With zucchini, eggplant, peppers, and sweet onions, this Grilled Vegetable Plate is the best way to enjoy summer’s bounty. Eat it on its own for a light dinner or pair it with your favorite grilled protein.
Grilled vegetables are always a treat. Most of us frequently steam veggies, sauté them in a skillet, or roast them in the oven, but grilling is a rarer event. But when you do grill vegetables, you always think to yourself, “I should do this more often!” because nothing beats that smoky, charred flavor.
This Grilled Vegetable Plate is simple and versatile. I used what’s in season—summer vegetables like zucchini, eggplant, red bell peppers, poblanos, and sweet onions—plus mushrooms because they’re absolutely irresistible when cooked on the barbecue. They’re brushed with a good olive oil, then seasoned with salt, pepper, and Italian herbs. (You don’t need to add anything fancy when you’re working with summer vegetables picked at the peak of ripeness!)
After adding pesto and freshly grated Parmesan, this plate of grilled vegetables is truly worthy of a meal—albeit a light one, of course. Or, while you’re grilling the vegetables, you can throw some chicken or sausages on the grill to serve alongside the veggies. Either way, you have a delicious dinner waiting for you!
(Love summer grilling? Be sure to check out my Grilled Sausage Peppers and Onion Casserole and Blueberry Grilled Pork Tenderloin recipes too!)
Which Vegetables Are Suitable for Grilling?
Most summer vegetables take well to grilling, although tomatoes can be a bit tricky because of their soft flesh and high water content. Even winter squash and potatoes can be cooked on the grill, but both take much more time than summer vegetables.
What You’ll Need
Scroll down to the recipe card below this post for ingredient quantities and full instructions.
For the Salad:
- Zucchini – Although farmers markets abound with zucchini the size of baseball bats this time of year, it’s best to choose smaller fruit, as they have a better flavor and fewer large seeds.
- Eggplant – Try switching things up with a different eggplant variety than you usually buy. Long, thin Japanese eggplants have a sweeter flavor and more tender flesh.
- Cremini mushrooms
- Red bell pepper – Yellow and orange bell peppers can be used, too.
- Poblano pepper – Poblano peppers are milder than other hot peppers, but you could certainly use another bell pepper instead to keep this dish milder.
- Sweet yellow onion – Like Walla Walla or Vidalia.
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- Kosher salt
- Ground black pepper – Freshly ground is always best!
- Dried Italian seasoning mix
- Kosher salt
- Ground black pepper
- Parmesan cheese – Freshly grated will melt onto the hot vegetables, but a container of grated cheese will also work.
- Basil pesto – Either store-bought or homemade pesto.
How to Make a Grilled Vegetable Plate
Ready to fire up the barbecue and grill some veggies? Here’s what you’ll need to do.
Prepare. Quarter the zucchini and red bell pepper lengthwise, then slice the eggplant and onion into 3/4-inch rounds. Sprinkle the eggplant slices with salt and set them on a paper towel to drain.
Season the vegetables. Brush or drizzle the vegetables (other than the eggplant) with oil, then season with salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning. Brush the eggplant with oil.
Heat the grill. Oil the grill grates and heat your grill to medium-high, then turn the temperature down to medium.
Grill the vegetables. Arrange all the vegetables onto the grill and cook them for 7 to 8 minutes, or until they’re tender and lightly charred, flipping them about halfway through the cooking time.
Finish. Place the cooked vegetables onto a serving platter and serve with the grated Parmesan and pesto.
Tips for Success
This Grilled Vegetable Plate is simple, but these tips will help you make sure your veggies turn out perfect.
- Adjust the heat as needed. If your vegetables are not cooking quickly enough, add a little more heat. If they are starting to blacken, lower the temperature.
- Use a basket or skewers if needed. Most of the vegetables are large enough that they shouldn’t fall through the grill grates, but for the sake of convenience, you may want to place mushrooms and other smaller pieces in a grill basket or thread them onto skewers.
- Switch it up according to what’s available. Asparagus is wonderful on the grill, or if your farmers market has heirloom summer squashes, give those a try. Like I said earlier, this recipe is versatile!
You can make this Grilled Vegetable Plate part of a more filling meal by pairing it with Balsamic Roasted Pork Chops, Grilled Tri-Tip With Sicilian Herb Sauce, or Perfect Barbecue Chicken.
How to Store and Reheat Leftovers
Grilled vegetables will keep in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days, and they can be eaten cold or warm. To heat them up, pop them in a 350º oven for a few minutes, or warm them in a microwave.
You can also repurpose these leftovers! Layer them onto a sandwich, add them to a salad, or use them to top a pizza.
Can This Recipe Be Frozen?
You can enjoy a little taste of summer well into the fall by freezing your grilled vegetables. Place them in an airtight storage container or freezer bag and freeze for up to 3 months. Reheat the vegetables from frozen according to the instructions above, or let them thaw in the refrigerator first.
Grilled Vegetable Plate
- 2 Zucchini trimmed and quartered
- 1 Eggplant ends removed and cut into ¾” rounds
- 8 ounces Cremini Mushrooms or Beella cleaned
- 1 large Red pepper or 2 small trimmed and seeds removed, cut into quarters
- 1 Poblano Pepper trimmed and seeds removed, cut into quarters
- 1 large Sweet yellow Onion trimmed cleaned and cut into ¾” rounds
- Bunch of Scallions (optional)
- Extra Virgin Olive oil
- Kosher Salt
- Ground Black Pepper
- Dried Italian Seasoning Mix
- Kosher Salt
- Ground Black Pepper
- 4 ounces Parmesan cheese grated
- 1⁄3 cup Basil Pesto optional
- Prepare the vegetables by quartering the Zucchini and Red Pepper lengthwise
- Slice the eggplant and onion into ¾" rounds.
- Starting with Eggplants first, sprinkle each round with kosher salt and place the salted rounds on a plate lined with a paper towel. You are sweating out the moisture of your eggplant. Set aside.
- Working with the remaining vegetables, brush or drizzle with Extra Virgin olive oil, pinch of kosher salt, black pepper and Italian seasoning.
- Before grilling, remove eggplants from the paper towel plate and add Extra virgin olive oil drizzle to rounds.
- Oil your grill grates with olive oil and heat your grill to medium-high heat. Then turn the temperature down to medium.
- Place the vegetable pieces straight onto the grill and cook for 7-8 minutes or until the vegetables have become tender and have started to char flipping the pieces about halfway through the cook time.
- Onions will cook quickest, followed by Mushroom, then Eggplant, Zucchini, and the Peppers will be last.
- If your vegetables are not cooking add a little more heat. If they are starting to blacken, lower the temperature.
- When the veggies have cooked, arrange them onto a serving plate, serve with grated Parmesan cheese and Pesto to the side.