Top 10 Memorial Day Grilling Recipes
General sweatiness and hair-frizzing aside, summer is easily my favorite season. It’s all sunshine, weddings, cocktails on the fire escape, and watching my roommate splash in the ocean like an overgrown toddler. I feel giddy just thinking about it, especially in light of the polar vortex craziness/misery that we’ve all been forced to endure over the past few months.
Margaritas and crop tops 4 lyfe.
I have all kinds of exciting warm weather recipes coming your way in the next few weeks, but for now, let’s tackle Memorial Day menu planning. Nothing says summer quite like grill marks on your food, so please dust off your grill/grill pan (or purchase one for God’s sake) and get ready to release your inner grill-master in T-7 days. In the spirit of thinking outside the “burgers and dogs” box this year, I’ve put together a list of ten foolproof grilling recipes to kick-off the season in style.
Happy almost summer, peeps. Lemme see your grillz.
10 Grilling Recipes to Make this Memorial Day:
1. Grilled Halibut Tacos with Peach Salsa. I’m aware that tacos aren’t traditional Memorial Day BBQ fare, but they should be because everyone knows that summer is a three-month fiesta. Throw some tequila-marinated halibut on the grill, serve it with corn tortillas and sweet and spicy peach salsa, and say hola to the summer season.
2. Sweet Potato and Black Bean Turkey Burgers with Sriracha-Lime Crema. Plain burgers are boring. Mix things up at this year’s Memorial Day bash with these nutrient and flavor-packed turkey patties. The original recipe calls for baking the burgers, but grilling them is an even better option, since it will add all kinds of badass smokiness into the mix without any added fat. You should probably double the crema to use as a fiery dipping sauce for everything from French fries to grilled vegetables.
3. Grilled Eggplant with Fresh Mozzarella, Tomatoes and Basil Vinaigrette. This is one of those rustic, yet fancy dishes that just screams summer. If you’re on the fence about eggplant, prepare to become a believer after one bite of this delicious madness. The grilled rounds have a gloriously creamy interior, and combined with fresh mozzarella, diced summer tomatoes and a pesto-like dressing, they make a heavenly appetizer, side, or light vegetarian meal. You might want to try serving this on grilled country bread à la bruschetta. Bruschetta rules.
4. Grilled Vegetable Quesadillas with Pesto and Goat Cheese. I like to throw these fancy ’dillas on the grill before dinner and serve them as a festive appetizer. Guaranteed crowd pleaser.
5. Spicy Pork Skewers. Gotta love a good meat stick, amiright?
6. Chipotle Turkey Burgers with Guacamole. I know, I know, two turkey burgers in one roundup. Whatever. I swear these are very different than the sweet potato and black bean version, but just as money. The burgers themselves are kicked up with chopped chipotles and garlic and then topped with turkey bacon and lots of fresh guacamole to create a little flavor partayyy in your mouth. I highly recommend lettuce wrapping these bad boys to keep that beach body in check. (Paleo dieters and glutards, rejoice!)
7. Grilled Sweet Potatoes with Cilantro-Lime Dressing. These are essentially giant, ridiculously flavorful sweet potato fries. On crack. Sweet and smoky with a lightly caramelized exterior, the potatoes soak up the citrus-y dressing and become otherworldly delights. Serve them hot or cold and prepare to be worshipped like the culinary wizard that you are. Accio compliments!
8. Grilled Halibut with Cherry Tomato and Corn Salsa. So fresh. So healthy. So hot right now.
9. Pork Chops with Grilled Pineapple Salsa. Pork chops are underrated. That’s about to change because these tender grilled chops smothered in a slightly sweet and smoky pineapple salsa are straight fire. Like, really, really, ridiculously dank. Plus, they’re high in protein and low and fat, which means you can pig out without porking up. Wonderland bodies for everyone!
10. Summer Salad with Avocado, Corn and Grilled Herb Shrimp. I saved the best for last, friends. Not to toot my own horn, but I really killed it with this salad. It’s light, it’s summer-y, and it’s basically a compliment magnet, so whether you serve it as a side dish or a main course, I strongly suggest working it into your Memorial Day menu. And the herb marinade for the shrimp doubles as the dressing, which makes prep work a breeze. Let’s all drink to that…
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