15+ Easy Grilling Recipes for Summer

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These grilling recipes will have you making the most out of long summer days and they provide the best cookout foods yet. From grilled meats to grilled fish, and even grilled vegetables (my favorite), there’s a little something for everyone to enjoy.

Grilling beef shish kabobs
Photo: Gayle McLeod

Why These Grilling Recipes Hit the Spot Every Time

Living in Southern California means I get to enjoy sunshine the majority of the year. But there’s just something about summertime grilling that gets me extra excited. Perhaps it’s the family and friends who so often join the cookouts, pool parties, and backyard gatherings. So if you’re in the mood for the best grilled food, check out the list below. Here’s why I think you’ll love them:

  • They’re super easy. I’ve always prioritized uncomplicated recipes, and these grilling ideas are just that. Not only are they great for summer BBQs, but many are easy enough to enjoy for weeknight grilling.
  • You’ll find inspiration for grilling marinades. Marinades are key to tasty grilling, and you’ll find delicious marinade ideas for kebabs, chicken, beef, fish, and more!
  • I’ll provide side dish options. You want pairings with the main course, right? Scroll below to get some delicious side dish pairings to complete your lunch or dinner.

Grilled Meat Recipes

BBQ chicken on a grill

BBQ Chicken

Be the MVP at your next summer cookout with this grilled BBQ chicken recipe. The low and slow barbecue process makes the chicken incredibly juicy and beautifully charred. Not to mention, my homemade BBQ sauce is what makes this chicken extra special.

Pairs well with: This classic potato salad or creamy coleslaw.

Sliced carne asada on a cutting board

Carne Asada

The secret to the best carne asada is using my carne asada marinade. The ingredients are simple, as they should be, but layered with bold, bright, and fresh flavors.

Pairs well with: Diced onions, cilantro, and lime juice in carne asada tacos or sides of cilantro lime rice and guacamole.

Steak fajitas in a skillet with toppings on the side

Steak Fajitas

This is one of my go-to grilling recipes for a fun and tasty weeknight dinner. And while you can eat the fixings on their own on a plate, complete fajita in tortillas with toppings are where it’s at.

Topping ideas: Pico de Gallo, red salsa, and a dollop of lime crema.

Skirt steak with chimichurri sauce

Skirt Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

One of my favorite sauces to make during summer is chimichurri sauce. It’s the perfect pairing with this tender grilled flank skirt steak. But you could also use it for other simple grilled meats!

Pairs well with: Garlic herb roasted potatoes

Grilled KEBABS and skewers

Grilled chicken souvlaki on a plate

Greek Chicken Souvlaki

This is hands down one of my favorite Greek street food items. The bright lemon garlic herb marinade is simple yet robust in flavor and will have everyone going for that second (or third) skewer.

Pairs well with: Tzatziki sauce and a side of this refreshing Greek salad.

Grilled shrimp skewers on a plate with lemon slices, parsley and the marinade.

Garlic Grilled Shrimp Skewers

There’s so much to love about these jumbo-grilled shrimp. They only take 10 minutes to cook and are doused in the brightest and freshest garlic herb marinade.

Pairs well with: Classic mashed potatoes or mashed cauliflower

Beef shish kabobs on a tray

Beef Shish Kabob

This recipe will give you a taste of my travels to the Middle East! It’s the ultimate kabob recipe with chunky, juicy steak bites and colorful sliced vegetables.

Pairs well with: A drizzle of tahini sauce and a side of cauliflower rice tabbouleh.

Greek chicken kabobs on a white plate with tzatziki sauce.

Greek Chicken Kabobs

Using my Greek salad dressing as the base for the marinade has made these chicken kabobs such a huge hit every time.

Pairs well with: Tzatziki or this vegan tzatziki.

Grilled FISH

Grilled salmon tacos on two plates

Grilled Salmon Tacos

Inspired by my trip to Alaska’s, these salmon tacos are ones I make often. They’re piled with flaky grilled salmon, freshly shredded cabbage, and a combination of my homemade salsa verde and creamy chipotle sauce.

Pairs well with: This cucumber radish salad for a complimentary fresh, coastal taste.

Grilled salmon steak on a plate next to a skillet

Grilled Salmon Steaks

When it comes to grilling salmon, salmon steaks are my jam. They’re done in less than 15 minutes and they’re moist, smoky, and drizzled with the best creamy mustard chive sauce. Hint — I’d make two batches of the sauce.

