Easy, Vibrant, Summer Recipes You'll Love

asian spicy cucumber salad

When the sun is out from morning to night, there is no cloud in the sky, and the humidity has you wilting—the last thing many of us want is to cook over a hot stove or stand in the heat by a grill. Something about summer and the weather, however, makes us whistful for easy yet vibrant and colorful dishes that reflect the bright nature of the season.

If cooking on the stove, sweating near a grill, or trying complicated recipes is not ideal this summer, we have the inspiration and easy recipes you'll love!

Spicy Asian Cucumber Salad

Cucumbers may be one of the most refreshing vegetables for summer dining. Its 95% water and high moisture content make it an excellent salad for any summertime meal or entertaining guests. The best part is that it is so easy to make.

What you need:

  • 1 cucumber (about 8 oz)
  • Salt, to taste
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 and ½ tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of Korean chili powder or 2 tablespoons of chili crisp oil
  • ½ teaspoon sesame oil
  • Optional: sesame seeds for garnish.

How to Make it:

  1. Wash and rinse the cucumber thoroughly and slice it into medallions or pieces as thick or thin as you like. Place slices in a bowl and add salt, stirring gently to combine, then set in the fridge to chill for 15 minutes.
  2. Combine the garlic, vinegar, sugar, Korean chili powder, crisp oil, and sesame oil in another bowl and stir until the sugar dissolves.
  3. Remove the cucumber from the fridge, and drain the excess water. Add the cucumber to the dressing mix and toss well. Top with sesame seeds and serve immediately.

mango spring rolls with peanut sauce

Left Over Chicken Spring Rolls with Peanut Sauce

Many of us love a great roasted or rotisserie chicken, but the thought of preparing and baking it sounds like too much in summer. Suppose you've got leftover chicken from purchasing one from the grocery store. In that case, you can make an easy, delicious, vibrant meal to utilize leftover chicken and enjoy a cooling meal on a hot day with chicken spring rolls and peanut sauce.

As well as being easy, this recipe is incredibly versatile as you can add or remove ingredients that may not work for you. Don't have chicken? Try any protein or seafood, such as shrimp, you have leftover, or substitute it with tofu.

Filling suggestions:

  • 2 ounces of rice vermicelli or rice noodles
  • Butter, romaine, or iceberg lettuce
  • Thinly sliced red cabbage
  • 2 cups matchstick carrots
  • 2 Mini cucumbers or one small cucumber thinly sliced or julienned
  • Two medium jalapeños
  • Chopped unsalted peanuts
  • Bean sprouts
  • Avacado
  • Red or yellow Peppers sliced thinly
  • Sliced mango

What You Need for the Rolls:

  • ¼ cup of thinly sliced green onions
  • ¼ cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro
  • ¼ cup roughly chopped fresh mint
  • 8 sheets of rice paper wrappers
  • 1 to 2 cups (depending on rice paper size) leftover chicken or protein of choice

What You Need for the Peanut Sauce:

  • 1/3 cup of your favorite creamy peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons tamari or soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey or maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, pressed or minced
  • 2-3 tablespoons water, as needed, to create the sauce

How to make:

  1. Following the directions for the rice vermicelli or rice noodles, bring a pot of water to a boil and cook them until al dente. Drain, then rinse under cool water and return to the pot. Turn off the heat, remove from the eye, and toss in sesame oil and salt to taste; set aside.
  2. Fill a shallow pan (cake pans work excellently here) with an inch or two of water. Fold a lint-free, clean dish towel beside the pan. Place all of your chosen pre-prepared fillings nearby as well. Combine the fresh onions, cilantro, and mint together within reach.
  3. Place one rice paper wrapper in the water and rest for 20 seconds at least. You want the rice paper wrapper to be pliable but not floppy. Remove it from the water and lay it flat on the towel.
  4. Place your preferred toppings roughly in the lower third of the wrapper, sprinkle generously with the fresh herb mix, and ensure you leave about 1 inch of exposed rice paper around all the edges.
  5. Fold the lower edge over the fillings, then roll upward until the fillings are tightly enclosed. Fold the left and right sides, then finish rolling. Repeat with the remaining ingredients until done.
  6. For the peanut sauce, whisk together all ingredients but the water. Add water 1 tablespoon until the sauce becomes creamy but dippable.
  7. Serve the spring rolls with peanut sauce on the side, and enjoy!

California Rolls from tortillas

California Rolls

You will probably love creating these no-cook California roll sandwiches if you love California roll sushi. Quickly capture your favorite flavors in a sandwich that's refreshing and delicious.

What You'll Need:

  • ½ cup wasabi mayonnaise
  • 6 whole wheat or flour tortillas, 8-inch
  • Imitation Crab, about 16 ounces (1 lb)
  • 1 medium-sized, ripe avocado, peeled and thinly sliced
  • ½ English cucumber or 2 small Persian cucumbers, thinly sliced
  • Furikake, for sprinkling
  • Bean Sprouts

How to Make:

  1. Divide the wasabi mayo evenly, and spread among the tortillas within ½ inch of the edges.
  2. Layer the lower third with imitation crab meat, avocado, cucumber, and bean sprouts, and sprinkle with furikake.
  3. Begin rolling tightly and serve, or slice in half with a sharp knife before serving and enjoy.

You don't need to sweat over a delicious, vibrant meal this summer! Make it easy and delicious with Wholey's help. We're here to make meals fun, engaging, easy, and entertaining again with some inspiration and a lot of the most delicious seafood, meats, and foods on the market today, delivered right to your door.