THIS POST IS SPONSORED BY
Zwilling, who I’m thrilled to partner with in celebration of their 290th Birthday this month! All thoughts & opinions are my own.
Grilled Veggie Salad, a summer superstar!
Most of my summertime hobbies involve seeking out the best seasonal goodies that I can get my hands on. I love perusing local farmer’s markets & unpacking my CSA basket every couple of weeks. This year I’m even trying my hand at a humble little herb & veggie garden on our deck (wish me luck!).
With this bounty of amazing fresh produce, cooking during the warm months always slows to a relaxed & low-maintenance pace at my house. Produce at the peak of its season is so beautiful on its own that you don’t need to do much to it to make really delicious meals.
That’s exactly what’s at the heart of this Chopped Grilled Vegetable Salad. The veggies are totally front & center – lightly seasoned, grilled to perfection, & finished with a light + bright vinaigrette. It’s a low-maintenance meal with very little prep & clean up involved (the grill does all the work!) & it’s the kind of thing you can whip up using whatever you happen to have on hand (ICYMI, you can grill pretty much every veggie!). I could seriously make it every single day from now ’til September!
A 290th Birthday Celebration!
This pursuit of quality doesn’t stop at the food I buy, but also the tools I use to prepare it. That’s where Zwilling is forever my go-to. Zwilling’s craftsmanship is committed to excellence, their product design is always a marriage of beauty & functionality, & their products are truly high-quality pieces made to last a lifetime.
If you’ve been around PWWB for a while, you know that I’m completely obsessed with my Staub Cocotte collection (my fave cookware!). This year, I’ve had a lot of fun working with new-to-me Zwilling products, like the amazing knives & blender used in this chopped veggie salad recipe.
This month, Zwilling celebrates their 290th Birthday, & to celebrate & share in the fun, we’ve got a seriously amazing giveaway in store for you – the chance to win one of 290 Zwilling Pro chef knives! Enter the giveaway here!
Summer on a plate! ♡ Read on to learn more about this Grilled Vegetable Salad, or jump straight to the recipe & get grilling!
How to Grill Vegetables – An Overview.
The star of this grilled veggie salad show is, of course, the grilled vegetables! Grilled vegetables are my favorite thing to both make & eat during the summer months. The grill brings out the natural sweetness of veggies at the peak of their season, adding rich & smoky char that’s pretty hard to beat!
Full Recipe Directions with step-by-step photos provided in the Recipe Card, below.
Which vegetables are best for grilling? ⇢ When I make this grilled vegetable salad, I like to use bell pepper, zucchini, onion, & asparagus. Mushrooms also add nice meaty texture & summer tomatoes add acidity & sweetness. You can grill just about any vegetable, so feel free to use whatever you love most or happen to have on hand already – I have some suggested variations listed below!
Once the grilled vegetables are cool enough to handle, simply use your favorite chef’s knife to chop them into bite-sized pieces – pretty simple!
Other Grilled Vegetable Tips:
- Grilled vegetable prep ⇢ Slice the vegetables into flat pieces that sit nicely atop the grill. This both maximizes the surface area that comes into contact with the grill grates & prevents them from falling through the grates as you grill.
- For large vegetables like bell peppers & zucchini, flat planks are great!
- For small vegetables, like tomatoes & mushrooms, threading them on to skewers is the best bet.
- Grilled vegetable seasoning ⇢ Since these grilled veggies end up in a salad with a flavor-forward vinaigrette, season them very simply. Brush them with a little bit of avocado oil (or another neutral oil with a high smoke point) & sprinkle with S&P. Easy!
- Grill temperature & grill times ⇢ Medium-high heat, about 450-500 degrees F, is ideal for all of the veggies used in this grilled vegetable salad. Grill times vary veggie to veggie, so start by grilling the hearty veggies first (e.g. onions, bell pepper) & finish with the most delicate veggies (e.g. tomatoes, asparagus).
- Learn all about How to Grill Vegetables!
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Lemon Basil Vinaigrette – Tangy + Bright Summer Flavor!
Because grilled veggies take on such a rich, smoky flavor from the grill, I like pairing them with a bright & light Lemon Basil Vinaigrette made with loads of basil, lemon, garlic, & a little champagne vinegar for brightness. It’s perfect if you have an overflowing summer herb garden & it comes together in 10 minutes or less thanks to a high-speed blender!