Pairs well with: I love this cucumber salad for a refreshing side. For a warm side, sauteed cabbage or sauteed green beans are great.

Salmon on a charred cedar plank garnished with green onions.

Cedar Plank Salmon with Maple Ginger Glaze

If you haven’t tried grilling with a cedar plank yet, you’re in for a treat. It prevents fish from sticking to the grill while giving it just the right amount of smokiness.

Pairs well with: This perfectly seasoned and tender roasted asparagus.

Two fish tacos on a table next to limes and avocado.

Grilled Fish Tacos

Perfectly grilled Alaskan cod paired with a bright, fresh citrus carrot slaw screams summer in a taco. And I would even make extra slaw to eat as a BBQ side dish!

Pairs well with: This garden fresh corn salad.

Grilled Vegetables and Fruits

Grilled corn on the cobs on a white plate next to butter.

Grilled corn on the cobb

It’s not a summer cookout without this grilled corn, especially for holidays like Memorial Day, 4th of July, and Labor Day. Plus, I’ll show you how to grill two ways for juicy, flavorful results!

Elote on a plate with limes

ELOTE (Grilled Mexican Corn)

Speaking of corn, elote is hands down one of my favorite ways to serve grilled corn. And if you love Mexican food like I do, you’ll go head over heels for the topping — a creamy mayo spread, with cotija cheese, chili powder, lime juice, and fresh cilantro.

Grilled peaches with ice cream

Grilled Peaches

The best way to make use of peach season is to grill them. I know they’re great served fresh, but hear me out. They become extra juicy and sweet, turning into the perfect summer dessert with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Grilled watermelon pieces on a white plate

Grilled Watermelon

This grilled fruit is definitely a sleeper recipe. It’s slightly smoky and brushed with a refreshing blend of honey, lime, and fresh cilantro.

More Ideas For A Summer Cookout

  • Peruse my list of July 4th recipes for tasty ideas to complete your barbecue spread!
  • These smoothie recipes are the perfect thing to enjoy by the pool.
  • You can never have too many salads on the table, especially with so many to choose from in this list of salad recipes or summer salads.
  • If you want to update your grilling supplies, you can find all my favorite items on my Amazon storefront.

I hope you enjoy these grilling recipes as much as I do! If you make any of them, I’d love to hear how they turned out in the comment box below. Your review will help other readers in the community.

Grilling recipes.

15+ Summer Grilling Recipes

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Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 15 minutes
Total: 20 minutes
Servings: 2 servings
Author: Lisa Bryan


Enjoy all the best grilling recipes, from grilled meats, to grilled vegetables, to grilled fish like these delicious salmon steaks drizzled with a creamy mustard chive sauce. You'll shine at your next summer cookout!



Salmon Steaks

  • 2 salmon steaks
  • 1 tablespoon avocado oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste

Creamy Mustard Chive Sauce

  • 3 tablespoons stone-ground mustard
  • 3 tablespoons Greek yogurt (dairy or dairy-free)
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped chives
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • salt and pepper, to taste


  • Heat an outdoor grill or grill pan on the stove over medium-high heat. Brush both sides of the salmon steaks with avocado oil, then season with salt and pepper.
  • Grill the salmon for 5-7 minutes each side, depending on thickness. To flip, use a spatula underneath rather than grabbing from the side with tongs (as it may cause the salmon to fall apart).
  • Meanwhile, in a small bowl, stir together the mustard, yogurt, chives, honey, lemon juice, salt and pepper.
  • To serve, plate the salmon and drizzle a generous amount of the creamy mustard chive sauce on top.
    Salmon steak on a plate drizzled with yogurt sauce.


Calories: 366kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 37g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 95mg | Sodium: 339mg | Potassium: 915mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 216IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 62mg | Iron: 2mg
Course: Dinner
Keyword: grilling recipes
Did you make this recipe?Mention @downshiftology or tag #downshiftology!

About the author

Lisa Bryan

Lisa is a bestselling cookbook author, recipe developer, and YouTuber (with over 2.5 million subscribers) living in sunny Southern California. She started Downshiftology in 2014, and is passionate about making healthy food with fresh, simple and seasonal ingredients.

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