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Gazpacho, Hummus, Cheesecake and More Cold Dishes for Hot Days

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Don’t stick your head in the freezer just yet
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Summer is a season filled with yummy foods, but most of the time they involve firing up the grill, which in 90-degree heat can be brutal — or even impossible if you don’t have access to one. Luckily, summer is also filled with cool, crisp and refreshing foods that will reinvigorate our taste buds. Ice cream, gazpachos, cold dips and crisp salads are all wonderful ways to cool down and help us feel like we have some semblance of control over the invading heat.

Chilled Crab Dip

Chilled Crab Dip
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Seafood tastes better in the summer, but you don’t need to have a crawfish boil or go through the laborious process of shucking oysters to get your shellfish fix. This chilled crab dip is ready in 10 minutes and requires no heat during the preparation process.

For the Chilled Crab Dip recipe, click here.

Buffalo Chicken Deviled Eggs

Buffalo Chicken Deviled Eggs
The Daily Meal

Sure, classic deviled eggs are always a good idea, but if there’s one ingredient that can make our most favorite appetizers shine, it’s Buffalo sauce. Mix the condiment with chicken and bleu cheese and whip it together with hard-boiled egg yolks for a new take on two favorite apps.

For the Buffalo Chicken Deviled Eggs recipe, click here.

Shrimp Cocktail Salad

Shrimp Cocktail Salad
Abel Uribe/Chicago Tribune

Shrimp cocktail has been making waves since the early 1900s, but its retro-ness hasn’t made it fade in popularity. This recipe modernizes the dish with the addition of avocado, red bell pepper and onion.

For the Shrimp Cocktail Salad recipe, click here.

Fresh Guacamole

Fresh Guacamole
Maryse Chevriere/The Daily Meal

Dips and salsas are the easiest way to snack during summer without firing up the stove, oven or grill. And no dip does it better than guacamole. This recipe keeps it simple with the usual suspects like avocado, red onion and cilantro.

For the Fresh Guacamole recipe, click here.

Caprese Skewers With Pesto

Caprese Skewers With Pesto
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Light, satisfying and easy to make; skewers are a crowd favorite during warm weather. But you don’t need the grill to make great skewers; just add some tomatoes, basil and mozzarella cheese and you’ve got a refreshing combo for the ages.

For the Caprese Skewers With Pesto recipe, click here.

White Bean Hummus

White Bean Hummus
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This hummus is better than anything you can buy at the store. Using white beans gives the dip a lighter and creamier consistency than chickpeas. Drizzle the top with olive oil and serve with celery, carrots and sliced pita.

For the White Bean Hummus recipe, click here.

Lemon Dill Potato Salad With Peas

Lemon Dill Potato Salad With Peas
Abel Uribe/Chicago Tribune

There are plenty of ways to make a great potato salad for cookouts, picnics and more. If you prefer a light potato salad, try cutting back on mayo and adding dill, dijon mustard and lemon.

For the Lemon Dill Potato Salad With Peas recipe, click here.

All-American Macaroni Salad

All-American Macaroni Salad
Carolyn Menyes/The Daily Meal

Like potato salad, macaroni salad is a summertime side dish that completes any cookout. Serve this classic macaroni salad as a side to burgers, pulled pork sandwiches, ribs and more.

For the All-American Macaroni Salad recipe, click here.

Kale and Cabbage Coleslaw

Kale and Cabbage Coleslaw
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There’s plenty of ways to make coleslaw that goes beyond the usual shredded carrot-and-cabbage combo. Adding kale to the mix is an easy way to bring an earthy, vitamin-packed element to the timeless no-cook side dish.

For the Kale and Cabbage Coleslaw recipe, click here.

Lemongrass and Peanut Slaw

Lemongrass and Peanut Slaw
Abel Uribe/Chicago Tribune; Shannon Kinsella/food styling

Another way to take coleslaw to the next level is to try something other than mayonnaise as a base. This Asian-inspired slaw uses rice vinegar, soy sauce and sesame oil, adding an umami flavor to the cabbage and carrots.

For the Lemongrass and Peanut Slaw recipe, click here.

Creamed Cucumbers

Creamed Cucumbers
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A simple yet refreshing side dish to serve on hot nights, creamed cucumbers require few ingredients and minimal prep. Sour cream, dill, cider vinegar and sugar coat the cucumbers, and onions give the dish a dynamic blend of sweet, sour and fresh flavors.

For the Creamed Cucumbers recipe, click here.

