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45 Summer Dinners with Just 5 Ingredients

It's summertime, and the cookin' is easy. These five-ingredient dinners make it super simple to put together a sunny-day meal in a snap.

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Mexican Bubble Pizza

This tasty pizza offers a new way to experience Mexican cuisine. Serve it at your next party and watch it disappear before your eyes. —Jackie Hannahs, Cedar Springs, Michigan

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Caesar Chicken with Feta

My tomatoey chicken is the perfect answer on those crazy days when supper has to be on the table in 30 minutes, tops (doesn't hurt that it's delicious, too). —Denise Chelpka, Phoenix, Arizona
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Skillet Mac & Cheese

This creamy mac and cheese is so simple it’s almost too easy! Kids always go for the rich cheese flavor, but I’ve never met an adult who didn’t love it just as much. —Ann Bowers, Rockport, Texas
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Chicken & Waffles

My first experience with this dish sent my taste buds into orbit. I first made this chicken and waffles recipe into appetizers, but we all love them as a main course, too. —Lisa Renshaw, Kansas City, Missouri
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Bacon and Spinach Pizza

Our go-to pizza is a snap to make using packaged pizza crust and ready-to-serve bacon. The kids don't even mind the spinach on top! —Annette Riva, Naperville, Illinois
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Stuffed Chicken with Marinated Tomatoes

I invented this roast chicken to prove goat cheese really is delish. I served it to my skeptical family without telling them, and they gobbled it up. But any soft cheese will do. —Gilda Lester, Millsboro, DE
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Saucy Grilled Pork Chops

My mamaw in Kentucky used this "dip," as she called it, on many grilled meats including chicken and steak. —Misty Schneider, Bayport, Minnesota
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Salsa Steak Garlic Toasts

These open-faced steak sandwiches play up the popular combo of steak and garlic bread. The salsa, sour cream and garnish elevate it into quick, satisfying meal. Substitute chopped green onions or chives for the cilantro if desired. —Arlene Erlbach, Morton Grove, Illinois
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Grilled Buttermilk Chicken

I created this recipe years ago after one of our farmers market customers, a chef, shared the idea of marinating chicken in buttermilk. The chicken is easy to prepare and always turns out moist and delicious! I bruise the thyme sprigs by twisting them before adding them to the buttermilk mixture; this tends to release the oils in the leaves and flavor the chicken better. —Sue Gronholz, Beaver Dam, Wisconsin
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Skewered Ginger Shrimp with Plums

Sweet, simple and sensational, these shrimp skewers boast loads of flavor with just four ingredients. Throw them on the grill for a quick dinner or tasty potluck dish. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Chili Sauce Chicken

Chili sauce, garlic and basil add flavor to these moist chicken thighs. We enjoy the tender grilled chicken not just in summertime, but throughout the year. —Marilyn Waltz, Idyllwild, California
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Grilled Tilapia Piccata

We aren’t big fish eaters, but a friend made this for us, and we couldn’t believe how wonderful it was! Now we eat it regularly. I love making it for guests because it’s simple, looks lovely and tastes restaurant-worthy. —Beth Cooper, Columbus, Ohio
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Asparagus Nicoise Salad

I’ve used my Nicoise as an appetizer or a main-dish salad, and it’s a winner every time I put it on the table. Here’s to a colorful, make-ahead salad! —Jan Meyer, St. Paul, Minnesota
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Spinach Steak Pinwheels

Bacon and spinach bring plenty of flavor to these sirloin steak spirals. It's an easy dish to make and perfect for backyard grilling. I always get lots of compliments.—Helen Vail, Glenside, Pennsylvania
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Grilled Salmon with Nectarines

My family liked this recipe so much one evening that I made it for a potluck the very next day. Everyone raved about it there, too—even people who aren't particularly fond of fish. —Kerin Benjamin, Citrus Heights, California
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BBQ Hot Dog & Potato Packs

For these nifty foil packs, small hands make quick work of topping potato wedges with a hot dog, onions and cheese. — Kelly Westphal, Wind Lake, Wisconsin
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Basil Pork Chops

Just a few ingredients give a tender pork loin chop all the glazed goodness it needs. Serve with your favorite roasted veggies and you’ve got a meal bursting with flavor. Leftover herbs? Use them in these basil recipes. —Lisa Gilliland, Fort Collins, Colorado
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Grilled Brown Sugar-Mustard Chicken

I came up with this recipe in college and it's been a household staple ever since. It's a snap to throw together with ingredients I have on hand. —Kendra Doss, Colorado Springs, Colorado
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Carolina Style Vinegar BBQ Chicken

Carolina-Style Vinegar BBQ Chicken

I live in Georgia, but I appreciate the tangy, sweet and slightly spicy taste of Carolina vinegar chicken. I make my version in the slow cooker. After the tempting aroma fills the house, your family is sure to be at the dinner table on time! —Ramona Parris, Canton, Georgia
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Spinach Pizza

This tasty pizza is so easy to prepare. My family, including my young daughter, loves it. What an easy way to make a delicious, veggie-filled meal! —Dawn Bartholomew, Raleigh, North Carolina
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Loaded Flank Steak

I wanted to do something different with London broil, so I stuffed it with bacon, green onions and ranch dressing. The recipe is fast, but it's a little bit fancy, too. —Tammy Thomas, Mustang, Oklahoma
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Zesty Chicken Soft Tacos

We’ve made these tacos with corn and flour tortillas, but naan flatbread is our favorite. Set out toppings and let people make their own. —Jessie Grearson-Sapat, Falmouth, Maine
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Grilled Basil Chicken and Tomatoes

