Give grilled romaine a try. A grilled Romaine Salad is a super fun and tasty Summer side dish. With Pine Nut Vinaigrette and grilled asparagus, all you need is a grilled steak, or grilled scallops … or both. Which ever you choose, this grilled Summer side dish will impress those back yard BBQ guests.
Stepping out of that recipe comfort zone
Well, I must say I out did myself with this one. I decided to jump on the grilled romaine lettuce salad bandwagon since I’ve been seeing it everywhere lately. I’m glad I did – it’s totally fabulous in a unique way.
You bet I was leery, but this summer salad idea has been a staple in our meal plan rotation ever since.
Easy to prepare, healthy, fresh, pretty and absolutely delicious. What more could you ask for.
But wait a minute … Is grilled lettuce good? A firm crisp lettuce like romaine holds up very well on those hot grill grates. And if you’ve never tried grilling romaine lettuce, you’re in for a real treat. It adds a smoky dimension to the flavor of romaine. With crispy edges and a warm toasty center, it’s simply a delicious and fun way to serve romaine.
Serve this grilled side salad next time you’re entertaining. They’ll find you very clever and adventurous.
To get this meal on your Summer table, start by getting that grill fired up, with final temperature reading 350 degrees.
How to Grill Romaine Lettuce with Grilled Asparagus
- Heat grill to 500 degrees. Once hot, turn heat down to 350 degrees. Hot searing grates is an excellent start to crisping the outer leaves of that lettuce.
- Prepare romaine by stripping outer leaves so you have a clean and uniform head of lettuce. Or you can purchase a package of romaine hearts from the store.
- Cut the romaine lettuce in half.
- Brush the romaine with olive oil.
- Salt and pepper the romaine lettuce.
- Prepare the asparagus by washing and cutting lower tough ends off. Brush asparagus with olive oil. Salt and pepper.
- Place the asparagus in a grill pan/basket. I like this one from Weber. It’s a great size for asparagus, shrimp, fish and beyond.
- Place the asparagus on one side of the grill, brush the grates with olive oil and lay the romaine directly on the grates, cut side down.
- Grill each for 5 – 7 minutes, or until the asparagus is tender, stirring with tongs as you go. And the romaine lettuce is starting to brown on the outer edges and the inner leaves are getting hot. Watch it closely, remember, you’re grilling romaine, not steak. I like to move the lettuce around now and then for more even cooking.
- And if you don’t have an outdoor grill, you can always make this recipe using a stove top grill pan.
I’ve included an Amazon link for the grill basket. I’m a member of the Amazon Affiliate Program. If you purchase the Weber grill pan from the link, I receive a small commission at no extra charge to you.
Make It A Meal, Dressing and Main Dishes for Grilled Salad
I served this meal with bacon wrapped scallops. Which were perfect because the grilling time was similar to both the asparagus and the grilled romaine. So easy to plate and serve the meal without having to keep one thing warm while the rest of the meal finished cooking. It was a nice timely dinner plan.
And with a drizzle of Lemon Pine Nut Vinaigrette. This lemon pine-nut dressing is bright, vibrant and irresistibly delicious. Pine nuts are high in oil which give them a buttery flavor and texture. They offer a hint of pine flavor and when mixed with vinegar shallots and lemon bring a mild and sweet flavor to the overall flavor.
You’ll find the recipe for the pine nut vinaigrette below in the recipe card.
Use a large serving platter to arrange the grilled asparagus, grilled romaine and the grilled scallops.
I always like to add a pop of color, so hard boiled eggs, and cherry tomatoes were a welcome addition. Throw the cherry tomatoes in the grill basket with the asparagus the last minute of cooking. It will warm them up and brighten the flavor.
You can serve the grilled romaine whole, or give it a good coarse chop and toss with the dressing rather than drizzling the dressing over the top.
A good Caesar dressing would also be fabulous for grilled romaine.
And if you’re not interested in scallops, try grilled romaine with:
- Pasta with Slow Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
- Grilled Cedar Plank Salmon
- Maple Glazed Grilled Chicken Kabobs
- Grilled Flank Steak with Orange Ginger Marinade
Wine suggestion: Our only mistake was the wine pairing. We served a Sauvignon Blanc, which was just plain wrong. We needed a toasty Chardonnay. Oh well, we suffered through and drank it anyway. 🙂
This grilled romaine recipe is such a favorite, and so easy to prepare, I’ve even prepared it at our camp site at Moraine Park.
Grilled Romaine Salad Recipe with Pine Nut Vinaigrette
I hope you give this grilled romaine salad a try. And if you do, please come back and give the recipe a star rating. And leave a comment about your experience with the recipe.
And if you have a favorite grilled romaine recipe, let me know, I’d love to give it a try.
More Side Salad Recipes
- Avocado Mango Salad with Blue Cheese delightful with fresh ingredients, beautiful with textures and awesome in flavor.
- Baby Kale and Apple Salad with Cider Vinaigrette super healthy Kale and Apple Salad topped with a sweet and tangy cider dressing. The combination of textures and flavors work perfectly.
- Arugula Salad with Truffle Vinaigrette Arugula tossed with a vinaigrette of Truffle Oil and Balsamic Vinegar. Add scrumptious double cream cheese and a chunk of bread and you have a perfect treat for dining on the patio.
And interested in learning how to make the perfect tossed salad? Check out my post for 9 Secrets To A Perfect Tossed Salad.
Grilled Romaine Salad is a great way to serve a Summer side dish. With Pine Nut Vinaigrette and grilled asparagus, all you need is some grilled steak, or grilled scallops … or both.
- 2 heads Romaine lettuce outer leaves removed
- 1 pound asparagus tough ends removed
- For the vinaigrette
- 1 large shallot diced
- 1 whole lemon zested and juiced
- 1 Tablespoon sherry vinegar
- 1/2 Cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
Combine shallot, lemon zest and juice, and vinegar in a food processor and whirl for about 30 seconds.
With food processor running, slowly drizzle in olive oil, then add salt/pepper/pine nuts. Process until fairly smooth but a few pieces of pine nut are still visible, about 1 minute. Drizzle over warm asparagus/romaine salad. Set aside.
Light grill and heat to 500, turn down and set final temperature at 350 degrees. Brush romaine and asparagus with olive oil. Place asparagus on a grill pan and cook, tossing, for 5 minutes. Add romaine lettuce and cook until leaves are browned and lettuce is just starting to wilt.
Place on a platter and drizzle with vinaigrette. You can slice up the vegetables if you'd like for an alternate presentation. Add a pop of color with hard boiled eggs and cherry tomatoes.
You can also purchase a package of romaine hearts at the grocery store. Just cut them in half and follow the directions above.
Grilled Romaine Salad with Pine Nut Vinaigrette … It’s What’s for Dinner