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18 Low-Ingredient Summer Sides to Save You Time (and Effort) All Season Long

Spend less time worrying about what you’re bringing to the potluck and more time getting outside this summer! We know you’re busy and need low-maintenance side dishes that let you focus on the fun, so we’ve rounded up 18 tasty sides to help—they all prep in record time, and only use seven ingredients (max!).

Summer potlucks are a staple of the season. What better way to celebrate saying goodbye to winter days spent indoors than with an outdoor party alongside your closest family and friends? Besides, the best part of a potluck is that you’re not responsible for the entire meal! Bring a side (or two) to share and enjoy time together outside without the stress of planning a whole dinner.

When transporting your food to the party, it’s important to make sure that whatever dish you use is tightly covered. Even if you’re not going far, a quick turn or stop could result in a mess in your car! We suggest storage containers with lids (some even come with carrying cases, too!), or a few tightly wrapped layers of plastic wrap.

Planning which side to bring to any potluck is part of the fun! These delicious sides are all about convenience and saving time. Keep in mind if this is an outdoor event, choose to bring a container with a lid or a net food cover to keep flies and pesky bugs away. If your side dish needs to stay cold, bring a few frozen ice packs and tuck them under your dish to help keep it cool.