The secret to making vegan barbecuing work is to find a way to bring in the rich, fatty flavors that meat and cheeses bring to a traditional barbecue. You can approximate the flavor of ricotta cheese, for instance, by puréeing nutritional yeast and raw cashew together. Here are 10 vegan barbecue recipe ideas that you can try out.
1. Grilled vegan chicken
Health food stores sell a product called fake chicken. These products are made out of wheat gluten, soy or other meat substitutes. They even make them in the shape of traditional cuts of chicken. You brush each piece with a glaze made of agave nectar (in place of honey), lime juice, garlic, pepper, cornstarch and cilantro and throw it on the grill. The glaze can be so delicious that you may find yourself using it in other recipes.
2. Sriracha burger
Sriracha is a traditional vegan hot sauce from Thailand that turns nearly every dish that it’s added to, into a mouthwatering treat. For a Sriracha burger, you’ll need to make your patties out of a mixture of cooked black beans, vegan mayonnaise, cumin, garlic, olive oil, red onion, button mushrooms, cilantro, pepper and soy sauce. To this mixture, you add the magic ingredient, Sriracha. The taste that you get is a convincing approximation of what you’re used to with traditional beef patties.
3. Vegan pigs in blankets
Start out with a package of Pillsbury Crescents and other vegan croissants. For the “pig” to put into this blanket, you’ll need to work with vegan cheese shreds, vegan bacon and veggie dogs. When these come out of the oven, chances are, you won’t find yourself missing bacon.
4. Spiced and grilled corn
The corn in this recipe, together with its delicious seasoning, can make your barbecue come alive. For the seasoning, you’ll need a mixture of garlic, chives, parsley, basil, salt and pepper, mixed in softened margarine. When you brush this dressing on your grilled corn, you’ll probably see everyone lining up for a taste.
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5. Cauliflower wings
Cauliflower is a great substitute for the chicken that makes Buffalo wings a universal favorite. While cauliflower has a convincing texture, it’s the sauce that you coat it in that really makes it believable as chicken. Coat each piece of cauliflower in a mixture of soy milk, soy flour, garlic and olive oil and set it to bake at 400°F. Not only do cauliflower wings taste impressively close to Buffalo wings, the appearance can be convincing, too.
6. Red peppers on the grill
Roasting red bell peppers on a barbecue grill and serving them on crisp, crusty bread with a seasoning of basil, pepper, salt and olive oil can be one of the most festive food experiences you have this summer. You do need to be sure to grill your red peppers on high heat, though. It’s the searing that brings out the flavor.
7. Grilled ratatouille salad
Ratatouille niçoise is a traditional stewed vegetable dish from the south of France. The great part is that this is an original vegan dish – you don’t need to make any substitutions. It’s a simple recipe, too. You simply need to lightly cook chopped-up eggplants, onions, zucchini, bell pepper, tomatoes, black olives, basil and parsley in the traditional method.
8. Portabella mushroom burgers
Planning something around Portabella mushrooms is one of the easiest ways of throwing a convincing vegan barbecue. For Portabella mushroom burgers, you simply need to coat the mushroom caps in marinade and pop them on the grill. You can even buy the marinade ready-made – teriyaki works well. Once you have your mushroom caps grilled, you put them between toasted buns and serve.
9. Grilled pineapple
Slices of pineapple brushed with a mixture of agave nectar, cinnamon and lemon juice and grilled rare, can taste wonderful. The sweet aroma can fill a barbecue area, too.
10. Creamy potato salad with dill
You make creamy potato salad with boiled potatoes cut into cubes and mix them with seasoning. The seasoning uses sea salt, black pepper, celery, vegan mayonnaise, onion, vinegar, lemon juice and Dijon mustard.
It can be hard to give up the food that you’ve grown up on. The right recipes, though, can often make the switch seem like not much of a sacrifice, at all. Do you have any other vegan BBQ recipes to share with us?