10 Best Things to Christen Your Grill With on Memorial Day (or Whenever)

Yes, you can grill peaches.
Yes, you can grill peaches.
Photo by mccun934

Memorial Day is just around the corner, and you know what that means -- it's grilling time. You might have used your grill here and there throughout the spring season, but as the summer months approach, get ready for back-to-back weekends (and even weeknights) of grilling your food.

Of course, you could start the grilling season by sizzling a nice juicy steak or simple beef patty for a burger on the grill, but why not get a bit creative and spice things up (literally and metaphorically). Here are ten foods you should throw on the grill to kick off grilling season.

10. Cobblers

Take the skillet outside and make your favorite fruit cobbler (peach, blackberry, raspberry, blueberry, plum, etc.). Cook the fruit with water, sugar and lemon juice (it adds some tang) in a skillet on the grill until the fruit softens. Drop dollops of sweet biscuit dough on top, cover with aluminum foil, then let it cook until the biscuits are done. Add a scoop of ice cream to each serving for the perfect finishing touch. Try this skillet-cooked mixed berry grunt recipe from Martha Stewart.

9. Grilled Fruit Cocktails

Wet your whistle and quench your thirst with something grilled. No, you're not going to grill liquid; that's impossible. But, you can grill the fruit you add to your cocktails. You essentially caramelize the fruit as you grill it. Take a standard sangria recipe and enhance the sweetness by grilling every item before adding to the pitcher of wine and brandy, or make a piña colada with grilled pineapple.

Take your pizzas outside and place them on the grill.
Take your pizzas outside and place them on the grill.
Photo by Bob Ryskamp

8. Pizza

Who doesn't love pizza? Sit outside with friends and family as you plop flatbread dough brushed with olive oil onto the grill. Remove the crusts once cooked, decorate with sauce, cheese and toppings, then place each back on the grill to finish cooking. It's as easy as pie. Take a whack at Bobby Flay's grilled margherita pizza recipe.

7. Grilled Cheese Wheel

Spend a relaxing evening outside with cheese, wine and fruit. But, instead of making a standard cheese tray, place a cheese wheel of Brie or Camembert on the grill to soften and warm, as suggested by Martha Stewart. Toss some baguette slices brushed with olive oil on the grill as well, then dive in to this gooey cheese wheel. Pour yourself a glass of wine, kick back and relax.

6. Baby Back Ribs

To me, it's just not summertime if I don't have baby back ribs. As a kid, I always loved eating a half rack of ribs, then jumping in the pool to clean myself off -- because, who doesn't get BBQ sauce all over their cheeks when they eat ribs? Slow cook a couple racks of ribs throughout the afternoon, slather them with BBQ sauce and enjoy for dinner.

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