Being well into summer, I’m sure many of us have already fired up the grill once or twice for a barbecue. While I only am allowed to have a George Foreman in my apartment complex, I do love the opportunity to grill out at a friend’s or family’s home.
There are the traditional barbecue favorites of hot dogs, hamburgers and chicken, but there are a number of other creative and healthier options as well. Have you ever tried grilling watermelon or even cauliflower “steaks?” It’s time that we adventure from the “boring barbecue foods and try something new! Try throwing some of these foods on the grill for your next backyard barbecue:
- Turkey Burgers- Cut fat and calories by using lean ground turkey as a substitute for ground beef. Not like the taste of turkey? Use a blend of spices like minced garlic, onion, salt, pepper to heighten flavor.
- Chicken Sausages- A great alternative to hot dogs or brats. Many come pre-seasoned like Italian, Cajun or Chipotle.
- Vegetables- Colored peppers, corn, onions, and almost garden vegetable can be seasoned and thrown on the grill to add not only color but lots of vitamins and nutrients to your meal. Once again I recommend using lots of spices to bring out flavor.
- Fruits – Don’t forget dessert! Grill fruit kebabs, pineapple slices or peaches on low until the fruit slightly golden. Serve the fruit on top of a scoop of low-fat ice cream or angel food cake for a lighter treat.
Grilling can be a healthy method when it comes to cooking but there are some food safety concerns. According to the USDA, recent studies have suggested a link between cancer and charred meats and fish. Charring commonly occurs as a result of high-temperature cooking methods such as grilling, frying and broiling. To prevent your meats from charring remove fatty areas before cooking, make sure coals of the grill are not directly below the meat, and avoid grilling meats until they are well-done or burnt.
So it’s time we got rid of boring hamburgers and hotdogs and gave our grills (and taste buds) something new to try!