6 No-Cook Meals for When It’s (Just) Too Hot to Cook
Something about summer makes us less willing to spend long hours in the kitchen, even for meals we're usually really into - and yes, it's the heat. No one wants to stand over a hot stove when they could spend time at the beach or by the pool. So, to get the best of both worlds (i.e., enjoy a great meal without melting away in a hot kitchen), we rounded out our six favorite no-cook meals for when it's just too hot to turn on the oven.
Hummus Veggies Wrap
Ready at a moment's notice, this no-cook recipe isn't just easy; it's nutritious thanks to the vegetables wrapped inside the tortilla. But this isn't a set-in-stone ingredient list. You can actually add any veggies you want, so feel free to experiment with other combos.
- 1/2 cup instant hummus mix
- 3/4 cup hot water
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 corn tortillas
- 1/2 cucumber, cut into slices
- 1 large tomato, cut into slices
- 1/2 cup dried corn
- Salt, to taste
- First, make the hummus (make sure to pack it into the ½ cup like you would brown sugar). Add the instant mix, hot water, and olive oil to a bowl and combine. Transfer to the fridge until it firms up.
- Meanwhile, add the corn and 1 cup of warm water to another bowl and soak for 15 minutes. Once hydrated, drain and squeeze away excess liquid. Set aside.
- To serve, take the hummus from the fridge and spread it on the bottom third of each wrap. Layer the tomato and cucumber slices and top with the corn. Season with salt according to your liking.
- Fold the wrap tightly and roll firmly to the end, making sure all the veggies are tucked in. Cut in half and enjoy!
TSP Bacon Caprese Salad
The Italian Caprese salad is tasty as it is - juicy tomatoes, creamy mozzarella, and a little bit of refreshing basil. But add some bacon to the mix, and you have a light no-cook meal that beats almost any lunch you can make on your stovetop.
- 4 medium tomatoes, cut into slices
- 1 package of fresh mozzarella, cut into slices
- 1/2 cup textured soy protein (TSP) bacon bits
- 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 tsp oregano
- Salt & pepper, to taste
- Add the bacon and 1 cup of warm water to a bowl and soak for 15 minutes. Once hydrated, strain through a fine sieve and squeeze away excess liquid. Season with salt and oregano. Set aside.
- Arrange the tomato slices, the mozzarella slices, and the basil leaves on a serving platter. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with the bacon bits and balsamic vinegar. Enjoy!
Cucumber Red Pepper Gazpacho
While spending time in the kitchen pursuing the perfect soup is commonplace for the winter, August isn't the time for standing over a stove. The next best thing? Toss some ripe produce in a food processor and make a bowl of chilled soup instead. You'll get the same feeling of comfort with none of the heat.
- 2 pounds ripe tomatoes, diced
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes
- 1 1/4 cups dried red bell peppers
- 1 cucumber, peeled and diced
- 1/2 cup dried onions
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp dried garlic (granulated)
- Salt & pepper, to taste
- Add the bell peppers and onion to a bowl and fill with enough warm water to coat. Once hydrated, strain through a fine sieve and squeeze away excess liquid.
- Transfer to a food processor and add the remaining ingredients (except for the olive oil). Puree the gazpacho until smooth. Season with salt and pepper, ladle into bowls, and drizzle with olive oil.
No-Bake Peach & Oat Bliss Balls
These fruit- and oat-studded treats are perfect as an afternoon snack and don't require an oven to be made. Just mix the ingredients, roll the dough into bite-sized balls, and enjoy a great pick-me-up snack to tame the midday munchies.
- 1/2 cup freeze dried peach dices
- 1/2 cup smooth almond butter
- 1/3 cup raw honey
- 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1 3/4 cups rolled oats
- 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
- Add the peach dices and one cup of warm water to a bowl and soak for 15 minutes. Once hydrated, strain through a sieve and squeeze away excess liquid. Pat dry with a paper towel and transfer to a bowl.
- Add the almond butter, honey, and sugar to a heatproof bowl and microwave for 1 minute. Remove from the microwave and mix with the peach dices. Add the oats and vanilla extract and stir to combine.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside. Dampen your hands and roll the dough into small balls. Place the treats on the baking sheet and chill for 1 hour. Transfer to an airtight container and enjoy for the week to come (if you haven't devoured them by then).
Peanut Butter Strawberry Open-Faced Sandwich
Jam may be the first thing you spread on top of peanut butter. But have you ever thought of switching to actual fruit? The taste is equally good, not to mention you feel like you get more out of each bite. Pro tip: A drizzle of honey will make this no-cook meal stand out even more.
- 2 slices sourdough bread
- 2 tbsp smooth peanut butter
- 1/2 cup freeze dried strawberries (sliced)
- 2 tsp raw honey
- Add the strawberries and 1 cup of warm water to a bowl and soak for 15 minutes. Once hydrated, drain the water, and squeeze away excess liquid. Set aside.
- Spread the peanut butter over the bread. Divide the strawberries between the slices. Drizzle with honey, and enjoy!
Blueberry Buttermilk Sherbet
Ice cream holds a special place in our hearts. But a well-made sherbet is just as satisfying on a hot summer day, especially if it contains refreshing ingredients like buttermilk and fruit.
- 2 cups freeze dried blueberries
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 3/4 cups buttermilk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- Add the blueberries and 3 cups of warm water to a bowl and soak for 15 minutes. Once hydrated, drain the water through a sieve, and squeeze away excess liquid. Transfer back to the bowl.
- Add the sugar and let stand for half an hour, stirring occasionally. Transfer to a food processor and blend until smooth. Strain puree through a fine sieve into a large bowl and discard the solids.
- Stir in buttermilk and vanilla extract. Cover and chill for 4 hours or overnight. Pour the sherbet into a freezer-safe container and freeze for two more hours. Enjoy!
Do you resort to no-cook meals during summer? If so, what are your favorites? Let us know in the comments down below!
- Branden Evans