Our 4 Top Tips to Green Grilling this Summer

Our 4 Top Tips to Green Grilling this Summer

We have all the green grilling tips and nutrition tricks to make your favorite summer meal an eco-friendly, healthy one! 

 

Biting into a refreshingly sweet, juicy watermelon slice. The savory, messy experience of eating ribs off the bone. Buttery corn on the cob displayed on red-and-white checkered tablecloths. You heard us: it’s Barbecue Season!

Has the seductive scent of barbecued meals reached the yards of your neighborhood yet? We know we’ve been hit with the BBQ bug. Whether it’s for a party overflowing with burgers and beers, or a family tradition of summertime meals, people across the country are setting up their grills.

We are more than ready to let the good times roll, but we care about practicing eco-friendly and natural grilling to protect our planet and health. We refuse to kiss our favorite BBQ traditions goodbye, so we dove into research. Here, we’ve condensed everything you need to know about green grilling and threw in some expert health advice from a nutritionist. Fire Up the Barbie!

Eco-friendly Grilled Vegetables

Eco-friendly Grilled Vegetables

Grilling Blues

We know, grilling doesn’t sound like the worst of our carbon footprint troubles, right? There are enough planes, trains, and automobiles out there to fill a lifetime’s worth of environmental concern! Well, just hear us out.

According to the Environmental Resource Center, “60 million Americans will fire up the grill during summer holidays.” When you consider the astounding extent of grilling in our country, it’s no wonder the Air Quality Research Center of UC Davis concluded in a study that backyard grilling is one of the most toxic sources of air pollution.

Frying Away Your Health

We hate to say it, but the problems don’t stop there. When you barbecue your food, the high heat increases the production of modified proteins and fats, called Advanced Glycation End Products (or AGEs). According to Clinical Professor of Medicine, Dr. Joel Kahn, consuming a high content of AGEs can contribute to diabetes, heart disease, and obesity.

Wait, Come Back! Please stop trying to sell your grill on Craigslist. There’s no need to give up hope! You are not destined to a lifetime of boring yard parties, serving only coleslaw and fruit salad. There are loads of easy, effective ways to protect the environment by greening your grill. Add some healthy tricks to reduce harmful toxins in your food, and your diet will stay as clean as your grill is green! Read on, and we promise you can keep that party going.

green grilling

eco friendly ways to green your summer grilling

4 Eco-Friendly Tips to Green Your Grill

  •  Lose the Petroleum Based Lighter Fluids and Self-Lighting Coals
    • They release harmful petrochemicals into the air. Switch to these safer alternatives:
      • Charcoal Chimney (we like: Drop Bottom Charcoal Chimney at Williams-Sonoma).
      • Electric Charcoal Starter (we like: Master Forge 550-Watt Electric Charcoal Starter at Lowe’s).
  • Choose a Gas Grill
    • They produce less pollutants and waste, burn cleaner, and are more energy efficient.
    • Take it up a notch with a grill that uses natural gas, by far the cleanest fossil fuel (we like: Weber Grill 2-Burner Stainless Steel Natural Gas Grill at Home Depot).
  • If You Must Use Charcoal – Select a Natural, Lump Kind
    • This fuel is greener, because it is made from hardwood materials with no chemical additives, and it creates less ash (we like: Big Green Egg Natural Lump Charcoal at Sears).
  • Clean Your Grill Regularly and Naturally
    • When excess pieces of food and grease clog up your grill, it produces more smoke.
    • Toss the petroleum based cleaner and replace it with a natural, nontoxic version (we like: Goo Gone All Natural Grill Cleaner at Walmart).

 

A Nutritionist’s Top 3 Ways to Keep Grilling Healthy

Now that you’re no longer hurting the environment, let’s make sure you’re not hurting your diet. Follow these tips by Clinical Nutritionist, M.S., Alex Swanson, to make your barbecue season as healthy as it is happy!

  1. Homemade marinades can reduce the risk of HCAs (heterocyclic amines – toxic compounds created when meat is cooked on high heat) by 90%!
  2. To cut down on those nasty AGEs, add antioxidant-rich fruits, lemon juice, herbs, and spices to your meat.
  3. Avoid commercial tomato and sugar-based barbecue sauces – these can double or triple chemical formation.

See, it’s simple: healthy planet, healthy body.

