Another Friday, another skewer! Grilled vegetable skewers to be exact.
I mentioned last week that I was in a skewer phase, and this time I’m giving you a leeeeettle bit more than an appetizer.
With pesto again! I promise I’m not trying to be boring. I just can’t hold in all of these delicious recipes.
And these aren’t just any old grilled vegetable skewers. They are served with grilled halloumi cheese AND pistachio pesto.
My everything is so happy.
To say that we’ve been obsessed with halloumi for the last few months would be an understatement. Ever since I made these hummus halloumi bowls (that you guys love too!), it’s been on my must-make list for other recipes. We cannot get enough.
If it was up to me, I’d like to include halloumi in our weekly meal plan. And, I mean, I guess it IS up to me, but does my cheese consumption reeeeeally need to be that extreme?
Don’t answer that.
If you follow along on Instagram, you see that I’ve been grilling vegetables like CRAZY. Grilling is my roasting in the warmer months. Raw vegetables are still my frenemy but if the veg is charred to perfection, I’m game.
These skewers are pure heaven. Potatoes, radish, peppers, onions, zucchini, mushrooms… and cheese!
I feel like a broken record. I know I just talked about this a TON in this post where I shared the grilled broccoli salad, but I truly never thought I’d want to eat vegetables like these for meal!
Yes, I know. I can’t believe I said it either.
I could eat (and, well, have eaten) these roasted vegetables with halloumi and pesto for a meal over and over again. It’s so good, super satisfying, and if you add something crunchy (like a sprinkle of pistachios from the pesto) then your texture craving is covered. I live for it.
Eddie also loves these so much. They aren’t a full meal for him, but he seriously enjoys them too. So does Emilia!
They are not hot dogs or mac and cheese, so I can’t say the same for Max. Whomp whomp.
The pesto? Well I’ve done pistachio pesto a bunch of times. With chicken, on pizza, with strawberry caprese and even pasta salad. Classic basil pesto is definitely I craving I find myself having when warm weather hits, but pistachio pesto has a depth of flavor that can’t be beat. I like to use a mix of arugula greens and basil (but much less than you would traditionally!) and then LOTS of pistachios.
The other great thing about this recipe is if you make one of the recipes I mention above and find yourself with leftover pesto, make these skewers!
And there is something about actually grilling halloumi that makes it insanely flavorful. The smoky flavor and extra char takes it over the top. While in the cooler months I tend to just use a skillet or grill pan to toast it, actually grilling it is by far superior!
Seriously why wasn’t I eating my vegetables like this ten years ago?!
Grilled Vegetable Skewers
Yield: 4 people
My all time favorite grilled vegetable skewers served with grilled halloumi cheese and pistachio pesto! Makes the best summer meal ever.
- 8 ounces cherry tomatoes
- 8 ounces baby bella mushrooms, stems removed
- 1 1/2 cups baby Yukon gold potatoes, halved
- 1 cup whole radishes, halved
- 1 zucchini squash, chopped
- 1 red onion, chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- salt and pepper, for sprinkling
- 8 to 12 ounces halloumi cheese, cut into 1 inch chunks
- olive/grapeseed/coconut oil spray or drizzle
- 1 cup shelled pistachios
- 1 1/2 cups loosely packed fresh basil leaves torn
- 1/2 cup fresh arugula
- 2 tablespoons fresh oregano
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1/3 cup finely grated pecorino romano cheese
- 1/3 to 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
The key to the skewers is making sure your vegetables are all roughly around the same size. I like to look at the size of my tomatoes, radishes and halved baby potatoes, then chop the onions, zucchini, mushrooms and peppers accordingly. You just want them roughly all the same size! If anything, you want the potatoes slightly smaller and the tomatoes slightly larger. The potatoes will take the longest to grill, and if you wish, you can par boil them ahead of time.
To par boil the potatoes, place them in a pot of cold water and bring it to a boil. Boil for 5 to 8 minutes until they are slightly softened.
Then… skewer! There is no rhyme or reason to skewering. I like to do 1 or 2 potato halves, 1 or 2 radish halves, 1 or 2 potatoes, and in between all of that, your stacked peppers, onions, mushrooms and zucchini. I skewer roughly 12 to 15 pieces of vegetable on each skewer. Some pieces, like the peppers and onions, require a stack of 3 or 4 slices together. These veggies should make roughly 8 large skewers, give or take a few veg pieces depending on how you slice them. You may notice in the photos I skewered a few pieces of radicchio too. It tends to burn quickly so I wouldn’t recommend it.
To make the halloumi skewers, skewer 4 to 5 pieces halloumi on each skewer. I find that 1 halloumi skewer is perfect for 2 veggie skewers!
Preheat your grill to medium heat for at least 15 minutes. You want the temperature around 350 or 400 degrees F.
Brush or spray your vegetable skewers with an olive oil or even a coconut oil spray if you wish. Sprinkle them liberally with salt and pepper. You can also brush or spray the halloumi, but it does not need salt.
Place your vegetable skewers directly on the grill. Grill for 2 to 3 minutes per side, rotating 3 to 4 times so each side of the skewer gets nice and charred.
Place the halloumi skewers directly on the grill. Grill for just 1 to 2 minutes per side, until grill marks appear.
Serve the veg skewers with the halloumi skewers and the pistachio pesto. Enjoy!
Note: you can make the vegetable skewers a few hours ahead of time, except for the potatoes. You can add them on the skewer right before making. You can also make the pesto a day or two ahead of time!
Place the pistachios, basil, arugula, oregano, garlic and cheese in a food processor. Pulse and blend until the nuts are coarsely chopped, then with the processor on, stream in 1/3 cup of olive oil. Add a little more if necessary, depending on how “spreadable” you want your pesto to be. Taste the pesto and add in the salt, blending once more. This will make a little extra pesto than needed, so store it sealed tightly in the fridge for up to a week.
Happy cheesy face.