This is one of my favorite recipes for summer grilling, adding a lot of color and vibrant flavor to any dinner. When you already have the grill fired up for a steak or some chicken, it is too easy to throw on some fresh veggies for this Balsamic Grilled Vegetables recipe. You can use any of your favorite vegetables. Some of our favorites are Zucchini, Bell Peppers, and Red Onion. They are generally easy to control on the grill. You might lose a few onion rings in the process, but I usually do not have too many casualties.
The process is quite easy. First, fire up the grill in the high heat range – around 500 F or more. Zucchini I usually slice lengthwise into long pieces that are easy to handle on the grill. The peppers I will slice into 4 pieces per pepper, also making it easy to handle. The onions you want to slice against the core direction, so you have nice tight bundles of onion rings.
I then put a light coating of olive oil on them to allow some seasoning to stick to the veggies. After coated, generously season all sides of the veggies with salt and fresh ground pepper.
We now need to make a balsamic vinaigrette – a mixture of balsamic vinegar and olive oil. For applications like this, I beef up the amount of balsamic in the mixture, using 50% olive oil and 50% balsamic vinegar. Because the vegetable are only going to come in contact with the mixture for a short time during grilling, I like to punch up the flavor with more balsamic than a traditional vinaigrette, which is 3 parts oil and 1 part vinegar.
Whisk the mixture together vigorously to bring the mixture together into an emulsion – the vinegar will no longer look like bubbles floating around in the olive oil. You are now ready to grill.
Place the onions on the grill first, as they will take the longest to grill. Apply your vinaigrette with a brush on the onions. Grill for 5 minutes and flip. Continue to grill the onions another 5 minutes before adding the others. Apply your vinaigrette every time you flip the vegetables. Place your remaining veggies perpendicular or at an angle against the lines of the grill grates. This will give you more surface contact and more charring on your vegetables. The more charring, the more flavor. The zucchini and peppers should only need 3 minutes a side. You want them to still have some body, not flopping around everywhere when you take them off the grill. Continue to mop the veggies with our balsamic vinaigrette as you turn, but you should not need to coat them as they come off the grill. You do not want the balsamic flavor to be over the top.
Take them off the grill, and you are ready to roll. If you give these a shot, leave me a comment on what you think of them. What are your favorite grilled vegetables?
Balsamic Grilled Vegetables
- 2 Bell Peppers
- 2 Zucchini Squash
- 2 Red Onions
- 6 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 4 Tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
- Freshly ground pepper
Heat the grill to 500 F or higher
Slice Zucchini lengthwise into 3/8" - 1/2" thick pieces
Slice onions against the direction of the core into 1/2" thick rings
Cut off the outside of the bell peppers into large pieces. Approximately 4-5 pieces per pepper
Lightly coat the veggies with 2 tablespoons of olive oil
Season all veggies with Salt & Pepper
Mix equal parts of olive oil and balsamic. Whisk together so the mixture is an emulsion - so you can no longer tell the difference between the oil & balsamic.
Place onions on the grill. Brush on balsamic. Turn after 5 mins and brush again. Grill for 5 more mins.
Place remaining vegetables on the grill. Brush with balsamic. Grill & flip all vegetables every 3 minutes until tender, but not floppy. Zucchini & peppers should only need one flip.