It’s that season again! Time to fire up the BBQs and pack up a few picnics and feast outdoors. There’s no reason, you can’t have a delicious vegetarian or vegan BBQ. There is definitely more to a meatless BBQ than veggie burgers! Not that veggie burgers are a bad thing, but honestly, there is so much more.
There are a lot of great reasons to consider at least reducing the amount of meat we ingest — both for our own health and the health of our environment. The Meatless Monday folks have a great ‘Why Meatless’ page listing some of the health and environmental reasons everyone should reduce their meat consumption, like;
“On average, about 40 calories of fossil fuel energy go into every calorie of feed lot beef in the U.S. Compare this to the 2.2 calories of fossil fuel energy needed to produce one calorie of plant-based protein. Moderating meat consumption is a great way to cut fossil fuel demand.”
I’m not suggesting that everyone go vegan or even vegetarian, but I am suggesting that everyone who is a carnivore consider the impact of the meat they eat and think about creative and yummy ways to eat less meat and more delicious plant-based protein.
Here are a few of my favorite meatless BBQ recipes for picnics and BBQs that may be good for your 4th of July celebration, or any summer foodie event (even if it is just dinner at home with the family!).
There are about a million ways to make yummy, delicious, local, seasonal, organic, healthy, festive salads, but here are a couple of my favorite recipes:
- 1. Curried Tempeh Salad
- 2. & 3. 2 Vegan Salad Meals (Exotic Thai Salad & Healthy Salad w/ Cashew Yogurt)
- 4. Healthy Crunchy Salad Slaw Thing
- 5. GD Meg’s Yummy Curry Vinaigrette
Grilled Veggies, Yum!
There are more ways to grill vegetables than stupid metaphors I could come up with . . . But, if you find your favorite seasonal, local, organic vegetables and grill them up, you can make this DELICIOUS and easy (6.) grilled veggie tostada w/ quick mole like I did for my Cinco de Mayo brunch.
7. Make Green Diva Meg’s Lazy Sunday Grilled Eggplant Sandwiches
1 eggplant – sliced into 1/2″ thick slices
1/2 cup GD Meg’s Balsamic Marinade*
Roasted peppers – sliced into strips
1/4 cup shaved Parmesan cheese
4 of your favorite rolls
almost 1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar
2 Tbls olive oil
2 cloves garlic – crushed
sweetener of your choice (I use 2 Tbls honey usually)
Slice up the eggplant and soak it in the marinade for a few minutes. Then grill it. While grilling, slice up the roasted peppers. Then cut rolls in half and grill to toast slightly. After rolls are toasted, baste them with the remaining marinade and then pile on the goodies. We usually have other options like sun dried tomatoes or fresh basil or other goodies that may be hanging around that day to pile on too.
Meatless Grilling Tips – the Foodie Journal did a great post on tips for meatless grilling, which is worth perusing before grill time, and they offer a delicious looking recipe for (8.) Dijon Grilled Asparagus and Onions.
I’m not even allowed to show up at certain summer events unless I bring my special berry crumble. It is so easy and ridiculously delicious. Here’s the
9. Green Diva Meg’s Easy Berry Crumble
2 sticks butter – softened
2 cups quick cooking oats
2 cups sugar
2 cups flour
4 cups (approximately) of various berries – washed and cut as needed. (depending on what is in season and available locally, my favorites are blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries and sometimes I throw in a pear or two)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 9 x 13 baking pan. Mix butter, oats, sugar, and flour together. I usually get in there with my hands. Line the bottom of the pan generously with about half of the mixture. Pour the fruit on top of the crumble lining and spread evenly, leaving enough room to put the rest of the crumble on top. Bake for about 45 minutes, until top is golden brown and fruit is bubbling.
10. Flowers Quench the Thirst . . .
But, for those who may have lavender in the gardens already, here is a REALLY special and excessively yummy recipe for lavender lemonade. I did it a few years ago, and now I grow extra lavender just to make more of this throughout the summer!
eat. blog. be merry!
BBQ family image via shutterstock