Fresh, seasonal dishes at outdoor picnics are one of my favorite things. Every summer, my family gathers together for at least three outdoor picnics, where everyone brings salads and side dishes to pass.
In my family, we’ve found two summer recipes that we return to again and again. These dishes are bright, delicious, and very simple to make. Definite crowd pleasers!
Caprese Pasta Salad
Tomato, basil, and mozzarella are some of my absolute favorite ingredients – particularly in summertime, when everything is fresh and bursting with color and flavor. One of the best and simplest dinners is just cherry tomatoes, little pieces of mozzarella, and hand-torn basil.
Image source: Gimme Some Oven
This pasta salad from Gimme Some Oven takes those flavors to a whole new level. You have the classic cheese, vegetable, and herb ingredients, with the addition of pasta and a tangy balsamic and honey dressing.
I’ve made this pasta salad multiple times for parties, and it’s always a huge crowd pleaser. Even better than that, this pasta salad is one of those recipes that gets better as it sits, and makes for the perfect make-ahead lunch for the week.
Blueberry, Strawberry, and Jicama Salsa
Chips and dips are a crucial part of any party. While I love queso, guacamole, and standard salsa, this fruit-based salsa is perfect for warm weather months.
This blueberry, strawberry, and jicama salsa features some classic berries, red onion, jicama, and lime juice. It seems like an unusual combination, but it tastes great with tortilla chips!
We usually skip the cilantro and jalapeno in this recipe and it is still great, so this salsa is easily customizable to your tastes.
Image source: Two Peas & Their Pod
What are your favorite summer dishes?