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Healthy braai tips

Healthy braai tips

Current rating: 3.3 from 3 votes.

Let's make this summer a healthy one for us all. Take a look at these tips to ensure you remain healthy but still enjoy tasty braais…

Arrive prepared

  • Eat a snack before you go to a braai, because if you arrive hungry you’ll choose the wrong foods and may also eat too much.

Pre-braai snacks

Don’t fill up on unhealthy pre-braai snacks. Here are a few other options:

  • Homemade popcorn – low in fat and high in fibre, a far healthier option compared to chips, and more affordable too!
  • Vegetable crudités with a low fat cottage cheese dip or PnP reduced fat hummus
  • Braai toasties made with low GI bread, chutney, mozzarella cheese, onion and sliced tomato. Only use a thin scraping of margarine or butter only the side of the bread facing the grid.

Eat a balanced meal

Take a step back and assess what is available before you start to dish up.

  • Fill half your plate with vegetables and salad, one quarter starch and one quarter braaied meat. Then walk away from the table.
  • Focus more on chatting to friends and family and eat slowly.Watch your portion of starch – bread, potatoes, mielies and pasta all count as starch. Rather fill up on vegetables.


Here are some great veggie ideas that will help to balance out your plate:

  • Vegetable kebabs made with peppers, mushrooms, baby marrows and brinjals marinated in lemon juice and balsamic vinegar (remember to pre-soak wooden skewer sticks for 30 minutes to avoid the ends from burning)
  • When making potato salad and coleslaw, use a little light mayonnaise and add fat free yoghurt for a creamy texture without the kilojoules.
  • Tossed green salads are great – dress with lemon juice and vinegar and skip the croutons.
  • Wrap sweet potato and butternut in foil and toss into the coals – loaded with fibre and vitamin A.
  • Take a bunch of trimmed asparagus, toss with a little olive oil, lemon juice and salt and pepper and pop on the braai for 2-3 minutes.
  • Slice brinjals and baby marrows length ways, brush with a little olive oil and cook on the braai.
  • Pre-boil mielies until just tender, then place on the braai until charred on the outside.
  • For the vegetarians, fill red peppers or butternut with fresh herbs, reduced fat feta cheese and spring onions. Wrap in foil and toss in the coals.

Recommended proteins for the braai

Try these healthy alternatives to boerewors and chops:

  • Homemade chicken kebabs – use dried peaches and skinless chicken breasts
  • Pork fillet medallions
  • Fish
  • Ostrich
  • Pork sausages contain less fat compared to boerewors


These are some great desserts to whip up for a braai.

  • Bananas in their skins on the braai are delicious!
  • Fruit salad or fruit kebabs served with fat free cottage cheese blended with a touch of vanilla essence… Yum!


  • Watch the alcohol as it is loaded with kilojoules. Alternate every alcoholic drink with a large glass of water. If you are watching your weight, men should limit their alcohol intake to 6 drinks a week and ladies 4 drinks a week.
  • Serve a large jug of ice water with strawberries, sliced lemon or mint.


Images courtesy of Fresh Living magazine

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Current rating: 3.3 from 3 votes.
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