana pudding
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

This Southern treat might just be the most delicious way to end your meal.

Get our recipe for Banana Pudding

Baked Beans

Baked beans

Whether you eat baked beans on their own or on top of hot dogs, they're another cookout staple. Our version incorporates garlic, onion, and bacon for plenty of smoky flavors.

Get our recipe for Baked Beans

Oven-Roasted Shrimp Cocktail

Healthy shrimp cocktail
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

It's a classic for a reason! We love chilled shrimp cocktail too, but if you're in the mood for a change, try this baked recipe.

Get our recipe for Oven-Roasted Shrimp Cocktail


Healthy gazpacho
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Yes, you can have soup in the summer—if it's a chilled soup like gazpacho. Yum!

Get our recipe for Gazpacho

Grilled Pineapple and Rum Sauce Sundae

Sundae with grilled pineapple and rum sauce
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

If you're firing up the grill to make dinner, why not use it to make dessert, too? Pineapple is one fruit that's even more delicious when it's grilled.

Get our recipe for a Grilled Pineapple and Rum Sauce Sundae

Grilled Pizza Burgers

pizza burger on wooden tray with marinara sauce
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

You don't have to choose between two classic American comfort foods with this inventive recipe. Who said burgers were boring?

Get our recipe for a Grilled Pizza Burger

Fruit Pizza

Whole fruit pizza ready to slice up for dessert
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

Ready to use those summer fruits in a delicious way? Then you have to try this dessert pizza recipe.

Get our recipe for Fruit Pizza

Piña Colada Smoothie

paleo pina colada smoothie in three glasses with little umbrellas
Rebecca Firkser/Eat This, Not That!

You don't have to head to a bar to get a delicious drink! This smoothie recipe is the best of both worlds—and it's actually good for you.

Get our recipe for a Piña Colada Smoothie

Fig, Prosciutto, & Goat Cheese Salad

Healthy fig and prosciutto salad
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

What's better than a ripe fig? The fruit's natural goodness combined with the salty deliciousness of prosciutto! This salad is so satisfying, it could be a meal on its own.

Get our recipe for a Fig, Prosciutto, & Goat Cheese Salad

Arugula and Grapefruit Salad

keto arugula grapefruit salad
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

Citrus is especially refreshing in the warmer months, and this recipe puts grapefruit to good use. Yum!

Get our recipe for an Arugula and Grapefruit Salad

Zucchini Carbonara with Bacon

healthy zucchini carbonara
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Zucchini is a delicious summer vegetable, and it's even better when bacon is involved! This recipe combines zoodles with spaghetti to make the dish lighter without sacrificing flavor.

Get our recipe for Zucchini Carbonara with Bacon

Curried Egg Salad

curried egg salad in pita pocket with spoon and bowl of spinach on wooden serving board with blue linen napkin
Waterbury Publications, Inc.

Despite the fact that they aren't the best foods to leave sitting out in the heat, pasta salad and egg salad are classic summer recipes. Spice things up by adding curry to your egg salad, and enjoy it tucked into a pita pocket with some fresh greens.

Get our recipe for Curried Egg Salad

Fried Chicken

plate of fried chicken
Darryl Brooks/Shutterstock

Fried chicken and sweet tea are a match made in heaven, and they're even better if enjoyed while sitting on your front porch. This oven-baked fried chicken recipe couldn't be easier to make.

Get our recipe for Fried Chicken

Iced Tea

iced tea in a mason jar with a green straw, lemon wheel, and a sprig of mint

You didn't think we'd mention sweet tea and not give you a recipe, did you? Sure, you can buy the bottled stuff at the supermarket, but we think it's tastier to brew your own pitcher.

Get our recipe for Iced Tea



Coleslaw is the perfect topping for a plate of barbecue or a fried chicken sandwich. Our recipe uses vinegar and Greek yogurt, rather than mayo.

Get our recipe for Coleslaw

The Ultimate Burger

Healthy ultimate burger
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

We get it: Sometimes, you just want a classic burger recipe for summer grilling. That's where this dish comes in.

Get our recipe for The Ultimate Burger


Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

This easy side dish makes the most of summer produce, with delicious ingredients like corn, bell peppers, and scallions. Serve it with all of your grilled meats!

Get our recipe for Succotash

Shrimp and Mango Summer Rolls

Healthy summer rolls
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

This recipe literally has "summer" in the name! These refreshing appetizers are much better for you than spring rolls, and they're just as delicious.

Get our recipe for Shrimp and Mango Summer Rolls

Shrimp Roll

Paleo shrimp rolls
Mitch Mandel and Thomas MacDonald

Lobster rolls are a classic summer food. But if you can't get your hands on lobster, shrimp rolls are just as delicious.

Get our recipe for a Shrimp Roll

Whipped Coffee

whipped coffee with three different flavors
Kiersten Hickman/Eat This, Not That!

If you've been working at home because of the coronavirus, you'll probably still be working from home this summer. What better way to cool off than with whipped coffee, a quarantine trend?

Get our recipes for Whipped Coffee

Coconut Lime Watermelon Slushie

watermelon coconut slushie
Courtesy of Minimalist Baker

Sliced watermelon is a summer classic. But if you want to take things to the next level, try this watermelon slushie recipe.

Get the recipe from Minimalist Baker

Lemon Chess Pie

lemon chess pie slice on plate
Courtesy of Taste and Tell

Come on, you can do better than a basic apple pie! This lemon chess pie is the best way to end a meal.

