Time to get your grill on for the 4th of July holiday! Burgers, dogs, potato salad, corn on the cob...ho doesn’t love a 4h of July cookout? With all of that food, it can be easier to overdo it, but there are some ways to make your holiday cookouts a little healthier.

When it comes to protein, try grilling either leaner cuts of beef, chicken or even grilled fish.  Try cooking meat slower on a lower temperature. Everyone likes a nice grill-mark, but too much char can actually add carcinogens our food.

Of course, the grill can make even the most boring vegetables delicious, so be sure to make plenty of veggies on the grill. If you are doing shish-kabobs, it is easier to fill each shish kabob with the same vegetables and prepare separate ones for meat since they all cook at different temperatures.

Here are some leaner and healthier recipes for your Independence Day barbecue.


  • 1

    Flag Fruit Pizza

    This recipe from The Bubbly Hostess is a fun twist on a regular fruit salad. Get the kids to help you design the fruit in the shape of an American flag. Using bananas, blueberries, and strawberries, or any other fruits you wish, this is a patriotic and delicious treat. If you prefer it without the baked bottom, you can just do it with fruit.

  • 2

    Ultimate Barbecue Chicken

    From Cooking Light: "This chicken is wonderfully moist, with a smoky sauce that will have you firing up the grill year-round. In our ultimate BBQ makeover, we remove the skin just before the chicken finishes grilling (saving 128 calories and 2.7g sat fat per breast), then baste with a spicy-sweet sauce. The best part? You'll save 183 calories, 3g sat fat, 26g sugar, and 854mg sodium over the traditional recipe, without losing any of the flavor."

  • 3

    Flag Pops

    Red White and Blue Yogurt Popsicles are perfect for the hot holiday. Use strawberry for the red, blueberries for the blue, and yogurt for the white. Just a blender is needed to create your purees and  popsicle mold for the popsicles!

  • 4

    Greek Turkey Burgers

    From Eating Well: "Creamy tzatziki and crisp sliced cucumber add a refreshing twist to this easy Greek-inspired burger recipe loaded with feta, spinach and Mediterranean spices. No tzatziki? No problem! Make your own at home by combining plain Greek yogurt with a squeeze of lemon, dill and finely chopped cucumber."

  • 5

    Rosemary Ranche Chicken Kabobs

    From All Recipes: "This rosemary ranch chicken recipe is so delicious, tender, and juicy the chicken will melt in your mouth. Even the pickiest eater will be begging for the last piece."

  • 6

    Healthy Grilled Vegetables

    This Food Network recipe shows us how to properly cook grilled veggies. There is an art to getting it just right.

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