Grilling a Full Meal

Summer and grilling go together like peas and carrots.  Or just various colored carrots.

Your grill should not be pigeonholed to only prepare meats.  Really, you can make most anything on the grill if you know what you’re doing.  With the right pan, you can even boil pasta or saute vegetables.  Timing while grilling is the key, so be sure to have your timer handy.

If you want to keep your kitchen cool in the hot summer evenings, avoid the oven and grill entire meals on the grill.  Grab a drink and get started.  Here’s a sample menu to give you inspiration, and remember that the principles of grilling should always be rooted in simplicity.

grilled pork chops with chimichurri sauce
 Chimichurri Sauce:
  • 1 cup packed flat-leaf parsley leaves
  • 1/2 cup packed cilantro leaves
  • 2 tablespoons chopped white onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red chile pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

Combine all ingredients in a food processor with 1 tablespoon water. Process until blended; set aside.

Pork Chops:

  • 4 thick-cut (1 1/2-inch-thick) bone-in pork chops (14 to 16 ounces each)
  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper

Prepare a gas or charcoal grill for medium-heat cooking, leaving one area of the grill cool (this will be a place to transfer the chops if they flare up). Brush chops all over with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill, turning once or twice, until just cooked through, about 15 minutes. Watch the chops carefully, and move them to the cool area of the grill if they flare up or brown too quickly. Let rest 5 minutes; serve with the chimichurri on the side.


grilled garlic bread 

  • 1 loaf crusty bread
  • 2-3 garlic cloves, gently smashed
  • Olive oil
  • Sea salt
  • fresh cracked black pepper

Slice the bread into 3/4″ slices.  Rub slices of bread with garlic cloves. Gently oil or butter each side of the slices.Heat grill to medium high heat.  When hot, oil grates with a paper towel dipped in a bit of cooking oil, then grill each side until gently golden 2-3 minutes on each side. Season with sea salt and black pepper. Serve immediately or top with preferred topping and serve.

grilled vegetable salad

  • 1 small eggplant , cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 small red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 small yellow bell pepper, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 small zucchini, cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 2 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons salt and pepper

    Toss vegetables with oil in large bowl. Sprinkle with Seasoning; toss to coat well. Place vegetables in grill basket, grill rack or thread onto skewers. Grill over medium heat for 12 to 15 minutes or until vegetables are tender, turning occasionally.


Dessert is a piece of cake – literally.  Place store-bought glazed donuts on a medium-hot grill for 45 second or so per side.   This technique will make this simple treat feel decadent and more grown-up.  Add a dipping sauce to further sophisticate this dessert.

grilled donuts with strawberry-basil dipping sauce


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