Order Up: Healthy Summer Grilling


You are the master of your domain at the grill. Juicy steaks and big ol’ baked potatoes. Sirloin burgers topped with slabs of cheese. Beer brats and foot-long dogs.

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Of course, you round out the menu with sweeten baked beans, butter-soaked corn on the cob, chips and dip, and your favorite fudgy brownies.

Then again... maybe its time for a change. Grilling is as much a national past time as summer, baseball, Father's Day and perfecting slow cooked brisket. But we simply can't eat like a BBQ champion every day and maintain a healthy lifestyle.

Next time you get your grill on, follow these tips for serving up a great tasting - and great for you – meal.

  1. Boost your burger. Swap out the beef for a portabella mushroom and serve up the "steak" of veggie burgers. Top it off with a thin slice of provolone, lettuce, tomato and a toasted whole wheat bun.
  2. Go for that steak but grill up heart-healthy sweet potatoes as your side. Cut the potatoes into wedges topped with a cilantro-lime dressing and wait for the "wow."
  3. Kabobs are easy crowd pleasers. Think lean chicken and pineapple chunks. All-veggie skewers. Lemon garlic shrimp. Just watch out for calorie-laden marinades.
  4. You don’t have to banish bratwurst but try a healthier chicken brat instead. Let the brats get to room temperature, brush lightly with olive oil and grill over medium heat. A bean salad is a quick and easy side.
  5. Try grilling a few crispy margherita pizzas. Go easy on the cheese and focus on flavorful olive oil, tomatoes and basil. Add a green salad and you’re all set.
  6. No need to skip dessert. Grill up good-for-you peaches, plums, pineapples, nectarines or cantaloupe. Drizzle with a simple syrup or pair with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream.