Ahh, summer! It’s time for long, leisurely nights in the back yard, on the deck and around the campfire. While burgers, hot dogs and steak are barbecue staples, you can up your grilling game this summer with these easy, healthy and tasty ideas.

The usual suspects for grilling on the barbecue include sweet peppers, onion and asparagus. Here are a few recommendations you may not have considered. Just brush with olive oil and get grilling.

Vegetables on the barbecue:

  • Grilled portobello mushroom caps make a great substitute for a burger. Top with your regular burger toppings or try with some goat cheese, grilled onion and grilled red pepper
  • Grill thick slices of zucchini. Season them lightly with salt, pepper or some curry or cumin. They’re especially delicious with a dollop of hummus
  • Kale is one of those leafy greens that people either love or hate. Even the haters may change their tune once they’ve tasted crispy Tuscan kale on the grill 
  • Fresh tomatoes are tasty on their own but try slicing them in half and grilling until grill marks appear. Serve them on their own or use them in a caprese salad
  • Grilled eggplant is a delicious base for homemade baba ganoush, served warm or cold
  • Grilled Caesar Salad. Grilling romaine is easy and adds a whole new dimension to a Caesar salad. The grilled leaves can get a little soft – you may want to try using half grilled romaine and half fresh. Grilling brings out a sweetness in the romaine that is easily overlooked when fresh
  • Cauliflower can be tossed on the barbecue! Here’s an easy grilled spiced cauliflower recipe
  • Corn on the cob. Once that Taber corn comes in season, you’ll want to try these four ways to make grilled corn

Fruit on the barbecue:

Grilled fruit? It may sound unusual but once you’ve tried it, you won’t look back!

  • Pineapple. Throw some pineapple on the grill for an easy dessert or use it to whip up a tasty pineapple salsa as a spectacular side dish for grilled fish. Check out these 14 recipe ideas for inspiration
  • Peaches. A little time on the grill really enhances the natural sweetness of fresh peaches. Eat them on their own or make a grilled peach salad with arugula and feta
  • Watermelon. Grill a big slice of watermelon and you’re in for a tasty treat – and it makes a great side dish for steak, chicken or fish, too. Try drizzling it with a little balsamic reduction or serving it with feta and mint for a salad.

Our team of medical, wellness and fitness professionals are available all summer long. To learn more about our services, talk to an INLIV advisor today.