When you’re finished eating some delicious grilled steak or chicken this summer, don’t close up the grill just yet. You’d be surprised how you might extend your grilling prowess to make some incredible treats. When it comes to desserts, grilling will caramelize sweet foods, boosting the flavor of their natural sugars. Here’s a round-up of 10 desserts, gathered from foodie blogs and websites as well as Spoon and “Tara” originals, all made on the grill. Unless otherwise noted, each of these sweet treats should be grilled over medium heat.
‘Cuz we’re all healthy, right?
Cut up fruits like peaches, apples, bananas, pineapple, berries and even melons. Stick them on the grill, turning every couple minutes so they’re evenly heated. Cook until fruit is softened and starts to develop a syrup-y layer. That’s the sign it’s caramelized. You can also add sugar, cinnamon, honey or other toppings while grilling. Serve with granola, raisins or nuts and/or drizzle chocolate or caramel sauce over the top.
2. Fruit Kebabs
Spear pieces of various fruits onto a skewer, small enough to bite but large enough that they’ll stay put on the skewer and hold together during grilling – about 1-inch-sized pieces will work or use whole berries, melon balls, etc. Like above, turn skewers every couple minutes. Serve with a yogurt dipping sauce, if desired.
3. Banana Boat
This is a personal favorite. I don’t know where my family originally got this idea, but there are tons of recipes online for it. Basically, with the peel still on, make a cut down the length of the inner curve of the banana, but don’t cut all the way through. Fill the slit with chocolate chips, miniature marshmallows and/or nuts. Fold banana in a piece of tin foil on the grill and heat until peel begins to brown and chocolate and marshmallows begin to melt. Check out banana boats made over a campfire here.
You can grill more than cheese, you know.
4. Peanut Butter and Nutella
As pictured above. Spread peanut butter and Nutella between two pieces of bread, stick the sandwich on the grill over low heat for about two minutes (until the bread starts to brown and the spreads inside start to melt) then flip and cook for one more minute. Other ideas: add in banana slices, use just Nutella or just peanut butter, make a classic PB&J, spread some marshmallow fluff in there, the possibilities are endless.
5. Cinnamon Raisin
Spread a cream cheese + cinnamon + sugar + raisin mixture between two slices of bread and cook on the grill just like the above sandwich (low heat, two minutes on one side, then one minute on the other). Maybe add in a few chopped walnuts or swap raisin bread for wheat.
Check out other fresh takes on grilled sandwiches here.
6. Classic S’mores
Grab two graham crackers for each s’more you want to make. Put a piece of chocolate (or Reese’s cup – yum!) on one cracker and a large marshmallow on the other. Then, place topped crackers on the grill on low heat until toppings soften. Sandwich the two halves together and there you have it! No more accidental marshmallow torches.
Just make sure you put it on the grill AFTER you bake it. Nobody wants to scrub spilled batter off the bottom of their grill.
Pound cake and angel food cake are most popular for this, but I assume really any type of cake would work here. Place slices directly on grill grate for a few minutes on each side, until both are crisp and have light grill lines. Top with fruit (maybe grilled fruit?), whipped cream or ice cream, if desired.
The only difference between grilled cobbler and regular cobbler is the use of a grill instead of an oven. Make sure to cover the grill when cooking so the entire dish cooks evenly. I will definitely be trying this summer berry cobbler recipe ASAP.
Like cobbler, pie can easily be adapted to the grill. Make one large pie or multiple single-serving ones for a summer cook out. What’s more American than a grilled apple pie? Nothing at all. Serve with a dollop of vanilla ice cream for a traditional treat.
10. Dessert Pizza
Make (or buy a prepared) pizza dough and cook it on the grill for a few minutes, until it puffs up and gets a golden crust. Scatter chocolate chips on the crust, let them melt and then remove dough from the grill. Top with fruit, caramel drizzle, more chocolate (no judgment) or whatever else you want and slice it up like a regular pizza. Need some inspiration? This recipe looks awesome.