4 BBQ Victoria Day Long Weekend and Plant-Based Options

It’s hard to believe that the May long weekend is just around the corner! While usually people celebrate this holiday up at their cottage or barbecuing with family and friends at home, this year is going to look different.

That doesn’t mean you can’t still celebrate and enjoy the long weekend with all the delicious food that usually comes along with it!

Our Culinary Development Chef, Stephanie Tucci, has been kind enough to share some of her top-notch BBQ recipes and fresh veggie side and summer salad for you to prepare and enjoy over the holiday weekend.

On the menu, we have Turmeric Grilled Chicken, Blackened Tofu Steaks, Basil Broccolini and a Summertime Watermelon Salad.

Take a look below for some information about some of the ingredients and the complete recipes!

Broccolini with Basil Vinaigrette

Broccolini with Basil Vinaigrette

Course Appetizer / Side, Side Dish
Keyword Gluten Free, Vegan
Prep Time 25 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Servings 6 people
Calories 168.8kcal
Author Stephanie Tucci


  • 3 bunches organic broccolini trimmed
  • 2 tbsp Nature’s Emporium Olive Oil
  • ¼ tsp Lumiere de Sel Himalyan Salt for the broccolini
  • ½ tsp Lumiere de Sel Himalyan Salt for the water
  • ¼ cup Simply Organic Black Peppercorn freshly cracked
  • 2 tbsp Central Roast Roasted Almonds sliced/slivered and toasted

For the Vinaigrette:

  • 1 organic shallot minced
  • 2 cups organic fresh basil leaves tightly packed
  • 1 clove organic garlic minced
  • ¾ cup Nature’s Emporium Olive Oil
  • 2 tbsp Sarafino Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 tsp Lumiere de Sel Himalyan Salt


  • Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  • Prepare slivered almonds on a baking sheet or shallow baking pan.
  • Bake until lightly browned, approximately 5 minutes.
  • In a blender or food processor, place the shallot, basil, garlic, olive oil, red wine vinegar and salt and blend until smooth.
  • Bring pot of water to a boil. Once boiling, add broccolini and cook for 2 minutes. Quickly drain and set in an ice bath to stop cooking or run under cold water.
  • Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the broccolini and sauté for 5-8 minutes and season with salt and pepper.
  • Off heat, add in the vinaigrette and toss together before serving and scatter almonds over top.


Calories: 168.8kcal | Carbohydrates: 9.9g | Protein: 6.3g | Fat: 12.4g | Saturated Fat: 1.6g | Sodium: 47.1mg | Fiber: 7.4g | Sugar: 2.2g

Broccolini – though similar to its relative Broccoli, is actually a hybrid of Broccoli and Chinese Kale or Chinese Broccoli. It closely resembles Broccoli but tends to have smaller florets and longer, thinner stalks.

While hybridization can be confused with genetically modified, these are not the same thing and it should not be considered a GMO.

Like Broccoli, it is also considered a cruciferous vegetable. This means it contains sulfur compounds and glutathione, which are important for the health of the liver. Nutritionally speaking, it is high in both Vitamins A & C.

All in all, this is a great addition to your veggie routine if you haven’t had a chance to try it yet!

Turmeric Grilled Chicken Breats

Turmeric Grilled Chicken Breasts

Course Main Dish
Keyword Dairy Free, Gluten Free
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Marinating Time 12 hours
Total Time 12 hours 25 minutes
Servings 5
Calories 248.2kcal
Author Stephanie Tucci


  • 5 Yorkshire Valley Chicken Breasts boneless and skinless
  • ½ tsp Frontier Turmeric Powder
  • ½ tsp Frontier Garlic Powder
  • 1 organic orange juiced
  • ½ tbsp Nature’s Emporium Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 2 tbsp Nature’s Emporium Raw Honey
  • ¼ tsp Frontier Ginger Powder
  • ½ tsp Frontier Paprika
  • 2 tbsp Nature’s Emporium Olive Oil
  • ½ tsp Lumiere de Sel Himalyan Salt
  • ½ tsp Frontier Ground Pepper


  • Mix all the ingredients (except the chicken) into a small bowl.
  • Pour all over the chicken making sure the chicken is evenly coated. Allow to marinate overnight (12-24 hours).
  • Preheat the grill to medium high heat.
  • Proceed to grill the chicken for 4 minutes. Then, rotate the chicken 90° to create a crosshatch pattern.Grill the chicken for another 4 minutes.
  • Turn the chicken over repeat the last step on the other side, until finished.


Calories: 248.2kcal | Carbohydrates: 4.4g | Protein: 37.2g | Fat: 8.1g | Saturated Fat: 1.9g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 102mg | Sodium: 108.4mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 4g

Turmeric is a secret weapon in the kitchen. Full of flavour and nutritional benefits, this powerhouse superfood is a flowering plant. Belonging to the ginger family – no wonder it resembles the ginger root so much!

It is the root (fresh or dried, then ground into a fine powder) that is used for culinary purposes. Ginger is often an ingredient seen in South Asian and Middle Eastern cuisine. It has a pungent aroma with an earthy and slightly sweet taste to it.

Turmeric has become a well-known food in the past years for its anti-inflammatory properties. These properties are due to the active ingredient curcumin found in it. This property is enhanced when combined with black pepper.

Curcumin is also a powerful antioxidant, which helps protect your body from free radical damage.

