With the summer holidays around the corner, many of you must be excited to fire up the food smoker. If you are getting ready to host a grand barbeque party, ditching the coveted summer body, here is some good news for you. Instead of loading the plates with calories, you can choose comparatively healthier options that will weigh less on your waist but be equally delectable as ribs or brisket. Yes, we know you drool over the melting fat and a sizzling, succulent steak, and we are not asking you to compromise on it. This guide is meant to give you some healthier fatty meat options for smoking that will help you maintain your calorie count.
5 Healthy Fatty Meat Cuts for Smoking
We understand the preferences of all kinds of barbeque lovers. So, here we have handpicked 5 types of meat that are a big part of the world of food smoking. Check them out below:
1. Turkey breast
The star of Thanksgiving can also be the showstopper of your barbeque party. Turkey is a low-calorie option compared to red meats. Remove the skin to make it healthier. You can also use ground turkey breast if you desperately want to stay on track with your diet. Ground breast is loaded with protein, extremely low fat, and lower in calories. Don’t forget to add some olive oil mixed with a dry rub on the turkey before throwing it in the food smoker. This will keep the meat tender and succulent even after smoking.
2. Pork tenderloin
Smoked pork is a favorite of every barbeque lover. The natural flavor and tenderness of the tenderloin will further add to the magic. This cut is way better than other parts of the animal that are loaded with calories. Pork tenderloin is also a good source of protein, has zero carbs, and is low in fat. The smoking time is also a bonus with pork tenderloin. It reaches perfect doneness in about 2.5 to 3 hours when smoked at 225 to 240 °F (107 to 115 °C).
3. Flank steak
For those who were badly missing steak on this list, here it is. Flank steak is a comparatively leaner cut of steak compared to other cuts of red meat. The positive side is flank steak gives the same drool-worthy juicy, smoky flavor without overloading your body with calories. It is rich in protein, has zero carbs, and has little fat. With a smoked flank steak, you can enjoy every barbeque session guilt-free.
Ditch the chicken for a while because that’s always on most people weekday dinners. Food smoking can be great for day to day cooking, but deserves a special place on weekend meals. It is the fun of making gourmet food at home and deserves to be special. Wild or farm-raised pheasant is a great alternative in terms of taste and calorie quotient. The meat is rich in protein, vitamins, and potassium, without carbs. You can further increase how healthy it is by removing the skin. This will not only lower the calorie count but prevent the meat from turning crispy and flaky on the surface. You can smoke a whole pheasant in just an hour when smoked at 225 °F (107 °C).
5. Top sirloin steak
This one is for all those beef lovers who refuse to settle for anything less than that. Yes, there is a leaner cut of beef that will help you maintain a slim waistline. The top sirloin steak has fewer calories and trans fat content. This cut of meat will make a delectable succulent steak when smoked at 225 to 240 °F (107 to 115 °C) for about 2.5 to 3 hours. Remember, the rub is the secret behind all the flavors you’ll drool over with this steak.
Tips to Smoke Food the Healthy Way
Food smoking has many stigmas attached to it for being unhealthy. Leaving aside the high-calorie part, food smoking can adversely impact your health if not done hygienically. Here are a few factors that can also make food smoking unhealthy along with some tips to avoid them.
Food smoker: You have to clean the food smoker after every barbeque session. The oil, grime, and fat settled on the walls and bottom of the food smoker can not only ruin the flavor of your next barbeque but become a breeding spot for bacteria and other microbes, which can lead to food poisoning. Buy a modern electric food smoker like the Bradley Smoker with removable racks for easy cleaning. The insulated stainless steel body and separate burners for smoking and oven in Bradley Smokers make cleaning a breeze.
Quality wood chips: Poor quality wood chips or chunks emit toxic fumes when they burn out, making the food smell foul. Bradley Bisquettes is a savior here. Bradley Smokers use Bisquettes that are flavored wood chips specifically designed to burn for a precise time and extinguish before turning to ash. These wood chips ensure the food is cooked in clean smoke.
Over charred meat: Over charring or over smoking your meat can affect its nutritional content. Use a meat thermometer to check the temperature and remove the meat from the smoker when it reaches the desired doneness.
We hope these Bradley tips & tricks on healthy meats and food smoking have encouraged you to fire up the smoker without compromising your beach body.
Here are some great articles about how to smoke some juicy BBQ:
How to Smoke the Juiciest Beef Ribs
How to Add Moisture Before and During Food Smoking
For more great ideas on how to get the most out of your Bradley Smoker, check out the awesome articles on our Bradley Smoker Food Smoking Blog for more tips & tricks.