Grill Healthy This Summer! | Carson Tahoe Health

It’s summer, which means it’s time to get outside. What better way to spend time outdoors than grilling a meal for your family and friends?

“The key is to think beyond hamburgers and hot dogs,” says Rachael Roberts, RD, LD, Dietitian and Nutrition Care Manager at Carson Tahoe Health. “Go lean with chicken, fish, and lots of fruits and vegetables.”

Get Creative

If you’re set on burgers for a cookout, there are many ways to make them healthier—and easier on your pocketbook. Mix half ground lean meat with chopped mushrooms, cooked lentils, or whole grains, such as bulgur or quinoa.

“Use a thermometer to make sure you don’t undercook meats, which can cause illness,” Roberts says. “Fish should reach 145°F internally, and ground meat should reach 160°F.” However, you should avoid charring your meat too much.

“As meats get drier and more cooked, compounds called heterocyclic amines form, and they have been linked to cancer,” Roberts says. “Marinating the heck out of your meat can reduce the risk of these compounds, while also making it easier for them to not stick to the grill.”

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