Sun’s out, grill’s out! Or something like that.
It’s that time folks. Stock up on the charcoal, refill those propane tanks, and prepare to nosh on fire-roasted decadence all summer long. There’s something almost primal about preparing food over a fire; it feels good in your soul. Sure, cooking in your kitchen can be inspired but grilling can turn the most basic meal into something extraordinary.
You know all about grilling burgers, kabobs, and brats… but what about pizza? Or your a pitcher of lemonade? Yeah, that’s what we thought. Use your grill to really exercise those culinary muscles. Grilling is such a superb way to add flavor to the simplest meals without adding extra calories. In fact, grilling can help trim fat and calories (if you’re into that) making your favorite summery dishes even better for you.
17 Grilled Recipes to Rock Your Summer
Croutons — Lightly brush thick, crusty pieces of bread with olive oil and toast on the grill for a few minutes. Then, chop into cubes and top a big a-s salad. The flavor is outstanding and the texture becomes a little chewy and a little crunchy.
Pizza — You can still enjoy comfort food without heating up the oven and the entire house. Get a pizza stone (or cheaper — a ceramic tile from the hardware store) and use this grill-ready dough recipe.
Salad — This is not just for fancy restaurants. Grilling full heads of crisp romaine lettuce can be a delicacy in your own backyard. It’s only over the heat for a moment, and instead of wilted leaves you get savory, smokey flavor. Top with those grilled croutons!
Peaches — This fruity summer dessert will out shine all of the others. Serve over vanilla ice cream or Greek yogurt for a truly sublime experience.
Lobster Rolls — Make this your official sandwich of summer and impress every guest that shows up on your patio. Grill the lobsters, grill the buns, and get down on the best thing to ever come out of New England!
Burger Kabobs — The traditional burger is tired and we’ve played out the slider… now it’s time to make those burgers even tinier! Roll up tiny meatballs, thread on a kabob, and stack with veggies like mushrooms and jalapenos.
Brie — Add a dimension of flavor to this craveable appetizer when you place the brie wheel over the flames just long enough to make it all melty and gooey. Follow the crouton lead (again) and toast crostini over the fire. Talk about wow!!
Lemonade — The grill is not just for edibles. When summer hands you lemonade, put it on the grill and give your tastebuds a real flavor thrill. For an extra pop, grill jalapenos and add a few slices to the finished product.
Corn on the Cob — Few of us are strangers to grilling corn, but when you add parmesan, chili pepper, cilantro, and lime juice you’ll wonder why you haven’t done this before.
Avocados — This fruit certainly doesn’t come top of mind, but it will become a go-to preparation from here on out. It’s a simple way to boost flavor when clean eating is the goal.
Cocktails — << This grilled pineapple mojito should be the quintessential summer cocktail. Consider grilling any peaches, citrus, or other fruit you may be dropping in a highball glass.
Brussels Sprouts – If you turn up your nose at these little baby cabbages, then turn up the heat! If you don’t love a veggie, keep varying the cooking method until you find the one that suits your taste. Grilling Brussels is a surprising and must-try approach.
Bacon — Sure, you’ve wrapped steaks, asparagus, and even the aforementioned Brussels in bacon, but have you just cooked bacon strips on the grill? Oh you need to. Your house won’t stink, your skin won’t get splattered, and the taste is exceptional. (Pssst… you can even make your own bacon out there!)
Bananas – Bring the summer camp fun back home with this oft-forgotten treat. Bananas Foster, Grilled Banana Splits, and a Banana S’more concoction are pretty darn tasty over the flames.
Potato Salad — This ain’t your mama’s potato salad… but she’s going to like it! Be the hero of the cookout when you grill the potatoes (and even scallions, garlic, or lemon) for a beautiful addition to the picnic menu.
Watermelon — Is it possible to top the single best fruit of summer? Mmmm hmmm, grill it. You can even top it with feta, mint, and other fresh, summer flavors to transform a wedge of watermelon into an unforgettable dinner party dessert.
Gazpacho — Who said you can’t have soup in summer? Gazpacho is a traditional chilled soup made of fresh summer vegetables, and the flavor becomes a really satisfying treat when you grill before the puree.