This post was created in partnership with The RoomPlace. All opinions are our own.
With summer produce at its absolute peak, we’re firing up our grill more than ever. The dark char of a hot grill is the perfect treatment for veggies of all kinds, not just brats and burgers. And for summer entertaining, there’s not much better than the sultry smell of a grill, a colorful meal al fresco, and a cold glass of brew or rosé. (That’s not hyperbole!) Since we can’t transport you to our actual deck, here’s a sort of virtual summer cookout. We’ve got a menu of vegetarian grill recipes, drink recommendations, and some prep tips. The RoomPlace, a furniture store, was kind enough to sponsor our grilling extravaganza and send us a few indoor and outdoor pieces for our event!
First off, the grilling prep: we set up a grilling station indoors. This was the area for all grilled veggie skewers, including skewer soaking, vegetable and herb chopping, and olive oil drizzling. Why set up an indoor grilling station? Using a designated area keeps everything related to grilling on the prep station, so the mess didn’t creep into the rest of the kitchen (as it always does). This is especially helpful if you’re making other items to go with the grilled portion that use the main portion of your kitchen—and keeps things tidier for when guests arrive.
For our grilling station, we used this Brisbane Apartment Cart. It’s a heavy duty cart with lots of storage. We especially recommend it for kitchens with limited counter space, like the galley kitchen in our first home.
We did most of our grilling prep before our guests arrived, including threading our veggie skewers, making the pesto quinoa, and getting together appetizers and drinks. And we fired up the grill, which takes a bit of time since we have a charcoal grill. The flavor on this grill is incredible, but it does take about 20 minutes to heat using a chimney starter.
Once the prep was done, we moved the party outside. I love hanging out with drinks and appetizers while we smell the meal sizzling on the grill. For drinks, a few recommendations: a chilled bottle of rosé, craft beer, cucumber herb-infused water, or lemon mint slush.
(This Ari Catalan bench is a smart update to our patio furniture, which was in dire need of an overhaul!)
For the main dish, this grilled veggie skewers recipe is one of our new favorite vegetarian grill recipes. It’s the first time we’ve had success with halloumi, a salty grillable Greek cheese that’s a savory balance to the colorful vegetables. Halloumi can be tough to find at some groceries, but we found a few stores near us that carry it. We’ve tried grilling large slabs of it in the past, only to have it stick to and melt all over the grill! The halloumi skewering method worked well for us. If you try it, make sure to cut it into large pieces and take care when threading it on the skewers, as it can crumble. The halloumi adds a good amount of protein, making it a filling vegetarian main dish. For another filling element, we’ve served the veggie skewers over pesto quinoa. It’s a quick and easy side dish, and the bright green bed of grains looks beautiful for serving. For a vegan option, you could substitute baby bella (cremini) mushrooms; just make sure to load up on the quinoa to keep it filling.
Summer Grilling Menu
A few summer sides round out this summer grilling menu! A great way to pull off a full menu is to ask guests to each make a recipe. Here’s the full menu (vegetarian, gluten-free, vegan with the subs listed):
Thanks again to The RoomPlace for the summer cookout! You can find stores in Indiana and Illinois, and order online furniture to deliver to these states.
*For vegan, use coconut cream.
Looking for vegetarian grill recipes?
For us, summer grilling is all about vegetarian grill recipes! It’s easy to think of veggie burgers, but often times their texture is not designed to hold up on a grill. Aside from our Greek grilled veggie skewers, here are a few of our favorite vegetarian grill recipes:
- Grilled Vegetable Fajitas
- Quinoa Stuffed Grilled Zucchini
- Grilled Eggplant with Herbed Quinoa and Cherry Tomatoes
Looking for healthy dinner ideas?
Summer makes healthy dinner ideas a breeze. A few of our top healthy dinner ideas for summer:
Did you make this recipe?
If you make these Greek grilled veggie skewers, we’d love to hear how they turned out. Leave a comment below or share a picture on Instagram and mention @acouplecooks.
This recipe is…
Vegetarian and gluten-free. For vegan or plant-based, substitute baby bella mushrooms, and load on the quinoa to keep it filling.
- 1 orange bell pepper
- 1 red onion
- 1 medium yellow summer squash
- 1 zucchini
- 8 ounces cherry tomatoes
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ teaspoon red pepper flakes
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- Fresh ground black pepper
- 8 ounce package halloumi cheese*
- 1 lemon, cut into wedges
- 10 skewers
- Soak the skewers for 1 hour.
- Heat a grill to medium low heat.
- Start the pesto quinoa (below).
- Chop the bell pepper, onion, summer squash, and zucchini into bite-sized pieces and place them in a large bowl with the cherry tomatoes. Chop the mint; save out a pinch for the halloumi (below). In a bowl, toss the vegetables with the mint, 1½ tablespoons olive oil, red pepper flakes, kosher salt, and several grinds of black pepper.
- Remove the halloumi from package and drain any excess water, then cut it into 20 cubes (keep them as large as possible). Place the halloumi in a smaller bowl and gently mix with the remaining olive oil, a pinch of red pepper flakes, and the remaining mint.
- Gently thread the halloumi and vegetables on skewers, taking care as the halloumi can break easily.
- Place the skewers on the grill and cook, turning occasionally, until tender and charred, about 15 minutes. Remove from the grill and squeeze with juice from a few lemon wedges.
- When ready to serve, place pesto quinoa on a plate and skewers over the top. Serve with additional lemon wedges.
- 1½ cups quinoa
- 3 cups water
- ¼ to ⅓ cup prepared pesto (or make your own)
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- Place quinoa in a saucepan with water. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Cover the pot and simmer where the water is just bubbling for about 17 to 20 minutes, until the water has been completely absorbed. (Check by pulling back the quinoa with a fork to see if water remains.)
- Turn off the heat and let sit with the lid on to steam for 5 minutes, then fluff the quinoa with a fork. Stir in the pesto and kosher salt, to taste.