3 Cold Dinners for Hot Nights

Erin Coleman, R.D., L.D.
Chicken Salad Sandwich
Chilly chicken sandwich

Beating summer heat may be as simple as finding the right cold dinner recipes for hot nights. Cool, refreshing dinners hit the spot in the summer, and are a must when you're entertaining family and friends. These quick, easy (but impressive-looking) recipe ideas are sure to be a hit.

1. Chilly Chicken Salad Sandwich

This delicious chicken salad recipe is a refreshing way to cool off during sweltering summer months.

Servings: 4 to 6

Ingredients

  • 2 cups cooked chicken breast cut into small pieces
  • 2 tablespoons of light mayonnaise
  • ¼ cup of plain fat-free yogurt
  • ¼ teaspoon of Italian spice blend
  • 3 tablespoons of chopped walnuts
  • 1 finely chopped red or green apple
  • ½ cup of seedless grapes, halved
  • Whole grain bread
  • Lettuce

Directions

  1. Mix together (in large bowl) mayonnaise, yogurt, and spice blend.
  2. Add fruit, nuts, and chicken; stir well.
  3. Place chilled chicken salad mixture on whole grain bread with lettuce.
  4. Serve with raw veggies or a cold kale salad, and a fruit smoothie for dessert.

2. Cold Shrimp Pineapple Kabobs

Curb your sweet tooth and boost satiety with this fun, refreshing summer treat.

Servings: 4 large kabobs

Shrimp Kebobs

Ingredients

  • 20 large chilled, precooked shrimp
  • 20 bite-sized chunks of fresh pineapple
  • 1 tablespoon of lime juice
  • 2 teaspoons of honey
  • 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon of olive oil
  • 1/8 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon of grainy mustard
  • 4 wooden skewers

Directions

  1. Mix together honey, mustard, oil, apple cider vinegar, lime juice, and red pepper flakes into bowl.
  2. Add shrimp to mixture and toss gently until shrimp is well coated.
  3. Place 5 shrimp and 5 chunks of pineapple on a wooden skewer in an alternating pattern. Repeat with remaining shrimp and pineapple.
  4. Drizzle with remaining vinaigrette mixture if desired.
  5. Serve chilled with cold noodle salad and chilled banana pudding for dessert.

3. White Bean Tuna Salad

This cold salad, packed with protein and fiber, is sure to be a hit at any summer gathering.

Servings: 4 to 6

Bean and Tuna Salad

Ingredients

  • 2 cans of white beans, drained
  • 2 large cans of tuna, packed in oil
  • 1 cup of sliced cherry tomatoes
  • 1 cup of sliced cucumbers
  • 1/2 cup of capers, drained
  • 2 cups of leafy greens
  • 1 medium onion, sliced
  • 6 tablespoons of red wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  1. Add drained tuna to large bowl (saving the oil it was packed in) with beans and capers.
  2. Combine oil from canned tuna, additional olive oil, salt, pepper, and vinegar in separate bowl; stir well to form the dressing.
  3. Pour dressing into bowl with tuna, capers, and white beans; stir.
  4. Add sliced vegetables (tomatoes, cucumbers, and onions) to tuna mixture.
  5. Place tuna and vegetable mixture on decorative serving platter, lined with leafy greens.
  6. Serve cold with a sweet fruit salad. Finish with a slice of chilled super easy lemon cheesecake for dessert.

Stay Cool With Chilled Dinners

Beating sweltering summer heat can be fun with the right mix of cold dinner recipes for hot nights! Try one the next time it's too hot for the oven.

3 Cold Dinners for Hot Nights