The 4th of July is finally here!! That means fireworks, parades, fun with friends and family, and of course barbecues!
Typical Independence Day food includes yummy barbecue favorites and ice cold treats to cool you off while you’re having fun in the sun!
While it’s great to enjoy fun holidays and the food that comes along with them, it’s also important to be careful.
Here are some simple 4th of July tips, hacks, and recipes!
Healthy BBQ Swaps & Tips
Those tempting and scrumptious barbecue delicacies are definitely super delicious. Sadly however, they aren’t the healthiest options.
It is totally possible to enjoy the foods at your get together without going overboard though!
If you’re wanting to enjoy the BBQ while still being health-conscious, consider making the following adjustments.
Skip the Bun
If you’re having hamburgers, hot dogs, or any meat that’s usually served on a bun, and are wanting to limit your carbs, opt to go bun-free.
Instead, you can wrap the burger or dog in lettuce leaves, or just eat it plain with a knife and fork. This will eliminate a handful of simple carbs from your meal.
Beware of Sauces
Sauces can add SO much delicious flavor, but they can also be a secret dangerous pitfall for the fitness conscious.
They may seem innocent enough, but more often than not they hide a load of sugar, fat, or both, and these calories need to be accounted for!
Don’t Go Crazy with the Sides
It can be easy to sometimes feel like the calories in side dishes are somehow exempt from our daily total though, as if they don’t count for some reason.
Sadly they do of course, and some of those sides are actually super high in calories! That’s why it’s important to use discretion and not overdo it.
Go Heavy on the Veggies & Side Salad
Most barbecues include a nice offering of salads and veggie dishes.
Try to avoid those that are doused in high-sugar dressings, and eat your fill of the ones that aren’t!
Salads are also usually super low-calorie and are a great dish to fill up on!
Target High-Protein Food
Take advantage of the plentiful protein sources available at your get together!
There’s sure to be a mile-high pile of different meats, which can make reaching your daily protein goal a breeze.
Lean meats like chicken or fish are better, and as with salads and veggie dishes, pay attention to how the meats are cooked and what sauces they’re topped with.
Healthy 4th of July Recipes
In addition to the tips, check out these healthy 4th of July recipes to help you own your nutrition this Independence Day!
Red, White & Blue Breakfast
3 tbsp. non-fat, plain Greek yogurt
1 tsp. almond butter
2 tbsp. dotFit Vanilla Protein
2 strawberries, sliced
2 tbsp. blueberries
1 tbsp. sliced almonds
1 whole wheat tortilla (100 calories or less)
Mix together the yogurt, almond butter, and protein until smooth. Spread over tortilla, and top with berries and almonds. Roll up and enjoy! Great for on the go!
BBQ Chicken Kabobs
2 lb boneless skinless chicken breast
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/4 c low-calorie bbq sauce
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Cut chicken into 1-inch cubes.
Mix chicken with minced garlic, bbq sauce, salt, and pepper, and let marinate in the fridge for at least an hour.
Separate marinated chicken pieces evenly into 7 groups and slide onto wooden skewers.
Cook for 15-20 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink. Flip skewers halfway through cook time to ensure chicken is cooked thoroughly. Makes approximately 7 kabobs.
4th July Salad
2 c mixed salad greens
1/4 c fresh blueberries
1/4 c fresh strawberries, sliced
4 oz shredded chicken
1/2 c cooked quinoa
2 tbsp. crumbled feta cheese
2 tbsp. vinaigrette or poppy seed dressing
Toss all ingredients except dressing together. Pack into Tupperware, keeping the dressing separate. Toss with dressing when ready to eat. Enjoy!
1/3 c oatmeal, cooked & cooled
1/2 c non-fat plain Greek yogurt
1/2 scoop of dotFit Vanilla Protein
1/2 c mixed berries
Stir together the Greek yogurt and protein powder until smooth and combined. To assemble the parfait, layer in a glass the cooked oatmeal first, then the yogurt mixture, and finish with mixed berries! Enjoy!
Enjoy Your 4th July!
Life is all about balance, and it’s important to have fun and enjoy the little things, like fun holidays!
But while you’re having fun in the sun, watching fireworks, and enjoying your independence this 4th of July, keep in mind the fitness goals that you’ve been working hard to achieve.