Healthy Grilling Recipes That Will Delight Dad This Father's Day
Are you celebrating a health-conscious dad this year? These 22 recipes are sure to delight him, and each will prove that the grill is one of your greatest allies when it comes to smart eating.
Healthy eating is such a large category that it's best to break it down into more—ahem—digestible sections. In this gallery, we take the focus outside to the grill and highlight dishes that should appeal to Dad on Father's Day and beyond. Ahead, you'll find lighter recipe alternatives to the heavier barbecue classics like ribs and burgers he's probably fond of, starting with the Grilled Pork Loin with Lemongrass you see right here. It's a leaner cut of pork that's been marinated overnight and tastes delicious hot off the grill.
To be clear, we wouldn't dare disparage the occasional cheeseburger, but we do know that Dad (and the rest of the family) should not be eating one every day. In fact, the ticket to his—and your—being able to enjoy that cheeseburger occasionally without suffering health consequences down the road is to eat whole, minimally processed foods most of the time. If eating healthy most days is the gold standard we're encouraged to meet, then let's make it as delicious as possible. No need to hold your nose and eat boiled Brussels sprouts—it's entirely feasible to enjoy healthier eating when there are smart recipes and clever techniques to follow.
The recipes ahead are a collection of some of the more nutritious—yet equally delicious—choices for the grill. We have recipes for everything from quick-cooking teriyaki chicken cutlets that are perfect for a busy weeknight to leaner beef burgers with a secret ingredient no one will be able to guess. If sides are where you struggle, try our grilled zucchini dish that's packed with so much flavor it will compete with any entrée for first place.
Whether the aim is to get Dad to eat more vegetables this summer, help him his lower LDL cholesterol, or get to or maintain a healthy weight, this gallery is packed with healthy recipe inspiration for the grill that will help him and you meet any or all of those goals.
Teriyaki-Glazed Grilled Chicken
Grilled Vegetable Pizzas
Remind Dad that being a grown up means he gets to eat his vegetables any way he sees fit—piled onto these quick and easy grilled pizzas might just be his favorite way.
Hawaiian Turkey Burgers
The best thing you can do when preparing turkey burgers is to stop expecting them to act like a beef patty. Instead, embrace turkey's mild flavor profile with big, bold ingredients like ginger and soy sauce, and see how great this lighter (yet equally delicious) option can taste.
Grilled Shrimp Skewers with Orange Glaze
Grilled Zucchini with Miso
If you've ever thrown plain zucchini on the grill and been disappointed with the outcome, it's probably because there wasn't any miso involved. Give this favorite summer vegetable another try, this time with a rich and tasty glaze that will compel even the pickiest of dads to go back for seconds.
Grilled Pork Chops and Onions
Grilled Salt-Rubbed Fish Sandwich
Fish and Chips is a classic pub dish, but why should the deep fryer get to have all the fun? Make this light and easy fish sandwich using your grill and a firm fish like mahi-mahi or grouper. Dad will go crazy for the finished result.
Grilled Marinated Chicken Thighs
Boneless, skinless chicken thighs only contain a couple of extra grams of fat compared to breasts, but that little extra cushion makes them a much better choice for cooking on the grill (read: they're more forgiving about being overcooked with the grill's high heat).
Grilled Potatoes with Rosemary
Briefly kissing the sliced par-cooked potatoes on the grill will impart a sublimely smoky flavor to an otherwise simple side.
Charred-Eggplant and Beef Burgers
When Dad is yearning for a beefy burger, try this version that mixes cooked eggplant into lean ground beef. Don't tell him—the eggplant flavor is undetectable and contributes juiciness in what would otherwise be a lean perhaps dry-tasting patty.
Barbecued Baby-Back Ribs
When it comes to choosing the healthiest ribs to grill, baby backs win because they have the lowest amount of fat and calories. That said, it would still be wise to serve these up as a special-occasion appetizer, so the portion sizes can stay modest.
Grilled Balsamic Flank Steak with Pepper and Onions
Swordfish with Sicilian Oregano-Caper Sauce
Grilled Lamb Loins
Tender and naturally lean, lamb loins are a great choice for when you want to cook a special occasion meal on the grill.
Grilled Whole Fish with Lemon and Thyme
Grilled Pork and Pineapple Tacos
Whether it's Taco Tuesday or Father's Day, this taco recipe hits the spot. Lean and juicy tenderloin grills up beautifully in this dish that takes inspiration from the classic Mexican dish tacos al pastor.
Smoky Grilled Chicken with Sweet Vinegar Sauce
A flavorful dry rub and a vinegar sauce made with just a little honey creates delicious chicken magic on the grill without any need for high-sugar ingredients like store-bought barbecue sauce.
A strategically placed anchovy in the patty mixture amps up the flavor of these tuna burgers in a delightfully briny way. And when eaten in a bun with toppings like pickled ginger, wasabi mayo, and mizuna lettuce, we're guessing Dad won't wish for greasy fast food burger ever again.
Grilled Corn with Fish Sauce and Scallions
When the corn is slathered with so much butter that its status as a vegetable is called into question, then it may be time to re-think the approach. Here, butter is used judiciously on grilled corn in conjunction with punchy fish sauce and lime juice, creating a deeply flavorful and downright addictive side dish.
Grilled Buttermilk Chicken Tenders with Dipping Sauces
A little bacon never hurt—and in this case, it definitely helps these chicken tenders cook to perfection by insulating them from the flames of the grill.
Grilled Skirt-Steak Salad
Skirt steak is one of the most flavorful cuts of beef you can buy and, like flank steak, it is also one of the leanest. This means that a hot and fast trip to the grill is one of the best ways to prepare it.
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