4 Tips for Effortless Meatless Grilling
Move over meat – the grill isn’t just for grilling meats; it’s an excellent tool for adding delicious smokiness to meat-free meals, too! Use these tips and tricks to elevate your favorite meatless options, from fruits and veggies to meat alternatives and more.
1. Clean the Grill
If there are meat-eaters in your home, there are likely remnants of meat on your grill. Give your grill a good wipe down before cooking meatless meals to reassure vegetarians that they won’t be eating any meat and to ensure your veg-friendly meals don’t taste like beef. Cleaning hot grates also prevents sticking – bonus!
2. Oil Your Grates
Veggie burgers and meat alternatives don’t behave on the grill the same way traditional burgers do. Since veg options don’t have as much natural moisture, it’s essential to add it in. Make sure the grill is well-oiled before you start grilling, and if you’re cooking frozen veggie burgers, brush the frozen patties with oil as well, to prevent sticking.
3. Skewer Fruits & Vegetables
Some of our favorite fruits and vegetables are small-sized but big on flavor, and we don’t want them to get lost in the grates. Use skewers to grill smaller produce items, and be sure to soak the skewers before grilling to prevent flare-ups. Stack your skewers with fresh, bright produce and grill for about 10 to 15 minutes or until they’re as smoky and charred as your palate desires.
Don’t forget the veggies! Portobello mushrooms are meat-like and make a delicious, versatile, veg-friendly grilling option. Twist out the stems (discard or save for another use), use a damp cloth to clean the mushrooms, then grill the portobellos for three to four minutes on each side. Zucchini, eggplant, potatoes, cabbage and onion are also excellent for grilling; just be sure to cut them into uniform pieces so they cook evenly.
4. Take Tofu to the Grill
Paired with a delicious marinade, tofu is a great grilling go-to. Extra-firm tofu is the variety best suited for the grill. Before grilling (or cooking tofu using any other method), press it for about 15 minutes to release the excess water. Keep the pieces relatively big, soak them in your favorite marinade, then use a flat spatula to handle tofu on the grill. Grill tofu for eight to ten minutes on each side. Unlike meat, tofu can’t be undercooked – it’s ready when the outside is golden and crisped. Add extra marinade over the top for additional flavor, and serve on its own, between buns, in tacos or on salads!