Friday, June 12, 2009

Is There Such A Thing As Healthy BBQ?

Who doesn't have a memory filled with BBQs, family, friends, sunshine and outdoor activities? Oh the memories of helping dad at the grill flip the burgers and dogs while mom prepares the condiments. Of course it could have been the other way around or who knows, maybe you were the one cooking, well whatever your memories may be, I am pretty sure every one's included things such as hamburgers, cheese burgers, hot dogs, ribs, corn, potato salad, etc... This is where BBQing gets a bad wrap because all the foods listed are known for their extreme calorie and saturated fat content!

Foods such as...

  • Hot Dogs (Pork or Grain-Fed Beef)
  • Grain Fed Hamburgers
  • Ribs
  • Ketchup (full of sugar)
  • Coleslaw
  • Potato Salad
  • Corn rubbed with Butter
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Chicken Wings

... should either be eliminated completely or eaten sparingly...

Luckily though, healthy BBQ isn't an oxymoron; it certainly can be done! Here is a list of wonderful foods on the grill, that are healthy and won't do damage to your waistline/figure:

Some wonderful marinades (chimmichuri sauce being one) can be made for all of the above listed along with crazy combinations of different yet healthy foods... anyone ever try a turkey burger stuffed with olives, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes & hot sauce? What about a beef burger with artichoke hearts, olives, capers, garlic & minced onions?

In order to retain the FLAVOR (that you might think is LOST from not eating the fatty cuts of meat typically seen at a BBQ) you simply have to be creative! (Oh and I am sure I will post some intense combinations sooner or later...) Just to suppress your intense desire for my creations... here is a list of wonderful herbs, spices, seasonings, and other condiments to use on your new and improved BBQ foods:

  • Thyme
  • Basil
  • Oregano
  • Sage
  • Chili Powder
  • Mustard Powder
  • Curry Powder
  • Paprika
  • Parsley
  • Rosemary
  • Pepper
  • Cumin
  • Olive Oil
  • Tomato Paste
  • Olive Tapenade
  • Sun-Dried Tomato
  • Olives & Capers
  • Pickles (no sugar added)
  • Sauerkraut
  • Mustard (no sugar added)
  • Citrus Juices

And yes, you knew this part was coming... condiments to avoid:
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Jarred Relish
  • Bread & Butter Pickles
  • Butter
  • Mayonnaise
  • Honey Mustard
  • Cheese

I'm sorry if this ruined BBQing for you because it really shouldn't... You just have to give the "It Is What It Is" Approved Food List a chance! I promise you will be impressed with the results and your stomach will also be thanking you and asking for more at your next family gathering! So why not break out the grass-fed beef and the halibut steaks and get grilling!!

*Things to remember: marinating all meat before cooking helps reduce the formation of chemicals that are formed when foods are cooked at high heat. Also remember to clean your grill before and after use! Pot Holders may be useful and also consider having a fire extinguisher near by if your new to the whole grilling thing!

*I don't know if you caught on... but the foods in green = GO FOR IT... while the foods in red = STOP! Ha Ha!
*Sorry Jack Daniels... but you are full of sugar!

1 comment:

  1. Those all look like healthy foods.I love to grill because it is healthy.I have been compiling recipes and tips for a while now and if you would like to see them you can visit