Relax after work with a cold drink while this savory chicken marinates in an herby tomato blend for an hour, then toss it on the grill. It's one of those basil recipes that tastes just like summer. —Laura Lunardi, West Chester, Pennsylvania
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Southwest Steak

Lime juice tenderizes the steak while garlic, chili powder and red pepper flakes kick things up. My husband and I came up with this together as something lighter to make on the grill. —Caroline Shively, Alexandria, Virginia
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Easy Glazed Salmon

It takes only four ingredients and a few moments to make this delightful main dish. —Tara Ernspiker, Falling Waters, West Virginia
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Buttery Grilled Shrimp

This is easy and delicious! These shrimp are great with steak, but for a special occasion, brush the sauce on lobster tails and grill. —Sheryl Shenberger, Albuquerque, New Mexico
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"Secret's in the Sauce" BBQ Ribs

A sweet, rich sauce makes this BBQ ribs recipe so tender that the meat literally falls off the bones. And the aroma is wonderful. Yum! —Tanya Reid, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
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Grilled Maple Pork Chops

Pork chops on the grill are hard to beat. The marinade is simple, and so good. —Nicholas King, Duluth, Minnesota
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Garlic-Butter Steak

Made in a skillet, this quick-and-easy garlic butter steak is restaurant-quality and sure to become a staple at your house, too! —Lily Julow, Lawrenceville, Georgia
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Strawberry Feta Tossed Salad Exps Sdam18 24185 B11 30 11b 8

Strawberry Feta Tossed Salad

A neighbor served this light, wonderful salad at a summer barbecue. I’ve since tried it with many ingredient combinations, but this one draws the most compliments. -Lisa Lesinski-Topp Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin
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Lemon Basil Salmon

My husband came up with this easy, foil-packet recipe for flaky, fork-tender salmon. This recipe is a winner. —Marianne Bauman Modesto, CA
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Grilled Lemon-Garlic Salmon

A lot of people fish here on the shore of Lake Michigan, so I've developed quite a few recipes for it, including this grilled salmon recipe. I love it, and so do my friends and family. When it's out of season, I look for wild-caught fresh Alaskan salmon at the grocery store. —Diane Nemitz, Ludington, Michigan
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Grilled Ribeye with Garlic Blue Cheese Mustard Sauce

This simple steak gets a big flavor boost from two of my favorites: mustard and blue cheese. My husband and I make this recipe to celebrate our anniversary each year! —Ashley Lecker, Green Bay, Wisconsin
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Mexican Stuffed Peppers

This nutritious yet economical summer meal makes the most of my home-grown peppers. I like to top it with sour cream and serve with tortilla chips and salsa, but it’s wonderful on its own, too. —Kimberly Coleman, Columbia, South Carolina
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Easy Asian-Style Chicken Slaw

From the first time I made this chicken dish, I knew it was a winner—the bowl came back to the kitchen scraped clean. This one-dish wonder works every time in my house! —Bess Blanco, Vail, Arizona
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Marinated Grilled Chicken

My family loves this grilled chicken, and I love having a healthy and tasty recipe that keeps my kitchen cool. —Linda Coss, Lake Forest, California
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Chocolate Chipotle Sirloin Steak Exps Cmz18 143322 D10 31 3b 7

Chocolate-Chipotle Sirloin Steak

Looking to do something a little different with grilled sirloin? Add smoky heat and chocolaty rich color with this easy five-ingredient rub. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Contest-Winning Barbecued Pork Chops

Sherry, honey, barbecue and steak sauces combine to give these chops a beautiful glaze and dressed-up flavor. The sauce works well on chicken breasts, too. —LaJuana Holland, Amarillo, Texas
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Spaghetti with Fresh Tomato Sauce

When my mom made this spaghetti sauce, the house would smell so good that I'd open the windows to torture the neighbors. It even tastes wonderful the next day, when the flavors have really melded. —Vera Schulze, Holbrook, New York
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Garlic Grilled Steaks

Take steak to new flavor heights by basting your choice of cuts with an amazing garlicky blend that requires only a few minutes to fix. It will be a mouthwatering change of taste at your next outdoor gathering. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
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Cod with Bacon & Balsamic Tomatoes

Let's face it, everything really is better with bacon. I fry it, add cod fillets to the pan and finish it all with a big, tomato-y pop. —Maureen McClanahan, St. Louis, Missouri
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Salmon Veggie Packets

I feel the spirit of Julia Child when I make lemon-pepper salmon en papillote (in parchment). It’s the first French recipe I learned, and the delightful little packages are family-friendly. —Renee Greene, New York, NY
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Chicken and Asian Slaw

This meal is always a hit, and it goes together so quickly. Sesame ginger salad dressing adds refreshing flavor to this pairing of broiled chicken and an exotic homemade coleslaw. —Melissa Jelinek, Apple Valley, Minnesota
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Just Peachy Pork Tenderloin

I had a pork tenderloin and ripe peaches that begged to be put together. The results proved irresistible! This fresh entree tastes like summer. —Julia Gosliga, Addison, Vermont
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Salmon Salad with Glazed Walnuts

This main-dish salad was inspired by something I ate while on a trip. The glazed walnuts give it something special. I've also topped it with grilled chicken or portobello mushrooms with amazing results. —Joanna Kobernik, Berkley, Michigan

Rachel Seis
As deputy editor for Taste of Home magazine, Rachel has her hand in everything you see from cover to cover, from writing and editing articles to taste-testing recipes to ensuring every issue is packed with fun and fabulous content. She'll roll up her sleeves to try any new recipe in the kitchen—from spicy Thai dishes (her favorite!) to classic Southern comfort food (OK...also her favorite). When she's not busy thinking of her next meal, Rachel can be found practicing yoga, going for a run, exploring National Parks and traveling to new-to-her cities across the country.