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Get Your Grill On With These 3 Protein-Packed Vegetarian Foods

5 years, 11 months ago

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Posted on Jul 27, 2018, 8 a.m.


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Get Your Grill On With These 3 Protein-Packed Vegetarian Foods

Frying and grilling foods (particularly dry grilling like BBQing), are among the highest sources of advanced glycation end products (AGEs) in our diet. Grilled or broiled chicken and chicken nuggets have up to 10 times the amount of AGEs of boiled chicken. On the other hand, vegetables are naturally low in AGEs and their high water content protects them when heated. These recipes offer recipes with lower AGEs and choosing plant foods is my recommendation. In general, I recommend that you you avoid charred and blackened meats. If you are going to grill, be sure to marinate foods before and during cooking. Moistened meats produce half of the AGEs of dry meats. (Lemon juice, vinegar and dark beer are particularly good marinades to lower AGEs) Finally cook for shorter times an avoid charring the food. Bon appetit.
Joel Kahn,
Medical Editor

Summer is in full swing, and that means spending more time cooking under the sun and stars. While it's hard not to salivate at the very thought of a perfectly grilled steak or salmon fillet, you should know that meat and fish aren't the only reasons to fire up the barbecue. There are also many vegetarian foods that can rock your grill, and not being so meat-centric can help you net a greater diversity of must-have nutrients.

Not sure where to start? Try these physique-minded recipes featuring some of the best meat-free proteins.

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1. Pesto Halloumi Kebabs

Also known as "grilling cheese," halloumi is a squeaky cheese from Cyprus with a high melting point that makes it a great grilling option. On the outside, you get those great grill lines and crispy crust, while the inside turns into velvety goodness. Just a single ounce of halloumi has about 6 grams of protein, which is comparable to several types of meat, including chicken breast. Cook it like we suggest here, or slice it lengthwise into two big slabs and grill it like you would a steak.

For quick weeknight meals, these pesto kebabs can be assembled a day ahead and chilled. Instead of halloumi, you can also use cubes of paneer, a style of pressed cottage cheese common in India that is also a protein heavyweight. To keep wooden skewers from scorching, soak them in water for about an hour before use.

View Recipe Here

2. BLT Salad

This interpretation of the iconic BLT sandwich features tempeh for a nutritional upgrade. Made from fermented whole soybeans pressed into a cake, tempeh performs admirably when slapped on the grill grates. A 4-ounce serving delivers 20 grams of plant protein (more than twice what you'd get from tofu), making it a viable meat alternative for the grill.

This marinade not only converts tempeh into a stellar "fakin' bacon" but will also help it caramelize on the grill. Eating salad has never been more exciting.

View Recipe Here

3. Lentil Burgers With Mashed Avocado
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If you've tried those poor little frozen meatless patties before, you may think there's no hope for "veggie burgers." But these veggie burgers are infused with layers of great flavor, including tangy goat cheese, so you won't be left wondering, "Where's the beef?" Full of protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, lentils are a nutritional treasure trove. And if you want to skip some starchy carbs, ditch the bun. This recipe requires a food processor, by the way.

View Recipe Here

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