Deliciously New Grilling Ideas.
We love a beautifully charred burger, steak, chicken breast or rack of ribs as much as the next grilling fan. But we also love exploring new flavors and textures on the grill, from grilled halloumi cheese to warm grilled peaches drizzled with balsamic glaze.
Below you’ll find some of our favorite “unexpected” grilling ideas. They’re the perfect way to add something fresh to your cookout spread. Who knows, you might even find a new go-to grilling recipe you’ll serve year after year—alongside those signature burgers, of course.
Cheese on the Grill
Two grilled cheeses, please—hold the bread! Heat brings out the best in these unique, grill-friendly cheeses (which can, of course, be sandwiched between two slices of bread, but are hearty enough to stand on their own).
Say “hello” to halloumi! This sheep’s cheese hails from Cyprus and is known for its high melting point, making it a uniquely grillable cheese. It’s best enjoyed hot off the grill, crispy on the outside with a savory, soft middle.
We love serving Grilled Halloumi with Watermelon. Grilling watermelon intensifies its sweet flavor. Add honey and lime juice for the perfect balance of sweet, savory and tart flavors, then top with pistachios and mint for extra color and crunch.
For a delicious summertime appetizer, we also love Grilled Halloumi with Blueberries. Stonewall Kitchen's Wild Maine Blueberry Jam is vibrant and sweet, the perfect foil to thick slices of halloumi. Add crunchy pistachios and fresh mint leaves for a colorful finishing touch.
We also have Rougette Bonfire Grilling Cheese. Imported from Bavaria, this mild, all-natural, soft-ripened cheese is fantastic on the grill. It won’t stick or make a mess. Instead, it’ll develop a crispy, golden outside and warm, creamy inside. It’s also lactose-free! We love serving this cheese on a sandwich or even as a burger substitute.
Romaine & Eggplant
Lettuce help you get the most out of your grilled romaine. This hearty green can stand up to a few minutes of direct heat, making it perfect for Grilled Romaine Salad. Grilling the hearts creates a slightly charred, smoky flavor and softens the lettuce.
We recommend topping your grilled romaine with tangy Caesar-style dressing as soon as it comes off the grill. Add grilled croutons made with our crusty garlic bread, and you’ve got an outstanding appetizer that pairs perfectly with any grilled entrée.
When it comes to eggplant, you’re probably accustomed to seeing it breaded, deep fried and paired with pasta sauce. Of course eggplant parmesan is delicious, but there’s more than one way to celebrate this tasty vegetable!
We love to slice it thinly, brush the slices with olive oil and grill them until the ends are charred. Finish your eggplant slices with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and soy sauce to complement the rich, earthy flavor. Grilling eggplant also creates a soft texture that works beautifully on a sandwich with smooth, melty cheese, like our Grilled Eggplant and Fontina Sandwiches.
Potatoes & Mushroom
Potatoes are another one of our favorite vegetables to grill.
First, boil them, then slice them evenly and brush them with oil before tossing them on the grates. This helps the slices cook evenly without burning the outside. Place the hot potatoes in a bowl and top with butter, fresh chopped chives and dill.
We also love grilled mushrooms. They make a hearty meat substitute or satisfying side dish.
In our recipe for Grilled Portabella Mushroom Caprese, we use large mushrooms as a filling base for the classic Italian flavors of a caprese salad. Mushrooms act like sponges and also do well with light marinades, like the one we use in our recipe for Maple Balsamic Grilled Mushrooms.
The sugars in stone fruit intensify when grilled—which is always a good thing. Choose a ripe fruit that’s still firm, so it will hold up to the heat. Simply slice the fruit in half, remove the pit and brush the halves with honey before grilling them about three minutes per side.
Top your grilled fruit with The Fresh Market Balsamic Glaze for a delicious, eye-catching side dish.
Our favorite in-season stone fruits are eastern peaches and pluots. There are a variety of California pluots, each ripened to perfection and sold within a week of harvest. For a light, satisfying summer meal, try our recipe for Grilled Peach and Burrata Salad. It’s the perfect balance of flavors and textures, with salty pistachios and prosciutto paired with sweet peaches and smooth burrata.
Try This: For a sweet twist on traditional bruschetta, use freshly grilled peaches as your main ingredient. Grill your peaches, then remove the skin, dice and toss with a drizzle of warm honey and a dash of cinnamon, stirring until combined. Serve over rounds of shortbread with fresh cream on the side.
Avocado & Pineapple
Ah, the avocado. You already knew it was delicious, but did you know it could be grilled? Make sure you pick one that’s slightly ripe—soft but not mushy. Split the avocado in two, ditch the pit and brush the inside with olive oil. Place the halves cut-side-down on the grill for 5-7 minutes, then top with The Fresh Market Nom Nom Salsa, a dollop of sour cream, fresh cilantro and toasted pepitas for crunch.
Another popular ingredient, pineapple is a perfect match for the high heat of a grill. Our Produce Department saves you a step by cutting the fruit into grill-ready spears. The sugar content in pineapple allows the fruit to caramelize quickly.
Try Grilled Pineapple with Chili Lime Rub for a mouthwatering summer side. Or, impress your cookout guests with Ice Cream Sundaes with Grilled Pineapple and Caramel Rum Sauce.
The Perfect Grilled Corn
Corn is one of our favorite things to throw on the grill. There are plenty of ways to grill this classic summer side, depending on your tastes. Here’s our go-to method, along with some delicious topping ideas that’ll set your cookout apart from the rest.
First, remove any remaining corn husk. Then wrap the cobs in foil and cook them on the back of your grill for 15-20 minutes, turning halfway through. Remove foil and cook for an additional 5 minutes, until the corn is deliciously smoky and nicely charred.
Top It Off
When it comes to grilled corn on the cob, toppings are essential. Here are some of our favorite combinations:
- Mayo and sour cream mixed with The Fresh Market Chili Lime Rub, salt, fresh lime zest and juice. Brush on corn after it comes off grill and sprinkle with cotija cheese and fresh cilantro.
- Softened, salted butter with a drizzle of honey and smoked paprika.
- Softened, salted butter with freshly chopped basil, freshly grated Parmesan and lemon zest.
Have you ever grilled naan for a pizza, or peaches for dessert? How about halloumi? These new recipes feature unexpected ingredients you’ll want to grill all season long.