With summer here in Australia, the great tradition of gathering with a BYO plate of food is back.

And whether it’s a picnic in the park, or backyard barbecue, easy vegetarian or plant-rich dishes are firmly on the favourites menu.

From sides to salads, we’ve got easy recipes perfect for your gathering sorted. And the best bit? You’ll be able to find all the ingredients during your regular grocery shop – no special trips needed.

And if you join Back to Basics things get even simpler, with our one-click add-to-cart online ingredient shopping. Happy alfresco eating!

Best for…impressing

Recipe: Tomato Medley and Barbecued Haloumi Skewers

Served with chargrilled sourdough, these easy vegetarian kebabs and herby sauce are brilliant on the barbecue.

A veggo BBQ favourite ready in 15 mins flat. Image: Lyndi Cohen

Best for…flavour

Recipe: Zesty Thai Noodle Salad

A punchy crunchy salad that pairs perfectly with Asian-inspired spicy meats, this is one way to eat colourfully.

A no-cook, no brainer. Image: Lyndi Cohen

Best for…those who still like their meat hit

Recipe: Middle Eastern Mezze Plate

Featuring cauliflower, pomegranate and one of my favourite flavours – zaatar this is fresh and made for sharing. If you don’t want to use lamb to make the meatballs, sub in turkey mince.

The perfect backyard barbecue share plate does exsist…..Image: Lyndi Cohen

Best for….crowd pleasing

Recipe: Haloumi, Brown Rice and Quinoa Salad

This legume based salad stars tangy salty haloumi and a healthy handful of mint.

Proof salads don’t need to be boring, or served in a bowl. Image: Lyndi Cohen

Best for….families

Recipe: Crispy Parmesan Cauliflower Nuggets

Kids love nuggets. So why not make them plant-rich like these cauliflower bites topped with cheese?

Cheesy, easy and moreish. Image: Lyndi Cohen.

Best for…eating the rainbow

Recipe: Summer Rainbow Salad

A mixed leaf salad bursting with colour, this is the ultimate plus one that’ll serve as a side to hero dishes.

It’ll colour you and your guests happy. Image: Lyndi Cohen

Best for….ease

Recipe: Baked Asparagus with Feta and Pinenuts

With a prep time of 5 minutes and cook time of 10, this lemony asparagus recipe goes from fridge to alfresco eating, fast.

The ultimate plus one, this hardworking but easy-to-make side goes with everything. Image: Lyndi Cohen

Best for…a surprise ingredient

Recipe: Chicken, Strawberry and Sweet Balsamic Salad

A vibrant satisfying salad – starring yep, strawberries – that just works. Lose the chicken if you want to go meat-free.

Warning: it will get Aunty Kath talking. Image: Lyndi Cohen

Best for…something substantial

Recipe: Pearl Couscous Pumpkin Salad

A filling dish thanks to the legumes and root veggie combo, you can also prep this one in bulk and then assemble fresh on the day.

A deserving meal on its own. Image: Lyndi Cohen