Easiest side dish ever! Grilled vegetables are SO flavorful and the perfect way to use up handfuls of vegetables, a CSA box, or what’s being harvested.
Our family seriously eats these almost daily in the summer. Be sure to check out the flavor variations in the printable recipe and how you can plan two meals from one! (Some links in this article are affiliate links and if you click on them I will receive a small commission at no cost to you – thanks for your support.)
I could eat these easy grilled vegetables every day – and we almost do in the summer. Sometimes it’s just one type of vegetable (green beans rise to new heights done this way!) or a couple (zucchini and onion are summer constants), but most of the time we grill a variety, using what we have in the fridge or coming in from the garden.
We used to just grill slices of single vegetables – you know, slice the zucchini (or tomato, or onion…), carefully place them on the grill, and turn them with tongs until they were ready to eat. It usually took up a lot of room and took more attention and care. Not to mention mushy zucchini (uck), lost onion rings, or whole tomatoes sunk into the grates.
Then one day last summer we found a grill basket (similar to this one, but with a long handle) in the back of a cupboard that Brian’s folks had given us and decided to use it to grill a couple cups of cut vegetables with it that needed to be used. Oh, my. It was love – deep love – at the first bite. Why had this been sitting in our cupboard for so long? Who knows, and who cares, because this basket is in almost daily use now.
It’s basically a summer version of roasted vegetables – and so easy I’ve hesitated to post a recipe (which is more like a “how-to” since you can adjust it to whatever you’d like). But I want everyone to be able to taste how amazing vegetables are cooked this way, so I’m going to put it down in black and white for you.
Easy Grilled Vegetables
Gather all the vegetables you have on hand – this is perfect for using up odds and ends. The bowl pictured includes half a cheddar cauliflower, an onion, a pepper, a zucchini, carrots, a few small red potatoes (see tip below), and some yellow and green beans.
With a grilling basket (a wok-like pan with holes- here’s a round version with a long handle), you can chop vegetables into bite-sized pieces without worry – as long as they are bigger than the holes they won’t fall through.
After the vegetables are chopped (it’s best to make them all about the same size as you’re able), toss them with some olive oil, salt, pepper, LOTS of garlic, and some red pepper flakes for a bit of spiciness. Or just sprinkle the mixture with our basic spice rub and call it good (I do this a lot because its easy!).
TIP: When adding vegetables like potatoes, cauliflower and carrots to the mix, steam or microwave them with water to steam for a few minutes until they are crisp-tender. Then they will be done in the same amount of time as the other vegetables. For potatoes especially, slice them pretty thin, and pre-cook them thoroughly. You can also grill them separately like this if you don’t want to bother.
I usually prep the vegetables and happily pass them to Brian to do the grilling – here are his how-to & tips:
- The best way to cook them is to start them over high heat for a few minutes without stirring. This seems to get some of the juices cooked out and starts the nice charring effect.
- Then stir them around a bit and close the grill lid.
- Let them cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 8-10 minutes until they are nicely browned and cooked through (though still crisp), with spots of wonderful, grilled-marked goodness.
You know what? Vegetables are so good this way that I sometimes serve them on a tortilla with shredded jack cheese and call them “Grilled Vegetable Wraps.” We don’t even miss the meat- and that’s saying something with my family.
Click the arrow for the full printable recipe!
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