There’s nothing quite like a hot summer evening, the smoky smell of the barbecue and an ice-cold drink in hand.
But let’s think beyond store bought hamburgers and hotdogs when it comes time to hit the grill.
There are plenty of ways to barbecue with nourishing foods so you can end the night feeling awesome. Today we're sharing our best tips on how to healthify your next barbecue without sacrificing any of the amazing taste.
1. Grill All the Veggies
Throwing your vegetables onto the grill gives them a charred and delicious flavour. Hit up your local farmer’s market to pick up some in-season vegetables like bell peppers, zucchini, mushrooms, red onion, asparagus, eggplant or sweet potatoes. Brush them with a bit of olive oil to prevent them from sticking to the grill.
2. Power Up With Salads
Asking your guests to bring a salad to your backyard barbecue is the best way to keep the various flavours and nutrients flowing. Keep it quick and easy but also think outside the typical salad box. We highly recommend trying our vegetarian-friendly Chickpea, Avocado & Feta Salad. It comes together in minutes and is so flavourful!
3. Don’t Be Afraid of Vegetarian Burgers
Vegetarian burgers often get a bad rap. But when done right, they can be just as delicious on the grill. Use chickpeas, lentils or black beans as a base and build from there. You can use an egg to bind, or keep it vegan with a chia egg (3 tablespoon of water mixed with 1 tablespoon of chia seeds).
Need some inspiration? Check out our Kale Quinoa Burger recipe!
4. Buy Quality Meat
Can’t imagine having a barbecue without meat? No problem. Hit up your local butcher and ask about ethically raised and grass-fed options. You can even buy directly from a local farmer whose practices you trust. It is the perfect way to support and build your community’s food security and economy!
Got some high quality ground meat? Make these Spinach & Artichoke Burgers!
5. Grill All the Fruits
If you think the grill is reserved for meat and veggies, think again. When fruit is grilled, it creates an incredible sweet and smoky flavour. Watermelon, peaches, apples, strawberries, bananas, cantaloupe and pineapple all work beautifully on the grill.
Grilled cherry stuffed peaches make the most delicious dessert with a spoonful of our coconut whipped cream!
6. Make Homemade BBQ Sauce
STOP! Put down the store-bought barbecue sauce. Making your own is easy, healthy, satisfying and so yummy.
7. Kabob All the Things
You can never go wrong by sliding things onto skewers. Meat, veggies, fruit or all three together makes life a whole lot easier. You can make up kabobs in advance, then store them in the fridge until you are ready to grill. They are easy to flip and cook through super fast.
8. You Can Never Have too Many Dips and Sauces
Whether you are cooking up grilled veggies, veggie burgers, meat or kabobs, you can never have too many sauces or dips. Think homemade ketchup, pesto, hot sauce or tahini drizzle.
9. Delicious Fizzy Fruit Infusions
Non-alcoholic beverages are usually an afterthought at barbecues. But hydration is key, so keep it simple with fruit infused sparkling water.
Try out some of these delicious combos like grapefruit with thyme, strawberry with lemon, blueberry with lime or cherry with pineapple. Bottoms up!
10. Don’t Forget the Watermelon!
Watermelon makes the perfect dessert. It is affordable, hydrating and can feed a crowd in a jiffy. You can grill it, slice it or even turn it into a Watermelon Cake. Yes, it is just as delicious as it looks!
What are your favourite ways to keep it nutritious at barbecues? Share your tips with us in the comments below!