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Be Labor-less on Labor Day — Best Quick and Easy Dinners

Be Labor-less on Labor Day — Best Quick and Easy Dinners

As summer winds to a close, take it easy with this collection of quick and easy cookout recipes.
By Relish

This article has been posted with permission and originally appeared as Quick and Easy Dinners: Laborless on Labor Day on Relish


It may be difficult to celebrate Labor Day, a.k.a the end of summer, but cooking for your last grill-side hoorah of the season doesn’t need to be. In fact, it can be quick and easy.

On that note, we’ve gathered some of our favorite no-fuss, mix-and-match recipes for the holiday weekend with easy, breezy Labor Day prep and dining in mind—a collection of Labor-light Labor Day recipes, if you will.

Easy-Prep Proteins

In the interest of kicking back this holiday weekend, give yourself permission to splurge for pre-prepared meat and seafood at your local market. You can order ahead of time, or browse and see what’s available on the spot. From there, these recipes feature simple, delicious marinades and require only a quick trip to the grill.

Charcoal Grilled Shrimp
Try this light and flavorful shrimp dish on its own or paired with rice or pasta. Get the recipe.


Shutterstock: HLPhoto

Nora’s Grilled Chicken
Slice up some boneless chicken breasts, marinate them in the fridge, and you’ll have dinner and snacks prepped and ready to go for several days. Get the recipe.


Mark Boughton Photography / styling: Teresa Blackburn

Korean Grilled Beef
When entertaining, we use rib-eyes. When it’s just the family, we choose flank steak: a leaner, less expensive cut. Get the recipe.


Grilled Pork Chops and Vegetables
Grilled pork chops and a fresh veggie platter are ideal for any summer grill-outs. Get the recipe.


Mark Boughton

Simple Sides

Each of these recipes is primed for shortcuts, with minimal prep and cook time involved. Some can even sit pretty and sizzle on the other side of the grill while your proteins cook.

Simple Bean and Pasta Salad
A delicious pasta salad get a protein boost from canned beans. Get the recipe.


Mark Boughton Photography / styling: Teresa Blackburn

Middle Eastern Bean Salad
This Middle Eastern bean salad (Balela) is best served at room temperature but keeps well in the refrigerator for easy snacking. Get the recipe.


Blueberry-Cucumber Salad
The super fresh flavors of blueberries and cucumber combine to make a salad that tastes as light and refreshing as it looks! Serve it with grilled fish or meats. Get the recipe.


Grilled Summer Vegetables
Perfectly grilled vegetables are a healthy summertime side. Get the recipe.


Mark Boughton Photography / styling: Teresa Blackburn

No-Fuss Desserts

An arsenal of easy desserts is your best friend when it comes to entertaining a crowd. Each of these are light, fruity and perfectly suited to an end-of-summer celebration.

Mini Lemon Tarts
These simple lemon tarts are perfect to make with kids. Get the recipe.


Teresa Blackburn

Fruity Granita
Granita is Italian for “grain,” and the word “grainy” perfectly describes the texture of this style of Italian ice. Get the recipe.

See Also


Jessica Merchant

Quick Peach Crisp
Packaged ginger cookies make this four-ingredient Peach Crisp a snap. Get the recipe.


Mark Boughton Photography / styling by Teresa Blackburn

Frozen Blackberry Yogurt
An unbelievably easy way to whip up fruity low-fat frozen yogurt. Get the recipe.


Mark Boughton Photography / styling by Teresa Blackburn

Three Ingredient Libations

Your guests will thank you for the extra refreshment, but there’s no need to let on how easy these sweet sips actually are. Each of these special-occasion summertime coolers call for only three ingredients—two recipes for the 21+ crowd and one the whole family can enjoy.

Best Fresh Lemonade
Fully dissolving the sugar in water is key to great lemonade. Get the recipe.


Mark Boughton Photography / styling by Teresa Blackburn

Blueberry Lemonade Cocktail for Summer
Early summer’s favorite—blueberries and lemons—team up in this festive cocktail. Get the recipe.


Americano Cocktail
For a patriotic drink, try this red-tinged American cocktail. Get the recipe.


Richard Swearinger

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