By Shannon Crocker MSC RD PHEc


Whether you’re at the cottage, at a campsite, or hanging out on your patio, there’s nothing quite like cooking a meal over hot coals (or a gas flame) and enjoying it outdoors.

In my backyard, grilled turkey is on our weekly menu. It’s juicy and delicious on its own or as part of different dishes, and it works with a whole world of flavours. For inspiration, here’s a trio of easy, healthy meals that combine turkey and veggies – mostly cooked on the grill – and reasons why they deserve a spot on your family’s summer table.

  1. Turkey Drumsticks with Lime Ginger BBQ Sauce

The smoky flavour and finger-licking-good sauce on these grilled drumsticks will have you dreaming of leftovers (and wishing you made more!)

Three things to love:

  • Easy sides: You can pair these drumsticks with any veggie sidekicks. I suggest corn on the cob (try drizzling it with olive oil and adding a squirt of lime juice) and steamy baked potatoes, both cooked on the grill.


  • Picnic perfection: Leftover drumsticks are terrific cold. Make extra to enjoy for lunch the next day with a crunchy side salad, like the tasty dill slaw from the turkey burger recipe below.


  • More minerals: As a dietitian, I’m always on the lookout for foods with an extra nutritional boost. It makes me happy to know that dark turkey meat has even more of the immunity-supporting nutrients found in white meat: iron, zinc and selenium – making both white and dark meat great choices.


  1. Yakitori-Style Turkey Skewers with Grilled Vegetables

Level up your grilling game with these irresistible skewers. The tangy, slightly sweet marinade pairs deliciously with turkey.

Three things to love:

  • Quick meal: Yakitori are skewers of meat that cook quickly, giving you more time to relax and enjoy hot summer days.


  • Switchable sides: No local asparagus available? Grill up more zucchini, or try red, orange or yellow peppers instead.


  • Tasty extras: Double up the turkey and grilled veggies to make a nourish bowl or salad the next day. These amazing summer salads would be delish with yakitori turkey.


  1. Spicy Turkey Burgers with Dill Slaw

Crunchy, creamy slaw + spicy turkey patty = super-yummy summertime meal.

Three things to love:


  • Simple slaw: Adding slaw is an easy way to take your burgers up a notch. Even simpler: use bagged slaw. It’s a healthy and convenient shortcut that I use when I’m in a hurry – or when I just want to spend less time in the kitchen.


  • Satisfy cravings: Ground turkey is flavourful, extra-lean and an excellent source of hunger-crushing protein, making it the ideal choice when you want a burger.


  • Dynamic duo: Here’s a perfect example of how you can create nutritional synergy on your plate: cabbage is high in vitamin C, which helps your body absorb the iron in the nutrient-rich turkey.


Happy healthy grilling,