There's nothing better than a barbecue with friends and family, but traditional summer get-togethers often include a menu of hotdogs, hamburgers, potato salad and chips, which can dampen your days at the pool sporting a swimsuit. But grilling is a healthy method of cooking, so there's really no need to sacrifice flavor when cutting fat. Try these alternatives to get fewer calories and more nutrients.
Choose lean proteins: Replace that 600 calorie cheeseburger with a veggie burger or turkey burger. Or better yet, why not try shrimp (chicken or tofu) and veggie shish kebabs, grilled salmon or tuna as a main course (omega-3 bonus!).
Munch away: Instead of putting out bowls of chips, opt for cut up veggies and hummus instead. If you want the chips, opt for corn tortillas (with a short ingredient list) with salsa or guacamole.
Embrace veggies: Include a big salad with the meal as well as grilled veggies (try asparagus with balsamic and a bit of olive oil and sea salt). Plus, everyone loves corn on the cob (skip the butter and add some sea salt and paprika for a kick).
Smart Sides: Skip the mayo-drenched potato or macaroni salad and opt for grilled sweet potatoes with sea salt and spices (try curry), or make a whole wheat pasta salad with a bit of olive oil, balsamic and herbs (add peas, sundried tomatoes and feta cheese for a delicious combo).
A Sweet Snack: If it gets really warm out, offer company frozen grapes as a refreshing treat. For dessert, why not make a big a fruit salad. Or try this recipe:
Grilled Fruit Kabobs with Pineapple Yogurt Sauce
Yields: 4 Servings
- 1/2 pineapple
- 1/4 cup apple juice
- 1/2 cantaloupe
- 12 strawberries
- 2 peaches
- 1/4 cup nonfat plain yogurt
- Mint sprigs (garnish)
- Place 1/2 cup (125 mL) of the pineapple and the apple juice into a 2-quart (2-L) saucepan. Bring to boiling, reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.<
- Coat a grill rack with nonstick spray. Fire up the grill and heat for 10 minutes.
- Place the rack on the grill.
- Thread the cantaloupe, strawberries, peaches and any remaining pineapple chunks onto four 16-inch (40-cm) skewers and place on the grill. Heat for 2 minutes; turn and heat 2 minutes.
- Meanwhile, place the cooked pineapple-apple juice mixture and yogurt in a blender.
- Process on low until blended. Transfer to a serving dish and garnish with the mint.
Recipe complements of Prevention.com
What are your BBQ favorites? Please share below.