A few years ago, I picked up a grill basket at Target and, little did I know, that grill basket would open up a whole new world of options as far as veggies go for the grill. I personally love the smoky charred flavor that the grill gives all food, from meats to veggies to even pizza (if you haven’t tried grilling pizza you must!).
I’ve don’t think I’ve yet to meet a veggie that doesn’t taste great coming off the grill. Grilled zucchini, asparagus and pepper halves are probably some of the most common vegetables placed on the grill, and you can never go wrong with either. I like to cut the zucchini into spears so that they are more sturdy on the grill grates and easier to turn without falling apart.
Things can get more interesting when you are using a grill basket or wok. I treat the basket or wok like I would a pan on the stove and grill whatever vegetable I have on the menu. Broccoli florets, carrots, cauliflower, fajita vegetables – you name it, if you can sautee or stir fry it on the stove you can grill it in a grill basket.
Skewers are another great way to get veggies (or fruit!) on the grill. Mushrooms, peppers, onions cut into large pieces are perfect for skewers and when cut the same size, cook up evenly and quickly. Using skewers is a fun way to get your kids involved, they can easily thread the veggies onto the skewers and brush each skewer with oil or glaze, under supervision of course. Always use tongs when handling skewers on the grill – especially metal skewers!
Here are a few tips when grilling vegetables:
- Always preheat your grill (and grill basket if using).
- Lightly oil grill grates by using a brush or a wadded paper towel dipped in oil. If you are using the paper towel method use tongs to help you spread the oil on the grates. You do not need to use a lot of oil for this, a little oil goes a long way and too much may cause a flare up.
- When prepping your veggies for the grill, cut them all to about the same size so they cook up evenly. Always keep an eye on your veggies on the grill because some cook up quicker than others.
- Lightly oil the veggies while prepping them by brushing the oil on each individual veggie (like zucchini spears or asparagus) or each veggie skewer. If using a grill basket or wok, tossing the vegetables in a large bowl (like broccoli, peppers or cauliflower) is best. You can also place veggies in a large ziplock type bag with oil and toss around to coat.
- Season your veggies well with coarse salt and pepper, you can add dried seasonings to your veggies as well.
- Drizzle with vinegars or sauce or brush-on glazes after veggies come off the grill for best flavor.
Some grilled vegetable recipes to try:
- Greek Grilled Cauliflower and Vidalia Onion Quinoa Salad (the grilled cauliflower and onion are delicious on their own!)
- Grilled Italian Chicken Sausage and Pepper Pitas (use the peppers for anything from fajitas to sandwiches like these)
- Grilled Broccoli and Vidalia Onion with Pine Nuts and Parmesan Cheese
- Grilled Zucchini with Lemon
- Clean Eating BBQ Carrots
- Aloha Kebabs