What Your Vegetarian Friends Really Want to Eat at a Backyard Barbecue

Somehow it has become the norm to have a few portobello mushroom burgers on hand at a backyard barbecue to appease your veggie-loving friends. If it's not portobello burgers, then it's frozen veggie burger patties that were a last minute thought to cook when you realized that you needed some vegetarian grilling recipes.

While that's all fine and dandy, some vegetarians despise mushrooms, or have had way too many portobello burgers. And to be honest, there are some mind-blowing homemade veggie burger recipes out there that make it hard to ever eat frozen again.

If you're throwing a backyard barbecue this summer, go the extra mile and whip up one of these insanely scrumptious vegetarian recipes. It's what your veggie friends really want, and some of your meat eating friends too.

1. Sunflower Seed Veggie Burgers with Grilled Halloumi + Curried Tahini Sauce

Half Baked Harvest

We could talk for days about veggie burger recipes that are way better than store bought and give beef patties a run for their money. One of those mouthwatering burgers is this Sunflower Seed Veggie Burger, which pairs perfectly with an earthy potato salad or grilled summer squash.

Local flavors shine in this recipe that uses cannellini beans instead of the typical black beans. Talk about comfort food. While it sounds hippie in name, this burger is over the top in flavor. And if that's what it means to eat like a hippie, then we'll gladly be one any day.

2. Grilled Zucchini Gyros with Sun-Dried Tomato Tzatziki

Half Baked Harvest

This recipe is a game changer. No-meat gyros would be blasphemous, that is, until you took on bite of this vegetarian Grilled Zucchini Gyro with Sun-Dried Tomato Tzatziki. And that sauce? It's similar to a romesco sauce, but brighter and tangier. Basically you'll want to put it on everything from grilled cabbage wedges to zucchini salad.

While the recipe may be a bit elaborate, if you're looking to impress your vegetarian guests, toss your zucchini and mushrooms on the grill, and get cookin'.

3. Grilled Eggplants with Za'atar

Dishing Up the Dirt

Vegetarians, not too mention eggplant lovers, will rejoice at the sight of this Grilled Eggplant with Za'atar recipe.

If you want to get fancy, a touch of goat cheese on each eggplant as it comes off the grill would be absolutely divine, along with a touch of black pepper.

4. Grilled Asparagus with Marinated Roasted Red Peppers, Feta, and Kalamata Olives

Closet Cooking

Ah, asparagus. The one summertime green veggie that is impossible to pass up - especially when grilled. Vegetarian or not, this Grilled Asparagus with Marinated Roasted Red Peppers, Feta, and Kalamata Olives will be a barbecue hit.

On second thought, make extra because your meat-eating friends may not realize it wasn't meant for them.

5. Balsamic Grilled Veggies

Jessica in the Kitchen

You simply can't go wrong with a staple like Balsamic Grilled Veggies in your recipe box. While chicken recipes might be classic grilling staples, you haven't lived until you've had cherry tomatoes grilled on a skewer.

Celebrating the flavors of summer, toss some summer balsamic-marinated squash, red onion, tomatoes, eggplants, and mushrooms on the grill for a foolproof recipe that's vegan and vegetarian friendly.

6. Rainbow Veggie Kabobs

Damn Delicious

Rainbow Vegetable Kabobs are a vibrant, colorful crowd-pleaser that vegans, vegetarians, meat eaters, gluten-free, and dairy-free individuals can all enjoy. Think vegetarian grilling recipes don't enjoy grill marks? Think again.

Simply skewer some fresh seasonal veggies, brush with an easy marinade, and then toss on the grill for a delicious finger-food meal on a stick.

7. Watermelon Steaks

The Ravenous Couple

Sometimes there are vegetarian recipes that actually taste like they are supposed to. This grilled fruit recipe is one of them. These Watermelon Steaks have the texture and taste that can be compared to an ahi tuna steak. The trick? It all has to do with the roasting process.

If you have some vegetarian friends, or ahi tuna fans, hanging out at your next barbecue, bust out this recipe and see if they can tell it's really watermelon.

8. Grilled Flatbread Pizza with Peaches and Arugula Pesto


Grilled Pizza? Now that's a no-brainer. If you're looking for a veggie friendly recipe, then opt for this Grilled Flatbread Pizza with Peaches and Arugula Pesto.

The homemade arugula pesto along with ripe peaches that are in season is a must for any backyard barbecue. Save some sweet basil for a fresh topping outside of the pesto, you won't regret it.

9. Grilled Romaine Salad with Corn and Avocado

Floating Kitchen

Newsflash, you can grill your sweet corn salad and it's amazing! Upping your salad game, toss a halved head of romaine lettuce on the grill then add some fresh corn kernels and diced avocado with a miso-based dressing.

Not into miso? Swap in a lemon-herb vinaigrette for a summery kick. You'll never look at salad the same again. Get the recipe here.

10. Grilled Corn, Tomato, and Avocado Salad with Chimichurri

How Sweet It Is

Think flank steak is good in chimichurri sauce? Try it with a heaping of freshly grilled veggies - now we're talking. This Grilled Corn, Tomato, and Avocado Salad with Chimichurri will have your vegetarian friends leaping for joy.

Have a couple vegans in the bunch and looking for vegan grilling options? Leave the goat cheese on the side and please both with one fantastic summer dish.

11. Grilled Mexican Street Corn

Cooking Classy

No barbecue is complete without grilled corn on the cob. While you could simply rub it in olive oil or slather on the butter, turn it into a full-on meal with this Grilled Mexican Street Corn recipes.

Some mayo here, a bit of Cojita cheese there, a sprinkle of ancho chile powder, and a hint of freshly squeezed lime just elevated the status of your grilled corn.

12. Grilled Thai Veggie Tacos

Cookin Canuck

How do you make veggie tacos that are the envy of meat eaters? You grill bell peppers, onion, yellow squash, and zucchini, then stuff it inside a fresh corn tortilla with creamy avocado and a sweet, spicy peanut sauce.

If you want to up the ante on these tacos, add grilled potato or grilled sweet potatoes for a texture that will surprise you with its meatless-ness. Get the recipe here.

13. Grilled Vegetable Avocado Quesadillas

The Roasted Root

What can make a quesadilla better for home cooking? The grill! These Grilled Vegetable Avocado Quesadillas may be cheese-less, but they're certainly not lacking in flavor.

Packed full of avocado goodness, this recipe is a simple one to toss on the grill that will have everyone reaching for a piece. Want an extra kick? Try a spicy lime dressing or chili sauce for dipping.

14. Vegan Mediterranean Grilled Avocado Stuffed with Chickpeas and Tahini

Food Faith Fitness

It's not hard to make a meal out of an avocado, especially when it's stuffed with grilled chickpeas, crisp cucumbers, and creamy tahini. Oh, did we also mention it's vegan?

Indulge with this recipe here.

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