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    21 Affordable Summer Recipes That Taste Like A Million Bucks

    Shop on a budget, eat like a millionaire.

    Whether you're cooking for your family or entertaining friends this summer, feeding a group can get expensive. Luckily, we've got a handful of affordable seasonal recipes that taste seriously fancy.

    1. Mexican Street Corn Off The Cob

    A corn salad with Cotija cheese, green onions, and cayenne pepper in a creamy dressing.
    Table For Two Blog / Via tablefortwoblog.com

    Corn on the cob, mayo, green onion, Cotija cheese, and some spices are really all you need to whip up this spicy and creamy corn salad. Get the recipe for Mexican street corn off the cob here.

    2. Chicken Yakitori

    Carlsbad Cravings / Via carlsbadcravings.com

    This Japanese-inspired skewered, grilled chicken calls for chicken thighs, a notoriously affordable cut of chicken, which are marinated in soy sauce, rice wine, apple cider vinegar, and spices. Get the recipe for chicken yakitori here.

    3. BLT Pasta Salad With Avocado

    Foodie Crush / Via foodiecrush.com

    Instead of eating your bacon, lettuce, and tomato on sandwich bread, why not mix it all up with your favorite noodles into a big, summery pasta salad. Get the recipe for BLT pasta salad with avocado here.

    4. Ramen Noodle Salad

    Dinner At The Zoo / Via dinneratthezoo.com, Dinner at the Zoo / Via dinneratthezoo.com

    Turn your dollar packets of instant ramen into a satisfying salad recipe by mixing it up with cabbage, scallions, carrots, and sliced almonds. You can always add shredded chicken, shrimp, or your favorite protein to make it more filling. Get the recipe for ramen noodle salad here.

    5. Tuna Pasta Salad

    A bowl of pasta salad with tuna, tomatoes, onion, and fresh herbs tossed in a creamy mayo-based dressy.
    The Almond Eater / Via thealmondeater.com

    Turn two pantry staples — pasta and canned tuna fish — into a creamy, tangy side dish. You can jazz it up with whatever is in your fridge from cherry tomatoes and cucumber to capers and red onion. Get the recipe for tuna pasta salad here.

    6. Pesto Chicken Pull-Apart Sliders

    Half a dozen cheesy chicken sliders on Hawaiian rolls topped with pesto.
    Bake Eat Repeat / Via bake-eat-repeat.com

    Pro tip: Start off with a rotisserie chicken and you'll have tons of tender, shredded meat to fill your sliders with. Get the recipe for chicken pesto pull-apart sliders here.

    7. Grilled Pizza

    Pizza dough cooking on a grill. / Via tastesbetterfromscratch.com, Tastes Better From Scratch / Via tastesbetterfromscratch.com

    If you've never tried cooking pizza on the grill, now is the time. Just make sure your grill top is clean and well-oiled so the dough doesn't stick. Then, load it up with your favorite toppings! Get the recipe for grilled pizza here.

    8. Instant Pot Pulled Pork

    The Salty Marshmallow / Via thesaltymarshmallow.com

    Start with either pork loin roast or pork shoulder, let it marinate in a spice rub for about an hour, then cook it in the Instant Pot for just 50 minutes. You'll have pulled pork so tender, it'll taste like it slow-cooked for a full day. Get the recipe for Instant Pot pulled pork here.

    9. Fish Tacos With Garlic Lime Crema

    Natasha's Kitchen / Via natashaskitchen.com

    Fish tacos may seem totally fancy, but they're actually surprisingly affordable. You can use any fresh or frozen white fish like cod, hake, or mahi mahi. Just coat the fish in olive oil, lime, and spices, then toss it into tortillas with your favorite toppings. Get the recipe for fish tacos with garlic lime crema here.

    10. Peach, Corn, and Mozzarella Bruschetta

    Spice Is In My DNA / Via spicesinmydna.com, Spice In Is My DNA / Via spicesinmydna.com

    Grab a baguette and top it with a refreshing salad made of summer's best produce. A little drizzle of olive oil, salt, and pepper on top, and you've got a serious party app. Get the recipe for peach, corn, and mozzarella bruschetta here.

