91 Super Cheap Summer Recipes And Meal Ideas

As you know, I am not a food blogger.  So when I wanted to put together some great summer recipes for you, I gave a shout out to a bunch of friends for easy, cheap summer recipes and meal ideas.

Many of these utilize appliances like outside grills, crock pots, and Instant Pots.  These are great appliances to use in the summer because they will not heat p your kitchen.

I was boiling pasta for a macaroni salad last week and it raised the temperature in the house an extra 4 degrees on an already hot day.

This means the air conditioner (not yet in) would have had to work additionally harder to keep it comfortable.

This is costing you money!  Running your oven or stove in the summer heats up your house and will cost you extra money to cool it.  Why not utilize some of the appliances you may already have!

The Instant Pot For Summer Cooking

Because the instant pot cooks things in record time, it will not give off the amount of heat that an oven would.  Imagine pot roast in the oven for hours?  That would be torture!  In an Instant Pot, you could have the same in under 30 minutes!

And, buying less expensive cuts of meat will bring down the grocery costs, too.  Check out the cheap summer meal ideas for the Instant pot below!

Slow Cooker When It’s Hot Out

Slow cookers are also a great alternative to turning on the oven or stove.  And you can have a full meal.

I also will plug my slow cooker in outside on the back deck to cook for the day saving the house from that little bit of heat that does radiate from my cooker.

Imagine a delicious meat sauce cooking all day in your crock pot outside for the top of the hot dogs that you are going to grill later!  That’s a pretty cheap summer meal idea!  Check out more below!


 Roasting Cooker To Keep Your House Cool

We have a large Nesco cooker that my gram got me years ago for Christmas.  I also plug this in outside.

I have cooked a turkey in July and my electric roaster even works great for baking! Cakes, banana bread, and brownies have been baked outside in this cooker.

You can use this cooker for anything that you might cook in your oven.  This is the BEST way I know to keep your house cooler in the summer.


Grilling Is Made For Summer

Who doesn’t love to grill?!? We just built phase one of our outside kitchen.  And we are buying these countertop propane components for that.

We have a large grill but as a family of four, we rarely need to use such a big grill.  So these smaller grills will work just perfectly for our family.

With these three components – the grill, the griddle, and the stove burners, we can cook our whole meal outside and not heat up the house.

There are plenty of recipes for all of these small appliances listed below.  Check them out and please let me know your favorites!


Beef Recipes Perfect For Summer

Grilled Pineapple Meatball Skewers

Grilled Pimento Cheese Hot Dogs

Instant Pot Barbacoa Tacos

Ground Beef Kabobs

Ground Beef Zucchini Noodles

Mexican Beef Taco Lettuce Wraps

Shish Kebob

Cheap Chicken And Recipes For Hot Weather

Easy Bruschetta Chicken

Chicken Pasta Salad

Instant Pot Tuscan Chicken

Instant Pot Fajita Chicken

Buffalo Chicken Pinwheels

Cilantro Lime Chicken With Corn And Black Beans

Crock Pot Lemon Garlic Chicken Dump 

Siracha Chicken Noodle Lettuce Wraps

Instant Pot Whole Chicken Recipe

Carolina Style Instant Pot Shredded BBQ Chicken

Three Ingredient Crock Pot Chicken Tacos

Southwestern Chicken Salad

Crock Pot Santa Fe Chicken

Instant Pot Hot Wings

Chili Lime Chicken Foil Packs

Summery Chicken Orzo

Chicken Provencal And Vegetables

Instant Pot Shredded Chicken Mexican Style

Chicken Shawarma With Vegetables

Instant Pot Italian Chicken Olive Garden

Instant Pot BBQ Ranch Chicken

Crock Pot Hawaiian Chicken

Crock Pot Pulled BBQ Chicken

Chicken Spinach And Tomato One Pot Dish

Teriyaki Chicken Stir Fry

Instant Pot Chicken Tacos

Pasta Dishes That Are Easy And Frugal

One Pot Chili Mac And Cheese

Instant Pot Vegetarian Fajita Pasta

One Pan Creamy Tortellini And Sausage

Spaghetti Aglio E Olio

Southwestern Taco Pasta

Lemon Pasta

Applebee’s Three Cheese Chicken Penne

Pork Recipes Great for Summer Meals

Crock Pot BBQ Ribs

Grilled Pork Chops With Peach Rum Sauce

Instant Pot Pulled Pork

Cabbage And Sausage Skillet

Bacon Wrapped Pork Chops

Instant Pot Italian Sausage

Slow Cooker Orange Ginger Pork

Sheet Pan Sausage And Vegetables

Shrimp and Kielbasa In Alfredo Sauce

Thrifty Summer Salads For Hot Days

Sweet Broccoli Apple Pasta Salad

Tuna Macaroni Salad

Lime Chicken Pasta Salad

Strawberry Chicken Salad 

Spicy Peanut Pasta Salad

Easy Asian Salad

Avocado Tuna Salad

Italian Meatball Salad

Broccoli And Pasta Salad

Shrimp And Potato Salad

Apple Chicken Salad

Italian Pasta Salad

Orzo Greek Salad

Zesty Pasta Salad

Hawaiian Pasta Salad

Cheese Burger Salad

Corn And Avocado Summer Salad

Italian Tuna Salad

Tomato Avocado Zucchini Salad

Fresh Basil And Parsley Spaghetti Salad

Roasted Zucchini Salad

Easy Tuna Rice Salad

Mexican Chopped Salad

End Of Summer Greek Chickpea Salad

Easy Mexican Layered Salad

Summer Pasta Salad

Rotini Spinach Salad

Chayote Tuna Salad


Special Summer Miscellaneous Recipes

Lemon Garlic Zoodles

Instant Pot Iced Tea

Strawberry Milkshakes

Cherry Sorbet

French Bread Pizza

Lemon Chickpea Wraps

Garden Veggie Burgers

Lemon Pepper Tilapia Sheet Pan Dinner

BLT Turkey Roll Ups

Easy Pad Thai

Avocado And Chipotle Mushroom Tostadas

5 Minute Easy Vegan Tacos

Chicken And Shrimp Tacos

White Bean And Tuna Salad

Instant Pot Turkey Sloppy Joe’s


I hope you find something that you love here!  And let me know if you have ever done anything as crazy as using your crock pot outside just so your kitchen doesn’t heat up!

Grilling outside and saving money


3 thoughts on “91 Super Cheap Summer Recipes And Meal Ideas”

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    This is such a great list of summer meal ideas! Can’t wait to check out the links and find some new faves 🙂

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