Slim Down Your Memorial Day Weekend BBQ!

Memorial Day Weekend kicks off the unofficial start of summer, although the food offered at many barbecues isn’t exactly light summer fare. My blue cheese burger with caramelized onions and baked sweet potato fries will give you that summertime barbecue feeling (and fullness)  – without all of the calories and fat!

Blue Cheese Burger With Caramelized Onions 

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Ingredients (serves 4):

16 oz ground sirloin (look for lean or extra lean)

1 large egg, scrambled

2 medium onions, chopped

4 oz blue cheese crumbles

4 whole wheat rolls

1 Tbsp oil (canola or olive oil work well)

Directions:

1. Warm up a grill, griddle or a pan (I like these best on the grill).

2. Combine egg, ground beef and a small handful of blue cheese crumbles (should be about 1/4 of the blue cheese). Form four patties with your hands and set aside.

3. Warm oil in pan over medium heat. Add onions and sauté until browned, stirring occasionally.

4. Place burger patties on grill and cook until cooked through (about 4-5 minutes on each side for medium doneness, although grill time may vary).

5. Add rolls to grill for 1 minute. Remove rolls and place one patty on each roll, along with blue cheese and onions. Enjoy!

The Goods: What’s Inside

Nutritional Analysis Per Serving (1 burger):

Calories 438 calories, Total Fat 21 g, Saturated Fat 9 g, Carbohydrates 26 g, Fiber 3 g, Protein 37 g, Sodium 616 mg, Calcium 200 mg

Baked Cinnamon Sweet Potato Fries

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Ingredients (serves 4):

3 medium (~5″ long) sweet potatoes

2 Tbsp oil (canola oil works well)

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

3/4 tsp cinnamon

Dash salt

Nonstick vegetable oil cooking spray

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Spray casserole dish with nonstick vegetable oil cooking spray.

3. Slice each sweet potato in half, lengthwise, then cut into fry-shaped strips

4. Transfer fries to casserole dish, toss with oil and spices and bake in oven for about 50 minutes, stirring occasionally.

5. Once fries are softened, broil for about 2-3 minutes, until browned. Serve and enjoy!

the Goods: What’s Inside?

Nutritional Analysis Per Serving:

Calories 136 calories, Total Fat 7 g, Saturated Fat 1 g, Carbohydrates 18 g, Fiber 3 g, Protein 2 g, Sodium 69 mg, Calcium 37 mg

A Sweet Thanksgiving Side Dish

Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Cinnamon

Forget the marshmallows- these sweet potatoes are sweet, tasty, aromatic and straight-up comfort food, sans grease! These baked sweet potato fries are naturally sweet and flavored with cinnamon to enhance the taste of this fall favorite! Sweet potatoes offer a ton of beta-carotene, a precursor form of vitamin A, along with fiber and a creamy taste, while being naturally low in fat! Instead of baked yams with butter and marshmallows, relish the real flavor of these potatoes without all of the extra calories!

Ingredients (serves 4):

2 medium sweet potatoes

1 tsp cinnamon

3 Tbsp canola oil

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Dash salt

Non-stick vegetable oil cooking spray

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2. Wash sweet potatoes well. Dry with paper towel (the skin is included in this recipe).

3. Slice sweet potatoes in half. Cut each half into strips (approximately 1/2 in thick, or to desired thickness).

4. Spray baking sheet or casserole dish with cookin spray. Place sweet potato strips on baking sheet/in casserole dish.

5. Drizzle oil over sliced sweet potatoes. Add salt, pepper and cinnamon. Mix well and arrange in thin, single layer.

6. Bake for 45 minutes- 1 hour (depending on desired crunchiness), mixing every 15 minutes. Fries should be soft and slighty crunchy. Serve hot.

The Goods: What’s Inside?

Nutritional Analysis Per Serving:

Calories 151 calories, Fat 11 g, Saturated Fat 1 g, Cholesterol 0 mg, Sodium 60 mg, Carbohydrates 12 g, Fiber 2 g, Sugar 5 g, Protein 1 g, Calcium 29 mg.