Editors' Picks: 12 Recipes We're Excited to Make This Summer

From grilled pork chops to homemade gelato, these recipes are the stars of the season.

Raspberry Hibiscus Sorbet
Photo: Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Victoria Granof / Prop Styling by Christine Keely

The build-up to summer is often full of excitement. Dreams of warmer weather, cooling off in the pool, and of course, seasonal recipes. (Hello, tomatoes and grilled corn.) Now that it's almost here, we asked our fellow F&W editors which dishes they're looking forward to making the most over the next few months, and we ended up with a delicious collection of 12 recipes. Plenty of staffers are turning to the grill, with recipes including Shawarma-Style Chicken and Mushroom Kebabs and Grilled Pork Chops with Burst Blueberry Sauce; others have their eyes on desserts like Banana Pudding Paletas and Raspberry-Hibiscus Sorbet. The spread also includes salads, fish stew, and a frozen drink to keep you cool when the heat really kicks in. Read on for those recipes, and everything else we have on our summer menus.

Banana Pudding Paletas

Banana Pudding Paletas
Photo by Antonis Achilleos / Food Styling by Ruth Blackburn / Prop Styling by Christine Keely

"I had the pleasure of being on set when Paola Velez made these paletas for Pastries with Paola, and they absolutely blew my mind. I'm not a dessert person, so this is a somewhat unexpected choice for me, but that goes to show you just how good these are. They are easy, incredibly tasty, and simply adorable." –Guillermo Riveros, Senior Video Producer

Shrimp and Okra Kebabs with Grilled Peaches and Jalapeño-Bourbon Vinaigrette

Shrimp and Okra Kebabs Recipe
Photo by Tara Donne / Food Styling by Chris Lanier / Prop Styling by Raina Kattelson

"These next few months, I hope to do as much grilling as possible. I've never grilled okra before, so I'm super intrigued by this recipe, which looks simple enough for a lazy summer cookout (and works with frozen shrimp!)." –Maria Yagoda: Senior Editor, Restaurants

Stop the Hourglass

Stop the Hourglass Frozen Cocktails
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Rishon Hanners / Prop Styling by Audrey Davis

"Chantal Tseng had me at slush. I'm utterly defenseless when it comes to frozen drinks, from convenience store Icees to umbrella-decked rum cocktails. But the moment I saw both sherry and ginger in the mix of Tseng's Stop the Hourglass, it slushed me up (in a good way). Blender drinks can skew toward the sweet and simple, but her recipe — though easy to make — reveals its complex flavors as you sip. Blended mint tea ice cubes provide a cool, crunchy backdrop for nutty Amontillado sherry, a sweet-sour-spicy meld of peaches, ginger and lemon juices, and a lemon-zest-kissed honey syrup. The drink can be batched and frozen a few days in advance which is excellent, because once you have one in hand, you just might find yourself frozen in time." –Kat Kinsman, Senior Editor

Raspberry-Hibiscus Sorbet

Raspberry Hibiscus Sorbet
Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Victoria Granof / Prop Styling by Christine Keely

"What I love about a good sorbet is that they often make a fruit taste even fruitier, somehow. This vividly pink number, with tart raspberries and a floral punch thanks to plenty of hibiscus flowers, caught my attention immediately. The recipe only calls for five ingredients, meaning that the raspberries really shine. You'll catch me eating plenty of scoops this summer, especially when it becomes too hot to do anything but open my freezer." –Khushbu Shah, Restaurant Editor

Tamarind Chicken

Tamarind Chicken
Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Melissa Gray / Prop Styling by Lydia Pursell

"Lara Lee's recipe for Tamarind Chicken is simplicity at its finest. Packed with sour tamarind concentrate and smoky chipotles, the potent marinade seasons the chicken in as little as five minutes, or can be marinated up to 12 hours in advance, making it perfect for last minute weeknight dinners or backyard barbecue parties. I'll be serving this beautifully lacquered and caramelized chicken with grilled squash and okra at my house all summer long." –Paige Grandjean, Associate Food Editor

Pancetta-Wrapped Peaches with Basil and Aged Balsamic

Pancetta-Wrapped Peaches with Basil and Ages Balsamic
© Keller & Keller

"As soon as temperatures warm up and the air mellows into summer, my internal clock starts counting down to peach season. That means sourcing Georgia peaches early in the summer while I wait for Michigan peaches to finally make their appearance at the farmers' market. Once peaches are in my kitchen, they don't stand a chance. I eat peaches with yogurt and toasted slivered almonds for breakfast, slice them atop mounds of sherry vinegar-dressed arugula and tomatoes for lunch, and bake them into pies for dessert. And when I'm having friends over, I like to offer a platter of Stuart Brioza's Pancetta-Wrapped Peaches with Basil and Aged Balsamic. Each bite is sweet, salty, fatty, and full of joy — just how summer should feel and taste." –Chandra Ram: Associate Editorial Director, Food

