The 4th of July is the perfect time to show off your grilling skills. A good BBQ doesn’t need a table full of chips, salty meats, or sugary desserts to be delicious. Healthier options are available and are just as yummy – and it’s easy to incorporate more fruits and veggies during the summer when they are in-season and readily available. Check out these tips for your Independence Day:
- Cut back on sodium. Use onions, garlic, herbs, spices, citrus juices and vinegars in place of some or all the salt to add flavor. Also look for reduced- or lower-sodium versions of your favorite condiments. Need more tips of reducing sodium? Get it here.
- Add veggies to your appetizers. Instead of filling up on chips and dips, find delicious appetizers that embrace the flavors of summer produce. This Greek seven-layer dip is sure to be a crowd pleaser!
- Create a summer salad. Picnic side dishes can often be calorie-heavy, but a summer salad is delicious and heart healthy! Start with a green base like romaine, spinach or kale and top with your favorite fruits, veggies and a simple vinaigrette. Need inspiration? This spinach salad is on point!
- Skip the alcohol. Backyard BBQ’s are notorious for coolers filled with beer and other adult beverages. Alcohol is okay in moderation, but the American Heart Association recommends limiting alcoholic drinks to one per day for women and no more than two per day for men. Swap out the alcohol for this refreshing summer mocktail instead!
- Fruit for dessert. Fresh cut fruit salad is an easy picnic go-to or try something unique, like these cinnamon sweet tortilla chips with fruit salsa.
For more tips and heart-healthy summer recipes, check out www.heart.org/healthyliving.