It’s a fact that barbecuing is synonymous with longer days, warmer weather and extra delicious food and flavour, the scent of freshly cooked food wafting in the summer breeze, catching up with friends and family and great tunes playing in the background. Sounds like summer heaven doesn’t it?
Unfortunately, barbecuing isn’t the most eco-friendly way to cook. But thankfully, with some careful pre-planning, living a more eco-conscious lifestyle doesn’t have to mean giving up barbecues altogether. So here are some top tips from award winning , plant based Sheese to help you plan a more sustainable BBQ blow out.
Sustainable BBQ – Give single use barbecues a wide berth
Characteristic of our anachronistic single use culture, steer clear of single-use barbecues – they’re pretty much impossible to recycle and fall into the same camp as plastic bottles, plastic bags and cotton buds. Instead invest in a good grill.
Sustainable BBQ – Get sustainable fuel
Good fuel is key to any barbie, to ensure food is well cooked, so look for sustainably sourced charcoal, which is carbon neutral as some charcoals have been linked to mass deforestation in developing countries. Brands such as The Oxford Charcoal Company are UKFS approved, meaning you will also be supporting the regeneration of local UK woodlands, as well as avoiding the polluting paraffin odours of chemical charcoals. Better quality charcoals will also burn longer, so although at a glance it may seem more expensive, sustainable charcoal lasts longer. Also make sure you use wood based firelighters over petrol ones which are bad for the environment.
Sustainable BBQ – Buy local where you can
Eating local ingredients reduces CO2 emissions plus you’ll be using seasonal produce that’s often riper and tastier. Remember to bring your own bags to reduce the plastic you use too!
Sustainable BBQ – Use the lid on your barbeque
For gas BBQ lovers, make your BBQ greener (and more flavoursome!) by only using as much fuel as you need and keeping the lid on the barbecue. Turning the gas off when you’re not cooking goes a long way to reducing your CO2 output too and make sure to adjust your barbecue’s vents to keep the heat and moisture in. Everything will cook faster and more evenly, and you use less fuel.
Sustainable BBQ – Make your menu meat free
Forget the risk of undercooked meat and take the opportunity to try new plant-based recipes and show your mates how delicious they can be! A vegan, veggie, or veg-heavy BBQ can cut your carbon and water footprint in half, putting you on the fast track to a more sustainable garden gathering.
A barbecue isn’t a barbecue without burgers, and your BBQ deserves the best. Vegan burgers can be gloriously juicy in their own right, layer them with vegan condiments and extras like sliced avo, crunchy gherkins , browned onion and award winning plant based Sheese mature cheddar slices which melt perfectly on the BBQ for that gloriously stringy taste and texture.
Why not try this plant-based burger recipe from Sheese or if time is of the essence, Heck does a brilliant range of plant based ready made burgers :
VEGAN PROTEIN CHORIZO BURGERS
Prep. time 10 minutes | Cooking time 15 minutes | Makes 4-6 burgers
A fantastic meal to throw together in a pan or on the barbecue! These vegan protein burgers are an animal free delight usingSheese Mature Cheddar Style Slices and vegan chorizo sausage. Enjoy!
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- 1 onion
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 2 cups vegan soya mince
- 200g vegan sausage (chorizo ideally)
- Salt & pepper to taste
- ½ cup wholewheat flour
- ½ cup ground almonds
- 1-2 tbsp. hemp protein
- Sheese Mature Cheddar Style Slices
- Fried Onions
- Avocado slices
- Beetroot strips
- Begin the process by placing a pan at medium heat, pour the olive oil and allow it to heat, throw in the chopped onion and garlic and lightly fry until golden.
- Add the soya mince and the chunks of the vegan chorizo and lightly fry with the onions and garlic, add salt and pepper to taste.
- Transfer the mince into a powerful food processor and pulse until the ingredients are completely mushed together, pour this mixture into a mixing bowl.
- Add the flour, ground almonds and hemp protein – combine the ingredients together using your hands (at this point you may want to add more or less flour depending on the texture of the burgers, you don’t want it to mushy – also adjust seasoning if needed).
- To make the burgers you can use a burger press, but if you don’t own one, you can simply shape them into a burger by rolling them into a ball and squashing them into a burger patty.
- Now that the burger patties are formed, placed them in a baking tray lined with greaseproof paper and place in the oven and cook for 10-15 minutes. Alternatively cook on an oiled barbecue grill for the same amount of time.
- Remove from the oven or barbecue and add some Bute Island Mature Cheddar Slices, avocado slices, fried onions and beetroot strips (you can play around with toppings)
Finally, you’ve got the sustainable food ready, what about the drinks?
Sustainable BBQ – Reduce bottles and drinks cans
A clever way to reduce bottles and cans is to get some fun beverage dispensers in and make your own drinks. Get creative and toss chopped fruit into Pimm’s, moreish margaritas, lemonades, sangria – the options are endless. For beer lovers, you could source them from local breweries (not only making you look super on-trend but reducing your footprint too).