Some days it's just too hot to cook! And when it's 90 degrees outside, warm foods don't sound appetizing anyway. All you can think about are icy drinks, juicy fruit, cool desserts or ice creams and crisp, cool vegetables. The five ideas below will help keep you (and your house!) cool on those sweltering summer days, while showcasing summer's best seasonal offerings -- make sure you follow our seasonal produce guide (based on your region) for June, July and August.
So get chopping, blending, or wrapping, but leave the cooking for cooler days!
1. Taco Bowl:
Taco salad is a quick, easy, and satisfying meal you can put together in just a few minutes. Simply prepare and set out the ingredients, and let everyone make their own bowl! Customize to your liking, but recommended ingredients include mixed greens (or lettuce), chopped tomatoes, black beans, mashed avocado (or guacamole), shredded cheese, salsa, and tortilla chips. Yum!
2. Raw Soups:
Raw soups make a great appetizer or light summer meal, and are an excellent way to use a variety of seasonal produce. From avocados to mushrooms to zucchini, there's something for every palate in this lineup of fresh, tasty raw soups. This Raw Green Pea Soup is killer but here are many more raw soup options for you!
3. Pitas and Wraps
Stuff a pita, tortilla, or lettuce wrap with a "mock" version of a traditional chicken, tuna, or egg salad (this summer tofu scramble is off the charts!). This tempeh-based Mock Chicken Salad is a super-satisfying, protein-packed, and delicious choice! (Can be made ahead of time and refrigerated). This Thai Tofu-Vegetable Wrap is filled with baked tofu strips, crisp fresh vegetables, and a creamy, zesty sauce these wraps make a yummy lunch or a light supper. Or try these beautiful Raw Zucchini Wraps!
Smoothies are the ultimate warm weather meal or snack idea! Cool, refreshing, light, and fruity, who can resist a frosty smoothie on a hot summer day? If you're using it as a meal, don't forget to add some protein and healthy fat to help keep you satisfied. Check out these amazing vegan smoothie recipes, or make your own Amazing Green Smoothie Combo!
5. Green Salads
Salads should not be considered a wimpy, unsatisfying meal option or a last resort! There are TONS of amazing ways to jazz up the basic green salad. Shelled edamame, marinated tofu or tempeh cubes, and beans are great protein sources, while nuts, seeds, and avocado are tasty ways to add some healthy fat. See this 5 Step Guide to Making Vegan Super Salads for more inspiration and here are some of our favorite vegan salad dressings!
Enjoy more vegan, dairy-free, meatless summer recipes by One Green Planet on Yahoo below:
1. 6 Easy Breezy Meatless Summer Salads
2. 15 Greatest Veggie Burger Recipes
3. 25 Cool Summer Vegan Dessert Recipes. Hell Yeah!
4. 8 Amazing Ways to Use Coconuts This Summer (With Recipes!)
5. 15 UNBELIEVABLE Raw (No-Bake) Dessert Recipes for Summer