Crispy Okra Salad

Crispy Okra Salad
© Greg DuPree

"This fried okra salad is full of delightful flavors and textures. You've got the crunchy long strips of okra, fried to total, toasty crispness then seasoned with salty, fruity, tangy amchoor (dried mango) powder and garam masala. You've got juicy chunks of ripe summer tomatoes. You've got the spicy, pungent bite of raw red onion. And then a fistful of fresh cilantro and a hit of lemon juice to brighten it all up at the end. I first made this recipe from chef Suvir Saran — which Food & Wine named one of our 40 best recipes ever — at the height of summer when I had several pounds of okra in my farm-share and was at a loss for what to do with it all. It's not even June yet, and my kids (11 and seven) are already asking me to make it again. I can't wait, either!" –Karen Shimizu, Executive Editor

Cataplana (Portuguese Fish Stew)

Cataplana (Portugese Fish Stew)
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Margaret Monroe Dickey / Prop Styling by Audrey Davis

"To me, summer means fresh fish, and I can't think of a better recipe to try than this Cataplana (Portuguese Fish Stew) from my brilliant colleague Justin Chapple. It's packed with four of my favorite seafoods — shrimp, clams, squid, and mussels — and also features rich linguiça sausage. I can't wait to make a batch, ladle myself a generous bowl, and sop up all of the flavorful broth with a warmed roll." –Bridget Hallinan, Associate Food Editor

Sugar Snap Pea Salad

Sugar Snap Pea Salad Recipe
Photo by Greg DuPree / Prop Styling by Christine Keely / Food Styling by Chelsea Zimmer

"In my kitchen, summer cooking revolves around two main goals: enjoying the most enticing produce from the farm stand and never turning on my oven. Enter this Sugar Snap Pea Salad from chef Ivan Conill. It's fresh, crunchy, and hydrating. It's filling even when I omit a juicy rotisserie chicken from a farm stand (those toasty almond slivers and creamy ricotta never leave me wanting). It's also easily scaled up or down, oh, and leftovers keep beautifully in my fridge. I'll make a batch, or several, this summer as a joyful WFH lunch or refreshing dinner to pack up and take to the park." –Kelsey Youngman, Food Editor

Grilled Pork Chops with Burst Blueberry Sauce

Grilled Pork Chops with Burst Blueberry Sauce
Photo by Jessica Pettway / Food Styling by Micah Morton / Prop Styling by Paola Andrea

"Pork chops pair so well with smoky flavors, and they're honestly really easy to grill. This recipe comes from cookbook author Nicole A. Taylor (who recently released Watermelon and Red Birds: A Cookbook for Juneteenth and Black Celebrations), and it's a perfect take on the classic pairing of pork and fruit. Shallots, thyme, and chipotles in adobo balance out the natural sweetness of summer blueberries, making the ultimate condiment for juicy grilled pork chops — or really any other grilled meat." –Merlyn Miller, Social Media Editor

Pistachio Stracciatella Gelato

Pistachio Straciatella Gelato
Photo by Greg DuPree / Food Styling by Victoria Granof / Prop Styling by Christine Keely

"I love making homemade ice cream, but I've yet to make gelato from scratch. Pistachio is one of my favorite flavors — just ask the nearly scraped clean container of pistachio gelato hanging out in my freezer — and this recipe from Fany Gerson sounds incredible. I'm already planning out a batch for this summer." –B.H.

Shawarma-Style Chicken and Mushroom Kebabs

Shawarma Style Chicken and Mushroom Kebabs Recipe
Photo by Victor Protasio / Food Styling by Margaret Dickey / Prop Styling Heather Chadduck

"I vividly remember when Food & Wine took the photos of this recipe for homemade shawarma in 2020, because I was the hand model for the step-by-step instructions! The process for making these is fun and a bit messy — to mimic the vertical rotating spit of a traditional shawarma setup, you essentially build a giant kebab of thinly pounded, tightly packed marinated meat, using three skewers to stabilize it, which you rotate laterally on the grill. Shortly after we made this in the photo studio, I made it at home for our last pre-Covid cookout (which in Alabama, where grilling season starts early, was at the beginning of that March), searing the mega kebab over hot coals, finishing it over low heat, then shaving it into a heap of crispy, juicy, tender meat that my family and our guests folded in flatbread and devoured with fresh veggies and tahini sauce. I am so looking forward to making it again." –K. Shimizu

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