Forget about baseball—firing up the barbeque for a cookout is the one true American pastime. There’s nothing quite like a great neighborhood potluck or block party, but vegetarians are all too frequently left out in the proverbial culinary cold. Burgers, hot dogs, and ribs might always enjoy their place as the go-to cookout foods, but when will home cooks across the country realize that grilling a semi-frozen veggie patty on the barbecue just doesn’t cut it anymore? It’s 2017, and that’s so ‘90s. Whether you can stand to eat it or not, there’s really no need for Tofurkey—or any other meat substitutes, for that matter—when so many classic summer dishes also happen to be meat-free.
The coincidental absence of meat shouldn’t come as a surprise when you consider how many dishes are perfect for the warm weather. After all, summer is the best season to eat. You don’t need fancy chef techniques or a million “artisanal” ingredients found only at those really nice (and expensive) grocery stores to make something delicious. With seasonal fruits and vegetables this fresh, the best thing to do is cut out the fuss and let the ingredients speak for themselves. Food publications have long been speaking this language, whispering the secrets of everything from revved up classics like hot honey corn on the cob to spicy grilled vegetables to totally unique sides you may not have tried to prepare before, like grilled watermelon salad. (It’s truly delicious, by the way).
So, what are you still doing reading this article? Grab a six pack of your favorite beer, text your favorite neighbors, and fire up the grill. There’s nothing quite like eating in the summer sunshine. From meatless takes on all-time BBQ classics to modern dishes that just happen to be vegetarian, here are the vegetarian recipes that on the menu this summer.