If you’re looking for vegan BBQ dishes everyone will love, you’ve come to the right place! Maybe you’re one of the many vegetarian or vegans who won’t be grilling up meat at your cookouts this summer. Or maybe you’re an omnivore who’s a little baffled on what to cook for friends and family who don’t do hot dogs and hamburgers.
Either way, here are some of my top plant-based BBQ recipes from main dishes to sides to desserts that are both delicious and easy.
Some of these are easy tweaks to traditional meat-based BBQ dishes — that tempeh kebab recipe is such an easy switch. But all of them are so delicious, no one will even notice they’re (gasp!) vegan!
(Well, most people won’t notice if you don’t tell them.)
Speaking as a vegan myself, it’s just nice to ensure that vegan or vegetarian guests have more options at a cookout than that one sad looking cold pasta salad with a few lonely olive tossed in at the end of the picnic table. Not that there’s anything wrong with a great pasta salad, and we’ve got that covered too.
Top: Vegan BBQ Jackfruit Sliders at Neurotic Mommy
Related: 7 kid-friendly vegan dinner recipes they’ll love
Marinated Tempeh and Veggie Skewers
If you’re grilling kebabs, use this recipe for Marinated Tempeh and Veggie Skewers at Vegan Yack Attack which can work as a main, when you add in the protein. If you’re feeding lots of people who eat differently, you can use the same marinade on chicken or beef for those meat eaters, then simply do a few with the tempeh for the rest. It’s an easy, affordable dish that can easily feed a crowd.
Vegan BBQ Jackfruit Sliders
These Vegan BBQ Jackfruit Sliders at Neurotic Mommy are one of my favorite vegan BBQ dishes for a cookout or any kind of party. It has a similar taste to pulled chicken BBQ, and one batch can make a whole tray of sliders. I I usually make it even easier by popping all of the BBQ ingredients in an Instant Pot so it’s tender — but spicy!
Vegan Instant Pot Baked Beans
So many baked bean recipes call for added bacon or sausage (or the beans themselves come this way), but this Vegan Instant Pot Baked Beans recipe at Sweet Veg Table is sticky and sweet, just like we like our beans. Make plenty, because everyone will want to have seconds.
Also be sure to check her smart tips for serving these for mixed-diet guests or family members. They can easily serve everyone.
Related: The easiest, most impressive summer dessert you can make on the grill.
Perfect Pesto Pasta Salad
We always serve a good (GOOD!) pasta salad at our backyard cookouts, and this Vegan Pesto Pasta Salad recipe at Wholly Plants is a great option because it skips both the cheese, and the olive oil, should you be avoiding that. I’ve found it’s a great option for toddlers, who want lots of finger-food bites on their plates. If your kids are particularly picky, you could leave the pesto on the side for guests to add in.
Alternately, if you’re going vegetarian, check out this post on how to make perfect classic pesto, which is made with just five ingredients including a good Parmesan. It includes lots of serving tips too, should you want to offer it as a spread for crostini, or serve it some way besides over pasta.
Vegan Mexican Street Corn Variation
Corn on the cob is so sweet right now, you hardly need more than a little salt after you’ve grilled or boiled. But if you want a more impressive vegan BBQ dish, try this adaption of Mexican elote. Traditionally, it tends to have lots of cheese mixed in, but the Vegan Mexican Street Corn at The Mostly Vegan uses cashew mayo and cashew parmesan that you make from scratch.
That said, yes, it’s some work. You could totally buy vegan mayo and cheese at your grocery and go semi-homemade.
Related: Our favorite corn on the cob hacks and serving ideas you have to try this summer.
Vegan Dessert Parfaits
Want something a little more exciting than just slices of watermelon or bowls of berries? I’m already craving these Fourth of July parfaits at Bear Plate, which we included in our roundup of Fourth of July fruit treats. I’d set them up as a DIY bar, so guests — especially kids — can make their own the way they like them. It’s a fun activity and dessert all in one! Hers are made with vegan Coco-Whip, but if you’re serving vegetarians, any great yogurt will do.