Although most of us associate BBQs with burgers, ribs, and lots of melty cheese, it's 100% possible to make a scrumptious plant-based barbecue spread. Because summer is a time of bountiful produce, it's the perfect season for enjoying hearty vegan meals.

If you're preparing a BBQ as the host, or are simply looking to make a dish to share with others as an attendee, searching for vegan-friendly, crowd-friendly, barbecue recipes can be a bit daunting. Hence, I've rounded up some of the best vegan BBQ recipes for your next party, all of which use no meat, eggs, or dairy. Don't be afraid to see these recipes as guidelines; incorporate your favorite spices, seasonings, and produce as you see fit.

#SpoonTip: Check the ingredient lists on your favorite buns, condiments, and sides to make sure they're vegan as well.

Veggie Burgers:

1. Easy Grillable Veggie Burgers

Making a veggie patty at home that doesn't fall apart on the grill is harder than it might sound. Luckily, the vegan queen Minimalist Baker has perfected a plant-based, grillable veggie burger. Packed with walnuts, black beans, bread crumbs, and brown rice, this burger is mega satisfying. Sautéed onions, BBQ sauce, and lots of spices entice the taste buds, making this a go-to for your BBQ.

2. Chickpea Mushroom Burger

Kelli Cook

Looking for something with a deep umami flavor? If you're into 'shrooms, make these chickpea mushroom burgers. Packed with shiitake mushrooms, chickpeas, brown rice, cumin, parsley, and cayenne pepper, they taste like a real burger if you close your eyes and take a bite.

3. Black Bean and Sweet Potato Veggie Burger

Angela Kerndl

Black beans and sweet potatoes are a match made in heaven; the earthiness of the beans plays nicely off the sweetness of the potato. Enjoy the pair in this hearty veggie burger, bound together with oats and quinoa, and spiced with paprika, chili, and cumin.

4. Lentil Burger

meat, beef, pork
Marina Wollmann

The small, al dente texture of the lentils gives this burger a hearty, chewy mouthfeel. Top with your favorite vegan bbq sauce for a more authentic flavor. 

5. Tomato Basil Veggie Burgers

This canellini bean-based veggie burger by blogger Alexis Joseph (aka thehummusapian) is jam-packed with sundried tomato and basil flavor, and enhanced with umami undertones of nutritional yeast and liquid aminos. These are perfect if you're looking for something other than your average vegan burger. 

Other Main Dishes:

1. Buffalo Cauliflower Sandwich

Need I say more? This incredible sandwich comes from vegan YouTuber Lauren Toyota. Cauliflower acts as a vehicle for buffalo sauce, delivering a heartier-than-expected sandwich patty for hot sauce-lovers. 

2. Cauliflower Steak

vegetable, sweet
Katie Zizmor

This recipe contains minimal ingredients and can be easily incorporated into any BBQ spread. Slice a head of cauliflower into thick steaks, brush with oil, and toss on the grill for a scrumptious twist on cauliflower. Add your favorite barbecue sauce, hot sauce, or chimichurri sauce for a fun twist. 

#SpoonTip: Don't buy pre-cut cauliflower steaks at the grocery store. They're much more expensive than buying a whole head of cauliflower. 

3. Carrot Dogs

Plant-forward blogger Miranda Hammer (aka @thecrunchyradish) has a playful take on classic hotdogs, eschewing faux-meat for roasted carrots served on buns. The semi-snap of a smoked carrot mimics that of biting into a hot dog, and a well-seasoned carrot pairs nicely on a bun with all your favorite condiments.

4. Grilled Avocado

If you haven't had grilled avocados yet, I'd suggest adding it to your to-taste list. Grilling adds another layer of umami flavor to the delicious creamy avocado we all know and love. Simply slice an avocado in half, brush with oil, and grill for 3-4 minutes until slightly charred. Or, if you want to get fancy, make these quinoa salad-stuffed grilled avocados.

5. BBQ Jackfruit

Abi Scott

Jackfruit has the texture of pulled pork, zero pigs required. It's also much faster to prepare, which is a major perk when you're cooking for a crowd. You can find canned jackfruit at Trader Joe's and Whole Foods, as well as many grocery stores in the international product sections.

