17 Summer Recipes Our Food Staff Can’t Wait to Make

Summer can be a punishing time of year — the heat! — but it can also be the most rewarding, full of juicy stone fruit consumed precariously over the kitchen sink, plump tomatoes fresh from the market (or the garden, if you’re lucky) and impromptu beach days that call for recipes both simple and satisfying. The season also flies by. In hopes of slowing down these warmer months and savoring every delicious bite of what summer has to offer, here are 17 recipes the New York Times Food staff can’t wait to make.

I make Julia Moskin’s best gazpacho all summer long. It’s a great way to use up tomatoes that are getting too ripe and all those cucumbers your neighbor keeps bringing over. I hand it out in small, chilled glasses with a swirl of good olive oil on top for an unexpected guest or to start a dinner party. But, just as often, I pour some out for myself, lean against the kitchen counter and toast summer. KIM SEVERSON

I have a list of items I can’t wait to make that feels like it grows 10 times faster than I can possibly cook. But Gabriella Lewis’s limonada instantly landed on the top. I’m intrigued by the concept of throwing quartered limes into my blender with sweetened condensed milk, which adds unexpectedly rich notes. I’m saving it for my first sweltering summer day, a sip of pure bliss. ALEXA WEIBEL

Recipes: Limonada (Brazilian Lemonade)

I cannot wait for the first BLT, that crispy bacon, the tangy mayo and, best of all, the tomatoes so juicy they drip all over your hands. But who cares? it’s summer! I especially love Clare de Boer’s BLT because she marinates the tomato slices in red wine vinegar and salt before building the sandwich. This is really helpful for early season tomatoes, which can often be used for a flavor boost. And it makes dead ripe August tomatoes taste even better. MELISSA CLARK

Recipes: Juicy BLT

I’m an absolute evangelist for Melissa Clark’s skillet meatballs. When summer rolls around, I want to eat every single stone fruit in every possible preparation, and this dinner satisfies that urge — it’s saucy, punchy and pretty enough for entertaining. Per Melissa’s suggestion, I usually serve the meatballs right in the skillet alongside coconut rice and a big salad. Becky Hughes

I’m looking forward to spending most of the summer visiting family in Europe, where I plan to fill the table with large platters of simple dishes made from ingredients I find in the markets: Ali Slagle’s stone fruit caprese and summer squash scampi, and Melissa Clark’s all-purpose green sauce, which I can already taste slathered over rotisserie chicken. BRET ANDERSON

Recipes: Stone Fruit Caprese | Summer Squash Scampi | All-Purpose Green Sauce

To me, summer means cold noodles. I love to stash away frozen packs of instant Korean naengmyeon and bring them out whenever the craving strikes. These cold noodles from Eric Kim use ingredients that I always have in my pantry, and I can’t wait to experiment with whatever I have on hand, like dashi, soba or chewy arrowroot starch noodles. ALLISON JIANG

Recipes: Cold Noodles With Tomatoes

I have an unscientific theory that summers in Montreal (where I live) are especially glorious to make up for the fact that our winters are, to put it nicely, difficult. Every summer, the fruit stands at Marché Jean-Talon become heavy with all sorts of berries — familiar friends like blueberries, strawberries and raspberries, but also haskaps, Saskatoon berries and gooseberries — and I plan to use them all in Melissa Clark’s summer berry buckle . MIA LEIMKUHLER

Recipes: Summer Berry Buckle

When sour cherries hit the farmers’ market, it is time to strike. The tart cherries are available for only a week or two, so I buy as many as I can afford, pit them, pack them in sugar and freeze them (4 cups pitted cherries to ½ cup sugar). Those frozen cherries will appear in cherry pies during Thanksgiving and Christmas, and I’ll hold back a few fresh pints for snacking and quick baking projects. This year, I’m going to swap them in for the plums in Marion Burros’s stellar tart. SARA BONISTEEL

Recipes: ‘Twin Peaks’ Cherry Pie

Year-round, I can get a world-class pizza a few blocks from my house, but in the summertime, pizza from my grill has its own special appeal. I make a batch of Roberta’s pizza dough, shape it and plop it on the grill until it’s puffed and crackly, then top it with whatever I have on hand. If I plan ahead, it might be grilled zucchini with fresh ricotta, mozzarella and lemon zest, sprinkled with any patio herbs that have managed to escape the marauding New York City squirrels. CATHY LO

When I need a salad with more oomph and protein, I look to Melissa Clark’s shrimp salad. It can easily be prepared ahead of time and transported to summer picnics, barbecues and potlucks. For the mayo haters, don’t be alarmed. The recipe still turns out fresh and bright, thanks to the two whole lemons and zest, celery and herbs that are tossed into the mix. ELEANORE PARK

Recipes: Shrimp Salad

Always, always Bill Smith’s Atlantic Beach pie. A dead simple lemon pie — egg yolks, lemon juice, condensed milk and a pinch of salt — is baked in a saltine crust and topped with piles of whipped cream. It’s the perfect beach vacation dessert. MARGAUX LASKEY

Recipes: Atlantic Beach Pie

I don’t love baking. And my desire to turn on my oven declines even more in summer. So I turn to shrikhand, the delightfully creamy, refreshing, I-can’t-believe-I-made-this-with-yogurt dessert from western India that’s spiked with saffron and cardamom and showered with chopped pistachios. It’s easy to put together, looks impressive and tastes luxurious. Checks all my boxes! PRIYA KRISHNA

Recipes: Shrikhand (Sweet Strained Yogurt)

Mark Bittman’s watermelon salad is the best of all worlds: salty, sweet, briny and herbal, with a variety of textures that make it fun to eat. Best of all, you don’t have to turn on a single appliance to make it. KASIA PILAT

Recipes: Greek-Style Watermelon Salad

Darun Kwak’s nearly effortless Korean corn cheese uses canned corn. But I am excited to make it with fresh, peak-season kernels. Cut from the cob and briefly sautéed, they’ll still have a juicy crunch. I’ll add lots of lime, a little hot sauce, and eat it with grilled steak and a cold beer. EMILY FLEISCHAKER

This shrimp scampi from Ali Slagle tastes like summer, comes together in one pan and takes less than 30 minutes. The corn gets nice and caramelized, the tomatoes blister and it’s all tossed together with the shrimp in a delicious garlic butter sauce. It’s one of my summer staples for weeknight dinners or easy entertaining. Serve it with good crusty bread, a nice salad or enjoy it on its own. KIM GOUGENHEIM

Recipes: Summer Shrimp Scampi With Tomatoes and Corn

With great hope, maybe since late April, I’ve been buying tomatoes like a fool. Recently, I cooked a pot of this pasta al pomodoro (with decent sungold cherry tomatoes on the vine) for me and my partner. I asked him what he thought, and he said, “Tastes like April tomatoes.” At first, I took it as a dig at my cooking, but he clarified that out-of-season tomatoes are special in their own way, that nature had given them to us, so we should appreciate them. It made me look at the tangle of spaghetti in front of me in a new way, not just because it was delicious to me, but also because it was a harbinger of the savory goodness to come. Eric KIM

Recipes: Pasta al Pomodoro