No-Cook Side Dishes

Beat the heat with summer vegetable recipes that don't require any cooking. No cooking at all. We promise.

  • Mediterranean Chickpea Salad

    Mediterranean Chickpea Salad

    Create a colorful salad that's packed with protein by combining chickpeas, tomatoes, and arugula. The salad is also full of flavor from the mixture of manchego cheese, lemon zest, and mint.
  • <p>Strawberry-Tomato Salad</p>

    Strawberry-Tomato Salad

    Look for mini multicolored tomatoes at the supermarket. Toss them with strawberries for a surprising combo to serve with grilled salmon, chicken, or pork.

  • Marinated Heirloom Tomatoes with Tarragon
    Photo: Lee Harrelson; Styling: Melanie J. Clarke

    Marinated Heirloom Tomatoes with Tarragon

    Side dishes don't get any easier than this one. All you need to do is slice up the tomatoes and drizzle with a mixture of olive oil, vinegar, and tarragon.
  • <p>Shaved Zucchini and Parsley Salad</p>

    Shaved Zucchini and Parsley Salad

    This 5-ingredient side features shaved zucchini, flat-leaf parsley, red onion, and crumbled feta cheese. It pairs well with grilled meats and sandwiches.
  • <p>Snappy Pea-and-Herb Salad</p>

    Snappy Pea-and-Herb Salad

    Serve this fragrant side with just about any grilled meat; it plays well off smoky, charred flavors. Toss in feta cheese and shrimp to turn it into a main.
  • Gazpacho


    Gazpacho is a chilled tomato soup filled with other vegetables such as peppers, onions, cucumbers and green peppers. Serve it as a side dish alongside a sandwich for cool, summertime meal.
  • Fresh Squash Chips
    Photo: Beth Dreiling Hontzas; Styling: Katherine Eckert

    Fresh Squash Chips

    Offer a healthy side dish option at your next cookout by serving thin slices of summer squash instead of chips. Serve these fresh veggie "chips" with your favorite dip.
  • <p>Green Machine Salad</p>

    Green Machine Salad

    There's enough acidity to keep the apples from turning brown if made up to three hours ahead. Use a vegetable peeler to transform asparagus into thin ribbons, a technique that also works well with carrots.

  • Balsamic Carrot Salad

    Balsamic Carrot Salad

    Perk up sliced carrots with the addition of white balsamic vinegar, cilantro, and oregano. Not only is this bright side dish great for picnics and cookouts, it's also a great source of vitamin A, which really is good for your eyes.
  • Spiced Marinated Tomatoes

    Spiced Marinated Tomatoes

    Marinated tomatoes are a great choice for summer entertaining because you can marinate up to two days ahead. This spiced-up version features jalapeño pepper, ginger and cumin.
  • Marinated Vegetable Salad

    Marinated Vegetable Salad

    Combine an assortment of colorful vegetables and stir in chickpeas and olives for a hearty vegetable salad that's easy to make and easy to take if you're headed to a picnic or potluck supper.
  • <p>Heirloom Tomato and Zucchini Salad</p>

    Heirloom Tomato and Zucchini Salad

    This light and refreshing summer salad features gorgeous heirloom tomatoes and garden-fresh zucchini. An easy red wine vinaigrette ties everything together.
  • Marinated Chickpeas
    Photo: Jan Smith

    Marinated Chickpeas

    Add Mediterranean flavor with kalamata olives, feta cheese, parsley and rosemary. Once you've served this as a side dish, you can toss the leftovers with pasta for a main-dish pasta salad.
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