One of my favorite parts of summer is pulling out the grill and having some family fun. The great thing about having a healthy lifestyle is how CREATIVE you get to be! Grills aren’t just for burgers and hot dogs! Heat things up with these 25 creative options. Who says we can’t bring healthy and creativity to the grill?
For the first section, you are going to use that tin foil.
Quick Tip: When you use foil, make sure to roll up the seams and seal it really tight so that juices don’t escape!
- Spiced nuts: Try a few different spice combinations added to nuts
- 2 cups nuts + 1 tsp chili powder+ 1 /4 tsp ground pepper + ¼ tsp cumin + 1 Tb olive oil
- 2 cups nut + ½ lime juice + ½ cup cilantro
- 2 cups nuts + 1 Tb cinnamon
- 2 cups nuts + peel of 1 orange + ¼ tsp nutmeg
- Small potatoes (or potatoes diced) + garlic + Pepper + oil + lemon juice + other favorite spices
- Amazing Asparagus
- Toss some asparagus spears in olive oil and spices and wrap well with tin foil
- Cheese + veggies + whole wheat tortilla
- Put 1Tb oil with ¼ cup popcorn kernels and any spices you are in the mood for in a tin foil pie pan. Making a dome over the top using two sheets of foil and seal at every seam. Put over high heat, and keep shaking until popping stops.
- Roasted Veggies:
- Zucchini + tomatoes + garlic + carrots+ onion + mushrooms + olive oil
- Sweet Potato Fries
- Sliced Sweet Potatoes + cinnamon + oil
- Sautéed Squash with Thyme and Feta
- Instead of sautéing, put the ingredients in the foil and cook for 3-5 minutes. Continue with recipe directions.
For this next section, Kabobs are where the party is at!
The main rules for kabob ingredients are 1) The food should fit and should stay on the skewer and 2) you must think it tastes delicious. So get creative and try something new! You can substitute favorite fruits and vegetables and top with any spice that smells good to you. This is your masterpiece we are talking about here! To help get your creative juices flowing, here are a couple ideas:
*Quick tip: Soak the skewers beforehand to reduce burning. You can soak them for as little as a half hour beforehand but the longer the better. To make things easy just put them in a bowl of water the night before when you go to marinade your chicken and veggies.
*Quick tip #2: Be sure to cook chicken to at 165° F to prevent foodborne illnesses like salmonella. Try putting chicken in a frying pan for 5-10 minutes before putting it on a skewer and onto the grill.
- Tango Mango chicken kabob
- Chicken +Mango+ Bell pepper + Onion (sprinkled with lime juice, garlic, and chili powder)
- Fajita style kabob
- Chicken + red bell pepper + onion + yellow bell pepper + green bell pepper (marinade chicken with lime juice, garlic, chili powder, and cumin)
- Paprika Chicken Kabob
- Chicken + Mushrooms (sprinkle with paprika)
- Ham & Yam Kabob
- Large diced deli ham + diced sweet potatoes (sprinkle with Italian seasoning)
- Apple Sweet Potato Kabob
- Sliced sweet potato + apple slices (sprinkle with cinnamon)
- Chicken Casserole on a kabob
- Chicken + broccoli+ mushroom+ onion (marinade chicken in lemon juice, garlic, and pepper)
- Fruit Kabob:
- Put all of your favorite kabob sized fruits (pineapple, mango, strawberry, apples, nectarines, plums, etc.)
- Roasted Veggie Kabob:
- Choose your favorite combo (ex. Zucchini + onion+ mushroom + bell pepper)
And for the final section: Classic Grilling with a Twist.
These options go straight on the grill like normal, but the twist is, these aren’t your typical burgers and hot dogs! In fact, these options are not only healthier but they might even be tastier to you.
- Personal Pizza
- Use some homemade dough or ciabatta bread for the crust and then top with your favorite low fat cheeses and veggies. The grilling will add a nice flavor to your pizza
- Pineapple slices
- Zucchini boats (Zucchini sliced in half or quarters long way)
- Marinated Chicken (Put your favorite marinade and chicken in a bag the night before for best results):
- Lemon juice + Olive Oil + favorite spices
- Balsamic vinegar + Olive Oil + favorite spices
- Italian Dressing
- Veggie Burgers:
- Either buy frozen patties, or find a recipe to make your own!
- The Real Grilled Cheese
- Throw some cheese, tomato, avocado, and slice of turkey on thick slices of bread over low heat for the ultimate grilled cheese
- Grilled Eggplant
- Peel, brush on some olive oil and spices and place directly over the heat. Cook until tender.
- Ears of Corn (try rubbing with a little lime juice for extra flavor)
- Egg Breakfast
- Put a cast iron pan on the grill. Mix up some ground turkey, diced peppers, zucchini, eggs, and spices for a fun twist on breakfast.
There you go! 25 experiments for you to get your creative juices going. Get the whole family involved and comment with pictures of what you can come up with.