Pasta primavera from Sapore
We love the way rainbow bow-tie pasta brightens this tasty dish from the owner of the Eastern Market olive oil emporium
Berry cobbler from Red Truck Bakery
This is the sort of recipe you make all summer long—just toss in whatever seasonal fruit looks good and you have a delicious dessert. Photograph courtesy of Red Truck Bakery.
Barbecued oysters from Hank’s Oyster Bar
Jamie Leeds shared the secrets of the awesome sauce she uses on her popular barbecued oysters, which are perfect for a casual outdoor party. Photograph courtesy of Shutterstock.
Vodka-infused watermelon from Bourbon Steak
Bourbon Steak is a pretty fancy spot, but its bartenders aren’t above this college-kid favorite. Follow these instructions and you’ll find yourself surrounded by some very happy adults, as well. Photograph courtesy of Bourbon Steak.
Cheesecake with cassis compote from Ardeo & Bardeo
Cassis lends an elegant twist to a classic picnic dessert. Photograph by Erik Uecke.
Pan con tomate from Boqueria
Serve this quick-but-tasty tapa with some sangria on the patio.
Korean beef barbecue from Honey Pig
Burgers and dogs are great, but this recipe from the Korean barbecue icon will be a welcome newcomer to your grill routine.
Chocolate chip cookies from Watershed
Need an upgrade from the instructions on the back of the Tollhouse bag? Two kinds of chocolate and a chewy-gooey center make this a great recipe. Photograph By Scott Suchman.
Coleslaw from Jack Rose
Only olive-oil-based mayo will do for this simple, but perfect, side dish. Photograph by Emma Patti.
Steamed mussels from Addie’s
Jeff Black’s tweaked version of moules marinières was inspired by mentor Jean-Louis Palladin. Photograph courtesy of Addie’s.
Barbecue shrimp from Bayou
If you’re not into butter, move on from this rich rendition of the NOLA dish. Photograph by Erik Uecke.
Honey-lavender and strawberry-rhubarb popsicles from Pleasant Pops
Refreshing, light, and full of flavor, these pops are pretty much summer on a stick—and definite kid pleasers. Photograph by Jeff Elkins.
Macaroni and three cheeses from Firefly
Where do you turn when you want instructions for making the ultimate mac and cheese? To a Southern restaurant, of course.
Avocado toast from Cork
We first snagged Cork’s recipe for avocado toast—a truly exquisite and super-simple appetizer—as a Valentine’s Day dinner idea. It works even better for spring and summer, when uncomplicated fare is always welcome.
Chilled spaghetti with clams from Bibiana
Ashok Bajaj’s Italian restaurant shared this one—it makes a great weekday dinner on a hot evening.
White gazpacho from Jaleo
Make a batch and bring it to work all week for lunch. Photograph courtesy of Shutterstock.
Deviled eggs from Firefly
Another one from Firefly: Deviled eggs are always the first thing to go at a potluck for a reason. Smoked paprika and heavy cream help this version really shine. Photograph by Chris Leaman.
Spice-grilled chicken from Estadio
Wow everyone at the picnic with chef Haidar Karoum’s excellent chicken dish. It’s simple enough, but the bird marinates in zesty yogurt overnight, so be sure to plan ahead. Photograph by Chris Leaman.
The Majestic’s coconut cake
The perfect way to end a backyard party: this fluffy confection from the Majestic. Photograph by Chris Leaman.
Boozy milkshakes from Ted’s Bulletin
Adult shakes combine everything good in the world—no wonder they’re showing up in restaurants all over Washington. Blend like a pro with these variations from the throwback restaurant. Photograph by Chris Leaman.