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It's Grillin' Time

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Peppered Pork Tenderloin
Southwestern Kabobs
America's Favorite Pork Chops

(Family Features) - Lift the lids of grills around the country and you'll find evidence of two eating trends that show no sign of going away -- America's love affair with both grilling and low-carb meals.

According to a recent survey by the National Pork Board, 70 percent of Americans plan to grill at least once a week this summer. When you consider that grilling is a convenient way to prepare a quick and nutritious meal, its popularity is no surprise.

Simple, Healthy Meals

Lean pork cuts, such as pork tenderloin and loin chops, are great sources of high-quality protein, making them perfect additions to any summertime grilling menu. These recipes can be paired with a fresh green salad or side of low-carb veggies, and you have a complete, delicious meal. A 3-ounce serving of pork tenderloin has 24 grams of high-quality protein, with only four grams of fat and zero carbs.

Pork's subtle flavor also makes it a "clean canvas" on which to "paint" your favorite flavor combinations. Spice up your pork cut of choice with one of an endless variety of low-carb and low-fat seasoning favorites, like spice rubs, herbs or marinades for dishes that take on Asian, Mediterranean, Cajun or Latin flavor twists.

Hint for Choosing Cuts

A hint for finding healthful pork cuts at the supermarket is to look for the word "loin" in the name, such as pork tenderloin. The tenderloin is lean, easy to grill and a classic favorite.

For additional recipes for grilling lean varieties of pork and planning low-carb meals, visit otherwhitemeat.com. With more than 1,400 recipes on the site, all searchable by carbohydrate content, the summer diet season will have plenty of options.

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Propane Safety

More than 80 percent of U.S. families have a grill -- the majority of them fueled by propane. That's because propane grills offer homeowners a wide variety of benefits. They are equipped with convenient on/off switches, allowing for instant heat, easy temperature adjustments and quick cool-down times. And because there are no burning embers, propane grills don't throw sparks or require messy cleanup.

Before the grilling begins, however, there are a few safe grilling tips that will help you ensure a healthy and enjoyable grilling experience:

  • Always follow the grill manufacturer's instructions and keep written materials accessible.
  • When lighting a grill, keep the top open.
  • Always use or store cylinders outdoors in an upright (vertical) position.
  • When the cylinder is refilled, have the supplier check for dents, damage, rust or leaks.
  • Before connecting or lighting a propane gas grill burner, use a leak-detection solution to check connections for tightness. Do not use matches or lighters to check for leaks.
  • After filling or exchanging a cylinder, take it home immediately. Keep the vehicle ventilated and the cylinder valve closed and capped.
  • Do not allow children to tamper with the cylinder or grill.
  • Do not smoke while handling a propane cylinder.
  • Do not use, store or transport cylinders near high temperatures (this includes storing spare cylinders near the grill).
  • When a grill is not in use, cover disconnected hose-end fittings with plastic bags or protective caps to keep clean.
  • If there is an uncontrollable release of gas, call the fire department.
  • For additional safety tips, visit usepropane.com.

Peppered Pork Tenderloin

  • 1 whole pork tenderloin (about 1 pound)
  • 2 teaspoons lemon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne (red pepper) OR pepper blend seasoning
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    1. Rub tenderloin with seasonings, covering entire surface.
    2. Grill over medium-hot fire 15 to 20 minutes, turning occasionally, until internal temperature (measured with meat thermometer) reads 155° to 160°F.
    3. Let roast rest 5 minutes before slicing to serve.
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Calories: 140g     Total Fat: 4g
Cholesterol: 75mg     Protein: 24g
Carbohydrates: 1g     Sodium: 250mg

Serves 4
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Southwestern Kabobs

  • 4 boneless pork chops, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 4 tablespoons taco seasoning
  • 1/2 green OR red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1-inch pieces
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    1. In plastic bag or shallow bowl, toss pork cubes with seasoning until evenly coated.
    2. Thread pork cubes, alternating with pepper pieces, onto skewers*.
    3. Grill over medium-hot fire, turning occasionally, until pork is nicely browned (about 10 minutes).

Calories: 170g     Total Fat: 6g
Cholesterol: 55mg     Protein: 23g
Carbohydrates: 5g     Sodium: 280mg

Serves 4

Notes, Tips & Suggestions
*If using wooden skewers, soak in water for 20 minutes before using.
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America's Favorite Pork Chops

  • 4 pork chops, about 3/4-inch thick
  • 3/4 cup reduced-fat Italian dressing
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

    1. Place all ingredients in self-sealing bag and refrigerate at least 20 minutes (or as long as overnight).
    2. Remove chops from bag, discard marinade and grill over medium-hot fire, turning once, until just done (about 12 to 16 minutes total cooking time).
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Calories: 180g     Total Fat: 3g
Cholesterol: 65mg     Protein: 25g
Carbohydrates: 1g     Sodium: 180mg

Serves 4
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SOURCE: National Pork Board
Propane Education Council

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