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Diet Diva
Diet Diva

Get advice on healthy eating, nutrition, and weight loss from expert dietitian Tara Gidus. 

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Memorial Day: Grilling Season is Here!

Grilling on a summer evening.Memorial Day is the unofficial kickoff to summer grilling season. Have you dusted off the grill and fired it up yet? If not, get cooking!

Backyard barbecues tend to involve highly decadent foods, but they don’t have to! With spring in the air, there are healthy and fresh options available for any family gathering, even one centered around the grill. Follow these tips for a fun and healthy holiday weekend:

Bring a Healthy Side Dish

If you’re heading to a gathering, make a healthy side dish so that there will be at least one healthy option at the party! For a delicious, nutritious, and affordable side try this tasty Tex Mex Salad.

Choose Lean Meat

Burgers and hot dogs are the most popular things to grill, but for a healthier option, try chicken sausage—it has 50 percent less fat and no trans fat or MSG. Johnsonville has three new flavors of chicken sausage: 3 Cheese Italian, Chipotle Monterey Jack and Apple Sausage. Give the kabob recipe below a try.

Healthier Toppings

Top your favorite burger with fresh vegetables or grilled fruit rather than mayonnaise.

Grill Up Some Corn

Nothing says BBQ like corn on the cob!  Instead of drenching it in butter, spray a little I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter, which has less than five calories per serving.

Make Healthy Grilled Desserts

Dessert can be done on the grill, too! Have you ever grilled bananas? Check out this recipe for Grilled Banana S’moresfrom Dole.

Recipe to Try: Lime Chipotle Sausage Kabobs

grilled sausage kabobsIngredients

  • ½ cup honey
  • ½ cup lime juice
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 2 medium bell peppers (red, yellow or green), cut into 1-in. pieces
  • 1 medium onion, cut into wedges
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes
  • 1 package (12 ounces) Johnsonville® Chipotle Monterey Jack Cheese Chicken Sausage, cut into 1-in. pieces


In a bowl, combine the honey, lime juice and soy sauce. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine the peppers, onion, tomatoes and 1 cup honey-lime mixture.  Seal bag and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Preheat grill to medium. On metal or soaked wooden skewers, alternately thread sausage and vegetables. Grill for 10 minutes or until browned, turning frequently and basting with remaining honey-lime marinade.

Makes 4 servings.

  • 1

Tags: Healthy Eating

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About the Author


Tara Gidus is a nationally recognized expert and spokesperson on nutrition and fitness.

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