4 Summer Grilling Tips For Delicious, Healthy Meals!

Denise Austin
by Denise Austin | 

Summer is my favorite time of year, and grilling is one of my favorite ways to prepare food! Especially when it comes to hosting, grilling and dining al fresco is always a hit, and depending on what you make, can be a healthy (and satisfying!) way to eat. Below are my tried and true grilling tips that will please a crowd or just one. Enjoy!

Grilling Tips

  1. Focus on lean proteins. Chicken, tofu, lean cuts of beef and shrimp are all lower in fat than burgers and dogs, which can create carcinogens when exposed to flame cooking. Plus, lean mains means you can introduce sides that have a little more fat content, so everything balances out! 

  2. Marinate everything. When it comes to grilling, marinating is a simple way to impart flavor and texture, and helps to keep foods moist. Marinades are usually two parts oil to one part acid, with seasoning that helps create the flavor profile you are looking for. I love to add freshly chopped garlic and herbs to my marinades, whether I am going for an asian, italian, or greek flavor. Be sure to marinate for a minimum of 15 minutes so the flavors really develop.

  3. Don’t be afraid to grill seafood. Grilling is a great way to enjoy the healthy benefits of salmon, tuna, shrimp and other seafood. I like to grill extras so I can use leftovers for lunch the next few days. Added benefits of grilling fish outdoors: clean-up is simple, and your house doesn’t smell afterwards! 

  4. Consider kebabs, especially if you are hosting. The best way to enjoy time with your guests is to pre-prep the best you can. That’s why I love kebabs! The secret is to thread foods with similar cook times and temps onto each skewer, like onions with bell peppers, shrimp with tomatoes or pineapple, chicken with zucchini, and salmon with lemon slices. If you prep ahead, you can also vary your marinades, for a variety of flavor profiles at meal time!

I hope these grilling tips inspire you to get outdoors and take advantage of the grill this summer! My Fit Over 50: The Beach Body Issue has plenty of grilling recipes, including my Summer Protein Bowl featuring grilled salmon, Grilled Shrimp with Honey Kissed Pineapple, and yummy sides like Garlicky Green Beans, Grilled Romaine and more - get your copy today!