To everything, there is a season. A time to grow, a time to grill. And a time to grill what you grow. Because grilled vegetables are crazy-delicious.

Sweet and smoky and so much prettier than a big blob of potato salad.

For these Grilled Vegetable Skewers, I cut up the veggies we had on-hand (i.e. mushrooms, squash, zucchini, a red bell pepper, grape tomatoes and a red onion), threaded them onto wooden skewers and brushed them with a basil pesto vinaigrette before throwing them on the grill.

On their own, these kebabs make a really light, tasty salad-on-a-stick, but there are so many things you can do with these veggies. Stuff them into pitas. Make grilled veggie subs. Pile them on top of a few grilled pizzas. Toss them with feta and couscous. Layer them on a mountain of arugula, and add a few black olives and some feta for a big, beautiful green salad.

And then stuff your face, because there’s a time for that, too.

Farm-Stand Grilled Vegetable Skewers with Pesto Vinaigrette

Adapted from “Sara Foster’s Southern Kitchen”

Makes about 12 skewers (serves 6 to 12 people)

Vinaigrette:

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup Pesto (recipe below)
  • Juice of 1 lemon

Vegetables (use whatever mix you can get your hands on; these are suggestions):

  • 1/2 pound okra, stem ends removed (OR, substitute with 8 ounces mushrooms)
  • 2 bell peppers (any color), cored, seeded, and cut into 2-inch wedges
  • 1 red onion, cut into 2-inch wedges
  • 6 small summer squash (like yellow or zucchini), cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  1. For the Vinaigrette: Whisk together the olive oil, pesto and lemon juice. Set aside.
  2. Get a hot fire going in a charcoal grill, and let the coals burn to gray ash with a slight red glow. (If you’re using a gas grill, heat the grill on medium.)
  3. Soak your wooden skewers in water while prepping the vegetables.
  4. Skewer the vegetables, alternating them for varied flavor and color.
  5. Brush the skewers with the vinaigrette, and season with salt and pepper.
  6. Place the skewers on the grill, and cook for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until the vegetables are slightly charred but still crisp-tender. Serve warm with the remaining vinaigrette on the side.

Pesto

From Food Network Kitchens

Makes 1 cup

  • 2 cups packed fresh basil leaves
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino cheese
  1. Combine the basil, garlic, and pine nuts in a food processor. Pulse until coarsely chopped.
  2. Add 1/2 cup of the oil, and process until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Add all the remaining oil, and pulse until smooth. Mix in the cheese.