Al Roker’s Grilled Vegetable Skewers Are a Healthy Yet Savory Labor Day Cookout Dish

Despite having a larger-than-life attitude on TV, Al Roker dealt with health complications and weight gain issues. The celebrity often shares his secrets to weight loss, including some delicious and healthy recipes. One of Roker’s favorites, his grilled vegetable skewers are a healthy yet savory Labor Day cookout dish.

How does Al Roker maintain a healthy weight?

Roker grew up around food, not because it was plentiful but because his family had to find ways to stretch out every dollar; carbs were a great way to do that. In his 2013 memoir Never Going Back: Winning the Weight Loss Battle for Good, Roker revealed that his weight caused trouble in his marriage. 

The weatherman and his wife Deborah Roberts tied the knot a year after his divorce from Alice Bell. In 2013, he told Today that his wife became increasingly frustrated with his weight and refusal to do anything about it.

Roker said that he weighed 340 pounds at his heaviest, making him feel like he “wasn’t as good as he thought.” However, the anchor got a different outlook on weight loss when his dad made him “swear to God” on his deathbed that he would lose weight.

Weatherman Al Roker smiles while filming Today in 2022
Al Roker in 2022 | Nathan Congleton/NBC

In 2002, Roker underwent gastric bypass surgery for weight loss. But he gained back the weight in 2011 after his mother’s death. The weather reporter allegedly gained 40 pounds due to the guilt of not spending enough time with his dying mother, wife, and kids.

Roker said he started watching his portions and exercising three times a week. The anchor also began running in March 2010 and even participated in a half marathon.

The now-67-year-old further stated in his book that he cut out caffeine, sugar, alcohol, and gluten from his diet and started to eat foods high in protein and low on carbs. Roker said he tries to avoid watching TV at home while eating and tries to avoid eating out of boredom.

Al Roker’s grilled vegetable skewers recipe

Roker’s grilled vegetable skewers call for one summer squash, one zucchini, one red onion, 20 tomatoes, 20 white mushrooms, extra virgin oil, salt, and pepper. Before preparing your dish, soak the skewers in water for half an hour to prevent them from burning on the grill.

As they soak, preheat a grill and place your quartered veggies on the skewers. After skewering, drizzle some olive oil to coat the vegetables and season to your liking.

Place the skewered vegetables on your grill and cook for about 15 minutes or until tender. Remove your kabobs and plate them alongside your choice of protein and enjoy.

More Al Roker recipes perfect for summer cookouts

If you’re craving some starch, Roker has the perfect recipe with his potato salad with lemon and mint. Grab some Yukon gold potatoes, a lemon, olive oil, salt, ground pepper, a cup of mint leaves, and flaky sea salt for your garnish.

Boil your potatoes until tender, then drain and set aside. Juice your lemon and whisk with olive oil and seasonings. Quarter your potatoes and toss them in your dressing. Add the chopped mint leaves and serve warm. Sprinkle the flaky salt for garnish.

For his New Orleans grilled shrimp, you’ll need salt, jumbo shrimp, unsalted butter, onions, garlic, ketchup, extra virgin olive oil, chili powder, Worcestershire sauce, light brown sugar, lemon juice, oregano, thyme, cayenne pepper, bay leaves, one lemon, and Louisiana-style hot sauce.

Marinade your shrimp in chili powder and salt. Place your herbs and aromatics in a saucepan on high heat with melted butter, and reduce. Pour your reduced sauce over the shrimp, and grill the shrimp for 5 minutes per side. Remove and serve with warm sauce for dipping. 

RELATED: Al Roker on Keeping Weight Off During the Holidays: ‘Every Day Is a Battle’