Healthy Eating

Grilling Green

At your next BBQ, skip the meat and use fresh vegetables instead.

Grilling Green
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Grilling Tips

  • Make sure your grill is adequately hot: When you can hold your hand about two inches above the grill grate and keep it there for only two to three seconds, your grill is ready.
  • Work with small batches of food when cooking with a grill rack (about $15; available wherever grilling utensils are sold) so the heat circulates around the vegetables, allowing them to grill rather than steam.
  • Stay with your vegetables as they are grilling. They should be nicely browned, not blackened.
  • Keep in mind that cooking times in grilling recipes are only guidelines and will vary depending on the weather, the distance between the food and the fuel source, and the model of your grill. Ripe vegetables will cook faster than underripe vegetables, and vegetables high in sugar (such as carrots, beets, and sweet potatoes) will char quickly, so use your judgment to decide when a vegetable is done.
  • Coat vegetables with extravirgin olive oil, a marinade, or an oil-based salad dressing before grilling. Oil can be flavored with herbs, garlic, and salt and pepper.
  • Flavor your vegetables with fresh herbs-many spices become bitter when grilled.
  • Use firm (or extra-firm) tofu, and keep it from sticking to the grill by drying it in a clean cloth or paper towels and squeezing out excess moisture. Then brush it with an oil-based mixture and grill on a vegetable-grilling rack. The flat surface will enable you to force a thin metal spatula under the tofu to turn it. Grill until a good crust has formed before attempting to flip it.
  • Grill fruit over medium to low heat to avoid charring. Make sure your grill is scrupulously clean to avoid imparting other flavors to delicate fruit