Somehow Fourth of July weekend is coming up in just a few days. Wasn’t it just New Years? Technically, summer barely just started, but I already feel it’s going way too fast. If you’re celebrating, are you going to or hosting a cook-out? “Barbecue” is a word that strikes a note of fear in many dieters and anyone trying to stick to a generally healthy diet, but it’s totally possible to enjoy yourself and stay on track.

burgerIt’s true that burgers and dogs (and especially oversized buns) are what get a lot of the “danger, Will Robinson” attention, but the sides can make or break the meal. If you’re attending a cook-out at someone else’s place, offering to bring a few sides can help you keep things real, and if you’re hosting, serving some tasty, lower-calorie options alongside the classics will save you and your guests (chances are at least a few are in the same boat) the calorie-counting headache.

True, you can go the trusty hummus-and-veggies route (cliched for a reason), but there are lots of options. I recently shared some of my favorite tips for healthier barbecue sides over on Tabelog. Check it out!

If your’e celebrating, what are you doing for the Fourth of July this year? What are you favorite foods for summer cook-outs? 

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