Let’s talk pineapples! Grilling is by far the best way to eat pineapple as even the slightly under-ripe pineapples taste amazing. Grilled pineapple is a favorite side dish to make all summer long.
While there are so many ways you can use pineapples to flavor your meals, grilled pineapple is the ultimate as it adds a ton of flavor plus it’s healthy to boot and doesn’t alter your taste buds as raw pineapple does.
Grilling pineapples brings out all of the pineapple’s juices as it starts to caramelize, making it a perfect snack, appetizer, side dish and even dessert that can be served alongside grilled meats and burgers. You can knock the two recipes at the same time, as they can be grilled together.
Grilling basic pineapple is a breeze. You just spray or as well wipe canola oil on a grill pan and cook the pineapple for 2-3 minutes on medium heat. you then rotate 45 degrees to get the grill marks in a little x-like pattern. Some people prefer leaving the core intact to act as a spot for holding it while eating.
Grilled Pineapple Flavors
Honey: Honey serves as a substitute for brown sugar and has a much more prominent color. Depending on what other flavors you have going on in the meal, you can use either honey or sugar interchangeably.
Coconut and lime: These two serve a delicious drink to complement the grilled pineapple! You can also soak the pineapple slices in your favorite flavor of Malibu rum and serve it with some ice cream!
Cinnamon and brown sugar: For dessert uses, cinnamon and brown sugar are renowned as an excellent marinade.
Chili powder: Once you are done with frilling, you can always add a little bit of chili powder to spice up your grilled pineapple!
For this Pineapple Recipe, you are going to need:
1 can good-quality coconut milk
1/2 cup loosely packed brown sugar
Pinch of salt
Optional: 1 Tbsp. coconut extract (baking type), OR 2 Tbsp. coconut-flavored liqueur for an extra, adult treat!
8-10 wooden or stainless-steel skewers
Step 1: Choose a Well-Ripened Pineapple
For this grilled pineapple recipe, you will need a fresh and ripe pineapple. The pineapple will make approximately 8-10 single servings, enough to feed 4-6 people.
Testing for Ripeness
To test your pineapple for ripeness, lift the pineapple by a single leaf. If the leaf detaches from the pineapple, then the pineapple is ripe. You have to try this a couple of times with the same pineapple. If none of the leaves detach, then it’s unripe.
Also, check for over-ripeness when buying fresh pineapple. By gently pressing your thumb into the pineapple sides, you can tell by the pineapple’s texture. If it feels mushy or extremely soft in places, then it’s beyond ripe.
Step 2: Cut the Pineapple
With a sharp, serrated knife, turn the pineapple on its side and slice off the top.
Step 3: Slice off the Sides
Set the pineapple upright and slice off the skin by making long cuts down the sides of the pineapple, until you’ve completely sliced off all of the skin.
Step 4: Finish Off
Rotate the pineapple around as you check for any remaining skin as some of the pineapple’s skin runs more than skin-deep! Slice off all the remaining bits with your knife.
Step 5: Section the Pineapple
Firmly hold the pineapple and slice it in half downwards. Cut into half again to have four equal sections. Lay these sections on the cutting board. Then, pick up one section at a time, slice off 1/3 to ½ inch of the hard inner core, still downwards. The core is usually extremely dense and has a lot of fiber.
While some prefer cutting all the core off, leaving some of it lets you have some fiber left and also helps make the paces more stable and easy to skewer.
Step 6: Cut into Spears
Cut the pineapples into spears by slicing each section in half again. This will give you 8 wholesome pieces. Confirm the thickness and weight of the pieces as some tend to be heavier and thicker than the others.
For the thicker and heavier ones, slice in half again. This leaves them in perfect condition for the skewers to be able to hold them.
The final pieces should be 8 for a small pineapple or 10-12 pieces for a larger pineapple.
Place the pineapple pieces in a flat-bottomed bowl for marinating.
Step 7: Make the Marinade/Dipping Sauce
The marinade/dipping sauce is made from coconut and is pretty much easy to make. Simply place 1 can of coconut milk in a saucepan over medium heat for it to get warm.
Do not let it boil. Then, add loosely packed brown sugar plus a pinch of salt and stir it thoroughly.
All this is done while still on the heat, and once the sugar has dissolved completely, remove the saucepan from the heat. if you want more flavor, you can as well add 1Tbsp. of coconut extract or 2 Tbsp. of coconut flavored liqueur for an extra adult treat.
Step 8: Marinate the Pineapple Pieces
Pour half of the coconut marinade into a dipping bowl and refrigerate until you’re done the grilling and ready to eat. The remaining half is what you use to marinate the pineapple pieces. To coat effectively, turn the pineapple pieces around several times.
Cover and refrigerate till the time you’re ready to grill. At least 10 minutes up to 1 hour. Leaving it longer than this will cause the savory juice to drain out.
Step 9: Grill the Pineapple
Brush your grill with a little cooking oil then stick a wooden skewer at the very far end of each pineapple piece and place it on the grill.
Grill for 5 to 10 minutes on each side, or until the pineapple changes color to bright yellow with beautiful, restaurant-like grill marks.
While grilling, baste the pineapple once or twice with the leftover marinade from the bottom of the bowl.
Step 10: Serve
Get the grilled “pineapple pops” from the grill and serve them. Set out the dip for dipping and enjoy!
You can as well place the pineapple skewers on a serving plate and sprinkle with a little dry shredded coconut and serve with the dip on one side. The latter provides for a more elegant presentation. Enjoy!
The grilled pineapple can be kept at room temperature for up to 8 hours. You can always re-warm before serving.
Obsessed with grilling pineapple? Then this step-by-step of how to grill pineapple recipe is your ultimate solution! Happy grilling this summer favorite and enjoy!