The Meats of Summer Get a New Style

By Brooke Avedon

The bright blue skies and warm temperatures of summertime often usher in the season of grilling. However, the typical hot dogs and hamburgers are not the only meats worth grilling up this Fourth of July. According to an article from the journal Circulation, published by the American Heart Association, processed meats, like hot dogs, influence your risk of coronary heart disease, stroke and Type 2 diabetes. While America certainly loves its processed meats dearly, there are plenty of healthy alternatives. So fire up the grill and throw on some lighter meat options (and even some vegetarian options) that will brighten up your meal!

Grilled Chicken

The all mighty chicken! This great meat is an excellent source of protein, tastes exceptional grilled and goes with just about everything. For a light, summery taste, try grilling the chicken in a citrus marinade like in this recipe.

Chicken Sausages

Instead of picking up a classic sausage, shake things up with chicken sausages. You will still get that flavorful experience of a sausage but with less calories and fat. If you’re looking for something truly different, try this pairing of chicken sausage and pears!

Veggie Kebabs

OK, these may not be a true meat substitute but vegetable kebabs are perfect for grilling. Red peppers, red onion, zucchini and tomatoes are some fresh summer veggies to mix and match on a skewer. The simple olive oil and balsamic vinegar marinade in this recipe is enough to add some great flavor without overpowering the natural taste of the vegetables.

Turkey Burgers

Turkey burgers offer you a much lighter and leaner burger option than red meat. Just be careful not to overcook your turkey burger because they can become incredibly dry through overcooking! Click here to learn how to make the perfect turkey burger!

Salmon Burgers

If turkey burgers aren’t your style but you’re still craving a burger substitute, try an ocean-inspired handheld meal! The only drawback to making salmon burgers is that you have to have a food processor to grind the fillet into patties. If you do have this gadget, try giving this lemony burger recipe a go!