Our Best Vegetarian Grilling Recipes
These terrific recipes include grilled eggplant and tomatoes with Parmesan-basil crumbs and grilled-vegetable gazpacho.
Spicy Jerk Vegetables with Yogurt-Scallion Sauce
Spicy, fresh and satisfying, these make a spectacular vegetarian main course.
Glazed Tofu Sandwiches with Jicama Slaw
Tofu doesn't sound like a reasonable substitute for steak, but when it's pressed until firm, then glazed with a sweet, spicy sauce and topped with a crisp slaw of jicama and carrots, you won't miss the meat.
Grilled Polenta with Spinach and Robiola Cheese
Polenta is the Italian name for cornmeal. Here, it’s grilled until crisp and served with sautéed spinach and a creamy, tangy cheese that melts on top.
Soba Noodle Salad with Pesto and Grilled Eggplant
“Buckwheat and basil actually work really well together,” Bill Kim says about this unlikely match-up of Japanese and Mediterranean flavors. This chunky salad has a great mix of textures, too: velvety grilled eggplant, crunchy radishes and juicy cucumbers.
Mixed Grilled Vegetables with Fontina Fonduta
Scott Conant says that fonduta (melted cheese sauce) is traditional throughout the Piedmont region and also popular in Valle d’ Aosta, to the north. Fonduta is laced with white truffles when they’re in season, making it superbly rich and luxurious.
Cheese-Stuffed Grilled Peppers
Robert Perkins and John Lancaster love making this snack at backyard barbecues using all types of medium-sized peppers: As the peppers blister, the cheese mixture tucked inside turns warm and gooey.
Grilled Eggplant and Tomatoes with Parmesan-Basil Crumbs
Fresh bread crumbs are an underrated way of adding fabulous crunch to recipes. Here Francis Mallmann uses bread crumbs tossed with fresh basil and lots of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese to create a great topping for tender grilled vegetables.
Grilled Zucchini Subs with Fresh Mozzarella and Olivada
This summery sandwich benefits from a generous topping of olivada made with tangy green olives, lemon and oil. It's great with the creamy mozzarella and the lightly smoky grilled-zucchini slices here; it's also wonderful with grilled fish and shellfish and roasted meat and chicken.
Grilled Tofu and Heirloom Tomato Salad
This grilled vegetarian dish is a great template for a light summer meal. Don't worry if you can't find the right vegetables: Use whatever is fresh and in season and you can't go wrong.
Ember-Roasted Baba Ghanoush
The secret to this deeply flavorful baba ghanoush: The eggplants and onions are roasted directly on the embers of a fire.
Open-Face Grilled Eggplant Sandwiches
For this smoky version of eggplant Parmesan, Sam Calagione looked for a beer that could stand up to the grilled eggplant without overwhelming it, finally opting for Guinness.
Grilled Margherita and Olive-Fontina Pizzas
"This dough is not the kind you throw in the air like in the movies," Mario Batali says. He grills the crusts until they’re delectably charred, then adds one of two simple toppings—a classic Margherita with tomato sauce, mozzarella and basil, and a pungent mix of Fontina, black olives and pine nuts.
Honey-Buttered Grilled Corn
Spreading butter, honey and a pinch of spicy cayenne over fresh corn on the cob, then grilling it in the husk, makes it insanely good—sweet with a hint of heat.
Grilled Tomato-and-Scallion Salad
"If it were up to me, I would throw everything on the grill," says Tim Love. Case in point: He cooks tomatoes and scallions over a hot fire for a simple salad flavored with a little lime juice and crumbled cheese.
Classic Andalucian gazpacho combines raw vegetables like tomatoes and onions with red wine vinegar for a little kick. Kerry Simon transforms the recipe by using grilled vegetables brightened with a blend of vinegar, orange juice and lemon juice.
Grilled Eggplant Salad with Walnuts
Terrific as a salad or a spread for flatbread, adzhapsandali is like a Georgian version of ratatouille. Grilling the eggplant gives the dish a luscious, smoky flavor.
Grilled Carrot Salad with Brown Butter Vinaigrette
Grilling concentrates the sweet flavor of fresh baby carrots. (Bagged "baby" carrots will never taste the same.) Bryce Gilmore marinates them, then tosses them with a wonderful and unusual dressing he makes by cooking butter until brown, then pureeing it with marcona almonds and sherry vinegar.
Grilled Bread and Marinated Tomato Salad
Grilling the bread for this panzanella (bread salad) adds a slight smokiness and crunch. Marinate the tomatoes ahead of time so all you have to do is grill the bread and assemble the salad to serve.
Mushroom Kufteh with Green Harissa and Asparagus Pesto
Choose your favorite wild mushrooms for this hearty, flavor-packed summer dish.
Grilled Manouri Cheese with Caramelized Plums
Michael Psilakis likes to riff on saganaki—fried cheese with lemon. He uses manouri, a fresh, milky white cheese made from the whey that’s drained off during feta production. Like nearly all Greek cheeses, it’s produced from either sheep’s or goat’s milk.
Creamy Cucumber and Grilled Potato Salad
The potatoes in this chunky salad are boiled and then grilled so they're smoky on the outside and creamy within.
Grilled Portobello Mushrooms with Tarragon-Parsley Butter
Much more than the sum of its two parts, Sara Simpson’s side dish of beefy grilled portobellos with herbed butter is satisfying enough to be a vegetarian main course.
Grilled Tofu with Asparagus and Nori Vinaigrette
Lee Anne Wong plays with an array of Asian ingredients to create a wonderful marinade for extra-firm tofu or high-fiber tempeh (cakes made from fermented whole soy beans). Tempeh’s nutty flavor and grainy texture make it an acquired taste, but Wong loves it here.
Grilled Broccoli Rabe with Salsa Rossa
New York City chef Andrew Carmellini blanches and then grills broccoli rabe so it's tender and slightly charred. He serves it with a killer sun-dried tomato and roasted red pepper sauce that gets an appealing kick from pickled hot peppers.
Grilled Pizza with Greens and Eggs
This delicious grilled pizza is topped with fresh ricotta, runny eggs and spigarello, a leafy green that tastes a lot like broccoli. It’s available at farmers’ markets and some greengrocers, but Tuscan kale is a fine substitute.
Grilled-Vegetable Pasta with Cumin
If you're a fan of grilled vegetables, here's a fine way to turn them into a meal. We've selected a combination of eggplant, zucchini, and red bell pepper, but you can replace any of them with another vegetable, such as onions, tomatoes, or mushrooms.
Freekeh with Grilled Tofu and Miso-Lime Dressing
Freekeh—roasted and cracked green wheat—is delicious, healthy and fast to cook. Cookbook author Kristin Donnelly tosses it with a bright and flavorful Asian dressing, adding plenty of cucumbers for crunch.
Grilled Hen-of-the-Woods Mushrooms with Sesame
"Hen-of-the-woods are often shredded and sautéed, but when you cook them whole, they become crispy outside and meaty and moist inside," says Jean-Georges Vongerichten of his preferred method of preparing the coral-like mushroom. "I'm a purist when it comes to beautiful ingredients, so serving the mushrooms in big clusters keeps them the way they grow in the woods."
Grilled Corn with Cotija and Quicos
Traci des Jardins' version of Elote comes with extra crunch thanks to a helping of quicos, or corn nuts.
Grilled Eggplant with Summer Marinara
An excellent way to make use of the abundance of summer vegetables, this combines grilled eggplant with a silky tomato sauce.