Summer is fast approaching and so are the invites to party. I love a spontaneous weeknight dinner with friends or a casual neighborhood block party, yet it can be hard to decide what to bring. I’m taking the guesswork out of planning and giving you healthy BBQ sides that translate well to a variety of settings. Whether you need a grab n’ go side or frozen treats for those hot summer nights, I’m sure one of these easy BBQ sides will work for you.
Depending on the type of party, the table can be filled with processed, store-bought dishes. Instead, bring a little homemade love with one of these recipes that actually taste good.
Savory BBQ Side Dishes
A summer barbecue is a perfect time to break out a fresh new vegetable recipe. Since heavier main dishes are usually abundant, I’m sharing four easy side dishes that my family enjoys sharing with others.
Whether you need a great side dish or a fun appetizer, these baked potato wedges are delightful. They come out perfectly crispy with just the right amount of seasoning.
I’ve always been a coleslaw lover, but struggled these last few years as I’ve been moving away from mayonnaise and most processed foods. This vegan coleslaw has an amazing crunch and a sweet and creamy bite that tastes even better than traditional coleslaw to me, and it’s perfect for topping any taco.
These plant-based tofu nuggets are packed with protein and amazing crunch. The secret sauce is tearing pressed tofu to get craggily edges that help to make the crispiest nooks and crannies for your favorite dipping sauce to cling to. Try using your air fryer for an equally delicious nugget!
I grew up on roasted cabbage so it’s a staple in my St. Patrick’s Day celebrations with my family. Enjoy this simple yet comforting recipe and start a plant based tradition with your family, too!
I’ve never been a fan of chicken wings—yet I love the spicy-hot flavor! I was so excited when I got this plant-based recipe to work. Welcome to the world of Cauliflower Buffalo Wings!
Sweet BBQ Sides
Whether you want handheld desserts or cold options for those hot summer nights, I’ve got the healthy BBQ treats for you. These are my go-to recipes for warm-weather parties, and many of them are easier than they appear! Healthy BBQ sides can be delightfully sweet.
Looking for a refreshing, beautiful dessert? Look no further than this scrumptious blackberry Coconut Sorbet recipe. Fun to serve with coconut whipped cream and fresh berries.
These are simply THE BEST vegan chocolate chip cookies around! We’ve given them another upgrade by adding in toasted coconut (you can buy it or make it) and toasted almonds for extra flavor and crunch. Use your favorite dark chocolate chips and bake up a batch or two. They make great gifts and store well in the freezer for when a craving hits.
With bright, vibrant colors straight from nature, this banana nice cream recipe nourishes and satisfies. The gorgeous color comes from the superfood spirulina, which provides vital cell support. Perfect for breakfast or as a mid-day pick me up, banana nice cream is a delicious treat (while still getting in healthy nutrients).
Two simple ingredients is all it takes to make watermelon popsicles sweet enough to fall in love. Ask your kids to join in making this refreshing summer treat.
Thick, fudgy brownies that also happen to be vegan and gluten-free. (No one will be able to tell!) Loaded with delicious chocolate flavor and a great texture, this Fudgy Gluten Free Brownie Recipe really hit the spot.
This Rice Krispie Treats Recipe uses plant-based whole foods from brown rice to almond butter. Not only will you find more protein and fiber, but the flavor will blow you away.
This simple strawberry vegan milkshake has passed the taste test with my kids and their friends—so trust me, it’s a winner! Plus you won’t suffer the bloating or breakouts that traditional strawberry milkshakes can cause thanks to me using coconut milk. Feel free to swap out the coconut milk for another nut milk you prefer, such as almond milk or cashew milk.
Fresh Summer Salads
Fresh produce makes whipping up a salad easy and inexpensive. Plus, you can easily customize these to fit your ingredients and time constraints when preparing for a soiree! Brighten up your spread with a leafy green salad or vibrant fruity option.
This is my plant-powered take on a classic recipe. It is lighter, brighter, and not weighed down by mayo. Serve as-is for a wonderful side dish or double and enjoy as the main event.
Whether you’re in need of an easy week of lunches or a delicious potluck recipe to share, this vegan pasta salad is for you!
This lemon arugula salad is a feature on any table. It’s got unique (yet findable!) ingredients + an elevated flavor profile that makes me feel like I’m at a fancy restaurant. The perfect salad to mix up your lunch routine.
Step aside traditional potato salad! A new version is in town and it’s delightful. Try this vegan potato salad out on your next gathering and be ready to share the recipe!
This is the perfect dish to bring to Sunday brunch. I try to enjoy all the fresh berries I possibly can while they’re here, and this salad brings them alive.
This colorful salad is as full of flavor as it is color. Your skin will be glowing after incorporating this dish into your lunch routine, and Mediterranean inspired classic!
This gorgeous strawberry arugula salad is as delicious as it is beautiful. Topped with a unique vinaigrette, this rockstar salad is for you.
This refreshing noodle salad is a great light lunch or yummy side for dinner. Take it to the beach and enjoy at sunset for the ultimate summer night.
Answering Your BBQ Questions
I’ve got arugula salad, roasted potatoes, vegan potato salad, watermelon popsicles and more to make you the life of the next party you attend. Not up for making a hot dish? No problem! Salads bursting with texture and taste work well too.
No matter what you’re looking to make, stick to whole food! Use fresh plants, seasonal fruits and vegetables. You’d be surprised how delicious fresh produce and a good spice blend can be mixed up and roasted.
You can’t go wrong with a colorful salad (I’m not talking about the ‘garden salad’ that comes with your meal, I’m talking about one bursting with flavor and variety!) or keep it simple with roasted veggies. Whether you’re looking for a sweet or savory side, I’ve got you covered.
Plant Based BBQ Entrées
If you know there will be plant-based guests at your gathering, then you may want to include a few main dish options for them alongside these healthy BBQ sides. Here are my favorite summer recipes when I’m heading to or hosting a BBQ:
These marinated portobello mushroom burgers are the perfect, hearty main dish for all your summer parties. They are surprisingly easy to make and delight both meat and plant eaters!
Perfect for a backyard BBQ or a fun family meal, this black bean burger is a winner. My family loves to pair them with sweet potato fries, and load them up with fresh tomatoes.
Pulled BBQ jackfruit is a meatless wonder to make all of your Taco Tuesday dreams come true. Jackfruit Tacos only take about a half hour to prepare – perfect for getting dinner on the table in a hurry.
Enjoy the BBQ Vegetarian Pizza Recipe that’s loaded with protein and flavor. This recipe is also gluten free thanks to the homemade quinoa crust. A bit time consuming to make, yet no one ever regrets it. Bon appetite!
When I created this vegan taco recipe, it just felt like it had an Austin flair going on, so I named it after that city. Austin, Texas, is one of my favorite cities, thanks to the great music, the variety of healthy foods available, its natural landscape, and the fact that my awesome aunt and uncle live there.
What are some of your go-to healthy BBQ sides to share? Drop a comment and let me know! I love trying out new recipes, especially when I can share them with friends.
Looking for more great party dishes? Choose recipes that fit your needs: