Maybe you’ve stuck a few pineapple chunks along with some chicken and bell peppers on a kebab skewer and stuck it on the grill before, but have you ever grilled fruit all by itself? When you grill fruit it evaporates some of the water in it, concentrating the sugars. And, the sugars on the surface of the fruit that touch the grill get caramelized, creating flecks of crunchy, sweet goodness.
Most fruits work well on the grill if they're coated lightly with a healthy oil so they don't stick and then cooked over indirect heat. Here are 10 recipes for fruits you can grill that should have you firing up the coals all summer and experimenting.
1. Watermelon. Watermelon is perfect with absolutely nothing done to it, but grilling it makes it a different fruit and it goes with savory foods. Try Grilled Watermelon and Feta Stacked Salad that’s topped with arugula and balsamic vinegar.
2. Peaches. It doesn’t get more simple or much more tasty than Grilled Peaches. Drizzled with a little oil, they are delicious on their own or topped with a little vanilla ice cream.
3. Nectarines. Stone fruits are wonderful on the grill. This recipe for Grilled Nectarines with Mascarpone makes a simple dessert that can be grilled on the coals after the main meal has been grilled.
4. Bananas. If you’ve ever had bananas cooked up for bananas Foster, you'll know how good warm bananas can be. Imagine how good they'll be caramelized on the grill. Try Honey Rum Grilled Bananas for a grown up grilled treat.
5. Cherries. Sour cherries will sweeten a bit on the grill, and somehow it just seems right that grilled cherries get used in a cocktail. A Grilled Cherry Sour made with gin sounds refreshing. I’d suggest you use a grilling basket for the cherries so they don’t fall through the grates.
6. Pineapple. Go beyond the kebab and let pineapple stand on its own as a grilled dish. Marry the sweetness of the pineapple with a little sour in a Grilled Pineapple with Lime Zest side dish.
7. Pears. Grilled fruit can be simple or it can be decadent. Try this decadent Grilled Pears filled with Hot Caramel and Chocolate Sauce recipe for a hot and gooey delight.
8. Grapefruit. Fire up your grill for breakfast and make Grilled Pink Grapefruit. It’s sprinkled with a little brown sugar that caramelizes and you can top it with fresh yogurt.
9. Mangoes. You’ll often see a mango salsa accompanying pork, so it makes sense that grilled pieces of the fruit would make a good side dish for pork. Grilled Jerk Pork Chops with Mango and Rum Sauce sounds like a guest-worthy dinner, doesn’t it?
10. Cantaloupe. Close out a meal with Grilled Cantaloupe accompanied by a honey-sweetened yogurt and sprinkled with berries and pistachios.