20 Healthy Chicken Recipes for Easy Summer Dinners

Chicken Cashew Nut
Photo: Jenny Huang

As the days grow longer and the sun grows warmer, we shelve our hearty winter comfort foods for lighter, more refreshing recipes. Chicken is a healthy, versatile base for plenty of delicious recipes to keep weeknight cooking interesting, satisfying, and flavorful. From bell peppers stuffed with chicken sausage to grilled chicken topped with a garden-fresh sauce, poultry is the MVP in these healthy summer recipes.

01 of 20

Chicken Andouille-Stuffed Peppers with Roasted Green Beans

Chicken Andouille-Stuffed Peppers with Roasted Green Beans
Jason Donnelly

Peak green bean season runs from May to September, so there's really no summer day when you can't whip up this flavorful sheet-pan supper. Stuffed with lean chicken sausage and hearty brown rice, each 300-calorie pepper half is overflowing with nutrition—and Cajun spice. Since the green beans and stuffed peppers cook together in the same pan, dinner will be ready in no time.

02 of 20

Peachy Chicken Pasta Salad

Peachy Chicken Pasta Salad
Andy Lyons

Instead of peaches and cream, try peaches and chicken with pasta. The natural sweetness of juicy, in-season peaches perks up this nutritionally balanced summer salad. If you have your own herb garden, garnish with fresh basil leaves.

03 of 20

Herbed Chicken, Orzo, and Zucchini

Herbed Chicken, Orzo, and Zucchini
Andy Lyons

Orzo adds staying power to this 20-minute Mediterranean recipe. The savory herbs, soft orzo and crisp zucchini make this dish a scrumptious blend of textures and flavors that are the perfect complement to chicken.

04 of 20

Roasted Vegetable and Chicken Sausage Pizza

Roasted Vegetable-Chicken Sausage Pizza
Jason Donnelly

Yes, you can have a healthy pizza. Compose this chicken sausage pizza with whatever vegetables are in your fridge. And good news, this recipe requires just one pan, so cleaning up is (almost) as easy as enjoying a slice.

05 of 20

Rotisserie Chicken Banh Mi

Roasted Chicken Banh Mi
Karla Conrad

Thanks to shortcut ingredients like store-bought rotisserie chicken, this Vietnamese-inspired chicken sandwich is ready in just 30 minutes. Light mayonnaise and reduced-sodium soy sauce are simple swaps that keep the fat and salt in check.

06 of 20

Chicken with Minted Yogurt Sauce

Chicken with Minted Yogurt Sauce
Blaine Moats

Put a refreshing spin on seasoned grilled chicken with the help of cool cucumber, red sweet pepper, and a creamy Greek yogurt sauce flavored with fresh mint. This protein-packed combo will taste delicious served atop leafy greens or tucked inside a pita.

07 of 20

Chicken and Strawberry Panzanella

Chicken and Strawberry Panzanella
Jason Donnelly

Fresh strawberries meet poultry in this satisfying salad recipe. Use day-old bakery bread cubes that will soak up the dressing. Each serving has 38 grams of protein and just 5 grams of sugar, so you won't be hungry again an hour later. To speed up the prep, start with grocery-store rotisserie or leftover chicken.

08 of 20

Fresh Corn and Chicken Chowder

Fresh Corn and Chicken Chowder
Andy Lyons

This light chicken chowder gets its creamy texture from instant mashed potato flakes. Brimming with fresh sweet corn, green sweet pepper, and tender chicken breast, it's equally delicious as a leftover for lunch as it is the night you make it.

09 of 20

Balsamic Chicken and Vegetables

Balsamic Chicken and Vegetables
Jason Donnelly

This easy, low-calorie chicken recipe comes together in a single skillet and relies on bottled Italian salad dressing to add flavor, which makes both preparation and cleanup a breeze. It's an especially great recipe to enjoy with fresh, crispy asparagus.

10 of 20

Cilantro-Lime Pasta Salad

Cilantro-Lime Pasta Salad
Kritsada Panichgul

Fresh lime juice adds tart citrus flavor to this bright chicken pasta salad. Balance it with spicy jalapeño, sweet peppers, creamy avocado, and fresh-from-the-grill chicken for a 350-calorie lunch or dinner option that you'll want to keep on repeat.

