Grilled Vegetable Pesto Sandwiches

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Not only are these sandwiches quick and easy to make, but they’re healthy and delicious!  We make these for lunch a few times a week during the summer months, since almost all of the ingredients are grown fresh in our backyard garden.  They taste best with homemade pesto, which is so easy to make and so delicious (but Ina Garten says that store bought is fine too). Even better, they’re great for outdoor grilling when you want to enjoy the sun, or can be made quick and easy on the stove indoors.

Grilled Vegetable Pesto Sandwiches’ Environmental Benefits

  • This recipe can be made with minimal waste by buying loose vegetables and breads, which cuts down on plastic packaging going into landfills and oceans, especially when using Reusable Produce Bags

  • The meat and dairy industries are hugely contributing to the amount of greenhouse gasses going into the atmosphere, switching even a few meals a week to vegetarian or vegan options can help combat this impact

  • Buying pre-packaged and convenience food from fast food chains or grocery stores promotes the use of single use containers, utensils, napkins, and more that’ll end up in landfills and oceans, whereas making the same meal at home makes single use items obsolete

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Grilled Vegetable Pesto Sandwiches

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Total time: 20 minutes

Makes 2 Servings


  • 2 Ciabatta rolls
  • 1 Medium Zucchini
  • 1 Small Eggplant
  • 1 Red bell pepper (fresh or roasted)
  • 4 Tbsp Pesto
  • 4 slices Provolone cheese
  • 1 Tbsp Olive oil
  • Handful of Basil Leaves


1. PREHEAT: Heat up an outdoor grill to a medium-low temperature or stovetop grill pan to medium.

2. PREP WORK: Slice the eggplant into rounds and the zucchini down it's length, making the slices 1/3 inch thick. If using fresh bell peppers, cut it in half and remove seeds and ribbing inside. If using pre-roasted bell peppers, take them out of the jar and drain off any excess liquid. Lightly coat the vegetables with olive oil on both sides. Slice the bread in half to create buns, spread pesto on both sides, and place one slice of cheese on each half.

3. ROASTING: Place the fresh red bell peppers on the grill, and leave to cook for 6-7 minutes or until thoroughly charred and soft before flipping. Add on the zucchini and eggplant, grilling them for 4-5 minutes, or until char marks form. Then flip, and allow to cook for an addition 3-4 minutes, or until fully cooked (if any vegetables are done before others, just take them off the heat and set them to the side). Place the buns and pre-roasted bell peppers (if using) on the grill for the final minute of cooking, just to heat up and begin to melt the cheese.

4. ASSEMBLE: Once everything is cooked and warmed, assemble it all together on the buns, add some fresh basil leaves on top of the vegetables, and enjoy.


  • Make It Vegan- This recipe can easily be made vegan, just use a vegan pesto and vegan cheese, or simply forgo the cheese slices.

  • Try With Hummus- Hummus also works well with the flavors, spread it on one half of the bread in addition to or in place of the pesto. Just know that adding hummus makes the vegetables VERY slippery (and very delicious) when eating.

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