Here's how to enjoy grilling season without derailing your diet.
Grilling season is upon us, which means it's time to spend time outside (and eat lots of burgers and dogs). Whether you're wanting a veggie burger with heft, a hot dog with all the fixins', or a fluffy bun that'll hold your favorite meat and condiments, we've got you covered. Here are our favorites from each category.
The Healthiest Packaged Hot Dogs
All-Beef Dog Boar's Head Skinless Beef Frankfurters: 120 calories, 4.5g sat fat, 350mg sodium. This wiener's authentic beef flavor made it stand out among its beefy brethren. Although it was one of the lowest in sodium of the ones we tried, you won't feel like you're missing a thing: Salty-garlicky notes are rounded out by a hint of spicy smoke. It's sans skin, but still snappy. $6.59 (10 per package)
All-Poultry Dog Applegate The Great Organic Chicken Hot Dog: 80 calories, 1.5g sat fat, 410mg sodium. Turkey dogs may get bypassed because shoppers fear trading flavor for health, but we were delighted by this all-chicken version: It's a tasty frank that is pleasantly salty with a mild, delicately smoky chicken flavor. $6.49 (7 per package)
Trader Joe's Italian Chicken Sausage: 110 calories, 1.5g sat fat, 410mg sodium. If you want something that tastes like a brat, pick up container of Trader Joe's sweet Italian chicken sausage the next time you're at the store.
Hot Dog Toppers: Want to jazz up a plain ol' dog? Try one of our healthy hot dog toppers—they're all delicious, and under 100 calories.
The Healthiest Packaged Burgers
Trader Joe's Chile Lime Chicken Burgers: 110 calories, 1g sat fat, 270mg sodium. Ok, so these aren't beef hamburgers, but they're crazy delicious. Chicken and lime bring decidedly southwest flavor—plus, one patty packs 15g of protein!
MorningStar Farm Grillers Original Veggie Burgers: 130 calories, 1g sat fat, 260mg sodium. These plant-based burgers pack as much protein as the chicken burger from Trader Joe's (15g!) Talk about veggie power.
Applegate Organic Turkey Burgers: 140 Calories, 2g sat fat, 55mg sodium. We love that these turkey burgers are super low in sodium and free of any antibiotics. Plus, they boast 17g of protein per patty.
The bottom line: Pre-packaged beef hamburgers are not great when it comes to calories, sodium, and sat fat. Try making your own burgers—they're cheaper, healthier, and way more delicious.
The Healthiest Hot Dog and Hamburger Buns
Udi's Classic Hot Dog Buns: 170 calories, 0g sat fat, 330mg sodium, 30g carbs. These hot dog buns are gluten-free, but you'd never be able to tell by the pillow-soft texture and bakery-like taste.
Ezekial 4:9 Sprouted Whole Grain Hamburger Buns: 170 calories, 9g sat fat, 170mg sodium, 34g carbs. Sprouted organic whole grains get a star role in these hamburger buns, and the toothsome texture would be delicious with almost any grilled burger.
Rudi's 100% Whole Wheat Hamburger Buns: 140 calories, 0g sat fat, 240mg sodium, 28g carbs. These buns have a hearty whole wheat flavor that'll make you want to eat the bread first.