15 Summer Grilling Recipes: Burgers, Chicken, and More


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Summer is here and it’s time to fire up the barbecue! Get inspired with these 15 simple and flavorful grilling recipes to impress your guests. A collection of chicken, fish, pork, beef and vegetable ideas for cooking al fresco. 

15 Summer Grilling Recipes: Burgers, Chicken, and More - Time to fire up the grill! | jessicagavin.com

Grab these summer grilling recipes anytime you’re in need for a quick and flavorful dinner idea, or feeding a crowd! I’ve got to admit, whenever I get the chance to cook outdoors I take full advantage of my barbecue. It’s a convenient way to cook all of your ingredients on one source, keeps the mess to a minimum, and the flavor to a maximum! I love the infusion of smoky notes and hints of charred bites from grilled food.

I’ve rounded up my essential grilling guide so that you can have delicious BBQ friendly meals at your fun summer gatherings, any day of the week. Instead of just hot dogs, why not try a juicy steak, succulent chicken, corn on the cob, or a seafood twist to your typical burger, it’s all right here. Take a peek, get inspired and get ready for outdoor dining any meal of the day! The weather is heating up and it’s time to get your sizzle on.

Summer Grilling Recipes

#1) Flat Iron Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

Juicy, tender and lean flat iron steak is a top pick for grilled meats to feed a crowd. The spice-rubbed beef adds a boost of flavor immediately to the dish with little effort. You don’t want to skip the herbaceous, tangy and subtly spicy sauce to serve with the meat, it’s addicting!

Flat Iron Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

#2) Salmon Greek Salad with Lemon Dressing

A light and healthy grilled fish meal you can cook any day of the week! This grilled salmon provides added nutrition with heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids and lean protein for a satisfying entree salad. Crunchy fresh lettuce and a tangy lemon basil dressing make each bowl disappear.

Salmon Greek Salad with Lemon Dressing

#3) Grilled Asparagus

Grilled asparagus is a quick side dish that adds smoky flavor and lightly crisp edges to the vegetable. Squeeze some roasted lemon juice on top for a bright and healthy sauce.

Grilled Asparagus

#4) Grilled Chicken

This easy grilled chicken is ready in under 30 minutes and will be your go-to recipe! A bold combination of dried spices are sprinkled onto each chicken breast like paprika, cumin, garlic, onion, coriander, salt, and pepper gives the poultry a quick flavor boost.

Grilled Chicken

#5) Grilled Vegetable Salad with Citrus Dressing

Nothing makes vegetables shine more than a quick cook on the grill. A colorful blend of zucchini, summer squash, eggplant, fresh corn, cherry tomatoes, and spinach are tossed together for a nutritious salad. Drizzled with a tangy citrus dressing to complement the smoky grilled vegetables.

#6) Grilled BBQ Chicken Pizza

Have you ever tried grilling pizza? You won’t believe how a piping hot grate could create a crispy crust pie in just 10 minutes! I use a premade fresh dough for the base, then top with red sauce and savory chicken, bacon, and vegetable topping for a tasty barbecued pizza. Trust me, this will change your pizza game forever!

Grilled BBQ Chicken Pizza

#7) Tequila Lime Chicken with Mango Salsa

When you’re in need of a tropically inspired meal this chicken recipe is your solution. Each piece of chicken is marinated in a tequila lime to infuse the flavors and tenderize the meat. The fresh mango salsa is a refreshing homemade condiment that goes perfectly with chips too!

Tequila Lime Chicken with Mango Salsa

#8) Pork Chops with Honey Mustard Glaze

The classic combination of grilled pork with honey mustard sauce will leave your guests asking for more! Thick cut pork chops are seasoned and then grilled to add smokiness to the juicy meat. The glaze gives another layer of flavor for a sweet and tangy topping. You can also slice up pork tenderloin instead of chops to switch things up!

Pork Chops with Honey Mustard Glaze

#9) Memphis-Style Barbecue Pork Ribs

These sweet and sticky St. Loius style pork ribs will have you licking your fingers clean! Slowly cooked on indirect heat with a sweet and savory spice rub and basted with a tangy pomegranate mop. Each rib meaty rib is packed with flavor!

Memphis-style Barbecue Pork Ribs

#10) Santa Maria Style Tri-Tip

A family favorite from my college days on the Central Coast of California, this beef recipe is essential for summer cookouts. If your local grocery sells this unique cut of beef, make sure to try this savory and spicy tender steak recipe.

#11) Italian Chicken Bruschetta Sandwich

Up the ante with these grilled chicken sandwiches! The ripe tomato topping is tossed in a tangy balsamic vinegar with fresh basil. Thick slices of fresh mozzarella cheese gently melt together with the chicken and bruschetta mixture.

