5 Easy Cheap Summer Recipes

Looking for 5 easy, cheap summer recipes? The summer heat can zap your energy, so you can't even imagine slaving over a hot stove to make dinner. But beware of take-out and convenience foods, whose costs quickly adds up! Instead, try these easy summer meals that you can make without sacrificing your energy or your budget.

Pasta salad

To make this easy, cheap summer recipe, you will need:

  • one pound bow tie pasta
  • one cup cubed chicken breast
  • one cucumber
  • one cup shredded cheese
  • one can diced tomatoes with Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 cup Italian dressing
  1. Cook pasta according to box directions. Drain and let cool to room temperature.
  2. Peel cucumber and cut into cubes.
  3. Combine all ingredients and toss well.

Chicken with cucumber salsa

To make this easy, cheap summer recipe, you will need:

  • 1/2 cup seeded and chopped tomato
  • 1/4 cup peeled, seeded and chopped cucumber
  • two tablespoons each diced onion and cilantro
  • one tablespoon lime juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt  
  • four chicken breasts, boneless and skinless
  1. Combine all ingredients except chicken breasts. Refrigerate at least half an hour to combine flavors.
  2. Grill or pan-fry chicken until no longer pink, about eight minutes per side.
  3. Serve chicken topped with salsa.

Egg salad sandwiches

To make this easy, cheap summer recipe, you will need:

  • six large eggs
  • three ounces cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 3/4 teaspoon dill weed
  • 1/2 teaspoon each mustard powder and salt
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • one tablespoon pickle relish
  • two tablespoons diced onion
  • bread and lettuce
  1. Place eggs in a pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, then remove from heat and let sit fifteen to twenty minutes.
  2. Drain, rinse and peel eggs, then mash them together with all other ingredients except bread and lettuce.
  3. Serve egg salad on sandwiches with lettuce.

Turkey lettuce wraps

To make this easy, cheap summer recipe, you will need:

  • 1/2 cup each water and instant brown rice
  • two teaspoon sesame oil
  • one tablespoon minced ginger
  • one pound ground turkey
  • two cans water chestnuts, drained and chopped
  • one red bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • two tablespoon hoisin sauce
  • one teaspoon five-spice powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Boston lettuce leaves, about two heads' worth
  • one large carrot, peeled and shredded
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro, basil or mint
  1. Boil water. Cook instant brown rice for about five minutes and set aside.
  2. Brown turkey and ginger in sesame oil. Add water chestnuts, pepper, broth, hoisin sauce, five-spice powder, salt and rice and cook until heated.
  3. Spoon turkey mixture into lettuce leaves and top with herbs and carrot.

Bean quesadillas

To make this easy, cheap summer recipe, you will need:

  • four fajita-sized flour tortillas
  • 1 1/2 cups shredded cheddar or Jack cheese
  • one can refried beans
  • salsa and sour cream, for garnish
  1. Spread refried beans on each tortilla. Top with cheese.
  2. Fold in half and pan-fry in a nonstick pan until golden brown on each side.
  3. Serve topped with salsa and sour cream.
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