Tasty, Vegetarian-Friendly Summer Grill Recipes
Trying to eat less meat but don't want to give up your grilling habit? We've got you
School's out for the summer and we're officially swapping out backpacks for shades, sunscreen and the good ole' grill. Yep, you heard us right, we're firing up the grill and believe it or not, no meat is involved. Trying your hand at incorporating more vegetables isn't just good for you, it's great for the environment too. In a nutshell, it takes a TON of energy and water to produce the steaks and pork ribs traditionally grilled (1). The extra carbon dioxide pumped into the air from raising livestock then contributes to increasing Earth's temperatures (2). So, if you're on board to beat the heat, keep on reading for some awesome recipes and ideas to try out this summer.
Our kitchen guide for grilling summer vegetables
Getting the right temperature and timing down for vegetables can be hard! They come in all different sizes and water content and sometimes two vegetables that are similar in size and shape need to be cooked completely different (I'm looking at you zucchini and eggplant!). We've got some tips below for you on the most commonly grilled summer veg below (3).
- Eggplant - the key to delicious tasting eggplant is to make sure to char each piece (this means making sure your grill is hot, hot, hot).
- Zucchini - we can all agree that mushy zucchini isn't yummy no matter the season. Because this vegetable is so high in water content, you want to make sure to cut these into thick pieces and grill on high heat.
- Corn - save the kernels for popcorn. For grilling corn, its gotta be on the cob, don't try grilling kernels otherwise you'll spend the entire duration of dinner picking out burned kernels of corn.
- Bell peppers - the best way to eat bell peppers are in kebabs. Buy an assortment of different colored peppers and let the kids so crazy making their own "rainbow" kebabs.
- Mushroom - believe it or not, mushrooms actually contain a TON of water which is why the best tasting mushrooms are cooked over high heat.
- Onions - get these babies charred for a sweet mellow taste and say goodbye to raw onions forever.
- Asparagus - grill these veggies on a sheet pan, that way, they don't fall between the cracks.
- Cauliflower - give these more time than you would think on the grill and don't be afraid to raise the heat. The best cauliflower pieces are the ones that are a deep golden brown.
- Romaine - Although not traditionally a vegetable that is grilled, romaine is superb when charred (you know the drill!).
Don't worry, we didn't forget about the sauces and marinades! Grilled vegetables require a lot of oil, so if you're making marinades, the best ones are oil based (we LOVE a good mojo). Likewise, if you're making a sauce, the vegetable you're grilled has probably already been generously coated in oil, so stick with lighter sauces for a meal that doesn't weigh you down.
Hungry for more? Try your hand out at these recipes!
- Halloumi and Vegetable Skewers
- Balsamic Marinated Portobello Burgers
- Grilled Spiced Cauliflower
- Mexican Street Corn (Elote)
The world better look out, because you're armed and ready to make a (positive) impact while jamming out this summer. And hey, your vegetarian or vegan guests will thank you, too!