With summer in full swing, the 4th of July is a great opportunity to get together outdoors with family and friends. Whether you are hosting a party or headed to a barbecue at a loved one’s house, this occasion can be stressful. Like most holidays, a major part of the 4th of July is the food. Unfortunately, barbecue food can be very fattening and unhealthy. If you are watching what you eat, going to a 4th of July barbecue could pose a problem for your diet. But, it doesn’t have to. Here, you can learn about a few healthy barbecue alternatives to serve at your 4th of July party or to bring to a friend’s party.
As soon as you get to a barbecue, you probably start snacking. These snacks generally consist of chips and various types of dips, cheese and meat platters, and other unhealthy foods. If you are going to a party or hosting a party, consider making sure that there are a few healthy alternatives. A veggie platter, a healthy dip, or some fresh fruit could be a great alternative to these heavier appetizers.
Hot dogs, hamburgers, and ribs are classic barbecue foods. Unfortunately, they are also food options that contain a lot of fat. Most barbecues will have these foods and other unhealthy options on the grill. But, you can make sure that your party has healthier alternatives. Consider grilling some chicken breast in a healthy, light marinade for those who are looking for something healthy to eat. You can also grill vegetable kebabs, fish, and other foods that are lower in fat and sugar than traditional barbecue food. If you are not hosting the party, consider bringing one or more of these foods to be sure that there is something healthy for you to eat at the party. If you do want to eat traditional barbecue foods, consider skipping the buns to avoid empty carbs.
Classic barbecue side dishes are oftentimes loaded with mayo. They also tend to have a lot of carbs and fat in them. You can make a few lighter options by making healthy salads. If you still want to have a pasta salad, you can use whole grain pasta and oil and vinegar instead of mayo. You can also make a traditional salad with lots of fruits and vegetables. These versions of salads reduce the fat and carbs in a lot of traditional summer salads. Consider serving them at your own party or bringing them to a friend’s party.
Dessert can be a killer, especially for those with a sweet tooth! If you are going to indulge in dessert, make sure that you have a small portion. You can make reduced fat cookies and cakes, fruit salad, or a homemade fruit slush that will be a little healthier than some of the traditional options.
Whether you are going to someone else’s party or hosting your own, making sure that you have healthy foods to eat during the 4th of July is important if you are watching what you eat. Don’t beat yourself up about treating yourself to some unhealthy options, but with a few tricks, you can eat healthier while still enjoying the holiday.