Get the recipe from Taste and Tell

Frozen Bananas

frozen bananas with chocolate dip
Courtesy of Diethood

Why settle for Popsicles when you can make frozen bananas? Dipped in chocolate and topped with sprinkles or nuts, these treats are as pretty as they are tasty.

Get the recipe from Diethood

Sweet Peach Thyme Shortcakes

peach thyme shortcake
Courtesy of Half Baked Harvest

Strawberries aren't the only fruit that's delicious with shortcake! This recipe puts juicy peaches to good use, in the most delicious way.

Get the recipe from Half Baked Harvest

Strawberry-Lemon Blondies

stack of strawberry blondies
Courtesy of The View from Great Island

What is it about strawberry treats that makes them so delicious in the summer? These blondies are a delicious way to use the fruit.

Get the recipe from The View from Great Island

Zucchini Bread

Greek Yogurt Zucchini Bread from Sally's Baking Addiction
Courtesy of Sally's Baking Addiction

Zucchini is abundant in the summer, so you might as well make this classic bread with it. This recipe uses Greek yogurt to keep it extra moist.

Get the recipe from Sally's Baking Addiction.

Strawberry Crisp

strawberry crisp in ramekins
Courtesy of Whats Gaby Cooking

Strawberry picking is an iconic summer activity, and we say there's no such thing as too many strawberry-flavored desserts.

Get the recipe from What's Gaby Cooking.

Cajun Salmon

cajun salmon on grill pan
Courtesy of Creme de la Crumb

If you love making grilled salmon, it's time to spice things up. This recipe uses cajun spices and honey butter for a flavorful fish like you've never had before.

Get the recipe from Creme de la Crumb.

Key Lime Pie

whole key lime pie
Courtesy of Sallys Baking Addiction

Once you've tried key limes, you'll never go back to the standard version of the citrus fruit. Sure, you could buy a frozen key lime pie, but this recipe is so much better.

Get the recipe from Sally's Baking Addiction.

Peach Pizza

balsamic and peach pizza
Courtesy of Love and Olive Oil

We're saying it again: Pizza doesn't have to be savory! This peach pizza recipe is one of the most delicious ways to use the stone fruit.

Get the recipe from Love & Olive Oil.

Fried Green Tomatoes

plate of fried green tomatoes with dipping sauce
Courtesy of Foodie Crush

A Southern staple, fried green tomatoes are the perfect appetizer or side dish for a burger that's fresh off the grill.

Get the recipe from Foodie Crush.

Squash Casserole

squash casserole in baking dish
Courtesy of The Seasoned Mom

Summer squash is delicious sautéed with a bit of olive oil, but it's even more delicious baked into a casserole.

Get the recipe from The Seasoned Mom.

Summer Polenta with Sautéed Peas and Corn

summer polenta with asparagus
Courtesy of With Food and Love

Add some color to your meal with this vibrant summer polenta recipe. It will convert even the staunchest pea haters.

Get the recipe from With Food and Love.

Eggplant Steaks

eggplant steaks topped with tomatoes
Courtesy of Feasting at Home

Firing up the grill this summer? You don't have to serve your vegetarian housemate a veggie burger. Try one of these eggplant steaks instead!

Get the recipe from Feasting at Home.

Corn Salad

summer corn salad in bowl
Courtesy of Lil Luna

We've said it before, and we'll say it again: Corn is the official vegetable of summer. If you want to switch things up from grilled corn on the cob, try this easy salad recipe.

Get the recipe from Lil' Luna.

Zucchini Pie

zucchini pie in baking dish
Courtesy of The Seasoned Mom

You've had it as a pasta replacement and baked into bread. But have you ever had zucchini pie? If not, now's a great time to try it.

Get the recipe from The Seasoned Mom.

Buttermilk Pie

buttermilk pie slice
Courtesy of Well Plated

Take a cue from the South and give buttermilk pie a try. Once you've had this gooey treat, there's no going back.

Get the recipe from Well Plated.

Grape Tomato Tarts

grape tomato tart on plate
Courtesy of Sweet Phi

Tomatoes are a delicious summer vegetable, and they're even better baked into tarts.

Get the recipe from Sweet Phi.

Cucumber Salad

cucumber salad in bowl
Courtesy of Cookie and Kate

We get it: Sometimes you just want an easy, light salad recipe. For those days, this cucumber salad will do just the trick.

Get the recipe from Cookie and Kate.

Brown Sugar Peach Crumble Pie

peach crumble pie slice with ice cream
Courtesy of Sallys Baking Addiction

If you're looking for a classic summer pie recipe (that isn't apple pie), this peach pie is absolutely it.

Get the recipe from Sally's Baking Addiction.

Cheeseburger Salad

cheeseburger salad in bowl
Courtesy of How Sweet Eats

For a lighter alternative to the classic burger, try this cheeseburger salad recipe instead.

Get the recipe from How Sweet Eats.

0/5 (0 Reviews)
Eat This, Not That!
Inspired by The New York Times best-selling book series, Eat This, Not That! is a brand that's comprised of an award-winning team of journalists and board-certified experts, doctors, nutritionists, chefs, personal trainers, and dietitians who work together to bring you accurate, timely, informative, and actionable content on food, nutrition, dieting, weight loss, health, wellness, and more. Read more about Eat This
Filed Under