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How To Make Healthier BBQ: The Dr's Secret Recipe

2:05 PM, May 22, 2013   |    comments
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Colfax, NC -- BBQ. It's a North Carolina staple. But before ou take another bite, how about a healthy twist to the grub we've come to define ourselves by?

Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center's Dr. Joey Skelton met 2 Wants To Know at the Piedmont Triad Farmer's Market to talk Q. 

Skelton believes in chicken versus pork BBQ and he says put the sauce on the meat while you cook it, not while it's on the bun. Here's a look at the numbers between the two white meats: 

One ounce of Pulled Pork: 65 calories, 4grams fat, 7grams protein

One ounce of pulled dark meat Chicken: 50 calories, 2.5 grams fat, 7 grams protein

Dr. Skelton says saucing your meat after it's cooked and done only adds extra calories, salt and sugar.

Now, you can't have pulled BBQ without putting it on a plate with sides. Katie Boles, a dietitian at Wake Forest Baptist in the Brenner FIT unit says you need to have a "balanced plate method".

She says to make sure you don't over do it with any one food item, divide you plate into quarters. You still have a full plate, but there is a balance. For our grill out, they paired the BBQ Chicken with sweet potatoes, collard greens and fruit.

Dr. Joey's Pulled Chicken

Get 6-8 chicken quarters (leg and thigh joined). Cut off excess fat. Lightly salt and pepper both sides, and add garlic powder to the underside of the quarters on any exposed meat you can find. Make sure you take the chicken out of the refrigerator an hour before cooking  so it can come to room temperature.

Find a large chunk of hickory wood, about 2-4 inches square. Soak in water for a minimum of 15 minutes.

Gas Grill: Turn one burner on to high- heat grill to 300 degrees. Using tongs or a glove, lift the grate and place the soaked wood chunk on the lit burner. The wood does not have to be touching flame- it just need to get hot. After about 20-30 minutes, you should start getting smoke rising from it.

Once you have smoke and the grill is about 300 degrees, place the chicken on the grill, away from the lit burner, skin side up. Cook for about 1 hour or until the skin is a mahogany brown and the meat is 165-180 degrees. Remove from grill and let cook for about 30 minutes.

If the chicken is still hot, wear plastic or rubber gloves- remove the skin, the using your fingers and thumbs, remove all meat from the bone that you can. It helps to rip the leg off of the thigh. Be careful to remove any small bones or cartilage from the meat.

Separate into piles of big chunks and small chunks of chicken. chop the small chunks up even smaller, and either pull or chop the bigger chunks into 1 inch bites (the different sizes help it hold together on a bun as well as hold the sauce).

Mix all the meat together in a saucepan or cast-iron skillet. Add your favorite BBQ sauce (best to use a sauce that has some ketchup or tomato product in it, as it holds to the meat better- I prefer to make my own sauce- lots of recipes) and heat the chicken back through.

Serve on a bun with a pickle or straight on your plate.

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