Zesty Italian Pasta Salad

Zesty Italian Pasta Salad
Carolyn Menyes/The Daily Meal

Looking for an easy weeknight dinner side? Pasta salad is a no-brainer. Use store-bought dressing or make Italian vinaigrette from scratch and toss it into a combination of rotini, veggies, olives and more. Make this on Sunday (or the coolest day of the week) and keep it in your fridge for a last-minute accompaniment to burgers and brats.

For the Zesty Italian Pasta Salad recipe, click here.

Watermelon and Cucumber Salad

Watermelon and Cucumber Salad
Courtesy of Seasonal Cravings

Watermelon is the perfect way to cool down during summer. Serve the refreshing, juicy melon with cucumber, feta cheese, mint and avocado to make an incredible summer salad for you and your guests.

For the Watermelon and Cucumber Salad recipe, click here.

Creamy Garlic Salad

Creamy Garlic Salad
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Garlic is the star of this salad, and we’re not complaining. Not only is the treasured ingredient loaded with flavor but it has been known to reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke.

For the Creamy Garlic Salad recipe, click here.

Ceviche

Ceviche
Abel Uribe/Chicago Tribune; Shannon Kinsella/food styling

Ceviche is a delicacy in Peru, where the popular dish originated. Bite-sized pieces of fresh fish fillets are cured in a citrus juice like lemon or lime. Here, it’s served with red onion, bell pepper, fresh jalapeno and cilantro.

For the Ceviche recipe, click here.

Herby Potato Salad With Pickled Onions

Herby Potato Salad With Pickled Onions
Amy Drew Thompson/Orlando Sentinel

Get the most out of your potato salad by straying from the predictable combinations. This recipe mixes the starch with pickled onions and scallions, and uses aioli instead of plain mayo to achieve the classic creamy consistency.

For the Herby Potato Salad With Pickled Onions recipe, click here.

Sesame Noodles With Spicy Peanut Sauce

Sesame Noodles With Spicy Peanut Sauce
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Sesame noodles can be found on the menus of your favorite restaurants, but you can easily make the dish at home fuss-free. This recipe suggests you serve the noodles cold (perfect for summer!) by running them under cold water and tossing them with sesame oil and peanut sauce.

For the Sesame Noodles With Spicy Peanut Sauce recipe, click here.

Layered Mason Jar Farro and Chickpea Salad

Layered Mason Jar Farro and Chickpea Salad
Courtesy of Planet Oat

Looking for a quick lunch option that will keep you feeling cool and full on hot days? Try this farro and chickpea salad. Just add the ingredients to a mason jar and bring it with you to the office, school, park or wherever else you’re jetting off to.

For the Layered Mason Jar Farro and Chickpea Salad recipe, click here.

Gazpacho

Gazpacho
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Soup is great — just not on a 90-degree day. Enter gazpacho. The cold soup is made from blending raw vegetables, but it can easily be made incorrectly. Luckily this recipe is prepared exactly how they do it in Andalusia, Spain, where the dish originated.

For the Gazpacho recipe, click here.

Whitefish Salad

Whitefish Salad
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Whitefish salad is one of the best recipes for seafood fans, because it can be made with a variety of fish like cod tilapia, flounder, halibut, snapper and haddock. No matter which type of fish you choose, mix it together with mayo, celery and lemon juice for one perfect dip or sandwich spread.

For the Whitefish Salad recipe, click here.

Sriracha Avocado Egg Salad Sandwich

Sriracha Avocado Egg Salad Sandwich
Jacqui Wedewer/The Daily Meal

Whether you’re a fan of egg salad or if you have avoided it in the past, this recipe will be welcome to all. Using avocado instead of mayonnaise keeps the egg salad light without sacrificing its creaminess, while the sriracha adds a little spice.

For the Sriracha Avocado Egg Salad Sandwich recipe, click here.

Chilled Lemongrass Beef & Noodles

Chilled Lemongrass Beef & Noodles
Courtesy of Blue Apron

If you want to achieve the flavor of your favorite takeout meals without breaking the bank, this dish is the way to go. The lo mein noodles give the meal the feeling of takeout, while the marinated beef gives it the comfort of home cooking.

For the Chilled Lemongrass Beef & Noodles recipe, click here.

Lobster Roll

Lobster Roll
Eberly Film Labs/The Daily Meal, styling by Shannon Kinsella

Just as pumpkin spice is to fall, lobster rolls are to summer. They're a must. To keep the dish cold, prepare the lobster the night before and store it in the fridge. When you’re ready, toast your rolls with some butter and serve.

