How to Throw an Epic Vegetarian Summer BBQ

Today I'm going to give you all the (easy + delicious) recipes you need to throw an epic vegetarian summer bbq that will impress all of your friends and family!

Let's be honest, barbecues are usually centered around the grilled meat.

Grilled burgers. Grilled hot dogs. Grilled brats. Grilled chicken.

And then you throw in a few sides, often laden with more meat (ie. bacon) and a bit of fruit. And you call it good. But, summer barbecues can be just as good, if not BETTER, sans meat. So here's how you do it:

1) Include a hearty main dish. 

Choose something that is going to fill your guests up and has plenty of plant-based protein and satisfying grains. I went with over-the-top delicious Korean BBQ Bibimbap Veggie Burgers piled high with amazing toppings such as: spicy pickled cucumbers, sweet potato and carrot shoestring fries, red cabbage, and a fried egg. Let your guests assemble their own so they can choose the toppings (and amounts) they like best.

korean bbq bibimbap burgers for summer bbq

2) It's all about those apps, 'bout those apps. 

Provide a few appetizers that are easy to grab mid-conversation and don't necessarily require a full plate. This Italian Double Cheesy Flatbread does the trick. (and yes, that's vegetarian sausage on top -- by Field Roast)

italian double cheesy flatbread

3) No party is complete without an epic veggie tray. 

People are more likely to eat more veggies at a party when they can grab a few of each thing with their hands and dip them (hellllllllllllllo, carrot sriracha hummus) --- rather than a full on salad + fork situation.

veggie tray for summer bbq

4) Dranks. 

Anyone else have the new Chris Janson song on replay in their head? "I can fix a drank. Pour it on ice. Mix it on up. Getcha feelin' right..." Anyways, I digress...

The key to party drinks is having a nice variety so that people can choose what they want, when they want. I like to offer a couple flavors of LaCroix (the apricot is our favorite!), a few sodas (the hubby loves Coke), water, beer, annnnnnnnd a mixed cocktail in a pitcher, like my roasted cherry sangria

summer bbq drinks

5) I like big plates and I cannot lie. 

With so much deliciousness to choose from and put on your plate, make sure your guests have room! You can use those giant hefty paper plates or large ceramic plates--- whatever you choose, make sure they're BIG!

summer bbq on plates

6) You may be sooooooo full, but there's always room for dessert!

Make something that feeds a lot of people and can sit out on a table for an hour or so and still look perfect, like this roasted cherry bourbon cake. You can make it festive by using McCormick's new Color From Nature all-natural dyes, or just keep it simple and white. And let people choose how big of a slice they want. 

roasted cherry bourbon cake sliced

Now all that's left is to send the invites. And believe me, even your meat-loving friends are going to LOVE this spread. The full menu is:

* Korean BBQ Bibimbap veggie burgers

* Italian Double Cheesy Flatbread

* Veggie Tray with Carrot Hummus

* Roasted Cherry Bourbon Cake

* a variety of Kettle chips and drinks

* Roasted Cherry Sangria

summer bbq picnic with mountains

///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////// Disclaimer: this event was made possible by my friends at Dr. Praegers, Flatout, and Superfresh Growers. Thank you for supporting brands that support Nosh and Nourish!! I choose them based on what I already cook/create with and feel 100% confident in recommending to you.