Slideshow: 17 Cooling Cucumber Recipes for Summer

Green Salad with Pickled Mushrooms, Cucumbers, Onions, and Pecorino
Green Salad with Pickled Mushrooms, Cucumbers, Onions, and Pecorino

If you're a robust and flavorful salad that is essentially its own side dish, look no further! This salad uses a simple vinegar pickling method on cucumbers, onions, and mushrooms that brings a bright and punchy presence to the salad's base of greens and salty pecorino cheese.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Make-Ahead Marinated Cucumber Salad with Radishes, Dill, and Shrimp
Make-Ahead Marinated Cucumber Salad with Radishes, Dill, and Shrimp

This medley combines sweet veggies, savory shrimp, and fresh herbs into the perfect summer pack lunch. Let it refrigerate overnight for a stronger tangy marinade flavor, then take it with you to the office or the great outdoors (if you're lucky enough to have a picnic planned).

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[Photograph: Suzanne Lehrer]

Grilled Salmon with Thai Cucumber Basil Salad
Grilled Salmon with Thai Cucumber Basil Salad

Thai cucumber salad brings a punch of flavor to this simple salmon recipe, with a lime, fish sauce, garlic, and sugar dressing that gives both cucumber and fish that classic sweet-sour-salty Thai taste.

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[Photograph: Jennifer Segal]

Grilled Strip Steak with Creamy Yogurt Sauce and Tomato-Cucumber Salad
Grilled Strip Steak with Creamy Yogurt Sauce and Tomato-Cucumber Salad

If you want to enjoy a nice thick cut of beef this summer, there's no better way to accompany the steak's rich and juicy flavor than with a light and crunchy salad. Naturally, a combination of cucumber, tomato, parsley, and yogurt does the trick, but good olive oil will be the real secret weapon for your salad.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Asian Cucumber, Celery, and Avocado Salad
Asian Cucumber, Celery, and Avocado Salad

Half crunchy, half creamy, all green; this salad plays with texture and flavor while keeping it simple. With savory and spicy character from ginger, garlic, basil, and jalapeño, this simple salad is anything but boring.

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[Photograph: Jennifer Segal]

Chicken Souvlaki with Tzatziki Sauce and Greek Salad
Chicken Souvlaki with Tzatziki Sauce and Greek Salad

Cucumber's supporting role here showcases it's versatility in both sauce and salad. Salted cucumber is just one of the many flavors to enjoy in this quintessential Mediterranean dish.

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[Photograph: Yvonne Ruperti]

Kibbeh and Cucumber Salad
Kibbeh and Cucumber Salad

Cool yogurt and cucumber paired with torpedo-shaped meatballs make a great quick brunch. Complete this Middle Eastern favorite with some mint tea (hot or iced) and enjoy!

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[Photograph: Sydney Oland]

Quick-Pickled Cucumbers with Rice Vinegar
Quick-Pickled Cucumbers with Rice Vinegar

Quick-pickling is a handy trick for a number of dishes. Just use vinegar, water, and sugar on some cucumber for the perfect pork belly companion in steamed buns.

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]

Israeli Salad
Israeli Salad

Though this salad would obviously be a nice snack on its own, the ability to enhance your shawarma or falafel experience is its real raison d'etre. Honestly, any leftovers could work atop the sandwich or main of your choice, satisfaction guaranteed!

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[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Sweet Cucumber Relish
Sweet Cucumber Relish

This sweet and tangy relish, a classic condiment at any cookout, is easy to make on your own with onions, bell peppers, and cukes (of course). The pickling is a quick and easy process, and the result is good for canning or eating right away.

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[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Sweet and Spicy Pickle Relish
Sweet and Spicy Pickle Relish

If a sweet and spicy combo is more your style, this recipe using red chili flake should do the trick. Instead limit your relish use to the realm of hot doggery, try it on any that you could imagine eating with pickles (which should be almost everything).

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[Photograph: Marisa McClellan]

Fresh Watermelon and Cucumber Juice
Fresh Watermelon and Cucumber Juice

Watermelon and cucumber are two fruits (yes, really) with remarkably high water content, which makes this gently flavored smoothie equal parts hydrating and delicious. Mint and lime, cucumber's best friends, make an appearance here to round things out.

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[Photograph: Carolyn Cope]

Cucumber-Basil Lemonade with Lemongrass
Cucumber-Basil Lemonade with Lemongrass

Okay, so it's summer and you probably need to cool down. Lemonade is already an old standby, so why not get creative with refreshing flavors like cucumber, basil, and lemongrass?

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[Photograph: J. Kenji López-Alt]