Two ground turkey burgers with red onion, tomato and lettuce with flag toothpick on top

Enjoy the best of summer’s bounty with these healthy food recipes that suggest using fresh veggies in every recipe.

When the weather heats up, I like to indulge in summer dinner ideas, like quick-to-assemble salads, tasty sandwiches and make-your-own tacos, as well as anything grilled that helps get me out of the kitchen. Not only does it mean less cookware to clean, but it also means I have more time to spend with the little ones.

Enjoy these tasty, simple healthy food recipes that use fresh vegetables and simple ingredients.

6 light and fresh summer dinner ideas

  • Asparagus Pasta Salad
  • Grilled Veggie Pizza
  • Modern Tuna Cobb Salad
  • Grilled Salmon Sandwiches
  • Slow Cooker Pulled Beef Tacos
  • Mediterranean Turkey Burgers

Vegetarian at Heart

Asparagus Pasta Salad

32 percent of daily fibre per 85 grams

Asparagus Pasta Salad

Young children sometimes find chewing meat to be a chore. This vegetarian pasta salad recipe from Food Network Canada requires little prep time and is chock full of colourful, crispy vegetables, like asparagus, green peas and bell peppers.

Help make a veggie pasta fun for kids with Bows Pasta by Catelli Smart. It offers 32% of your daily recommended fibre intake per 85-gram serving.

Use the time while your little one is napping to prep this meal in advance to help make dinnertime as stress-free as possible.

Grilled Veggie Pizza

Grilled Veggie Pizza

Skip the takeout pizza and try this yummy recipe from Today’s Parent. Follow the recipe as is and enjoy fresh grilled asparagus and tomato toppings on your pizza, or add your choice of toppings.

Place veggies on top of Great Value’s Pizza Mozzarella Shredded Cheese. Or, prepare your pizza the good ol’ Montréal way and cover veggies with cheese before grilling. Gooey goodness!

Seafood Delight

Modern Tuna Cobb Salad

Modern Tuna Cobb Salad

A hearty salad like this no-cook recipe from Chatelaine deserves a place at the dinner table—especially in summer when you can include vine-ripened cherry tomatoes from your garden!

Toss baby spinach with homemade dressing and top with prosciutto by Marcangelo Foods, avocado, tuna and cherry tomatoes.

Grilled Salmon Sandwiches

Wooden bowl of arugula on wood countertop

Grilled Salmon Sandwiches

Use Atlantic Salmon Fillets by Your Fresh Market to make this simple, pesto-infused seafood sandwich recipe from Peas and Crayons. The tasty fillets can be cooked on the grill or baked in the oven.

Young kids may prefer an open-faced sandwich (half a bun) with fresh arugula, and slices of tomato and avocado to complement the smaller bits of salmon.

Try swapping out salmon for canned fish, like tuna, if you have pickier eaters.

Meat Lover

Slow Cooker Pulled Beef Tacos

Bunch of green onions on wood countertop

Slow Cooker Pulled Beef Tacos

Slow cookers are a go-to for soups, stews and saucy main dishes during the cold winter months. However, they can also come in handy for making lighter fare during the warmer months. This summer, put your slow cooker to work with this taco recipe from Canadian Living.

My kids love assembling their tacos, which may be garnished with thinly sliced radishes and green onion for added flavour.

I find soft tacos like Medium-sized Soft Tortillas from Old El Paso work better for little hands than hard, crunchy tacos. The kiddies tend to get upset when the hard tacos break apart.

Mediterranean Turkey Burgers

Bowl of tzatziki sauce with dill in the middle, dill lemon and garlic around the bowl

Mediterranean Turkey Burgers

Swap your traditional beef burgers for this healthier alternative: turkey burgers from the Food Network. This tasty recipe calls for lean ground turkey to make the patties.

To help give the burgers a Mediterranean flavour, have the kiddies spread a tzatziki-style mixture (see recipe) on the top and bottom of each bun before adding their fave fresh veggie toppings.

I like to use Greek yogurt, like 2% M.F. Greek Yogurt by Our Finest, when I make tzatziki because it’s known for being thicker and creamier than other types of yogurt.

From simple summer salads to easy grilling, these summer dinner ideas can help make it easier for you to introduce more vegetables into your family’s diet. These healthy food recipes also offer the opportunity for little ones to experiment with food toppings so they can discover their individual tastes.

Bon appétit!

See also: Easy Healthy Meals