We’ve all been there- walking into a barbecue and realizing you are surrounded by unhealthy foods. Summer is in full swing and navigating a barbecue while trying to stay on track with healthy choices can be quite the challenge. Between the cheeseburgers, chips, and summery desserts it seems impossible to eat healthy. With the tips below, you will be able to enjoy your barbecue guilt-free!
Bring an appetizer or entree to share
It is always helpful to bring something to a barbecue that you know you can fill up on if there is a lack of other options. Whether it’s a big salad loaded with toppings or a entree plate to share, you can guarantee a healthy meal if you bring it yourself!
Go lean for protein
Leaner protein is always the optimal choice. Choosing grilled chicken, turkey tips, fish, bean salad or even grilled tofu will help cut back on those saturated fats found in the hamburgers and steak tips. Better yet, the plant proteins often have lots of fiber to help keep you full!
Go easy on the sauces
It can be easy to accidentally drown your food in barbecue sauce or mayonnaise and rack up a few hundred extra calories without even noticing. Sauces can have loads of added sugars and preservatives. While a little bit of sauce or dressing is okay, try adding some pepper or other spices to add flavor.
Choose healthy salads
We’ve all tried to tell ourselves that pasta and potato salads are healthy (they’re salads, right?). The truth is the starchy base and creamy dressing make them anything but healthy! Swap the pasta/potato salad for a nice colorful garden salad or some grilled veggies.
Skip the bun
Hamburger and hot dog buns are typically white bread and empty calories. Opt for a lettuce wrap around your burger or cut up your chicken and make a kebob! Bringing skewers can always make a meal a little more fun.
Go for the grilled corn
A burger without a bun can leave you craving those starches. Instead of replacing those starches with potato chips or crackers, choose the grilled corn. This will satisfy your starch needs while loading you up with nutrients.
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