Eat Healthy This 4th of July

| Sarah Johnson MS, RD, CFP

Burgers, Fries, and Fourth of Julys?  As with most holidays, visions of the 4th of July usually involve food…lots of food; but that does not mean it needs to be unhealthy food.  When we eat better, we feel better, so by making a few small changes to your BBQ, the 4th of July can be spent as it should be – being full not of treats, but of laughs, gratitude, and joy.

To help, here are some Red, White & Blue, appetizer, side dish, and dessert recipes that are sure to be crowd pleasers. 

Happy 4th of July everyone!

Appetizer:  4th of July Fruit Salad

Ingredients: 1cup strawberries diced
1cup blueberries
1cup jicama peeled and diced
1/4cup red onion diced
1/4cup cilantro chopped
Juice of 1 lime
Salt to taste
Directions: Combine all ingredients together and salt to taste!
The flavors will marry over time so feel free to let
it hang out in the bowl for 20 minutes before serving!
Serve with tortilla chips.1

Main Meal Side Dish: Red White & Blue Caprese Salad

Ingredients1 pint blueberries
2 pints cherry tomatoes
Fresh basil
Balsamic vinegar
Olive oil
Salt & Pepper
Firm Buffalo mozzarella cheese
Directions 1. Wash blueberries and cherry tomatoes and drain well
in a colander. Half cherry tomatoes and toss in a serving
bowl with blueberries, set aside.
2. Slice mozzarella cheese into 1/4 or 1/2″ slices
and then cut into small stars with a cookie cutter.
3. Top the tomatoes and blueberries with the star cheese.
4. Tear fresh basil over-top and drizzle with olive oil and

Dessert:  Freedom Pavlova Cake

IngredientsFor the Cake:
4 egg whites at room temperature
4/5 cup powdered sugar 
1TBS corn starch 
1 tsp rice vinegar or lemon juice
¼ tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
For the topping:
1 cup liquid heavy whipping cream – 1 cup (250 ml)
1 TBS + more for sprinkling powdered sugar 
2 cups fruit strawberries (cut), blueberries, and
Directions1. In a dry, COOL, and clean bowl, put the egg whites,
vinegar and salt. Beat with a mixer on high and once
you get a soft snow with peaks, start adding the powdered
sugar 1-2 tablespoons at a time, while beating thoroughly.

2. After you have added all the sugar, continue whipping
for another 5 minutes. It needs to be a smooth, shiny, and
very thick mixture. Add the starch and stir gently for 10
seconds. Put the resulting mixture in a baking dish, laid
out with baking paper.

3. Shape an 8″ (20 cm) diameter meringue circle. Put it to
bake at 275°F (135 °C) for about 1 hour or 1 hour and 15
minutes until you get a very slightly pinkish crust and a
soft and juicy inside. Leave the baked layer to cool.

4. Beat the cream with the sugar into powdery snow, you
can use confectionery cream. Brush the top with plenty
of the cream and arrange the cleaned and well dried fruit.
5. Sprinkle some powdered sugar on top. Consume the
Pavlova cake as soon as possible, because after a while,
the crust softens.3

Sarah Johnson, MS, RD
Live Your Life Dietitian

Sarah Johnson MS, RD is a Registered Dietitian with a strong passion for helping people discover the healing power of food.

Today’s world offers more nutrition information at our fingertips than ever before. However, when it comes to nutrition, there is no one size fits all solution leading many to feel exhausted by years of “trial & error”. Sarah’s mission is to help people weed through the noise and to educate and empower them on simple ways food can help them regain their energy for life. She believes your body was designed to work well; you simply need the tools to get it back on track.

Sarah graduated from the College of St. Benedict with a B.A. in Dietetics and went on to receive an M.S. in Human Nutritional Science from the University of Wisconsin Stout where she focused on using nutrition to help those living with multiple sclerosis and other inflammatory diseases.

Sarah lives in Mahtomedi with her husband and 3 children and loves the access to nature Minnesota living provides all year round.


1A., Albert, says, H. sign up, up, H. sign, Says, C., & Canlitv. (2019, February 19). 4th of July Fruit Salsa. Your Cup of Cake.

2Red, White & Blue Caprese Salad. (2021, June 29). Freutcake.

3Ivan. (2014, April 24). Pavlova Cake.

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