Healthy Meals in a Snap

We’re midway through the summer and it’s likely that you’ve already eaten your share of hamburgers. Like most people, I do love a good burger. But, is there more?

When we think of summer and barbeques, most people think of the usual burgers, hot dogs and (maybe) chicken. Burgers are great, but there is a lot more to barbeques than just plain old beef burgers. In fact, if you use your imagination, the options are almost endless!

Here are just a few ideas for burgers that go way beyond beef. Try one or more of them at your next family dinner or summer party:

Beef Plus: Who says that a burger is just a patty of beef? Once you flip your usual beef patty over on the grill, instead of topping it with plain cheese, try topping it with pizza sauce, mozzarella cheese, sautéed mushrooms and olives for a “pizza burger.” Or, top your patty with sliced pastrami, swiss cheese and sauerkraut for a “Ruben burger.”

Meatloaf: Take your favorite meatloaf recipe and, instead of forming the mixture into a loaf and baking it, how about forming it into patties and grilling them? Meatloaf makes a great burger, and grilling gives it a nice, outdoor flavor. For something really different, try serving these great burgers on a rye or sour dough bun.

Turkey: For many people, the thought of turkey burgers isn’t too exciting. But they can be really good. The secret is to mix some grated zucchini into the ground turkey (about 1 cup of grated zucchini for each pound of turkey). The zucchini will keep the patty extra moist while grilling. Be sure to squeeze the zucchini dry after grating it and before mixing it into the turkey. Top them with with lettuce, sliced tomato and Greek yogurt. You can serve these on a bun or for something really different, try a pita.

Chicken: Make patties from ground chicken, or grill chicken breasts. Instead of loading them up with barbeque sauce though, try topping each patty/breast with pesto sauce and sliced mozzarella cheese. Serve on rye bread or Italian rolls with lettuce and tomato.

Salmon: For something extra special, try making salmon cakes, but grill them as burgers instead of frying them in oil. They’re very healthy and cooking them outdoors over an open flame keeps the fishy odor outside. Top them with lettuce, tomato and a dill sauce made with Greek yogurt and fresh dill.

I encourage you to try one or more of these beef burger alternatives. They’re fun to make and really tasty.


Remember, healthy choices you make each day can transform your family for generations! What choices will you make today?
You may also want to read: Quick, Healthy Grocery Shopping, You Can Eat Locally Grown Foods, Even When You’re Busy, Is Healthier Fast Food on the Horizon?

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