13 Delicious Early Summer Recipes to Try on Your Grill

By Ashley Marcin on 2 July 2015 0 comments

We're deep into summer, so it's time to get grilling to soak in as many of the season's flavors as humanly possible. Whether you're a veggie-loving vegan or a meat-obsessed carnivore, there are some amazing recipes out there that will dazzle your tastebuds. Here are a few to add straight to the top of your to-make list.

1. Corn on the Cob

Chances are that you've been grilling corn all wrong. The right way is easier than you might think. Simply soak your corn for a couple hours to overnight in their husks (this will prevent them from burning on the grill). Then gently peel back the husk and remove all the silks. You can brush corn with butter, season with salt and pepper, and even add some fresh herbs before pulling the husks back up to cover. Then grill on medium for around half an hour. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

2. Citrus Salmon

Add some flavor to your grilled fish by cooking it on citrus fruits. That's right! You can cook your salmon atop a layer of lemons to prevent burning and infuse with delicious flavor all at the same time. You'll want your grill set to medium-high before beginning. Season fish with salt and pepper before setting it on your fruit. You can also add herbs for some extra flair. Then cook until fish is opaque, no turning necessary.

3. Basic Steak

One trick for better grilled steak is cutting your meat into thick, one-inch slabs. Let your steaks rise to room temperature and rub with sea salt before tossing them on the preheated grill. You'll want to rotate steaks around so each one gets a chance to hit the hottest part of your grill and create those great grill marks in the process. Then use the "finger test" to check the doneness of your meat. The firmer it feels, the more well done it is.

4. Chipotle Lime Cauliflower

Vegans can get in on the fun with these hearty chipotle lime cauliflower steaks. Chop each cleaned cauliflower into three or four thick cross-sections. In a small bowl, whisk together lime juice, olive oil, grated garlic, and honey or agave. In another small bowl, mix together some lime zest, paprika, chipotle, and salt. Then heat your grill, brush cauliflower with oil mixture, and sprinkle with seasonings before cooking well on each side.

5. Beer BBQ Tofu

As a long-time vegetarian, I'm surprised I've never grilled tofu outdoors. I assumed it would stick and make a mess, but this beer BBQ tofu showed me otherwise. Cut a block of tofu into eight equal slices before pressing between clean kitchen towels to drain excess moisture. Your marinade will consist of a bottle of beer, ⅔ cup barbecue sauce, ginger, and garlic. Let tofu sit in the marinade for a couple hours before cooking on medium-high in your grill. Six to nine minutes on each side should do it.

6. Best-Ever Chicken

The key to getting the best grilled chicken ever is in the marinade. This recipe combines the flavors of Dijon mustard, apple cider vinegar, garlic, lemon and lime, brown sugar, salt, and pepper. Let the chicken rest in the flavorful mixture for around two hours in your refrigerator while you assemble other parts of your meal. Then grill the chicken on medium-high until the juices run clear.

7. Foil Potatoes

While you focus on your main course, try cooking sides in aluminum foil pockets. These grilled Parmesan potatoes turn out beautifully tender and aromatic with lots of herbs and spices. Just cube potatoes, place in a large bowl with onions and olive oil, and sprinkle with your seasonings. Fold into foil pouches and cook for 20 to 30 minutes until tender — no boiling necessary. I'd love to try this same recipe using sweet potatoes.

8. Grilled Cheese

One of my favorite grilled dinners is outdoor grilled cheese. My husband and I make this sandwich at least once a week, and we play around with different add-ins for unique flavor and texture. Take two thick slices of bread and brush them with olive oil or melted butter. Place cheese and grilled veggies or meat inside before wrapping in foil. Then place on your grill and cook on each side for around five minutes. Sandwich is done cooking when its crust is slightly golden and cheese is melted.

9. Stuffed Burgers

Try something new this summer with these amazing cheddar-stuffed burgers. You'll grab around three ounces of ground beef (80/20) and place it in the palm of your hand. Scoop out the center to form a bowl shape, then fill will bacon, cheese, and whatever else you'd like to stuff in there. Form the meat over your fillings to create a good seal. Dash with Worcestershire before cooking on medium-high heat for 10 to 15 minutes.

10. Romaine Hearts

Have you ever grilled salad? If not, prepare yourself to be amazed. These grilled romaine hearts keep all their crispness yet still manage to both soften and char. You'll cut the hearts in half and spray with olive oil before grilling for six minutes. Serve with a homemade Parmesan vinaigrette on the side.

11. Pork Tenderloin

This chili pork tenderloin grills up fast after only five minutes of prep for a finished meal in less than half an hour. Place rinsed pork on a plate and drizzle with grapeseed oil. Then rub with a mix of brown sugar, chili powder, paprika, and cinnamon. Cook for 20 minutes — flipping halfway through — until internal temperature of the meat reaches 160 degrees Fahrenheit.

12. Grilled Pizza

Another regular course to hit my picnic table is grilled pizza. The process can feel rather involved, but keep it simple by thinking of its separate components: Dough, sauce, and prepared toppings. Once you have everything set out to assemble your pizza, preheat your grill to high. Turn grill heat down to medium and brush grates with olive oil before you begin cooking. Quickly grill one side of your dough before placing any toppings on it. After you flip, put down a layer of cheese, then spoon out sauce (prevents the bread from getting soggy), and finish with whatever else you'd like on there. Cook only a couple minutes until crust is golden and cheese melts.

13. Grilled Pineapple

Here's a healthy side or dessert option that is also easy to make: grilled pineapple. Cut slices of pineapple and cook them over medium heat for five to 10 minutes. They'll get those classic grill marks that look so absolutely delicious. Send this sweet treat over the edge by whisking up a honey and cinnamon sauce for the side.

What's your favorite way to grill?

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