7 delicious ways to go plant-based at this year’s summer cookout.

Going meatless doesn't mean sacrificing flavor, but it does mean helping the planet.

Mmm, you smell that? That’s sweet summertime in the air — or it’s just the delicious aromas wafting off the grill outside. Either way, rising temps and bounties of sunshine are here to stay for the next couple of months, and so are our warm-weather cravings. It’s the season of our favorite summertime classics — burgers, hot dogs, sloppy Joe’s, and plenty more favorites. 

Thinking of main dishes to bring to those pool parties and cookout summer soirees is easy peasy when you’re a meat-eater, but what about your vegan and vegetarian friends? Yes, there is an abundance of sides for them — fruit salads, hearty pasta salads, and grilled vegetable options — but why can’t they share in your love of the good ol’ American favorites? Well, I’ve got great news for you, they absolutely can.

Thanks to plant-based brands popping up more and more in the food market, turning meat-based favorites into vegan and vegetarian options has truly never been easier. In fact, some of these plant-based picks are so good, meat-eaters may even swap out their usual staples for a greener path. 

So fire up that grill (don’t worry, we have recommendations for those too), and prepare for the best plant-based cookout this summer with these fan favorites.

 

This good ol’ Made in the USA grill is a summertime must-have. Apart from being affordable, the 22-inch charcoal-based grill can fit up to 13 burgers at a time and comes with a built-in lid thermometer, allowing you to adjust the temperature of your grill without ever letting out heat. Want something with more bells and whistles? Weber offers a whole line of premium grills to fit an array of price points and needs.

 

Love camping or have a wanderlust heart? This portable grill deserves a place in your pack. Besides serving up some love in the patriotic department with its Made in the USA stamp, this little baby fits six 4-inch burgers on a special v-grate that improves flavor and virtually eliminates flare-ups. The 15-pound on-the-go grill is user-friendly and will make any wandering heart and hungry stomach happy. 

 

They may contain 55% less fat than the average ground beef burger, but they don’t skimp on the flavor. This vegetarian favorite is flavored with herbs, spices, and cheese, and is packed with 13 grams of protein. You’ll want to flip these burgers all summer long.

 

These vegan hotdogs instantly transport you to the stands of your favorite all-American ballgame. And unlike classic beef hot dogs — which are a blend of who-knows-what — you’ll recognize the ingredients in this plant-based hot dog. These soy-based alternatives contain 8g of protein and support a company that prioritizes sustainability efforts.

 

Your favorite childhood staple made meatless is guaranteed to give your eager stomach the warm tinglies. You can make your Sloppy Joe’s in under five minutes with the quick-cooking, dairy-free, and certified vegan ground “beef.” Plus, rest easy knowing you’re getting 18g of protein and helping out the environment by reducing your meat intake.

 

What is summer without grilled chicken slathered in your favorite BBQ sauce? Sad. It’s sad. Fend off that summertime sadness by giving back to Mother Earth with this meatless option, while satisfying your finger-licking-good craving. These plant-based babies come in flavors original, breaded, cajun, and lemon & herb, and will fool any chicken lover with their taste and texture. Plus, they cook in under 7 minutes from frozen!

 

Turn up for Taco Tuesdays plant style. It’s hot, who needs the meat sweats on top of that spicy salsa anyways? The soy-free plant-based taco crumbles are made with pea protein and are flavored with a blend of organic seasonings, including tomato, onion, jalapeño, cilantro, and lime. If your tongue wants even more of a fiesta, these vegan taco crumbles also come in a mild and Southwest flavor.

 

With Beyond Meat’s widespread popularity in fast-food chains, it’s a no-brainer reaching for these plant-based brats when you want a meatless option instead. These plant-based brats contain 35% less saturated fat than your favorite bratwursts and are packed with 16 grams of protein from peas, brown rice, and fava beans. 

Want more top-notch plant-based food recommendations? Install the Consciously browser extension for your own personal shopping assistant and discover more plant-based brands putting the planet first. Also, be sure to check out these 10 plant-based foods even meat eaters love.

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