Do you feel it? Spring! It’s time to start thinking about long walks in nature, beach visits, camping, and other outdoor activities INCLUDING: having a barbeque. Yes, grilling, and YES, healthy grilling.
When considering grilling, it’s easy to make the mistake of thinking it has to be fattening and unhealthy. Have you tried vegetables grilling? This article is going to tackle how to enjoy a favorite culinary pastime of the warmer months while simultaneously fueling your health journey.
How to Get Started Grilling Vegetables
Grilling feels primal. It helps us tap into an essential aspect of our evolutionary process by keeping us closer to fire and by having us cook over live flames. Also, being near fire is an excellent way to celebrate the coming of the warmer season. Grilling keeps us outside with family, friends, and the elements. It’s the perfect option for connecting with our food on a deeper level during Spring, a time of detox, renewal, and new beginnings.
For an optimal grilling experience, you’ll need an optimal grill. Opt for a charcoal grill rather than a gas grill. This charcoal grill is one example of a smaller model that fits in most yards while the family gathers around for a classic grilling experience.
In the process of healthy grilling, you’ll also need non-toxic charcoal that’s free of chemicals, fillers, and scrap material. This will ensure that your food is safe and tastes as good as possible. When it comes to food preparation, always aim for purity whether it be in food ingredients or materials and supplies.
The Grilling Process
Your grill will come with instructions on how specifically to get started grilling. Meanwhile here are some tips to ensure a safe and delicious experience.
- Always practice safety by keeping flammable materials away from the grill. Tie up hair, roll up sleeves, and keep any other loose clothing out of the way of the fire.
- Get a good, steady burn going in the charcoal. You want the grill to be hot enough, but not too hot. You don’t want to burn the veggies.
- During cooking: when in doubt, check your veggies. Again, you don’t want them to burn, yet you want them to cook thoroughly.
- Keep a metal tray and tongs nearby for when your veggies are done. Another good tip is to have something handy to cover your food so it keeps warm while the first servings are being distributed.
Okay, so now we know a bit about why to grill during this amazing season, what grill and charcoal to buy, and some tips on how to get started. But what about what to cook? What veggies should be introduced to the grill as the perfect option for anyone trying to enjoy this outdoor pastime while trying to keep it lean and healthy? Let’s explore.
The Perfect Vegetables for Grilling
Onion. Summer isn’t in full swing and we may still have some lingering bugs we want to rid from our systems. This study confirms that onions are in fact an anti-pathogenic friend. They’re also delicious and develop a pleasurable sweetness when cooked on the grill. Buy red onions for the best antibacterial effects.
Bell Peppers. This is another savory, hearty addition to the outdoor grill. Peppers offer great nutritional benefit and are a great companion to onions for grilling.
Pineapple. Ok, I know, this isn’t a veggie but it’s time to sweeten things up. Grilled pineapple will blow you away. The sweetness alongside the other veggies could satisfy a desire for dessert after dinner.
Mushroom. Opt for portobello. Portobello mushrooms make for a good meat substitute. They’re renowned for their “meatiness.” A good tip is to cut the cap into “meat” slices before laying them on the grill.
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Grilled Vegetables Dinner
2 portobello mushroom caps
2 1/2-inch thick slices red onion
2 organic corn cobs
2 small zucchinis, sliced on a diagonal into thick pieces
Avocado oil or balsamic vinegar
Sea salt & pepper
Instructions: Preheat your grill to high. Place the portobello mushroom caps, red onion slices, corn cobs and zucchini on a rimmed tray. Using a silicone brush, brush all vegetables evenly on both sides with a small amount of either the avocado oil and the balsamic vinegar or just the balsamic vinegar. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper, a little steak seasoning and onion powder. Grill the vegetables for a few minutes, turning frequently, until desired doneness. Enjoy as is or with your favorite dressing, served with a side of some baked beans or hummus.