Three day weekends usually call for friends, family, and backyard barbeques. Lucky for you, a BBQ doesn't always have to ruin your diet! Here are 6 simple tips to make your cookout healthier so that you can stay slim and trim for summer.
1. MIX IT UP
Forget the overrated burgers and hotdogs. Think of foods that would typically be served cold and toss them on the grill. Spice up your avocado toast by grilling the peeled avocado halves for a unique smoky flavor. You have probably tried fruit on a kabob, but have you ever grilled fruit on its own? Some sweet fruits that grill perfectly include watermelon, peach, banana, pineapple, mango, grapefruit, and cantaloupe.
2. GET YOUR VEG ON
Whether you're a vegetarian or just trying to eat healthier, make your meal plant-based! Toss your favorite vegetables in olive oil and then put them on the grill. Add salt or pepper if you prefer more flavor. Corn, zucchini, mushroom, asparagus, cauliflower, eggplant, and peppers are all great vegetables to grill. Squeeze lemon or lime on top for a tangy, zesty flavor. If you want to add protein to the meal, grill your tomatoes and add them to a farro and mozzarella salad.
3. SPICE IT UP
Veggies don't have to be bland. Add various spices for stronger flavors! Marinate different vegetables, such as mushrooms or eggplants, in olive oil and seasonings such as thyme, oregano, or rosemary. You could also use chicken or vegetable broth. If you are grilling meat too, make sure to marinate that as well.
4. RETHINK YOUR FAVORITE MEALS
Do you love poke bowls? Make it backyard BBQ-friendly by searing the tuna steaks for just a few seconds. Add them to your favorite salad or coleslaw.
5. DON'T SKIP THE APPETIZERS
Save the pigs in a blanket for the kids. Surprise your guests with unique snacks that are rich in flavor. Stuff some jalapeños with a tad of goat cheese then wrap them in prosciutto. These tasty appetizers will hold them over until dinner without spoiling their appetites.
6. GUILT-FREE DESSERT
Ditch the cupcakes. Before you put out the grill, drizzle a little honey on peaches or plums and sprinkle with nutmeg. Put them on the grill for 3-8 minutes. If the grill has been on for a while and isn't too hot, you may need to grill them a bit longer. Once grilled, the fruit can be served on a stick. Mix flavors by serving the fruit with a little ricotta and fresh mint.