How to Make Grilled Fruit Kabobs for an Appetizer

Once you master the grill, there’s no going back. Everything is going on there: seafood, veggies, even bacon. And if you really want to blow your guests away, grill up some fruit kabobs. The charred, sweetened fruit makes the perfect appetizer, snack, or dessert for every cookout and picnic during the summer.

In the warmer months, we bust out the blackberry peach cobbler, berry crumbles, and other variations of warm fruit wrapped in pastry. While, obviously, we’ll never let these classic dishes go, there are other ways to enjoy fruit that has been heated to perfection. Grilled fruit kabobs strip back the work put into more decadent desserts, all while having a similar caramelized taste laced with hints of smokiness. Our favorite part about them is how customizable they are — you can have a platter of every fruit imaginable, from mangoes and guava to a wide range of berries.

When assembling the kabobs, opt for fruits that are just on the precipice of ripening. Firmer fruits hold their shape better on the grill and the caramelization process will bring out all the sweetness the appetizer needs. To prevent sticking, preheat the grill to a medium temperature before oiling the grates with avocado or grapeseed oil. Before placing the chunky fruit pieces on the skewers, soak the wooden sticks in water. This essential tip for grilling kabobs ensures the skewers don’t catch fire on the grill. Heat the kabobs for about five minutes on each side, or until you see grill marks.

What are the best fruits to grill for kabobs?

Fruit kabobs with yogurt

For the freshest taste, go with crops that are in-season. Stone fruits make up one of the more satiating aspects of summer, and their sweet, floral taste makes for the perfect grilled kabob. Add slices of nectarines, peaches, and apricots to each skewer for a charred, yet juicy post-barbecue dessert. To balance out the flavors, fit in a few pieces of halloumi cheese in between the fruits. If you want to go the extra mile, make a fig and caramelized onion whipped ricotta dipping sauce.

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Customizing existing recipes is one of our favorite ways to dream up kabob ideas. A grilled watermelon salad is delicious in its own right, but think about how incredible it’d be in handheld form. Once the skewered, thick chunks of watermelon and larger-cut feta cubes have blackened a bit, remove them from the grill before basting the fruits with a balsamic mint glaze. Sprinkle the kabobs with sea salt and black pepper, and a few pieces of fresh mint for good measure.

Try your hand with other melons and grill up some cantaloupe and honeydew. While they’re typically the discarded pieces in a fruit salad, the intense flavor they develop on the grill will make them a hot commodity. For a sweet, fiery kick, baste them with a mix of honey and water and roll them around in finely chopped candied ginger. And, of course, don’t forget the grilled pineapple!

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