Full Recipe Directions with step-by-step photos provided in the Recipe Card, below.
How to make lemon basil vinaigrette ⇢ Simple! Add basil, lemon zest & juice, shallot, garlic, champagne vinegar & extra virgin olive oil to a blender, blending until smooth & creamy. While drinks & smoothies may be the first things that come to mind when you see it, I love using Zwilling’s Enfinigy Personal Blender to blend dressings & sauces! It’s compact yet powerful, & it comes with a pourable storage lid that eliminates any extra dishes. Seriously so slick!
Storage ⇢ This lemon basil vinaigrette stores beautifully! Prep it up to 1 week in advance & store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator until ready for use. It also freezes really well! Check the Recipe Notes, below, for more storage & freezing guidance.
Serving Your Chopped Veggie Salad + a couple other tips…
Once the grilled veggies are chopped & the lemon basil vinaigrette is prepped, all that’s left is tossing together your chopped veggie salad! Add the chopped grilled veggies to a large bowl with your favorite spring mix, drizzle the vinaigrette over top, & toss to combine. Pretty simple! I like finishing this grilled vegetable salad off with some crumbled goat cheese, though you can omit to keep your salad completely dairy-free/vegan.
Chopped veggie salad is the perfect easy side dish for any of your favorite warm weather dinners! Try pairing it with my go-to grilled lemon chicken for an amazing light & easy meal. It’s a fab side dish for turkey burgers & grilled sausage.
Because it’s great served warm or at room temperature, this grilled vegetable salad is also the perfect app or dish to share for summer potlucks & backyard BBQs. Pair with some grilled bread & it’s a salad that totally steals the show!
Storage & Meal Prep Tips
While this grilled veggie salad is best served immediately, the lemon basil vinaigrette can be prepped up to 1 week in advance. You can also prep the vegetables for grilling up to 5 days in advance – check out the Recipe Notes, below, for more storage & meal prep guidance!
Easy Grilled Veggie Salad Variations
The best part about grilled vegetable salad is that it’s totally versatile. You can customize it a billion different ways, based on your preferences & what ingredients you happen to have on hand. A few ideas to get you started…
- VEGGIES: Use whatever veggies you love or happen to have on hand! Swap asparagus for broccolini, add sweetness with grilled corn, or add substance with grilled cauliflower or sweet potatoes. Sky’s the limit! Have fun with it.
- VINAIGRETTE: You can dress your grilled vegetable salad with any vinaigrette or salad dressing you love! Try the PWWB All-Purpose Vinaigrette (tangy, mustardy goodness!), PWWB Chimichurri Sauce (bright + herbaceous!) or my personal favorite Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette (perfectly sweet + savory).
- MAKE IT A MEAL: To make it a satisfying plant-powered main, add some chickpeas or white beans to your grilled veggie salad. I also love the thought of adding quinoa or farro for nice texture & grain bowl-vibes. If you want to add animal protein, grilled chicken or grilled steak is always a delish bet!
I can’t wait for you to try this grilled vegetable salad! It’s summertime in a bowl & I know you’ll love it as much as we do! If you do give it a try, be sure to let me know! Leave a comment with a star rating below. You can also snap a photo & tag @playswellwithbutter on Instagram. I LOVE hearing about & seeing your PWWB creations!
Love summer salads? Same here! Try our favorite Falafel-ish Quinoa Salad (vegetarian, easily vegan/dairy-free!), this hearty Greek Farro Salad (also vegetarian, easily vegan/dairy-free!), or my Caprese Salad 2.0 (an epic tomato burrata salad) next. Happy cooking! ♡Print
Fresh summer veggies are grilled until perfectly charred & smoky & tossed into greens with bright & light homemade lemon basil vinaigrette. This Grilled Vegetable Salad is simple to prepare & boasts all of the best fresh flavors of summer. Perfect for healthy weeknight eats & summer entertaining!
Naturally vegetarian & gluten-free, easily dairy-free & vegan.
