A Healthier Way to Grill
6 ways to avoid the pitfalls of barbecuing
Some fruits and vegetables that are great to grill:
- Bell peppers
2. Grill Smart, Grill Lean
When you're grilling meat, limit the amount of fat that drips on the coals
by starting with lean cuts trimmed of visible fat and skin. If you put a very
lean cut of beef or pork, or skinless chicken, onto the grill, you're off to a
healthy start. (Following Tip No. 3 can help make most lean cuts more tender
and tasty, too.)
3. Marinate, Marinate, Marinate
You've gotta love the idea of infusing flavor into meats, fruits, and
vegetables by soaking them in a tasty marinade. Some favorite marinade
ingredients include wines, vinegars, lemon or lime juice, low-sodium soy sauce,
honey, garlic, onions, herbs, and spices. Use fat-free or low-fat marinades on
your grilled meats, fish, and poultry to limit the fat that drips on the coals.
The simple act of marinating before grilling has been shown to reduce the
formation of HCAs by as much as 92% to 99% in some studies.
Keep these marinating tips in mind:
- When choosing bottled marinades or making your own, look for products or
recipes that contain olive or canola oil (and that only use a little oil).
- Refrigerate any foods that are marinating longer than 1/2 hour.
- Don't baste your food during grilling with the liquid the meat was
marinating in (this passes raw meat juices to your cooked meat). Before you add
the meat, set aside some of your marinade for this purpose.
- Meats and poultry should marinate at least 1-2 hours; fish and vegetables
generally only need to marinate for an hour.
4. Cut Down on Grilling Time
Grill smaller portions of meat, poultry, and fish so they cook faster and
spend less time on the grill. Another trick is to precook the meat, fish, and
poultry in the oven or microwave, then finish cooking on the grill.
5. Flip It -- Flip It Good
Flipping food frequently may help prevent the formation of HCAs, according
to recent research using hamburger patties. To turn meat without piercing it
(which releases juices that drip onto the coals), use tongs or spatulas instead
of a fork.