When you think of grilling, chicken and beef might be the first things that come to mind. But veggies (and even some fruits) can make a healthy and delicious addition to your grilling menu. Whether as a side dish or the main meal, they add great variety and wonderful flavor. Here are some of our favorite tips and tricks for grilling vegetables and fruit:

Size and shape matter - When slicing veggies for the grill, remember to make thick cuts; anything too thin can slip through the grates of your grill. Thin vegetables, like asparagus, will need to be placed perpendicular to the grates. Consider picking up a grill pan to easily prevent against losing any vegetables.

Marinate your veggies and fruit – Increase the flavor of your recipes by using marinades and spice blends on your vegetables and fruits before grilling. Garam masala or Chimichuri can add an unexpected flavor to your favorite veggies, while spice blends on fruit will create a unique dessert.

Grill similar things together - Have you ever skewered a kabob of different vegetables? Some of the vegetables burn before the others are done. Instead, try putting all the onions together on one skewer, all the peppers together, and so on. This will allow you to perfectly cook each ingredient, then combine them all in a bowl to serve.

The heat is on - Depending on what you are making, sometimes it’s best to use direct heat on the grates to get those wonderful grill marks, then move the items off the direct heat to fully cook them without burning. This technique works well with harder ingredients like carrots and cauliflower.

Use unique ingredients - Try grilling romaine hearts to create a new version of a classic Caesar salad, or grill fresh in-season fruits (think peaches) to caramelize the sugars and create a wonderful and simple dessert to finish off your meal.