Salads and Side Dishes:

1. Vegan Mac and Cheese

cream, pasta
Eileen Wang

Ready in 20 minutes, this vegan mac and cheeses recipe uses nutritional yeast to mimic a cheesy flavor. Use your favorite noodle as a vehicle for the 'cheese' and top with Srirarcha for a kick.

#SpoonTip: Bragg's and Bob's Red Mill make nutritional yeast, and it can be found in most grocery stores. Whole Foods also has it in bulk, and Trader Joe's has it at a steal of a price.

2. Grilled Corn Salad

corn, vegetable, legume, pea, cereal, succotash, corn salad, meat
Alexandra Tringali

Grilled corn is a barbecue classic. Mix it up with this scrumptious grilled corn salad, brightened with cilantro, lime juice, and bell peppers. This salad tastes better the longer you let the flavors mingle, but can easily be thrown together just before your guests arrive. 

3. Vegan Avocado Potato Salad

Jody Brimacombe

Not into mayo? This potato salad is for you. Avocados replace mayo as the base for the creamy dressing, making for a satisfying and flavorful potato side dish. The onions and herbs add an extra kick of flavor.

4. Grilled Vegetable Salad

Layla Gegout

Bursting with grilled corn, cherry tomatoes, apples, peaches, avocados, and bell peppers, this grilled salad is an excellent way to mix up your salad game if you want something besides a regular green salad. Because it's grilled, it's not only perfect for summer barbecue season, but also for using up any produce you may have that is slightly past its prime. 

5. Deluxe Vegan Green Salad 

salad, spinach
Danielle Cahoon

Looking to upgrade your vegan green salad game? This roundup gives you nine different ideas to make you a salad master. The key thing to remember is greens + nuts + fruits + veg. Use whatever you have in your fridge, or feel free to get creative based on what's in season.

6. Guacamole

guacamole, sauce, salsa, vegetable, tomato, pepper
Caitlin Shoemaker

What's a party without some guac? This recipe comes together in no time, and apparently can double as a face mask.Serve as a dip, or do as I do, and smear it on your burger bun as a condiment.

7. Easy Pico de Gallo

tomato, pepper, vegetable, cheese, salad
Katherine Baker

Ready in 10 minutes, this easy pico recipe is great for those looking for a classic dipping experience. Fresh pico seems really impressive, but is incredibly simple to make, so whip this up and knock the socks off of your guests. Leftover pico can be used on sandwiches and salads as well.


1. Vegan French Silk Pie

Katherine Baker

This creamy chocolate pie has a Speculoos (cookie butter) crust and a dreamy coconut whipped topping. Crowd-pleasing as dessert can be. Bonus: this is a no-bake dessert, and is cool, creamy, and satisfying on a hot summer's day.

2. Vegan Fruit Tart

Natalie Van Brunt

There's no better time for a fruit tart than the summertime! This dessert is a perfect, refreshing end to a BBQ meal. Sweetened with dates and made with a cashew-based cream filling, this is a nutrient-dense and delicious dessert. You can use whatever fruits are in season, or go for your faves.

3. Vegan Cookie Dough

chocolate, cake, sweet, cream, pastry, cookie, pie
Megan Schellong

Serve this with graham crackers, and be the talk of the town. This dippleable, spoonable, scoopable vegan cookie dough is made with chickpeas (you can't tell), and is delicious to eat with fruit, on top of ice cream, or straight from the bowl. 

4. Vegan Key Lime Pie Ice Cream

ice, cream, dairy product, sweet, milk, lime
Jody Brimacombe

This "nice" cream is made with bananas as the base, making for a pleasant, not-too-heavy finish to a big meal. Key lime is a refreshing flavor in the summer, making this simple, easy-to-prepare recipe an ideal BBQ dessert.

5. Giant Vegan Peanut Butter Cup

Even the most vegan-skeptical person can't turn down a slab of this beauty. This dessert packs a "wow" factor, but is relatively simple and inexpensive to prepare. Feel free to swap your favorite nut butter into this recipe for a tasty twist. 

#SpoonTip: Make sure you store this in the fridge; otherwise it may get melty.

The best vegan BBQ recipes are often the simplest. Use whatever fruits and veggies are in season, and remember to season every layer of your dish for the best flavor. If you keep these tips in mind, you'll be amazed at how good a vegan BBQ can be.