    11. Grilled Hawaiian-Inspired Pork Chops

    Barbecued pork chops in a sweet barbecue glaze with a grilled pineapple ring on top.
    The Life Jolie / Via thelifejolie.com

    An easy and affordable way to feed a group, these sweet and tangy pork chops are marinated in soy sauce, ketchup, garlic, pineapple juice, and red pepper flakes, then grilled until golden brown. Get the recipe for Hawaiian-inspired pork chops here.

    12. Beef Kofta Kababs with Tzatziki

    The Modern Proper / Via themodernproper.com

    Beef kofta, which are similar to meatballs only thinner and longer, are placed on skewers, cooked on the grill, and can be served with anything from rice and salad to pitas and hummus. Get the recipe for beef kofta kababs with tzatziki here.

    13. Pesto Tortellini Pasta Salad

    Salt and Baker / Via saltandbaker.com

    Grab your favorite store-bought tortellini and turn it into a sophisticated pasta salad you'll want to make over and over again. Get the recipe for pesto tortellini pasta salad here.

    Cook at Home Mom / Via cookathomemom.com, Cook At Home Mom / Via cookathomemom.com

    The best part about this recipe is that most of the salmon ingredients can be found right in your spice drawer. Top the fish with a zesty and refreshing salsa made with peaches (or really any summer fruit), avocado, onion, and jalapeño in lime juice and olive oil. Get the recipe for blackened salmon with peach avocado salsa here.

    15. Southwestern Black Bean Veggie Burgers

    Delicious Little Bites / Via deliciouslittlebites.com

    With very little prep and made of mostly cheap pantry ingredients, these vegetarian burgers are a no-brainer for your next barbecue. Get the recipe for southwestern black bean veggie burgers here.

    16. Shrimp Rolls

    A hot dog roll filled with shrimp tossed in a mayo-based dressing with chives and potato salad on the side.
    Julie Wampler

    Lobster's more affordable cousin, the humble shrimp roll is equally as delicious. Cooked shrimp gets tossed with celery, chives, mayo, and lemon, and spooned into hotdog rolls. Get the recipe for shrimp rolls here.

    17. New Orleans Jambalaya

    Confetti and Bliss / Via confettiandbliss.com

    The best thing about jambalaya is that you can really use whatever veggies or protein you have on hand. Mix it up with rice, crushed tomatoes, chicken broth, and a whole lot of seasonings. Get the recipe for New Orleans jambalaya here.

    18. Beef Taco Salad

    A salad with ground beef, corn, avocado, cabbage, shredded cheese, tomato, and lime.
    The Recipe Critic / Via therecipecritic.com

    Imagine tacos but in salad form, and you can make it with whatever ground meat you like best. Serve it with tortilla chips on the side for dunking. Get the recipe for beef taco salad here.

    19. Italian Pepperoni Roll-Ups

    Pinwheel sandwiches filled with pepperoni, peppers, mozzarella, and cream cheese.
    Tastes of Lizzy T / Via tastesoflizzyt.com

    Start with flour tortillas and fill them with sliced pepperoni, mozzarella, sliced peppers, cream cheese, and whatever other veggies or deli meat your heart desires. Roll them up and cut them into little sandwiches. Get the recipe for Italian pepperoni roll-ups here.

    20. Slow Cooker Mushroom Mac 'n' Cheese

    The Modern Proper / Via themodernproper.com

    How do you take mac 'n' cheese and make it sophisticated? Add some buttery mushrooms, a mixture of Gruyère and sharp cheddar, and some chives. Get the recipe for slow cooker mushroom mac 'n' cheese here.

    21. Farmers Market Cornbread

    House Of Yumm / Via houseofyumm.com, House of Yumm / Via houseofyumm.com

    Customize this melt-in-your-mouth cornbread with whatever vegetables you have in your fridge. It's a must-try summer side dish that goes great with whatever you're grilling. Get the recipe for farmers market cornbread here.