Before you fire up the grill

Courtesy Photo

By Taylor Sutton, MS, RDN, LD, United Supermarkets Dietitian

Summer is here and that means it’s time for the grilling season. Grilling adds a unique depth of flavor to food, allows you to catch some vitamin D if you’re outside, and helps decrease the AC bill at the end of the month since you’re using the stove and oven less. What’s not to love?! So brush off the grill set and brush up on your internal temperatures for meat:

  • Chicken – 165 degrees
  • Pork – 145 degrees
  • Seafood – 145 degrees
  • Red Meat – 145 degrees
  • Kabobs (1 inch cubes) – 150 degrees

Internal temperatures for cooking raw products are very important to decrease the risk of bacteria upon consumption. Some other things to keep in mind when grilling is to switch plates and utensils after placing meat on the grill to avoid cross-contamination. It’s also important to clean your grill before and after any use to get off dirt and prior debris. Here are a few other tips to be mindful of before firing up the grill:

  • Use a hard plastic brush scraper or solid flat steel scraper for food safety purposes
  • Be organized and ready to go with food clean plates and utensil before pulling things off the grill
  • Try using different woods and even flavors within the types of woods
  • Know the difference between direct and indirect heat before cooking
  • Invest in a meat thermometer
  • Rest meats before cutting them
  • Trim excess meat fats to avoid fire flare ups
  • When using skewers, soak them in water for 10 minutes prior

The grill isn’t just used for meats though! You can grill fruits and vegetables which generally take 6-20 minutes, depending on how hard or soft you desire them. You can also do dinner entrees like pizza, quesadillas, fish foil packets, and even use it as a stove with your stainless steel or cast iron pans. The grill is such a universal cooking tool that we can’t wait to continue to fire up week after week for some delicious things.

Grilled Naan


  • 4 Naan Breads
  • 2 Tbsp. Olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp. Zaatar
  • 1 large roma tomato
  • 4 oz mozzarella cheese
  • 1/8 c. Parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste


1. Grill naan for 3 minutes per side.

2. Brush olive oil evenly on all pieces.

3. Sprinkle on zaatar evenly on all pieces.

4. Dice tomatoes and top naan.

5. Roughly pull apart mozzarella cheese in small stringy pieces.

6. Place on a piece of aluminum foil.

7. Let cheese melt and bubble, roughly 5-7 minutes.