Grilled bread is a beautiful phrase, but it doesn’t always actually mean a BBQ is involved. This summer, though, it should. From grilled pizza to grilled garlic bread, there are lots of delicious ways to char-grill your carbs.
You probably already toast your hamburger and hot dog buns, but have you grilled slabs of sourdough, or made bread skewers? How about grilled flatbread? And then there’s the option to actually bake a loaf from scratch on the grill.
More than mere summer stunts, these BBQ breads are imbued with the great smoky flavor of charcoal (unless you use a gas grill, but at least you’ll still get some char), and (depending on the dough) they’re texturally elevated to some beautiful state of crunchy, crisp, or chewy—at best, a mix of all three.
Here are nine grilled bread recipes for every taste and skill level to try this summer:
Whether you use store-bought pizza dough or make the crust from scratch, you can toss it directly on the grill grate to cook; add the toppings after you’ve given each side a turn over the coals. And be sure to oil your grill grates before you begin. Get our Grilled Pizza recipes and tips.
Emile Henry Pizza Stone, $49.95 from Williams Sonoma
Use it on the grill or in your oven.
In the same vein as pizza, flatbread is great grilled, and perfect for serving with almost anything you can think of. Try using it to wrap up meat and veggies you slide off their skewers; dip it in everything from hummus to tzatziki; tear it into chunks to have with burrata and grilled peaches; or use it to swipe up curry, just for starters. Get the Grilled Flatbread recipe.
Grilling thick slabs of sliced bread (from a sturdy loaf, please, not pre-sliced supermarket squares) makes the ideal base for any number of things, from ripe heirloom tomatoes to creamy cheese. See some of our favorite summer bruschetta toppings, or treat it like crostini. Or forget the open-faced approach and make yourself a sandwich with the grilled bread.
Take any rustic loaf and grill it instead of toasting it in the oven to make panzanella. Our Grilled Eggplant Parmesan Salad recipe is essentially a non-traditional version of the classic Italian bread salad with tomatoes, but you can toss the grilled bread cubes with any combo of ingredients you like and call it dinner.
You know it, you love it, but have you made it on your grill before? Melted butter is key, as you’ll see in this Grilled Garlic Bread recipe. Try serving it with grilled chicken parm, anything with red sauce, or grilled clams.
If it’s not too crumbly to hold up to the treatment, you can grill pieces of cooked cornbread to give them a little smoky char and crisp edges, but you can also bake your skillet cornbread on the grill itself. You should be sure to preheat the skillet so you get a crisp bottom and sides. Get the Grilled Skillet Cornbread recipe.
Lodge Chef Collection Pre-Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet, $29.95 from Sur La Table
Instead of grilling slices of bread, you can also thread cubes onto skewers; that way you get even more toasty edges. Our Grilled Bread Skewer recipe is a deconstructed take on bruschetta, but you can play around with other quick-cooking veggies or just use this technique to grill the bread by itself. If going solo, brush the toasted cubes with garlic butter in the last minute and use them as grilled croutons in a Caesar salad (or any other leafy green bowl), or simply use them as the base of a bread salad with raw summer tomatoes and cucumbers.
When you use the lid on your grill, you can use it to bake bread (and desserts). This means everything from dinner rolls and homemade hot dog buns to no-knead bread loaves in a Dutch oven or even straight on the grate. True, this is a more advanced method, but if you’re feeling up for it, it’s a fun project and keeps your kitchen cool in high summer.
A loaf of French bread or ciabatta can be sliced in half along the horizon and filled with anything you like (meat and cheese, grilled veggies, or—as in this case—chocolate), then pressed shut, buttered, and grilled in one piece; a grill basket will help keep it closed. Then slice and serve. If you’re going for a sweet finish, sprinkle the outsides with cinnamon and sugar just before it’s done. If savory, try dusting it with garlic powder and parmesan instead. Get our Grilled Chocolate Sandwich recipe.
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