Kidney Diet Tips

No Heat Summer Meals

Cooking in the summer heat is no easy task. Most of us are looking for simple recipes and summer meals that don’t involve turning on the oven. We want to stay cool and enjoy the long summer days. Just because you may be cooking less this summer does not mean you need to sacrifice your health or kidney-friendly lifestyle. No need to head out to the closest restaurant or fast food chain. Below are some favorite no cook summer recipe ideas to help keep you cool and healthy!

Smarten up with Fresh Fruit

Summer is the perfect time to take advantage of all the fresh fruits available! Adding fruit to salads or as a side dish helps you reach your daily fiber goal while also loading up on vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. When produce is in season it not only costs less, but it is more flavorful and nutrient dense. Some kidney-friendly fruits include apples, cherries, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, pears, watermelon, pineapple, cranberries, and peaches. Try chopping one of the fresh fruits listed above and adding to mixed greens or freezing and blending for a refreshing smoothie.

Try one of these recipes:

Veg Out

Raw vegetables do not need to be plain or boring. Turn uncooked vegetables into salads, slaws, soups and sandwiches to add flavor, crunch and nutrients. One of the most refreshing summer dishes is gazpacho, a Spanish soup typically made with raw vegetables and served cold (1). Gazpacho can be made with a variety of vegetables (or even fruit!) and consumed as an entrée or side. Test out this Cool Cucumber Soup

Summer salad suggestions:

Pick a Protein

On the summer days you do cook, try making extra chicken or beef to add to salads and sandwiches throughout the week. You can also purchase frozen prepared shrimp, pre-cooked poultry or low-sodium tuna to save time and avoid turning on the oven or stove.

Try adding one of these salads to a bed of greens, spread it on crackers, or on bread as a sandwich:

For more cool summer meals see No Cook Kidney Friendly Dishes from


Merriam-Webster. Gazpacho. Retrieved July 31, 2017, from

Additional Kidney Diet Resources

Visit and explore these diet and nutrition resources:

DaVita Food Analyzer

DaVita Dining Out Guides

Today’s Kidney Diet Cookbooks

DaVita Kidney-Friendly Recipes

Diet and Nutrition Articles                                                      

Diet and Nutrition Videos

Kidney Smart® Virtual Classes

This article is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical advice or treatment. Consult your physician and dietitian regarding your specific diagnosis, treatment, diet and health questions.

Krista Blackwell, RD, LDN, CNSC

Krista Blackwell, RD, LDN, CNSC

Krista believes eating well is an essential component of living a long, healthy and happy life. She has been with DaVita for over one year and has been working as a clinical dietitian in the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan area for almost four years. Krista is a certified nutrition support clinician and is taking classes for a master’s of science in applied nutrition. She enjoys being part of a strong team of renal medical experts at DaVita. In her free time Krista loves traveling, cooking, reading and staying active.