Quality Summer Meals Made Easy

Quality Summer Meals Made Easy

Jacqueline Gomes, RDN, MBA

One of my favorite aspects of summer is the simplicity of summer meals. I tend to gravitate towards meals that are easy to prepare while incorporating the freshness of seasonal ingredients. When I’m cooking at home, I love to make use of the outdoor grill and yard as a way to stay out of a hot kitchen and keep cleanup to a minimum.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind…

  • Plan your menu around the grill. This is the one time of year you can really make use of outdoor cooking. From meats to veggies, the grill is an easy no-mess station for cooking all your summer fare, right down to fruits such as peaches and pineapple.
  • Think “less-mess”. Cover a grill tray in aluminum foil, cook fish, vegetables and potatoes right on the same surface. Food goes from grill to plate with super easy cleanup – you don’t even have to scrape the grill clean.
  • Make-ahead recipes. Crunched for time? Go for “make-ahead” items such as salads, both lettuce based and grain based, baked potatoes, and chicken, which can be cooked in advanced and reheated when ready to eat.
  • Keep your cool. Choose meals that require little to no cooking time. My Tuna-Pineapple poke bowls are perfect for hot summer nights.

Grilled Pork Chops with Rosemary Potatoes

Grilled Pork Chops w/ Rosemary Potatoes

Prep: 5 minutes

Marinate: 1 hour

Cook:15 to 20 minute


  • 4 bone-in Center Cut Pork Loin Chops
  • 1 lemon
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon dried Thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black Pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil


  • 2 pounds russet potatoes
  • 1 tablespoon Olive oil
  • Kosher Salt & Pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried rosemary


  1. Pat dry pork chops with a paper towel. Place pork chops in a shallow dish or food safe plastic bag.
  2. Squeeze lemon juice over pork chops, add in olive oil, herbs, salt & pepper. Marinate for 1 hour. Allow pork chops to come to room temperature before grilling.
  3. Heat grill to medium-high heat. Clean and grease grill grates. Remove pork from marinade and place on the grill. Cook for about 4 to 5 minutes per side.
  4. Test pork with a food thermometer, aim for a temperature of 140 degrees and remove from grill. Cover with aluminum foil and let rest for 10 minutes. This is an important step as the pork will continue to cook from the carry-over heat. Pork is safe to eat at an internal temperature of 145 degrees.
  5. For the potatoes, heat oven to 450 degrees. Scrub potatoes with a brush under cold running water. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with cooking spray.
  6. Cut potatoes into thick spears and lay on baking sheet in a single layer. Drizzle with olive oil, season with salt, pepper and rosemary.
  7. Bake for about 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
  8. Serve pork with lemon wedges and rosemary oven potatoes!

Eat Well Tip:

  • Avoid over cooking pork as it will become very dry. Test the internal temperature early, you can always place them back on the grill, but once over done there is no turning back!

Recipe by Jacqueline Gomes, MBA, RDN