Ahh… the aroma of the backyard barbeque, it is the signature smell of summer and one that is certain to make your mouth water. Grilling is one of the healthiest cooking methods and often requires limited effort put into preparation, cooking and clean up, saving valuable time on a busy night! The fresh meat, seafood and produce departments are full of healthy choices perfect for any grilling occasion.
- Cuts of meat that have less fat marbling, such as a sirloin or tenderloin, and chicken or turkey breasts, all win in taste and health! Marinating meat helps add flavor and moisture to lower fat cuts of meat. Read on for marinating tips.
- For a “better” burger, try ground turkey or vegetable burgers as an alternative to ground meat. A 99% fat free ground turkey breast mixed with vegetables, such as green peppers, red onion and mushrooms, helps keep the burger moist plus adds more volume to make a pound of meat go further.
- Seafood and summer go hand and hand! Aim to get in salmon fillets or tuna steaks at least once a week to boost your intake of heart healthy Omega 3 fatty acids. Lean white fish like flounder, mahi mahi and tilapia are versatile and often a crowd pleaser! Add a fruit salsa for a sweet twist or brush with olive oil, top with a few shakes of your favorite seasoning, grill and then add a twist of lemon juice.
- Save room on the grill for veggies! Grill a rainbow of veggies, such as bell peppers, red onion, asparagus, squash and eggplant. Plan to have leftovers to add to wraps or salads for lunch, or an omelet the next morning.
- Going leaner doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice taste! Whether seasoning meat, fish or vegetables, keep it low in sodium by using fresh or dry herbs, spices, powders, or pre-made salt free seasoning blends. Make a marinade with any of these seasoning combinations and add vinegar or lemon juice, olive oil and simply whisk and toss! Depending on what you are marinating will determine how long to marinade. Meat generally needs to sit for at least an hour where fish and veggies may only need 15 to 30 minutes.
Enjoy the bounty of fresh, local produce and the delicious taste of low fat protein varieties grilled to perfection this summer!
Valerie Waters, RDN is MARTIN’S In- Store Nutritionist. Valerie is located in 3 Richmond area MARTIN’S stores and available to assist customers in their quest for healthy food choices! She has 13 years of experience as a registered dietitian nutritionist and has worked in the grocery setting for 7 years. As a working mom of two daughters, Valerie relates well to the challenges today’s moms face trying to establish and maintain healthy habits for a busy lifestyle. She is committed to offering practical advice based on up-to-date medical information to help families make sustainable healthy changes to their lifestyle. To get a plan tailored to you, call Valerie at 804-364-3644 to set up a one-on-one consultation.
This article is sponsored by Martin’s Food Markets