Summer has arrived, marking the return of grilling season. With a little healthy mindfulness, grilling can be one of the healthiest methods of preparing foods. So, fire up the grill and keep your summer cookouts healthy with these tips:
- Use seasonings and homemade marinades to add flavor to grilled food, instead of adding fats, such as butter or oil.
- Add spices, such as pepper or fresh herbs.
- Select lean cuts of meat. Pork and beef products can be purchased at 95 percent fat free or greater. Trim off visible fat and remove the skin for added health benefits.
- Include fresh seasonal produce. Produce, such as summer squash, eggplant, portobello mushrooms, peppers, pineapple, mango and apples, pair well with grilled meats.
- Grill, don’t burn. Cook meat until it reaches a safe internal temperature, and remove any burned parts before serving. Charred areas may contain carcinogens and should be avoided.
- Beef — 160 F
- Turkey and chicken — 165 F
- Pork — 145 F
- Seafood and all fish — 145 F
Looking for some healthy grilling inspiration? Try these recipes:
- Grilled portobello mushroom burgers
- Grilled mango chutney
- Grilled turkey burger
- Grilled chicken salad with olives and oranges
If you have questions about your diet or would like nutrition support, talk with your health care provider.