 

We Smell Hamburgers

Who knows, we may just be imagining it from all this barbecue talk. Regardless, we’ve got to run … grilled hot dogs and corn bread are asking for us!

3 Easy Paleo Pancake Recipes to Earn You Serious Bragging Rights

3 Easy Paleo Pancake Recipes to Earn You Serious Bragging Rights

We’re bringing you 3 easy paleo pancake recipes so outrageously delicious, it almost seems wrong that they’re healthy. 

No doubt about it, breakfast is our very favorite meal. It always seems to trigger those quintessential childhood memories: waking up on a crisp morning to the inviting smell of French toast. Our mouths are watering at the thought of it! Breakfast sets the foundation for your day. Done right, it fills you with ample energy and nourishment. Done wrong, it could leave you unsatisfied or with a blood sugar spike that’s destined for a crash.

Problems with the Typical Modern Day Breakfast and How to Change it

Unfortunately, many breakfasts today are full of empty calories from highly allergenic foods, such as grains and dairy. Filling up on cereals, bagels, and milk wreaks havoc on our bodies and leaves us malnourished:

  • A diet with high gluten content can lead to brain fog (difficulty focusing) and leave us with serious bellyaches.
  • An article by USA Today stated that: “less than 40% of people in the world retain the ability to digest lactose after childhood.

Yikes! Not how you want to prep your mind and body for the day ahead.

paleo pancakes blueberries bananas

Paleo pancakes with blueberries

Enter: The Paleo Diet

The Paleo Diet is based on the idea that, for optimal health, we should be eating diets similar to those of our prehistoric ancestors. The onset of Homo Sapiens dates roughly to 300,000 years ago. Agriculture only began 10,000 years ago. The big picture: the introduction of agriculture disrupted the natural, healthy human diet and brought with it a myriad of diseases. People following the Paleo Diet today eat meat, fruits, veggies, and nuts/seeds and nix all grains and dairy. Fans of the diet have reported clearer skinweight lossmental sharpness, and increased energy.

For a true Paleo primer, check out Robb Wolf’s “The Paleo Solution: The Original Human Diet available on Amazon.

Cooking paleo pancakes

Paleo Pancakes Cooking On A Griddle

 

Caveman Meets Gourmet Chef with these easy Paleo Pancake Recipes 

These 3 indulgent, delectable Paleo pancake recipes will make you fall in love with breakfast all over again. Not only do they taste heavenly, they are quick to prepare and packed with nutrients.

Coconut Pumpkin Paleo Pancakes

Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp melted coconut oil
  • 2 cups organic pumpkin puree
  • 2 eggs
  • ¼ cup coconut milk
  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • ¼ cup ground flaxseed
  • ½ tsp apple cider vinegar
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp cinnamon

Directions: In a mixing bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients. In a separate bowl, whisk wet ingredients. Combine both and stir. Over medium heat, drizzle coconut oil on the skillet. Scoop the batter into pancake-sized shapes. When golden, flip to other side.

TIP: Coconut flour is a delicious, high-fiber baking alternative to grain flours. Our favorite is Bob’s Red Mill Organic Coconut Flour. Find it online at Amazon or Walgreens.

Nutty Almond Paleo Pancakes

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups ground almond meal
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • ¼ nutmeg
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ cup applesauce

Directions: Stir dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Whisk wet ingredients in a separate bowl. Combine dry and wet together, stirring until smooth. Grease pan with coconut oil at medium heat.  Pour batter in shapes 2-3 inches across. Cook until golden brown then flip.

TIP: Almond meal and almond flour can be used interchangeably, so use whatever you have.

Chocolate Chip, Banana, Almond Butter Paleo Pancakes

Ingredients:

  • 2 eggs
  • 2 bananas
  • ¼ tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tbsp almond butter
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 1 handful of chocolate chips
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil

Directions: Mash bananas in a small bowl. Whisk together eggs, vanilla, baking soda, almond butter, salt, and chocolate chips. Add bananas to the mixture. Apply coconut oil to griddle and put on medium-low heat. Pour batter into dollops 3 inches across. Cook for 4 minutes then flip.

TIP:  Use an unrefined coconut oil for more nutrients and flavor. We like Spectrum Organic’s Unrefined Coconut Oil, available at Vitamin Shoppe.

 

 

Enjoy! There you have it: caveman-approved gourmet pancake recipes fit for a queen! Eat like a goddess. Thrive like a hunter-gatherer. Prehistoric living never felt this good.