10/06/2008

Grilling Chicken Tips

Basic Tips for Grilling Chicken

One of the basic ingredients for any low carb diet is grilled chicken. Easy to make, simple to customize, you can grill a boneless chicken breast just about any time of year for a quick and tasty meal. This is low carb - and low fat too!

First, get a good piece of chicken. You really notice the difference between a tough, tasteless chicken patty and a tender, flavorful one. Since you tend to eat less on a low carb diet, because your blood sugar is naturally keeping your hunger at a reasonable level, it pays to get smaller but higher quality foods.

There are many ways you can marinade your chicken. There are many pre-mixed marinades on the market - check the carb counts of one you use. You can of course make your own ckicken marinade.

You can also parboil it - i.e. boil it for 20 minutes or so, with some spices. That helps to pre-cook it and keep the juiciness in, as well as infuse it with flavor.

Before you start grilling, clean the grill off of all impurities and lightly oil the grill. This will help keep your meet from sticking to the grill and picking up impurities.

Heat up your grill as hot as possible before you put your steak on. This gives the outside of the chicken a good sear, to keep in the juices. If you want your chicken to have the classic diamond pattern on it, turn the chicken 90 degrees on the first side before flipping it over. This should be done in about 12 minutes.

An alternate way to do the cooking is to slow cook the chicken, so the chicken becomes tender and nice. This takes about an hour or more, with the grill around 250F. You want to first super heat the grill, then just before you put the chicken in, turn off all but a far-away burner.

It's best to apply BBQ sauce in the last few minutes, while dry BBQ rubs and spices are best applied right at the beginning.

When you cut your chicken into pieces, don't cut it into chunks. If you create long, thin slices instead, it will taste far better!

Protein is highly important for every diet. While doctors used to think that people naturally lost muscle tone as they aged, studies now show that you can maintain healthy muscle as long as you continue to eat adequate protein and exercise regularly.

Note that the fat in chicken and other meats can form HCAs if grilled improperly. HCAs are linked to causing cancer. To avoid the risks:

* Trim off all fat before grilling
* Minimize fat drips into the grill, which causes flare-ups of HCA smoke
* Keep your grill rack high off the heat, so flare-ups don't reach the meat
* Marinate your meats - the layer of oil keeps the fat from the heat.

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