Fantastic meals made on the grill are rounded off spectacularly with the right sides, the perfectly-paired beverages and even the finale’ – the desserts! With the heat source warmed up and the coals still hot from the burgers or ribs, why waste your time baking in the kitchen when you can satisfy your sweet tooth and take advantage of fresh fruits easily prepared on the grill? While numerous recipes can be found online and in cookbooks for baking on the grill, such desserts as grilled cherry cobbler or grilled chocolate chip cookies (while tasty) require some time and effort. The following desserts can be made in a matter of minutes with minimal effort, yet the simplicity of these dishes is masked by the wealth of flavors you’ll be savoring. Two easy deserts follow; Grilled Honey-Glazed Pineapple and Grilled Sweet Bananas.
Grilled Honey –Glazed Pineapple
- 1 Whole Fresh Pineapple, peeled, cored and sliced into ½ thick rings
- Brown Sugar
Grilled Sweet Bananas
- Bananas, 1 per person
- Brown Sugar
- Sweetened Condensed Milk
- To begin, peel and core the pineapple and slice into 1/2” thick rings. Sprinkle both sides of the slices generously with brown sugar and set aside until ready to grill (the brown sugar will immediately begin to dissolve in the juices of the pineapple).
- Cut the stems off of the bananas and split lengthwise. Peel back the banana peels on both sides, leaving the middle of the peel still intact with the banana so that it is not completely removed (this will make the banana easier to arrange and move on the grill).
- Pack the peeled portion of the bananas, between the fruit and the skin, with brown sugar on both sides of the fruit. Set aside for now.
- Prepare your grill for medium heat (if you’ve already grilled a spectacular meal, your coals should be nice and even at this point). If making these dishes at the same time, all of the fruit can go on the grill at once, but we’ll handle them one at a time here.
- Place the pineapple on the grill and drizzle lightly with honey. Grill over direct heat for about 4-5 minutes. Flip the pineapple and repeat the process for an additional 4-5 minutes as well.
- Remove from heat (add a little more honey if desired) and you’re ready for a sweet, slightly smoky treat!
- Place bananas on the grill, skin-side down. Grill over direct heat for approximately 5-6 minutes, or until the peels turn black.
- Carefully flip the bananas, cut-side down, using a metal spatula and tongs to prevent the fruit from breaking in half. The peels should now pull away from the bananas and the brown sugar should have caramelized on the backside of the fruit.
- Remove the peels from the grill and continue cooking the bananas for about 4-5 minutes.
- Remove bananas from the grill, place on plate on drizzle generously with sweetened condensed milk. Place alongside your favorite ice cream and enjoy!
Fresh grilled fruits make for a fantastic dessert or can be used as a side for such dishes as grilled ham steak or pork chops. Fresh peaches, apricots and more can be enjoyed the same way and, if topped with a little mascarpone cheese, will give you a culinary masterpiece!
Grilling brings out the natural sweetness of the fruit and adds an additional element of flavor you cannot achieve with any other method of preparation. Grilled fruits make a wonderful, quick dessert and are a healthier alternative to most calorie-laden classics. Once you’ve attempted grilling fresh desserts, you’ll be apt to keep the grill mitts close by and the charcoal well stocked.
Keep on grillin’!