If you haven’t tried Turmeric in a dish yet, these grilled chicken breasts are a great way to get started!

Blackened Tofu Steaks

Blackened Tofu Steaks

Course Main Dish
Keyword Gluten Free, Vegan
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Marinating Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 15 minutes
Servings 7 steaks
Calories 75.8kcal
Author Stephanie Tucci


  • 1 block Soyarie Extra Firm Organic Tofu pressed, and then sliced into 7 steaks


  • 2 tbsp San-J Tamari
  • 1 tbsp Nature’s Emporium Apple Cider Vinegar
  • ½ tsp Lumiere de Sel Himalyan Salt
  • 1 ¾ cups Thai Kitchen Full-Fat Organic Coconut Milk
  • ½ tsp Frontier Black Pepper
  • 2 cups water

Blackening Spice

  • 2 tsp Frontier Paprika
  • 1 tsp Lumiere de Sel Himalyan Salt
  • 2 tsp Frontier Oregano dried
  • 4 tsp Wholesome Sweetener Coconut Sugar
  • 2 tsp Frontier Onion Powder
  • 1 tsp Frontier Garlic Powder
  • ¼ tsp Frontier Ginger Powder
  • 4-6 tbsp Nature’s Emporium Olive Oil


  • Remove the moisture from the tofu by pressing it from 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Once the tofu has been fully pressed, cut them into 7 equal slices.
  • In a deep dish, whisk all the marinade ingredients together.
  • Lay the tofu steaks in the marinade and leave for a minimum for 2 hours (or overnight).
  • In a large bowl, mix all the ingredients for the blackening spice except the olive oil.
  • Add olive oil to the blackening spice. Start with 4 tablespoons and working your way up to 6 tablespoons (if needed). You should use enough to coat the tofu.
  • Using a basting brush, coat all sides of the tofu.
  • Grill for 3-4 minutes on each side.


Calories: 75.8kcal | Carbohydrates: 0.5g | Protein: 8.1g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 30.5mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 0.8g

Tofu is a food that will take on the taste of anything you cook it with or marinate it in.

While it may not look overly appetizing on its own (it simply looks like a white brick), when cooked properly, tofu can be a versatile and delicious protein-rich plant-based food.

Tofu is made from soy. It is important to remember to purchase organic or non-GMO, as soy is one of the most common genetically modified crops currently being produced.

Organic or non-GMO Tofu provides 10 grams of protein per half-cup. It is also high in Calcium and Iron – all things we fear vegetarians do not get enough of.

This is a perfect recipe for you if you are looking to incorporate more plant-based meals into your life or want to give tofu a whirl on the grill!

Alternative to Tofu

If tofu isn’t your favourite, or only have one or two vegetarians in your household, don’t forget about our Nature’s Emporium NExt Burgers found in our freezer department, that you can pick up and grill without any prep work!

Nature’s Emporium NExt Burger (Plant Based Patties)

Summer Watermelon Salad

Summer Watermelon Salad

Course Salad
Keyword Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 0 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 358.7kcal
Author Stephanie Tucci



  • ½ cup Nature’s Emporium Olive Oil
  • 1 tsp Lumiere de Sel Coarse Himalayan Salt
  • ¼ cup basil leaves fresh
  • ¼ cup mint leaves fresh
  • 1 organic lemon zested
  • 2 tbsp Sarafino Red Wine Vinegar


  • ½ large organic watermelon seedless
  • Krinos Organic Firm Feta Cheese
  • ½ cup Elan Shelled Pistachios chopped
  • Simply Organic Black Peppercorn Grinder freshly cracked – to garnish


  • Add the oil, basil, 1 teaspoon of salt, and mint to a blender. Pulse a few times, then add the vinegar and lemon zest. Pulse again, until homogeneous.
  • Make sure to not completely puree the mixture. Having specks of herbs makes the dressing stand out against the melon.
  • Cut the watermelon into cubes and arrange on a platter.
  • Drizzle the vinaigrette over top. Crumble the goat cheese all over and scatter the chopped pistachios.
  • Finish by garnishing with freshly cracked black pepper.


Calories: 358.7kcal | Carbohydrates: 13.1g | Protein: 8.8g | Fat: 31.4g | Saturated Fat: 8.4g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Cholesterol: 35.3mg | Sodium: 846.1mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 8.6g

Watermelon is always a fan-favourite fruit! Who doesn’t love to bite into a watermelon wedge on a hot summer day? Well, there’s a good reason for that and it’s due to the high water content of this wonderful fruit, so it’s perfect for eating in the heat and will help keep you hydrated. Watermelon also contains a good amount of vitamin C and an important phytonutrient lycopene, a powerful antioxidant, which helps protect you from cellular damage from free radicals. While watermelon doesn’t scream diversity, and is often just consumed on it’s own, you will be surprised there are many ways to utilize it. From juicing it, to creating gazpacho, popsicles, sorbet and other desserts, it can also be incorporated into a salad or be the main ingredient in a salad, like in the recipe we have for you! We hope this salad will inspire you to get creative and find new ways you can use Watermelon this season!

Et Voila! A menu to please both the vegans and meat lovers in your family! Hopefully you’re able to make the best of this weekend by cooking some of our delicious BBQ inspired recipes and fresh sides to go with it. From our family to yours, we hope you all have a safe and fun May Long Weekend!

Nicole Ensoll, CNP

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