11 of 20

Tortellini and Garden Vegetable Bake

Tortellini Garden Vegetable Bake
Blaine Moats

This creamy chicken casserole is loaded with umami-rich mushrooms, sweet peppers, crunchy snap peas and bright cherry tomatoes—all seasonal vegetables that make this dish perfect for summer potlucks and picnics. Prepare it 24 hours in advance for a speedy weeknight dinner.

12 of 20

Chicken Enchilada Wraps

Chicken Enchilada Wraps
Andy Lyons

Kids and adults alike will love this innovative enchilada recipe. By placing the creamy sauce inside the flour tortilla, rather than on top, you'll have a delicious handheld meal—no forks required. That's a wrap on a fiesta-worthy chicken dinner that's fun and healthy for the whole family.

13 of 20

Chicken with Summer Squash

Chicken with Summer Squash
Andy Lyons

Transform store-bought roasted rotisserie chicken into a hit that's as simple as it is tasty. This light recipe blends bright yellow grape tomatoes and tender summer squash for a delicious and easy one-skillet meal that's ready in under 30 minutes. Sprinkle it with arugula for an additional hint of freshness.

14 of 20

Pasta with Chicken, Spinach, Tomatoes, and Feta Cheese

Pasta with Chicken, Spinach, Tomatoes, and Feta Cheese
Kritsada Panichgul

A light honey-orange vinaigrette is the icing on the cake in this easy whole-grain pasta dish that's bursting with flavor, thanks to sun-ripened cherry tomatoes, crumbly, salty feta, and nutrient-packed baby spinach. With the fiber-rich pasta, protein-packed chicken and fresh vegetables, you'll be hitting nearly all the food groups in this balanced meal.

15 of 20

Almond-Crusted Chicken

Almond-Crusted Chicken
Andy Lyons

Rosemary-laced panko and chopped almonds come together to create a satisfying crunch around a perfectly tender chicken breast. Boost the vitamin content in this healthy comfort food recipe by serving it on a bed of wilted cabbage, then sprinkle with black pepper and fresh mint.

16 of 20

Air-Fried Nashville-Style Hot Chicken Strips

blue plate of chicken strips coated in sauce and pickle slices
Jason Donnelly

Craving some fried chicken, but not all the grease and fat that comes with it? This low-fat, low-calorie chicken strip recipe will satisfy that craving and probably make it into your regular dinner rotation. The air fryer helps to crisp up the tenders to perfection, while brown sugar and cayenne pepper come together in a sauce that adds lip-smacking, spicy sweetness.

17 of 20

Spiced Chicken-Lentil Tacos with Quick-Pickled Red Onions

Spiced Chicken-Lentil Tacos Quick-Pickled Red Onions
Jacob Fox

Shake up your Taco Tuesday routine with this simple and tasty chicken taco recipe that uses lentils instead of the classic beans. Lentils add a healthy boost of zinc and vitamin B1, while the pickled onions bring a tangy, sweet crunch to this nutritious dish.

18 of 20

Chicken Sausage and Peppers

Chicken Sausage and Peppers
Carson Downing

Needing only 15 minutes of prep time, this sheet pan meal is an easy and healthy dinner you can whip up on a busy weeknight. Since it cooks all in one pan, the flavors of the juicy chicken sausage, fresh vegetables, and savory herbs, including oregano, blend together to create a delicious harmony of flavors.

19 of 20

Honey-Garlic Grilled Chicken with Pickled Chiles and Peaches

Honey-Garlic Grilled Chicken with Pickled Chiles & Peaches
Eva Kolenko

Sweet peaches, pickled fresh jalapeño chiles and crispy red onion work together to make this colorful dish perfect for summer. The honey-garlic marinated chicken breasts pair delightfully with a fresh and vitamin-rich arugula salad to create a delectable salty-sweet crunch with every bite.

20 of 20

Chicken Cashew Nut

Chicken Cashew Nut
Jenny Huang

Skip the takeout and make this healthy dish from Pepper Teigen instead. Chopped chicken, crisp peppers and salted cashews blend together to create a delectable Asian-fusion flavor that is fresh and slightly nutty. Add an element of sweet heat with a homemade sauce that includes soy sauce, oyster sauce and sweet chili jam.

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