By Debbie Benson
Grilling vegetables is a wonderful way to add flavor to usually plain or bland vegetables on a low sodium diet. The key here is flavor. The more flavor you add, the less salt or sodium you will feel you need. Grilled vegetables are flavorful, healthy and easy to prepare.
8 Tips For Healthy, Flavorful, Grilled Vegetables On A Low Sodium Diet:
- Season your vegetables with good salt free seasonings. You can also use an olive oil mixed with no salt seasonings, drizzled over the cooked grilled vegetables or in a side dish for dipping.
- Use freshly ground black pepper. For a variation try grinding a rainbow of colored peppercorns. You can find an assortment of black, white, green and pink peppercorns, already mixed for you, in most grocery or specialty food stores or online. These add more flavor and add a beautiful presentation to grilled vegetables.
- Add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice, or fresh lime juice over the finished grilled vegetables. Just a little bit adds wonderful flavor.
- Learn to use wood chips. These are available in a variety of flavors (different types of wood) and sizes. The basic wood chips like hickory wood can be found in most grocery stores. Some of the different types of wood chips like, mesquite, apple, maple and many more can be found in specialty food stores, some hardware stores, online, and of course most stores that sell barbecues have a good variety of wood chips. Don’t feel limited to just one kind of wood chip. Remember aroma adds flavor.
- Try grilling peppers, especially chili peppers. Grilled chilies add a wonderful, rich flavor. Chilies can come mild (no heat) to wild (lots of heat). The seeds and membranes contain most of the heat. You can scrape most of the heat out and leave it out or add a little at a time, to the heat level you like. Chop-up these grilled chili peppers and add to your platter of grilled vegetables or add them to a dipping sauce, a barbecue sauce, even a salad dressing.
- Use spicy or hot and spicy salt free seasonings, even a no salt added chili powder. So many folks think about adding spicy flavors to meats or sauces but they forget about the grilled vegetables. Spicy no salt seasonings add another dimension of flavor. More flavor is why so many folks like a spicy or a spicier barbecue flavor or barbecue sauce. Spicy grilled vegetables have amazing flavor. Spicy doesn’t have to be real hot.
- Grill vegetables at a lower temperature. Grilling on a lower heat helps give flavor more time to get into the vegetables. Many think vegetables should cook just a few minutes over high heat. Try the lower temperature for a longer time and let the grill or smoke flavor really permeate those vegetables.
- Always cook extra grilled vegetables for leftovers. Leftover grilled vegetables can be easily reheated the next day or added to sandwiches, salads, omelets and more.
Nothing is more beautiful than serving a colorful platter of healthy, flavorful, grilled vegetables, especially on a low sodium diet.
A cooking tip: try using a grill pan or grill basket for smaller or cut pieces of vegetables so they don’t fall through the grill.