Celebrating the Fourth, Paleo Style

It needn’t be hot dogs, baked beans and beer, followed by root beer floats, as you watch the local fireworks display in your neighborhood. (Incidentally, did you know that root beer has one of the highest levels of the antinutrients, saponins, of all ‘edible’ foods?  Not that we should be drinking any kind of soft drinks…).

Other ‘traditionally served’ Independence Day fare includes potato salad, pasta salad, potato chips, corn on the cob, strawberry shortcake and lemonade.

However, there are other foods that have an equally ‘traditional’ standing in terms of what you’d see at many a barbeque, even one which is hosted by someone that’s never heard of the Paleo Diet, that are, indeed, completely Paleo.  How about an all (grass-fed) beef burger or piece of grilled chicken, with a chunk of fresh watermelon, and some grilled bell peppers, zucchini and eggplant?  

While I’ll admit that no, you’re not likely going to find raw kale salad at most of the parties you’ll be attending, you can certainly get by on tossed mixed green salads and those lovely, grilled veggies!    

Even at the most bare-bones Fourth Fete, you’re probably going to be able to procure a burger, throw away the bun (or use it as a napkin), and pile on the sliced tomato and red onion ‘fixins’, wrapping it up in some iceberg lettuce, the most commonly seen ‘leaf’ served with burgers.

Some easy suggestions of what you might bring include a mixed green salad with your favorite lemon and olive oil dressing, tossed with avocado and toasted pecans, or, of course, the good old stand-by of a crudite plate with homemade guac or salsa as starters.      

As a dessert offering,  a simple fruit salad (even the most die hard dessert lovers may be more inclined to something lighter in the hot weather) made of whatever fruit is fresh, local and organic, then tossed with lemon, and perhaps mint, is always a big hit.

As a beverage, offer chilled sparkling water infused with fresh blueberries and strawberries (in honor of red, white & blue).   If you’re planning on imbibing, stick with Paleo friendly red wine or clear spirits, and nix the urge to grab a cold, frosty one.

Enjoy your fourth, and give yourself a pat on the back for staying true to Paleo form in yet one more event where it would’ve been quite easy to veer off track!