Now that the warm days are *finally* outweighing the chilly ones, outdoor plans and projects are a go. And what do we need after a few productive hours spent outside in the heat (besides the obvious cocktails)? A light and nourishing pick-me-up, like chilled pasta salad or refreshing spring rolls. That’s where our beloved cucumber comes in. Served warm or cold, these 12 invigorating recipes bring ALL the cool to your dinner plate with the help of the cucumber.

1. Chili Lime Cucumber Noodles on Salted Watermelon With Mint and Basil: Move over, zoodles; these cucumber noodles are the only things that matter. Mixed with bright flavors and toppled over juicy salted watermelon, cucumber proves to be the *real* MVP. (via The First Mess)

2. Cucumber Vegan Pasta Salad: This cooling heap of pasta is the perfect way to fill up on a warm day. Crisp cucumbers and rotini are tossed in a dill-y dressing to create a dinner that is fresh AF and keeps well for a next-day lunch. (via B. Britnell)

3. Meatless Gyro Wrap: Seitan impresses us by replacing meat in these gyros, but the true magic is in the toppings. Big crunchy pieces of cucumber steal the show by offering a sense of refreshment to every bite. (via Brewing Happiness)

4. Asian Cucumber Noodle Salad With Ginger Almond Dressing: In this recipe, chewy rice noodles mix together with cilantro, cool mint, and cucumbers. It may sound fancy, but this revitalizing dinner only takes 30 minutes to make. (via Avocado Pesto)

5. Grilled Pear Cucumber Flatbread: We love pizza, but for now, it needs to take a back seat. This grilled flatbread is adorned with cucumber ribbons, pear slices, toasty pine nuts, and pillowy goat cheese for a light, swoon-worthy dinner. (via Cooking With Ruthie)

6. Roasted Veggie Buddha Bowl With Quinoa and Avocado: This substantial all-in-one meal will fill you and energize you. Seasoned tofu, broccoli, and cauliflower bring their A game, but the hydrating cucumbers are where it’s at. (via Well Plated by Erin)

7. Vegan Sushi: If you’re off of meat but long for the essence of sushi, don’t fret. These cooling crunchy rolls hug cucumber and creamy avocado for a lightened-up dinner you’ll want to make over and over again. (via Beloved Kitchen)

8. Cucumber Noodles in Peanut Sauce: Spiralized cucumbers get twirled with a lip-smackin’ peanut sauce in this crave-worthy dish. Though it’s light, the meal is filling and will have you feeling restored. (via A House in the Hills)

9. Sofritas Tofu Lettuce Wraps: If you thought a crisp lettuce wrap couldn’t get any more refreshing, think again. Adding chopped cucumber to the filling creates a meal so invigorating, you can feel good about eating seconds! (via Veganosity)

10. Vegetarian Greek Stuffed Peppers: These aren’t your average stuffed bells. The Greek salad-inspired recipe keeps things mild and refreshing with a medley of couscous, cucumbers, tomatoes, and tangy feta. (via Cook Nourish Bliss)

11. Cucumber Dill Veggie Wraps With Coconut Wrappers: Sometimes all we want for dinner is a crisp and weightless wrap. Filled with nourishing veggies and a creamy dill sauce, these colorful gems are a godsend in such situations. (via Raw Revive)

12. Veggie-Loaded Peanut Noodle Salad: This cold salad packs a healthy punch with a myriad of fresh veggies tossed with whole wheat noodles. On top of that, we can guarantee that the creamy and dreamy peanut sauce will blow your mind. (via Kitchen Treaty)

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