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil
- 1 bunch asparagus, woody ends trimmed
- 1 medium bell pepper, sliced into 4–5 flat planks
- 1 medium zucchini, ends trimmed & quartered lengthwise
- 1 large sweet or red onion, peeled & quartered lengthwise with ends in tact
- 8 ounces cremini or button mushrooms, skewered for grilling
- 8 ounces grape or cherry tomatoes, skewered for grilling
- 6 ounces spring mix or greens of choice
- optional: 4 ounces crumbled goat cheese or feta
- kosher salt & ground black pepper, to season
for the lemon basil vinaigrette:
- 2 cups packed basil leaves & tender stems
- 2 lemons, zested & juiced
- 1/2 small shallot, peeled & roughly chopped (about 1/4 cup roughly chopped)
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 tablespoon champagne vinegar
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- kosher salt & ground black pepper, to season
- Prepare your grill for medium-high direct heat grilling, about 450-500 degrees F.
- Prepare the vegetables for the grill: Prep asparagus, bell pepper, zucchini, onion, mushrooms & tomatoes as described above. Place vegetables on a large plate or small baking sheet. Drizzle avocado oil over top, tossing to coat evenly. Generously season with kosher salt & ground black pepper. (Be sure to check out this A-Z Grilled Veggie Guide for veggie-specific prep tips!)
- Prep the lemon basil vinaigrette: Add basil, lemon zest & juice, shallot, garlic, champagne vinegar, & olive oil to jar of a high-speed blender. Season with 1 teaspoon kosher salt & ground black pepper as desired. Blend until vinaigrette is emulsified & as smooth as you’d like. Taste & adjust seasoning as desired – season with additional salt to taste, drizzle in a little extra vinegar for a tangier vinaigrette, splash in a few tablespoons of water for a thinner vinaigrette, etc. Set aside or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
- Grill the vegetables: Place the seasoned vegetables directly on the grill grates. For long, thin vegetables & skewers, like asparagus & zucchini, it’s best to place them on the grill such that they’re positioned perpendicular to the grill grates, which prevents them from slipping through as they grill or as you handle them. Grill vegetables until as softened & charred as desired. Tomatoes will grill in about 2 minutes per side. Asparagus, bell pepper, zucchini, & mushroom skewers will grill in 3-4 minutes per side. Onions will grill in 4-5 minutes per side. (Be sure to check out this A-Z Grilled Veggie Guide for veggie-specific grilling tips!)
- Chop & toss the grilled vegetable salad! Once grilled vegetables are cool enough to handle, use a chef’s knife to chop into uniform bite-sized pieces. Add the chopped vegetables to a large bowl with salad greens & cheese, if using. Pour the lemon basil vinaigrette over top. Toss to combine. Serve warm, cold, or at room temperature. Enjoy!
- Make-Ahead & Storage:
- Make-Ahead Grilled Vegetable Salad: If you’re prepping for a backyard BBQ or dinner party, you can grill the vegetables according to Steps 2 & 4 up to 1 day in advance. Store the grilled vegetables in an airtight container in the refrigerator, & toss the chopped salad just before serving.
- Storage: Once tossed, this grilled vegetable salad is best enjoyed immediately, though leftovers will keep for 1-2 days. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Enjoy leftovers cold or at room temperature.
- 20-Minute Meal Prep: Nearly all of the active prep work for this grilled vegetable salad comes from slicing the veggies & prepping the lemon basil vinaigrette. Prep either or both in advance for a great head start on your grilled veggie salad – it’ll take 20 minutes, tops:
- Prep the veggies for grilling as noted in the Ingredients List, above. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. (10 minutes active prep)
- Prep the lemon basil vinaigrette according to Step 3 of Recipe Directions above. Store in a jar or airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. (10 minutes active prep)
Keywords: grilled vegetable salad, grilled veggie salad, chopped veggie salad, easy, summer, spring, side dish, main dish, healthy, vegan, vegetarian, dairy-free, gluten-free, plant-based
Recipe & Food Styling by Jess Larson, Plays Well With Butter | Photography by Rachel Cook, Half Acre House.
Ready to Hit the Grill?
If this all still feels new to you, I encourage you to head over to Grilling 101, a compilation of tips & tricks for all of the grilling basics – everything from how to light your grill to how to clean your grill.
All this talk about grilling have you feelin’ ready to hit the grill? Me too! Be sure to check out this post for my 15 go-to marinades you need this grilling season. At our house, a good marinade is at the heart of grilling season. I’m positive these marinades will be on repeat at your house this summer! For even more grilled goodness, be sure to check out all of our Grilling & Smoking recipes.
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