(Family Features) There’s something about summertime that ushers in an easygoing spirit. The long, hot summer months are often celebrated with backyard barbecues, beach days and spending time with friends and family. It’s a time to fire up the grill, slow down and roll with the punches.
So, when you’re thinking about what to feed your family off the grill, it should be a breeze, and you shouldn’t have to choose between good and good for you. Next time you turn on your grill, consider these tips for creating healthier, flavorful meals you can feel confident serving.
Keep it simple. Skip the complicated recipes that call for a wide variety of ingredients, a multitude of steps and long cook times. Instead, seek out products and dishes that are made with ingredients you recognize and have just a handful of instructions. This will ensure less time in the kitchen and more time with loved ones.
Focus on seasonal, clean ingredients. Get inspired by your local farmer’s market. One of the best parts about summer is the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables that can add flavor and nutrients to your plate. Plant-based meat, like the burgers, ground and sausages from Lightlife, are also a healthier swap for traditional animal meat products. The pea protein-based product line features only simple ingredients, like pea protein, beet powder and red bell pepper, and are non-GMO, gluten-free and soy-free, perfect for use in recipes like this Burger with Grilled Pineapple and Honey Garlic Barbecue Sauce.
“I know how hard it can be to create fast and flavorful meals that the entire family will love,” said Dan Curtin, president of Greenleaf Foods. “That’s why we’re focused on making delicious food with the cleanest ingredients possible. The fact that they’re all plant-based is just a bonus.”
Don’t forget the sides. Food should be a source of confidence, with everything enjoyed in moderation. To balance your spread of burgers and hot dogs, consider serving fresh asparagus or sweet corn in place of other salty, processed options. Fruits like peaches and pineapple work well on the grill, too, but remember to group produce by similar cooking times.
Aim for a quick and fun cleanup. Perhaps one of the most overlooked secrets to a stress-free meal is to cut down on cleanup. A backyard barbecue can be one of the easiest messes to maintain as most of the prep is done outside on the grill. Try setting up a buffet line on your deck or patio where your family can build their burgers with customized toppings, like cheese, veggies and sauces. Then add a little bit of fun by putting on your favorite music playlist to help make a simple, everyday meal feel even more special.
Visit lightlife.com to discover more plant-based recipes and solutions.
Burger with Grilled Pineapple and Honey Garlic Barbecue Sauce
Total time: 30 minutes
- 2 rings freshly cored pineapple
- 2 Lightlife Plant-Based Burger patties, thawed
- salt, to taste
- freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 1 cup baby arugula
- 2 sesame seed burger buns, lightly toasted
- 1/4 cup crispy fried onions
- 2 tablespoons honey garlic barbecue sauce
- Heat grill to medium heat. Grill pineapple slices 4-5 minutes per side until grill-marked and slightly caramelized. Cut slices in half and set aside. Wipe down grill to cook burger patties.
- Season burger patties with salt and pepper, to taste. Grill 4-5 minutes per side until burgers are evenly browned with internal temperature of 165 F.
- To assemble, layer handful of baby arugula leaves on toasted bottom buns, top each with burger and two cut slices each of grilled pineapple. Sprinkle on crispy fried onions, drizzle with honey garlic barbecue sauce and place toasted sesame seed bun on top.
Source: Greenleaf Foods
(Family Features) With more than half of Americans willing to eat more plants and less meat in 2020 (and beyond), according to a study conducted by Yale and Earth Day Network, one thing holds true: Even when food is better for you and the planet, families crave quality taste.
Walnuts are one of the original plant-based superfoods that can carry sweet or savory flavors to satisfy snackers, add hearty crunch to salads or breakfast dishes and serve as a simple, whole-food meat alternative. In addition to being a delicious plant-based staple, 1 ounce of walnuts contains important nutrients including 4 grams of protein, 2 grams of fiber and good fats with 2.5 grams of monounsaturated fat and 13 grams of polyunsaturated fat, including 2.5 grams of omega-3 alpha-linolenic acid (ALA).
Try walnuts as an alternative to meat in recipes like Walnut “Chorizo” Tacos or Sweet Potato Walnut Falafel Bowls, and find more plant-based recipes at walnuts.org/plant-based.
Sweet Potato Walnut Falafel Bowls
- 1 raw sweet potato (12 ounces), peeled and cut into chunks
- 1 cup cooked quinoa
- 1/2 cup California walnuts
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1 egg
- vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup tahini
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- sea salt, to taste
- 4 cups loosely packed curly kale, coarsely chopped
- 2 cups cooked quinoa
- 1 cup julienned carrots
- 1 avocado, sliced
- toasted, chopped California walnuts, for garnish (optional)
- minced red onion, for garnish (optional)
- To make falafel: In food processor, pulse sweet potato until finely minced. Add quinoa, walnuts, ground cumin, onion powder and garlic powder; pulse until all pieces are uniform in size. Add flour and egg; pulse until well mixed, scraping down sides as needed.
- Using wet hands, shape mixture into 16 equal balls.
- In deep skillet or pot, heat oil. Cooking in batches, fry falafel balls 2-3 minutes on each side, or until golden brown and cooked through. Let drain on paper towel-lined tray.
- To make tahini dressing: In small bowl, whisk tahini, lemon juice, water, maple syrup, ground cumin, garlic powder and salt.
- To prepare bowls: Place equal amounts kale, quinoa, carrots and avocado in four large salad bowls. Place four falafel balls in each bowl and drizzle with dressing. Garnish with toasted walnuts and minced red onion, if desired.
Walnut “Chorizo” Tacos
- 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 8 radishes, thinly sliced
- 2 medium jalapeno peppers, thinly sliced
- 1 large clove garlic, thinly sliced
Walnut Chorizo Crumble:
- 1 1/2 cups black beans, rinsed and drained
- 2 cups California walnuts
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 tablespoon white vinegar
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon ancho chili powder
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
- 1 teaspoon ground chipotle
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 16 whole wheat tortillas
- olive oil
- thinly sliced romaine lettuce
- fresh cilantro leaves
- lime wedges
- To make pickled vegetables: In small bowl, stir lime juice, sugar and sea salt. Stir in radishes, jalapenos and garlic slices; let stand 30 minutes to pickle.
- To make walnut “chorizo” crumble: In food processor, pulse beans and walnuts until coarsely chopped. Add 2 tablespoons oil, white vinegar, paprika, chili powder, oregano, salt, chipotle, cumin and coriander; pulse until mixture is finely chopped and resembles ground meat, stirring several times and moving mixture from bottom of food processor bowl to top to evenly mix.
- In large nonstick skillet over medium heat, heat remaining oil. Add “chorizo” mixture and cook 10 minutes, or until mixture is browned and resembles ground meat, stirring frequently.
- To prepare tacos: Brush each tortilla lightly with oil. On skillet over medium-high heat, cook briefly to brown on both sides, keeping warm in foil until all tortillas are cooked.
- Remove pickled vegetables from liquid and discard garlic slices. Fill each tortilla with equal amounts “chorizo” and pickled vegetables. Garnish with lettuce and cilantro; serve with lime wedges.
Source: California Walnuts