Sizzlin’ Tastes of Summer

How About a Healthy Twist on Some Grilled Favorites?


Summertime is the perfect time to pull out the grill and cook up some delicious food, but classic cookout food isn’t exactly healthy — tons of carbs, lots of fat, and more can make it hard to keep it healthy when you grill. That’s why we’re sharing some of our favorite recipes for a healthier cookout!

With a few smart twists, you can transform your favorite grilled foods into healthy and delicious alternatives. Replacing buns with lo-carb alternatives, adding in more vegetables, and preparing surprisingly delicious meat-free options are all ways to make your next cookout healthier.

Let’s take a look at four alternatives for the next time you pull out the grill.

Carrot Dogs


  • 8 medium carrots
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup vegetable broth
  • ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp liquid aminos (can sub soy sauce or tamari)
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp yellow mustard
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • Dash nutmeg
  • Dash allspice
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tsp liquid smoke 


Peel carrots and cut the ends to give them a more hot dog like appearance. Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat and parboil carrots until just tender, about 10 minutes. Remove carrots, drain them, and rinse them with cold water to stop cooking. Set aside.

In a large glass container with a lid, combine remaining ingredients, stirring well to combine. Place parboiled carrots into the container and let marinate for 12 to 24 hours. 

Once ready to cook, remove marinated carrots and grill over medium for about 2 minutes per side for a light char, or 4-5 minutes per side if you prefer a more charred carrot dog. 

Cheeseburger Cabbage Wraps

Adapted from Delish


  • 4 large green cabbage leaves
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 4 slices cheddar cheese
  • ½ a red onion, sliced
  • 1 medium tomato, sliced
  • Pickles
  • Salt and pepper


First, blanch cabbage leaves in boiling water for 30 seconds and place them on a paper towel lined plate to dry. 

Next, make the burgers by forming the beef into 4 evenly-sized patties, seasoning both sides with salt and pepper. Grill on medium-high until done to your liking, about 4-6 minutes per side for medium.

Finally, assemble your burgers by placing a patty at the edge of a cabbage leaf where the stem is thickest. Top with onion, tomato, pickles, and preferred condiments. Fold the opposite end of the cabbage leaf over the burger and roll until the burger is completely wrapped. 

Grilled Green Tomatoes

Adapted from White on Rice Couple 


  • 1 lb green tomatoes
  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp worcestershire
  • ½ tsp red pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup fresh basil, chopped
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Heat grill and slice green tomatoes into ¼” slices. Season on both sides with salt and pepper and drizzle with oil. Grill tomatoes until charred but not too soft, about 2 minutes per side. REmove and let cool.

Meanwhile, mix together garlic, onion powder, brown sugar, worcestershire, and red pepper flakes in a small bowl. Arrange tomatoes on a plate and drizzle sauce over them and top with chopped basil. 

Grilled Veggie Skewers

Adapted from Allrecipes


  • 2 medium zucchini, cut into 1 inch slices
  • 2 medium yellow squash, cut into 1-inch slices
  • ½ lb whole fresh button mushrooms
  • 1 red onion, cut into chunks
  • 12 cherry tomatoes
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into chunks
  • 1 yellow bell pepper, cut into chunks
  • 8 bamboo skewers, soaked in water for at least 20 minutes
  • ⅓ cup olive oil
  • 1 ½ tsp dried basil
  • ¾ tsp dried oregano
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Preheat the grill. While the grill preheats, place veggies on skewers, alternating veggies as you go. Combine oil, basil, oregano, salt, and pepper, and brush this mixture over the veggies. Grill skewers, turning regularly and occasionally basting with remaining olive oil mixture, until veggies are tender, about 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the grill and enjoy.

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