I don't know about you, but peak summer is when my weeknight cooking game really hits a wall. It's partly because I cook more on weekends during the summer—big cuts of meat on the grill or in the smoker are my favorite, and tend to go overboard with side dishes because there's so much in-season produce to work with. I'm also out in the evenings more often, taking advantage of the rooftops and outdoor seating that isn't available year-round.
The main reason I'm a little stumped on what to make for dinner lately, though, is that I've exhausted most of my no-cook go-tos and it's too hot for the oven. And, as much as I love to grill, it usually doesn't seem worth it to light up the Weber for a quick Tuesday night dinner. The way around this, of course, is to turn to quick recipes that come together on the stovetop, no oven or grill required.
The following seven dinners are cooked entirely on the stovetop. All take less than 45 minutes to make, and you don't need to prep anything ahead of time.
All of the recipes are made with simple, good-for-you ingredients, and each serving has a healthy balance of carbs, protein, and fat, in accordance with current USDA dietary guidelines. There are three meatless recipes, two salmon recipes, and two recipes that contain meat (which, spoiler, is bacon). Each recipe serves two, and has plenty of veggies, healthy fats, and healthy carbs.
Because summer weekends are busy and you likely don't have as much time to meal prep, nothing in the recipes needs to be cooked ahead of time. I chose quinoa as the grain to use in a few of the recipes because it cooks quickly on the stovetop, in about 20 minutes. There are no big cuts of meat, either, since those take longer to cook and are the kind of thing you'd likely make during meal prep and repurpose.
And, because you might not even have time to make a grocery list on a summer Sunday, I also did that for you! Here's everything you need to make these seven stovetop dinners:
Apple cider vinegar, 2 tablespoons
Baby spinach, 9 cups
Bacon, 8 strips
Basil, 1 cup
Broccoli florets, 6 cups
Cherry tomatoes, 3 pints
Chicken stock (or vegetable stock), 6 ½ cups
Corn kernels, 3 cups (from 6 small ears)
Cumin, 1 teaspoon
Garlic, 10 cloves
Paprika, ½ teaspoon
Parmesan, 2 ounces
Quinoa, 3 cups (dry)
Raisins, ¼ cup
Salmon, 4 4-ounce fillets (skin on, about 1 inch thick)
White beans, 2 (15 ounce) cans + 1 cup
All of these ingredients will keep for the entire week when stored properly. If you're not sure how to best store your produce, here's some sound advice. You should only keep fresh fish in the refrigerator for one to two days, so anything you're not planning on eating in that span of time should be put in an airtight container and frozen, then thawed in the refrigerator overnight before you cook it.