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13 Things You Didn´t Know You Could Grill

Ever thought of grilling avocados, bacon, or even slices of cheese? Here's how, plus ten more surprising things to throw on the grill.

BEGIN

Cheese

Thick slices of aged provolone or halloumi get soft and chewy over the grill's heat, but don't melt and drip down between the grates. Lightly oil the cheese and grill over medium-high heat, then serve as part of a summery cheese plate with fruit and crusty bread.

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Herbs

The grill coaxes out the floral aromas of hearty, woody herbs like thyme and rosemary (but skip softer herbs like basil or cilantro, which will scorch). Grill whole sprigs over medium-high heat, then add to marinades or cocktails, like this Limoncello Cocktail with Grilled Thyme.

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Cake

To add toasty crunch and caramelized edges, brush angel food or pound cake slices with melted butter and grill over medium heat, then top with ice cream or fruit, like the grilled peaches and crème fraîche shown here.

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Bacon

Cut slab bacon or pancetta into chunks and skewer; grill over medium indirect heat. Add the chunks to salads or soups, or use in the Pancetta & Pineapple Skewers shown here for a fun starter to a backyard barbecue.

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Avocados

For a touch of smoky char on silky avocados, halve and pit the fruits, then brush with oil and grill over medium heat. Use the grilled avocado to your favorite guacamole recipe, or slice it to add an extra layer of flavor to these smoky BLT Burgers.

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Salad

Add a note of char to hearty greens like romaine, endive, and cabbage: halve the heads, brush with oil, and grill over medium-high heat. Dress the heads whole, as in the Butter Lettuce with Buttermilk-Chive Dressing shown here, or thinly slice for coleslaw.

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Shellfish

Nothing quite matches the sweet, intense, and slightly charred taste of shellfish when it's cooked on the grill. Grill lobsters, oysters, clams, mussels and shrimp right in their shells over medium-high heat, then serve with melted butter, cocktail sauce, or aïoli for dipping.

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Quesadillas

Any quesadilla recipe that doesn't have tiny bits of filling--like these Quesadillas with Roasted Poblanos & Onions--can be easily adapted to the grill: just brush the tortillas outside with oil and grill over medium-low heat until the cheese is nice and melty.

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Pizza

After stretching out the dough, brush it with oil and grill over medium-low heat. Flip the dough, add your toppings, and continue to grill until the crust is fully cooked. Some toppings that need pre-cooking (like the beets in this Goat Cheese, Beet and Fig Pizza) are great prepped on the grill too.

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Olives

Skewer any type of brine-cured pitted olive and grill over medium-high heat. Serve as a snack, add to antipasto platters, or substitute them for the cheese-stuffed olives in the Blue Smoke Martini for an extra-smoky edge.

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Fruit

It takes just a few minutes on the grill to caramelize fruit's natural sugars and add a luxurious softness. Brush pineapple, watermelon, peaches, mangos, or bananas with oil and grill over medium-high heat, then add to salads or serve with ice cream, as with these Grilled Cinnamon-Sugar Bananas.

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Nuts

Use the grill to impart toasty sweetness to your favorite nuts. Put the nuts on a sheet of foil (plain or tossed with sugar and spices), then grill over medium heat until toasted and crisp. Use as a garnish, as in these savory Chicken, Sweet Potato, and Peach Skewers, or in granolas or baked goods.

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You can either toast pre-baked flatbreads over medium heat (brush with oil first), or for the true grilling warriors, bake your homemade bread right on the grill grates, as in this recipe for Herb-and-Cheese-Filled Grilled Naan.

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