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A braai is a great South African pastime known for its tasty food and special sense of community Nevertheless braais are notoriously high in sugar, salt, unhealthy fats and energy, a typical South African braai is not synonymous with healthy living..  Here are some  hints and tips on how to enjoy your braai, guilt-free this Summer.

Chefs Tip: Opt for wholegrains, lower GI ingredients, lean cuts of meat, less fat, less salt, and vegetable based options!

  • When it comes to red meat, opt for lean cuts of meat; and trim off visible fat and skin.
  • Choose unseasoned meats like steak rather than boerewors and sausages which are commonly higher in sodium.
  • Change things up; choose fish like sardines, salmon and trout instead of red meat. Fish is not only delicious on a braai but is a very good source of heart- healthy fats
  • Swap your standard meat burgers for vegetable burgers (chickpea burgers are always a winner here!). This makes for a delicious alternative for vegetarian guests.
  • Vegetable steaks are trending! From Cauliflower to Aubergines; throw a few on to the grill as a healthy vegetarian option.


Side Dishes

  • Fresh colourful salads using cooked vegetables like sweet corn, butternut or sweet potato wedges which will add bulk to your plate.
  • Grilled vegetable kebabs are not only healthy; but visually appealing and easy to serve.
  • Cous-Cous is a healthy alternative to pap and is great with a fresh or cooked relish.
  • Whole-wheat or wholegrain bread or rolls with garlic butter, instead of white bread.
  • Fruit salad or fruit kebabs served with plain yoghurt make perfect sides for the end of the meal.
  • Using a reduced oil mayonnaise in your potato salad and coleslaw makes for a healthier option.


  • Instead of salty snacks; serve homemade oven-baked pretzels, lightly salted popcorn, unsalted nuts, or roasted chickpeas.
  • For a fresh snacking option use baby tomatoes, vegetable crudité instead of salty crisps, salted nuts or lean biltong. Not only is this healthier, but much more economical.
  • For dips, choose hummus, low fat cottage cheese, guacamole or salsa.