For the unofficial start of summer, these dishes with fresh, bold flavors give you plenty of time to spend with friends and family — and don’t leave you in the kitchen while everyone else is having fun. Many of the recipes are designed to be prepared ahead of time and easy to set up, while others are best grilled while chatting with guests.
This stunner from Millie Peartree is bursting with pineapple flavor caramelized in buttery brown sugar. Made from a simple batter that uses both milk and thick Greek yogurt, the cake is firm and light at the same time, perfect for taking anywhere and enjoying after a big meal.
Hetty McKinnon quickly turns pickled red onion and raisins into a vinaigrette to replace the usual mayonnaise dressing. It gives the mix of broccoli, fruit and almonds extra spice and ensures that the salad can be made a whole day in advance and put outside on warm days.
Recipe: Broccoli Salad
It can be tricky to determine the timing of steak when a crowd comes. Steven Raichlen shows us the safe way to perfect steak (including how to prepare it in advance!) with reverse searing on the grill. If you’re cooking indoors, you can roast tri-tip in the oven instead.
The berries are now at their best. You may already be working on a strawberry shortcake, but this galette really makes the fruit shine. Naz Deravian shares a forgiving dough recipe that’s flaky and flavorful made with almond flour and yogurt.
Recipe: strawberry galette
If you want a meatless main course, you’ll love this hearty one from Jocelyn Ramirez. Nuts and potatoes are combined with the traditional bold mix of tomato, onion, garlic, olives and capers, and the flavors only deepen over time. You can make it ahead of time and then warm it up to stuff in tortillas or serve with cilantro rice.
Recipe: Walnut Picadillo
Designed for lemon lovers, this cake-for-a-crowd from Yossy Arefi combines zest and fruit pieces in the batter and uses the juice to make a crunchy frosting. It’s just as perfect at the end of a big dinner as it is for brunch.
Recipe: Lemon Bundt Cake
Published almost 30 years ago, this recipe by Pierre Fraey remains timeless. Just the right mix of spices, vinegar, soy sauce and spices seasons swordfish thoroughly in the time it takes to heat up the grill. The broiler option works just as well.
Recipe: Grilled Marinated Swordfish Steaks
The short season of rhubarb has arrived and the tart stems shine in this easy dessert, rich in butter and almonds, from Yossy Arefi. (Try this recipe if you prefer pecans.) To make it taste really special, top it with homemade ice cream, using Melissa Clark’s delicious formula.
Recipe: Browned Butter Rhubarb Crisp
Nothing could be easier — or more satisfying — than making a huge pile of pulled pork for diners to pile into fluffy buns and top with coleslaw. This recipe from Margaux Laskey is all that and more: The slow cooker is particularly convenient, but you can also use the grill or a pressure cooker. Get one side of the classic potato salad ready to party.