For the Lobster Roll recipe, click here.

Apple and Curry Chicken Salad

Apple and Curry Chicken Salad
Courtesy of Perdue

Sprinkle some curry powder into your chicken salad to add a unique blend of heat and savory flavors that pair well with the neutral protein. Toss in sliced apples, grapes and celery for a crunchy, sweet bite.

For the Apple and Curry Chicken Salad recipe, click here.

Spicy Tuna Roll

Spicy Tuna Roll
Jacqui Wedewer/The Daily Meal

If you want to turn dinner at home into a 5-star experience, try your hand at sushi! Making it from scratch might seem daunting but if you have a bamboo mat handy, it’s easier than it seems. Head over to your local Asian market to pick up the fixings, which include ingredients like tempura flakes and daikon cress.

For the Spicy Tuna Roll recipe, click here.

Ham and Cheese Pinwheels

Ham and Cheese Pinwheels
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Cooking something simple and kid-friendly for dinner isn’t always easy, especially when you’re trying to avoid the oven. Enter pinwheels. The meat and cheese sandwiches take just 10 minutes to prepare and are fun to make with your kids.

For the Ham and Cheese Pinwheels recipe, click here.

Healthy Tuna Salad

Healthy Tuna Salad
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Few lunch options are easier than tuna salad. Just pop the can open, mix it with some mayo and you’re ready to go. But if you want to make a lighter rendition of this classic sandwich, try using Greek yogurt and avocado like this recipe suggests.

For the Healthy Tuna Salad recipe, click here.

Tropical Smoothie Bowl

Tropical Smoothie Bowl
Courtesy of West of the Loop

Eggs are a great breakfast option, but they require using the stove. Get your morning protein a different way with this tropical smoothie bowl. The base is a blend of bananas, blueberries and pineapple that’s topped off with coconut, granola and extra fruit.

For the Tropical Smoothie Bowl recipe, click here.

Frozen Strawberry Custard

Frozen Strawberry Custard
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Sure, eating fruit from a bowl is great, but having it in dessert? Even better. This frozen fruit custard is made with strawberries, which are in their prime during June.

For the Frozen Strawberry Custard recipe, click here.

Chocolate-Crusted Key Lime Pie

Chocolate-Crusted Key Lime Pie
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Key lime pie, one of the most iconic pies around, is given a new spin in this recipe that adds chocolate to the crust. The filling of key lime pie needs to be refrigerated overnight before being added to the crust, making it the perfect treat to cool down with this summer.

For the Chocolate-Crusted Key Lime Pie recipe, click here.

Freezer Thin Mint Pie

Freezer Thin Mint Pie
The Daily Meal/Jacqui Wedewer

If you don’t like citrus-based desserts, then this freezer thin mint pie might be more your speed. Made with Girl Scout cookies, chocolate chips, Cool Whip and more, this treat is a true masterpiece.

For the Freezer Thin Mint Pie recipe, click here.

Blackberry Sweet Potato Ice Pops

Blackberry Sweet Potato Ice Pops
Courtesy of McCormick

Get your fruits and vegetables in one star-studded dessert. These blackberry and sweet potato ice pops are the perfect blend of sweet and tart flavors.

For the Blackberry Sweet Potato Ice Pops recipe, click here.

Frushi

Frushi
Courtesy of Dole

Sushi for dessert is the next big thing. OK, so it’s not actually sushi, but it is shaped like it! Coconut milk, rice, vinegar and salt are boiled until the milk is absorbed. Once the rice is cool, form it into rectangular shapes, top with mango slices and chill.

For the Frushi recipe, click here.

Watermelon Pie

Watermelon Pie
FamilyFun Magazine/MCT

Of course, the easiest way to cool down during summer is to have ice cream or some sort of no-bake dessert. This “pie” might have the appearance of watermelon but it’s actually made out of sherbet, sorbet, gelato and chocolate chips.

For the Watermelon Pie recipe, click here.

Pomegranate Mascarpone Cheesecake

Pomegranate Mascarpone Cheesecake
Beth Ebin

If you’re hosting a summer party and want to impress your guests, this pomegranate mascarpone cheesecake is the perfect option. The light and airy dessert gets a sweet-tart pop of flavor and color from the addition of pomegranate seeds. It’s one of many impressive desserts you should try making this summer.

For the Pomegranate Mascarpone Cheesecake recipe, click here.

More from The Daily Meal:

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