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Simple tips for summer grilling

Family BBQ

Canadians everywhere are out and about enjoying the wonderful warm, sunny, summer weather. With the arrival of barbecue season, here are some handy tips when grilling and entertaining in the backyard this summer.

Tips for safe food handling techniques

Be Food Safe, a program supported by the Government of Canada, recommends four simple tips to keep food safe:

  1. CLEAN: Wash hands with soap for 20 seconds before and after handling raw meats
  2. SEPARATE: Keep raw meat, poultry and seafood (and their juices) separate from other foods
  3. COOK: Use a meat thermometer to measure the internal temperature of cooked foods
  4. CHILL: Bacteria multiply fastest at temperatures between 4°C (40°F) and 60°C (140°F), so chilling food properly is one of the most effective ways to reduce the risk of foodborne-illness

Click here for more food safety tips to use while barbecuing.

Tips for keeping your grilling healthy

To keep your grilling healthy this summer, Registered Dietitians from Eat Right Ontario recommend the following tips:

  • Grill lean cuts of meat
  • Trim off visible fat before grilling
  • Reduce heat or raise the height of the grill if food is starting to burn – avoid charring meat
  • Keep a spray bottle of water nearby to douse any flare ups
  • Pre-cook chicken in the microwave to cut down on the grilling time

Barbecue alternatives

  • Vegetables! Layer the grill with a variety of vegetables, which adds nutrients and flavour to your plate. Try creating ‘veggie kabobs’ with peppers, summer squash, and mushrooms
  • Colourful grilled fruits can be diced and tossed into pasta salad or served with yogurt for dessert. Tip: fruit will become mushy if cooked for too long
  • Try fish such as salmon or mackerel, which contain heart healthy omega-3 fats
  • Take pizza night outside by following these instructions to barbecue a Delissio Thin Crispy Crust pizza! To complete your meal, serve alongside a variety of cut up vegetables or a garden fresh salad


Leftovers can become a great lunch the next day as long as you don’t leave them out for too long. Try to eat refrigerated leftovers within two to three days, or freeze them for later use.