Summer meals need to be something you can make without a lot of fuss. That’s because summer is a different kind of busy.
Maybe yours is like that too? Our summer life is punctuated by ballgames and lots and lots of yard work on our acreage. We’re often working outside until the sun goes down.
When we can’t see what we’re doing, we have to stop and eat. It’s often so late I’m ashamed to tell you.
Make These When You Don’t Have Much Time
We love following our grandsons’ baseball teams and wouldn’t trade it for the world! However, it does make for some very busy weeknights!
And, we eat a little differently in the summer, do you? Our summer meals include salads and burgers on the grill for sure. But for us, vegetables take center stage this time of year! Meat is often cast in a supporting role.
And I’m a farmer’s market junkie! I admire the hardworking people who grow beautiful vegetables in the heat, with the bugs and the backaches! So I shop my favorites about three times a week.
Here’s what makes sheet pan dinners so much fun to do this time of year! It’s the ultimate palette for mix and match seasonal veggies! Plus, not only is dinner made on one pan, it only takes about 20 minutes in the oven.
And, you can add sausage, fish or chicken (or no meat at all) along with the garden bounty!
Great Summer Meals With No Mixing Measuring or Recipe Needed
This is freestyle cooking, baby! Start with a good heavy rimmed sheet pan drizzled with olive oil. Cover it with foil or parchment paper and make cleanup even easier!
Cut up any combination of potatoes, carrots, peppers, zucchini, sweet onion, asparagus, beets, green beans, cherry tomatoes, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, or cabbage. Have I left anything out?
Use whatever you love! Just make sure they’re cut up in fairly uniform pieces. Drizzle on a little more olive oil and season it all with garlic powder, pepper, and a little kosher salt if you like or read on for more ideas.
Want to add meat to your summer meals? Dealer’s choice! Fish you say? Great choice! Season it with lemon pepper or dill.
Any kind of smoked sausage works great and as it cooks, the flavor enhances everything around it!
Cut skinless, boneless, chicken fillets in pieces about the size of a playing card or use chicken tenders so they cook quickly.
Whatever you decide, you can add your family’s favorite seasonings or sprinkle on a packet of dry Greek, Italian, or Ranch dressing mix before it goes in the oven. Yummy!
This Was The Latest Combo At Our House Before It Went In The Oven
I used smoked turkey sausage, carrot chips, red peppers, Brussels sprouts, sweet onion, asparagus and small red potatoes cut in quarters.
Cherry tomatoes would have been great but I was out. (I snacked them all up!) The more colorful the better both nutritionally and for eye appeal! I added fresh parsley and chives from my washtub herb garden and popped it all in a 375-degree oven.
Halfway through I stirred things up a little to make sure that everything got coated with olive oil. Twenty minutes later, we were eating. All we added was some mustard on the sausage!
Part of the magic is how the oven roasting brings out the natural sweetness in carrots, tomatoes, and peppers! Love it!! It’s a feast fit for a king and with just one pan to wash, it’s a treat for the cleanup crew!
Or Don’t Heat Up Your Oven Just Make It On The Grill
Don’t want to heat up the oven at all? I don’t blame you. Make a foil pouch dinner instead.
Use two layers of foil or better yet, a sheet of heavy duty aluminum foil. Spray it with non-stick cooking spray and arrange vegetables and meat evenly.
Here I used beef smoked kielbasa, baby Yukon Gold potatoes, sweet red onion cut in thin slices and separated into rings. I added some celery I wanted to use up and leftover corn I cut off the cob.
I sprinkled on some basil, parsley, seasoned salt, and seasoned pepper. Finally, I cut about a tablespoon of butter into skinny pats and wrapped everything up tightly.
Make sure you make your foil pouch big enough so everything can spread out in one layer.
Here’s How To Grill Your Foil Pouch Summer Meal
This is what the foil packets should look like. Everything wrapped inside arranged in a single layer. Looking back, the edges should be crimped even tighter than I did here!
Heat the grill to about 400 degrees. Lay the pouches directly on the rack and cook about 20 minutes, turning once or twice. Use a wide spatula and tongs and turn the pouches gently to keep all the yummy juices inside. Everything is ready when you can easily pierce the potatoes with a cake tester or toothpick.
Put each pouch on a plate and open it carefully. Eat your delicious summer meal right from the pouch or transfer everything to the plate. Crumple up the foil, throw it away and the dishes are done! Boom!
I’m excited to hear what combos you come up with! Please share! I have a feeling you’ll have some great ideas of your own when you give it a try!
It won’t be long until our long summer evenings will get shorter. Darn if it doesn’t all go too fast!! Enjoy these beautiful sunny days and happy sheet panning and foil pouching everyone!
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