15 Grilling Ideas for Labor Day that Aren’t Meat


In need of vegetarian-friendly grilling ideas? Look no further.

Labor Day is just around the corner and you know what that means: last chance in summer to rev up the barbecue. But that doesn’t mean you’re forced to eat burgers with bacon on them. While burgers and hotdogs might be the go-to barbecue food, there is so much more that can be grilled that if you throw meat on the barbecue you might as well just slap a “I am a chef with no creativity” apron on.

Here are 15 different grilling ideas for all you vegetable lovers out there.

1. Eggplant

Slice it the right way, and grilled eggplant is an excellent alternative to your classic burger, or serve eggplant slices in a salad.

2. Artichoke

To get a good tasting grilled artichoke, you actually want to steam the artichoke beforehand.

3. Asparagus

You can grill asparagus a lot of ways, but I like to marinate them in some soy sauce and garlic beforehand. Olive oil and lemon also does wonders.

4. Corn

Grilled corn can be eaten on its own, but is also tasty in a salad.

5. Portobello Mushrooms

Grill portobellos on their own, or stuff them for a delicious twist.

6. Polenta

Make up a batch of polenta before it’s barbecue time, then cut out squares or rounds and grill away.

7. Cauliflower

Cut the right way and flavored with a few spices, you can almost call grilled cauliflower a vegetarian steak.

8. Romaine

Grill a head of romaine lettuce and top it off with a citrusy dressing or a yogurt sauce.

9. Haloumi

If you haven’t embraced the amazingness of haloumi yet, it’s time you started. The salty cheese grills up without melting all over the place, and is the perfect addition to a plate of grilled vegetables.

10. Radicchio

While radicchio has a reputation for being bitter, some time on the grill lets it chill out a bit and adds some smoky flavors.

11. Onions

It’s hard to turn down the sweet flavor that comes from grilling onions, completely transforming them from their usual strong flavor.


12. Zucchini

Consider salting and draining your zucchini beforehand, then douse it in some olive oil before throwing on the grill.

13. Tofu

Yes, grill that tofu up (douse it in sriracha if you like) and then use it to make tacos.

14. Cabbage

Cut the cabbage into wedges, and then you get can make a unique twist on the wedge salad.


15. Pizza

You haven’t been cooking your pizzas in the barbecue? Now’s the time to start. Grilled pizza is definitely a good way to celebrate the end of summer. Now all you need to do is choose some good toppings. Caramelized onions and fennel perhaps?

Related on EcoSalon

Grilled Eggplant Salad Recipe

Barbecue Dessert Recipe: Sweet and Simple Plantains

Grilled Ginger Apricots

Image: Sharat Ganapti, Didriks, arvind grover

Anna Brones

Anna Brones is a food + travel writer with a love for coffee and bikes. She is the author of The Culinary Cyclist and Fika: The Art of the Swedish Coffee Break. Catch her weekly column, Foodie Underground.