7 Fruits That You’ll Want to Toss On the Grill This Summer
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7 Fruits That You’ll Want to Toss On the Grill This Summer

These tasty treats are a healthy addition to any barbecue.

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By Taylor Lupo

We rely on the grill to cook many of our summertime eats, like veggie kabobs, burgers and marinated chicken breasts, but what about dessert? Some of your fruit salad favorites taste even sweeter served warm—and adorned with grill marks.

Caramelized fruits make for a quick (and wholesome) after dinner option all on their own, but grilled peaches and pears also elevate the flavor of any green salad. To round out your summer spread, we handpicked seven barbecue-friendly fruits, plus the sweetest ways to serve them.

We promise, these seasonal recipes make noshing the daily recommended amount of fruit—about 2 cups—a breeze.

Pineapple

2 / 8 Pineapple

To enhance the flavor of juicy, yellow pineapple, place thin slices or spears on a hot grill—no sugary sauce required. It takes only a few minutes per side to whip up a low-calorie dessert. Per cup, the fruit contains just 83 calories, but it's also packed with fiber—great for digestion and weight loss—and enough vitamin C to last the whole day. A piece of grilled pineapple might not ward off the common cold, but getting enough of the nutrient is important for the proper growth and repair of the body's cells.

Don't be afraid to mix pineapple with your savory dishes. The grilled fruit makes the perfect topper for a lean beef or turkey burger. Try it cubed and skewered between pieces of chicken breast, onion and bell peppers of various colors.

Mangoes

3 / 8 Mangoes

Mangoes are at the peak of ripeness during the summer months, making the period between June and August the perfect time to sink your teeth into these fleshy fruits. They're so versatile that you can grill them up and enjoy all season long. For a sweet and spicy treat, slice and skewer one medium fruit before topping with a generous squeeze of lime juice and a sprinkle of tajin, a colorful seasoning that combines mild chili, lime and salt. Toss on the grill and enjoy a refreshing snack with just 140 calories and about 4 grams fiber.

A flavorful mango salsa is perfect for serving with a filet of your favorite fish, like salmon. Slice and grill one mango, then chop the warm fruit and mix with diced tomatoes, onion, lime juice and chopped cilantro.

A grilled mango cheek can also be served beneath a dollop of homemade "nice" cream, made by blending a frozen banana until smooth. Top with a sprinkle of unsweetened coconut flakes.

Pears

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Thinly sliced pears taste great atop a grilled chicken, gorgonzola and arugula salad, but barbequed pears add a flavorful twist. Grab the juiciest pear you can find, remove the core and slice in thin strips, lengthwise, before placing on the hot grill. A quarter of the fruit adds just 25 calories to your meal.

You can also make pears the star of the show. To whip up a pear-focused dessert, slice a medium fruit down the center and scoop out the seeds. Grill each side for several minutes, until it is fork tender. Top with a scant teaspoon of honey and a tablespoon of chopped nuts. This dessert is seriously sweet, yet low in calories, with about 170 per pear. Plus, it also delivers a dose of fiber and protein.

Peaches

5 / 8 Peaches

Peaches are the epitome of summer fruits, and the perfect addition to any backyard gathering. To get started on this crowd pleasing dish, wash your desired number of peaches, slice each fruit in half and remove the pit. Give each side a brush of honey—no more than one teaspoon per peach—and let the grill do its thing.

Plate your fruit with a quarter cup of plain nonfat Greek yogurt, which can be whipped with a drop of vanilla extract to add some sweetness. Top your creation with a sprinkle of ground cinnamon, and take a knife and fork to this treat without feeling guilty. Per medium peach, the dessert contains just 115 calories.

You can also top a cup of low-fat cottage cheese with grilled and diced peaches for a lunch that's packed with 29 grams of protein and plenty of natural sugars, both of which will keep your energy up during long afternoons. The filling bowl contains about 220 calories.

Bananas

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Bananas are in season all year long, so you can enjoy these grilled treats from January to December—as long as you can brave the cold to turn on your grill. To create the grilled banana boats of your dreams, cut a deep slit on the inside curve of the unpeeled banana; take care not to slice all the way through the fruit. Fill the opening with a tablespoon each of dark chocolate chips and chopped pecans. Cover the bottom of the fruit with foil and grill for about 10 minutes. When the treats are cool enough to handle, enjoy for just 220 calories.

If you prefer a chocolate-free dessert, begin by peeling your medium-sized bananas and slicing them in half, lengthwise. Coat each half with a bit of honey—half a teaspoon per piece—and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Grill until dark, even grill marks begin to form, flipping after just a few minutes. This version is even more calorie conscious, with just 130 per banana.

Apples

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Apples aren't only a beloved fall fruit. Varieties are in season year round. This recipe takes a bit of prep work, but the results are worth it. Select your favorite type of apple and slice your fruit in two before removing the core. In a zip top bag or airtight container, combine a splash of all natural orange juice, a drizzle of honey, a drop of vanilla extract and a sprinkle of cinnamon and nutmeg. Let the apples marinate in the fridge for an hour or two, and grill for about three minutes on each side.

When you're ready to eat, plate two haves atop a scoop of light vanilla ice cream and drizzle on the extra citrus sauce. The coated apple contains 150 calories, and one popular "healthy" ice cream contains just 70 calories per half cup, but together they taste like an indulgence. If you'd like to add some crunch, sprinkle on some toasted oats or chopped walnuts, but at 48 calories per tablespoon, you won't want to overdo it.

Watermelon

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This vibrant fruit makes for a refreshing poolside snack, but can quickly become a healthy addition to your garden party menu. Elevate the look and flavor of this thirst-quenching fruit by slicing into wedges and tossing on the grill. Before firing up the barbeque, top your watermelon with lime juice, lime zest—to add some color—a sprinkle of salt and a drizzle of olive oil. One cup of the grilled fruit contains about 90 calories and can be served a number of ways. Or skip the oil and sweeten your melon with all natural maple syrup, with 17 calories per teaspoon.

Dunk your wedges in a cool yogurt dip—a combination of plain, nonfat Greek yogurt, lemon juice and honey. Cube the warm fruit and combine with diced cucumbers and a sprinkle of crumbled low-fat feta cheese and top with a drizzle of balsamic vinegar. Prefer to eat it plain? Go right ahead!

No matter how you eat it, watermelon is a great source of vitamins A and C, which both help your body's cells grow, repair and function to keep you well. The fruit is also made of more than 91 percent water, so it delivers some of the essential hydration your body needs.