Marinade, marinade, marinade!
Give your meat and vegetables a depth of flavour without adding too many calories by making your own marinades. Store-bought sauces often have added sugars and additives, but you can get plenty of flavour from adding even the simplest of ingredients. Some of our favourites include Worcestershire sauce, mustard, tomato puree, soy sauce and honey. Just pop your ingredients in a zip lock bag and leave to marinade until you’re ready to cook.
Swap your crisps for a tray of colourful crudités
Sugarsnap peas, carrot sticks, broccoli, celery, radishes, peppers and raw courgettes make a vibrantly healthy and refreshing alternative to salt-loaded crisps and snacks. Just put them out with some hummus and homemade guacamole and let people help themselves.
A salad that packs a punch
Summer berries, nuts and seeds, salty halloumi or creamy feta add an extra dimension to a regular old salad, and when your salad becomes a main contender on the buffet table rather than an afterthought, you’re more likely to fill up on all that goodness and eat less meat.
Make your own salad dressing
From tart vinaigrettes to creamy classics, the salad dressings you buy in-store are often packed full of sugars, extra calories and a whole host of ingredients we’ve never heard of. We’ve found that it’s just as fast and easy to whip up your own from scratch and wind up with something cheaper, healthier and much more delicious. You can find some of our favourites here.
5 Salad dressings to know by heart
Vegetables are your best friend
Move over meat! Barbecuing your vegetables give them a certain depth of flavour that you just don’t get when they’re boiled or steamed. Just add a quick drizzle of olive oil and pop them on the grill to cook slowly. For dense vegetables that take a little longer (like potatoes and corn on the cob) wrap them up in foil until they’re tender and finish them off on the grill.
High protein, low calorie
Swap fatty red meat (burgers, sausages etc) for healthy shellfish, pork loin steaks or skinless chicken breasts that really pack a nutritional punch. If you have to have your red meat, opt for high quality, lean cuts of steak for a wonderful smoky flavour.
Grilled fruit makes for an indulgent yet healthy dessert
Swap out treats like profiteroles, trifles and cake for grilled fruit sprinkled with brown sugar and topped with a low fat yoghurt. Stone fruits, bananas and apples can be wrapped up in tin foil with a drizzle of honey, a sprinkling of brown sugar or a few chunks of chocolate for a soft, sweet treat; whilst chunky slices of pineapple are delicious left on the barbecue to caramelise.