Italian Chicken Bruschetta Sandwich

#12) Cedar Plank Salmon Fillet

The ultimate way to infuse cedar aromatics into fish is cooking the seafood directly on a pre-charred plank on the grill. A sweet herb spice rub is generously sprinkled on the fish before cooking. This will be the most flavorful and flaky salmon you will ever taste! Try this method to make grilled halibut on the flavorful wood plank.

Grilled Cedar Plank Salmon

#13) Grilled Shrimp Skewers with Honey Garlic Sauce

Succulent marinated grilled shrimp skewers soaked in honey garlic sauce makes for a quick and easy outdoor meal. Smoky flavors from the barbecue and bold spices take this succulent seafood to the next level.

Grilled shrimp

#14) Elotes (Grilled Mexican Street Corn)

Elotes are popular grilled corn on the cob snack in Mexico.  The sweet corn is grilled until the kernels are lightly charred and tender then slathered with a creamy lime topping and cotija cheese.


#15) Salmon Burgers with Lemon Dill Sauce

This homemade fish burger will rival any beef patty, and it’s just as satisfying a delicious! The flavorful grilled seafood patties are served with a citrus herb sauce. Add your favorite toppings like lettuce, tomatoes, onion, and tomato for a mile-high stacked burger!

Bonus!) Homemade Barbecue Sauce

As you dive right into grilling this summer, make sure to always have a barbecue sauce on hand as an extra condiment to serve on the side with the main dish! This sweet and tangy blend with a hint of heat will be your go-to sauce. It’s ready in 30 minutes, so you can quickly have it prepared just in time for the feast! It can also be made a few days ahead and refrigerated so it’s ready at a moments notice.

jar of homemade bbq sauce

With so many of my favorite grilling recipes to chose from, I hope these ideas keep your culinary juices flowing and get some rotation on that blazing hot barbecue. Oh yeah, one more thing! Because I’m a nerdy food scientist I created a list of barbecue food safety tips, one can never be too careful when cooking outdoors. I can’t wait to hear what you cook this summer. Leave me some feedback or any questions you have in the comments section below.

Happy Grilling!

Jessica Gavin

I'm a culinary school graduate, cookbook author, and a mom who loves croissants! My passion is creating recipes and sharing the science behind cooking to help you gain confidence in the kitchen.

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10 Comments Leave a comment or review

  1. Larry Vaught says

    I used the Santa Maria Style Tri Tip Steak recipe for my wife’s 65th birthday party. It was so juicy and palette tantalizing ever. The meat was perfect! Be sure to use the link for the home made BBQ sauce further down in the recipe. While the meat was a hit with the guests, they couldn’t stop raving about the accompanying sauce! I printed this recipe because it’s a definite KEEPER!

    • Jessica Gavin says

      Thank you for your feedback Larry! I’m thrilled to hear that you enjoyed the tri- tip recipe and BBQ sauce!

  2. Judy Caywood says

    Thank you Jessica. I’m going to send this to my brother Ken. I don’t have a grill but he does and since I am heading back there June 19th, maybe we can try a few of these recipes together. They all look so good it will be hard to choose which ones but I am leaning toward the ribs for sure.

  3. Nicole says

    Omg where do I start these all look so amazing. I think I’ll start with the salmon burger. Sounds so interesting and having a few pescatarian friends this will be an awesome way for them to eat a “burger”.

  4. Hannan Ahmad says

    I was looking forward to find some recipes for the upcoming grilling events of my grill store’s promotion. I think some of your recipes are delicious enough to be selected for demonstration. Are there any videos of how these recipes were prepared?

    • Jessica Gavin says

      That is so exciting that you are having a promotion for the store Hannan! The mexican grilled corn salad has a video and will be a very flavorful and colorful recipe to demo.

  5. Esther says

    Hi Jessica, Every one of these looks so delicious! I’m wondering, do you use a gas or charcoal grill? What is your opinion or experiences with the pros and cons of the two? Thanks,

    • Jessica Gavin says

      Hi Ester. Great question! I have a gas grill at home. In terms of pros and cons you can create a controlled heat environment zones like hot for initial cooking, and then medium to low for finishing the cooking process in a separate area on the grill for both gas and charcoal. The plus with gas is that is takes a short time to pre-heat the grill, versus charcoal you need to create a chimney and get the coals burning and nice and hot to heat the grill. The flavors that you get from charcoal may be more be more smoky if you like that flavor profile. However there are ways to add more flavor to your food by using cedar planks, or burning different types of wood for various flavor infusion.