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Hungry Girl: 4 Easy Food Hacks to Save Your Summer BBQ

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Lisa Lillien is the author of the popular Hungry Girl website and email newsletter, featuring smart, funny advice on guilt-free eating. She is also the author of eleven books, six of which debuted at number one on the New York Times Best Sellers list. Read her PEOPLE.com blog every Monday for slimmed-down celebrity recipes and more.

Those summer cookouts don’t have to be calorie disasters! I’ve got a few key BBQ tips for you…

Spiralized veggies are perfect for side dishes.
One great thing about spiral-cut veggies is that they don’t even need to be cooked. This makes them a fantastic ingredient swap for chilled noodle dishes! Make a few batches of this cold sesame noodle recipe, or give this 5-ingredient zucchini noodle salad a spin.

RELATED: Hungry Girl: Cook Once and Eat for the Whole Week with This Spaghetti Squash Casserole

Diet-friendly food that doesn’t taste or look like diet food? KEBABS.
Just choose your favorite lean meat and marinate it — the number of bottled marinades with low calorie counts out there is staggering. You can also DIY, like with these asian steak and buffalo chicken recipes. Hot tip: chicken sausage and butternut squash is one of the best kebab combos ever.

WATCH THIS: How to Make Stuffed Breakfast Avocados

Slow cookers aren’t just for winter.
Don’t even think about storing your slow cooker in the closet ’til October. It’s essential for making BBQ-style pulled meats. I’ve got recipes for pulled pork and pulled chicken that you’ll flip over.

RELATED: Hungry Girl: The New, Diet-Friendly Fast Food Items You Need To Know About

Fruit skewers = the perfect summer dessert.
A fruit platter might seem a little boring, but fruit on a stick is fun! Skewer up some strawberries, pineapple chunks, banana coins, apple chunks… even cubed watermelon! It’s refreshing and healthy: Double win.

‘Til next time… Chew the right thing!