Top Tips for Summer Cooking
Summer is an enjoyable, relaxing and beautiful time of the year. To take full advantage of the warmer months, you need some cooking strategies that allow you to avoid heating up the whole house and spend as much time outdoors as possible. Below, you’ll discover some top summer cooking tips for preparing delicious summer meals and maximizing the season.
10 Tips for Cooking During the Summer
Get the most out of the warmest time of the year by following these tips and tricks for easy summer cooking.
If you know you’ll need to use your oven or stove for prepping part of a meal — such as cooking rice, noodles or boiling eggs — try to do these things before the hottest parts of the day. When you plan your day, you can fire up your stovetop first thing in the morning and finish using it while the temperatures are still relatively reasonable.
Planning your meals is also an excellent strategy if you’re going on a summer day trip. Peel veggies, chop fruit, make sandwiches, toss together a salad and prepare any other road trip snacks you’d like before heading out of town.
2. Keep It Simple
Make your summer cooking easier by keeping your recipes simple and using culinary shortcuts. You can purchase premade items like a rotisserie chicken or stir-fried tofu and chopped produce to make putting your recipes together a snap. With all the peeling, chopping, slicing and dicing already done for you, all you’ll have to do is combine the ingredients and cook the dish.
You can also save yourself some time and energy by choosing one-pot meals that make for easy cooking and cleanup. For example, a simple pasta salad recipe can be the perfect summer side while using fewer than five ingredients. Other straightforward dinner ideas include skillet meals and sheet pan dinners.
3. Get Outside
Summer is one of the best times of the year to enjoy the great outdoors. Get your kids and yourself out of the house for a while by doing some dinner prep outside. If you have a well-appointed porch or deck area, you can easily do some ingredient prep in the fresh air. Turn your kids into sous chefs by having them shuck corn, wash, peel and cut other produce items outside.
4. Cook Outdoors
As soon as the weather gets warmer, you know what that means — it’s grilling season! If you can’t take the heat, get out of your kitchen and do your cooking outdoors on the grill. Besides your grill, you can take a portable roaster outside on your porch or deck to cook different types of meat, roasts, stews and more.
When it comes to summer grilling recipes, your options are endless. You can grill anything and everything, including burgers, sausages, vegetables, kebabs, seafood, pizza and even fruit! From classic Premio Italian sausage burgers to grilled ginger-spiced kebabs, you can whip up a wide range of flavorful and satisfying summer dinners outdoors.
5. Lighten Up
Even if you don’t mind cooking in summer heat, you won’t want to feel weighed down by a heavy meal. Adapt your favorite dinners for the warmer months by preparing lighter versions of your usual recipes. For example, you can make open-faced sandwiches or zucchini-crust grilled pizzas to reduce the carbs in a recipe.
You can also lighten up your favorite wintertime meals by adding tons of fresh veggies to your regular rice or pasta dishes to cut down on starches or use thinner variations of pasta, such as orzo or angel hair. Alternatively, you can forego starches by swapping them for vegetable versions like zucchini noodles or riced cauliflower.
6. Switch to Small Appliances
Reduce the sweat that comes with cooking in the summer heat by using any smaller appliances you may have. Whether your weapon of choice is a slow cooker, toaster oven, pressure cooker or rice cooker, using a smaller appliance will help you cook your food thoroughly without heating the entire house.
Tossing ingredients into a slow cooker early in the morning allows you to magically cook a meal while spending the day outside. When you use a toaster oven, it heats up and cools down fast, unlike a regular oven, making it an ideal appliance for summertime cooking. Finally, a pressure cooker or rice cooker can help keep your house cool by providing a way to cook rice and veggies without using the stovetop.
7. Shake up Your Salads
Summer is salad season. With all the fresh produce to choose from, you’ll have no problem coming up with creative salad combinations during the warmer months. When making a summer salad, there are no rules — you can put together any combination of ingredients you’d like. Get creative with your summer salad recipes by serving unique creations like a hot and spicy summer salad or a grilled Grecian sausage salad.
8. Master the Summer Signatures
Summer isn’t the same without a few select staples, including fresh produce like corn, tomatoes and watermelon. You can incorporate these popular ingredients into your weeknight dinners by grilling them, putting them on sandwiches, tossing them into salads and more.
9. Use Fresh Fruit
Fresh fruit, in general, is a summertime icon. Specifically, berries are in season during the warmer months. You can use your fresh-picked berries in a nearly infinite amount of ways. Consider topping a shortcake with berries, baking your berries into a pie, turning leftover berries into jam, freezing berries to make smoothies or snacking on a handful of plain berries.
10. Go Double or Nothing
On the days you decide to fire up your oven or stovetop, make a double portion of whatever you’re cooking to avoid heating the whole kitchen more than necessary. Doubling or tripling a recipe means you can cook once and have enough leftovers for the entire week. You can also freeze any leftovers you have to save them for busy summer days you don’t have time to cook.
Purchase Premio Sausage in a Store Near You for Your Summer Cooking
Your summer recipes depend on using the freshest ingredients possible. When you cook with Premio products, you can be confident you’re getting top-quality ingredients that make for delicious meals. At Premio, we always make our sausage with fresh, unique blends of meat and without any fillers — the way sausage should be!
Use our online store locator to find the Premio nearest you and start summer cooking like a pro today.