4 Summer Recipes That Can Stand the Heat

The weather is beautiful, the sun is shining... Sounds like picnic time to me! Dining al fresco is fun, but you need to make sure the dishes you bring are warm-weather appropriate. Here are four cool recipes perfect for hot days.

1
Zucchini-Noodle Chinese Chicken Salad

Healthy Recipes to Bring on a Picnic: Zucchini-Noodle Chinese Chicken Salad
Courtesy of Hungry-Girl.com

1/2 of recipe (about 2 cups): 230 calories, 6g total fat (0.5g sat fat), 476mg sodium, 21.5g carbs, 4g fiber, 13g sugars, 23.5g protein

My love for zucchini noodles is endless. They're the perfect low-calorie pasta swap! Grab that spiralizer (you can do so many things with it!) and let’s make a salad.

1. Pound a 6-ounce raw boneless skinless chicken breast to 1/2-inch thickness. Season with a dash each of salt and black pepper.

2. Bring a skillet sprayed with nonstick spray to medium heat. Cook chicken for about 4 minutes per side, until cooked through.

3. Using a spiral vegetable slicer (like the Veggetti), cut 1 pound (about 2 medium) zucchini into spaghetti-like noodles. (If you don’t have a spiral veggie slicer, peel zucchini into super-thin strips, rotating zucchini after each strip.) Roughly chop for shorter noodles.

4. Place zucchini noodles in a large bowl. Chop chicken, and add to the bowl. Add 1/4 cup low-fat sesame ginger dressing (like Newman’s Own Sesame Ginger Dressing), and toss to coat.

5. Stir in 1/2 cup drained and chopped sliced water chestnuts, 1/4 cup drained and chopped mandarin orange segments (previously packed in juice), and 1/4 cup chopped scallions. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least 15 minutes.

6. Top with 1/4 ounce (about 1 tablespoon) sliced almonds.

2
Sassy Melon Salad

Healthy Recipes to Bring on a Picnic: Sassy Melon Salad
Courtesy of Hungry-Girl.com

1/4th of recipe (about 1 1/3 cups): 91 calories, 0.25g total fat (0g sat fat), 30mg sodium, 22g carbs, 2g fiber, 17g sugars, 2.5g protein 

Talk about refreshing! Try juicy fruit mixed with vanilla-lime-watermelon yogurt. Your picnic pals will want the recipe, and seconds.

1. In a blender or food processor, combine 1/2 cup fat-free vanilla yogurt, 2 teaspoons lime juice, and 1/4 cup seedless (or seeded) watermelon. Blend until smooth.

2. In a large bowl, combine 1 1/2 cups diced cantaloupe, 1 1/2 cups diced cucumber, 1 cup diced pear, and 1 3/4 cup seedless (or seeded) watermelon. Add yogurt mixture, and toss to coat. 

Taking a personal picnic? (Alone time can be so relaxing!) Pack a mason-jar salad.

3
Fruity Cheese Skewers

Healthy Recipes to Bring on a Picnic: Fruity Cheese Skewers
Courtesy of Hungry-Girl.com

1/2 of recipe (2 skewers): 109 calories, 4.5g total fat (3g sat fat), 241mg sodium, 8.5g carbs, 0.5g fiber, 7g sugars, 9.5g protein 

Invite this dream team along on your picnic. Easy to make, and the flavor combo is on point! Sometimes, great snacks require very few ingredients.

1. Cut 3 pieces of Mini Babybel Light cheeses into 4 wedges each.  

2. Cut seedless (or seeded) watermelon into 16 one-inch cubes (about 1 1/2 cups).

3. Grab a skewer and thread the following: 1 watermelon cube, 1 cheese wedge, 1 watermelon cube, 1 cheese wedge, 1 watermelon cube, 1 cheese wedge, 1 watermelon cube.

4. Repeat with three more skewers!

4
Tropical Pico de Gallo

Healthy Recipes to Bring on a Picnic: Tropical Pico de Gallo
Courtesy of Hungry-Girl.com

1/8th of recipe (about 1/4 cup): 25 calories, 0g total fat (0g sat fat), 108mg sodium, 5.5g carbs, 1g fiber, 2g sugars, 1g protein 

Is there ever a time when chips and dip aren’t the answer? For a warm day, this island-inspired chunky salsa is the way to go!

1. In a medium-large sealable container, combine 1/2 cup chopped mango, 1/2 cup drained and rinsed canned black beans, 1/3 cup seeded and chopped tomatoes, 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion, 1/4 cup finely chopped red bell pepper, 1 tablespoon seeded and chopped jalapeño pepper, 1 tablespoon chopped cilantro, 2 teaspoons lime juice, 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/8 teaspoon black pepper, and 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin.

2. Mix until uniform.

3. Seal and refrigerate until ready to use.

Have fun out there! And remember to stay hydrated; it's just one way to have a healthier day

For guilt-free recipes, food finds, tips 'n tricks, and more, sign up for free daily emails or visit Hungry Girl!

Continue Reading