The slightly sweet taste of thoughtfully grilled seasonal vegetables with a touch of charred bitterness means that zucchini, summer squash, eggplant and more have once again taken pride of place at the dining table. Even children eat vegetables when cooked this way. But do you know how to grill vegetables? We have the secrets to making delicious grilled vegetables a staple of your summer table. Also read our guide to vegan grilling.
1. Choose a tasty marinade
While a seasonal vegetable packs a lot of flavor no matter what, it doesn’t hurt to embellish it a little. An aromatic marinade adds significantly to the flavor and lubrication of the grilled vegetables and makes cooking easier and tastier when served.
Marinades can range from simple to complex. We like to start with a base of equal parts oil and acid, seasoned with a few flavors.
You can find almost endless combinations by following this formula, but here are just a few of our favorites to get you started:
- Eggplant with olive oil, balsamic vinegar, rosemary and garlic
- Zucchini with grape seed oil, lemon juice and basil
- Summer squash with avocado oil, lime juice and mint
- Green beans with equal parts sesame oil and grapeseed oil, Chinese black vinegar, ginger and orange peel
- Corn on the cob with avocado oil, lime juice and chili pepper
Pick out your favorite vegetables and combinations, marinate them for anywhere from 15 minutes to 2 hours depending on the porosity of the vegetables and the taste you want, and toss them on the grill for an easy and delicious way to change up your eating routine.
Grilled Vegetable Image Via Shutterstock
2. Regulate your temperature
You want your vegetables to be nicely charred, but you don’t want them to be burnt on the outside and raw on the inside. What you really want for ideal grilled vegetables is a medium to high temperature, but how do you know if your grill is medium high?
The easiest way can be with a point-and-shoot thermometer. Aim for 400-450 degrees Fahrenheit and your veggies will be expertly cooked before you know it.
However, if you don’t want to invest in such a device, you can also guess if your grill is hot enough by holding your hand palm down about 4 to 5 inches from the grill (remove the jewelry first!) If You can hold your hand there for between 4 and 5 seconds before it gets uncomfortable and you’re good to go.
3. Turn them into a meal
Once you’ve mastered grilling vegetables, you’ll want to make them the star of your dining table – not a skimpy side.
Fortunately, grilled vegetables are easy to make into a delicious main course that is hearty enough to fill you up. Here are our favorite methods:
- Choose a variety of vegetables with a variety of different colors and arrange them on a beautiful platter. Add some freshly cut homemade bread and dinner is ready.
- Add more protein to your grilled vegetable selections with grilled homemade tofu or seitan.
- Alternatively, you can top a plate of grilled vegetables with one or two poached organic eggs. The semi-liquid egg yolk creates an extra sauce for your vegetables.
- Combine your grilled vegetables with grilled halloumi, like in our grilled halloumi salad.
- Take a tip from the French and serve a variety of vegetables with a homemade aioli or mayonnaise.
And don’t turn off the grill when dinner is ready – the best way to end a grilled vegetable dish is with a grilled fruit dessert. Here are just a few of our favorites:
With seasonal produce and some time, you can’t go wrong this summer learning how to grill vegetables.
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