Blueberry Spritzer

This Blueberry Spritzer recipe is a refreshing summer mocktail, just in time for Memorial Day weekend. If you’ve been following me and my recipes, you know I like easy. This yummy beverage is only three ingredients. Kids and and adults love it!

If you’re one of the lucky people heading to the beach or lake this weekend, put these ingredients on our grocery list now. If you’re like me and staying home, this recipe will hopefully will make you feel better. My Blueberry Spritzer uses Pomegranate Blueberry Juice, which is 100% juice with no added sugar. If you want to turn this recipe into a cocktail, add desired amount of vodka (be careful here).

Blueberries are a nutritional powerhouse. Tufts University conducted a study of 60 various fruits and vegetables and found that blueberries rated the highest for their antioxidant capabilities. Blueberries have been linked to so many health benefits. Areas of blueberries with blueberries show that they also may assist with improving brain health, cardiovascular health, aging  eyesight and more. One cup of blueberries has four essential nutrients, including fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K and manganese.

When purchasing blueberries, look for smooth, plump berries that are a deep purple or blue-black color. Refrigerate them as soon as you get home and wash before using. Most blueberries will last 7-10 days. If you want to grow your own, spring or fall is usually the best time to do this. Choose a sunny, well-drained location. Raised beds and containers work well if you don’t have good soil. Frozen blueberries are awesome too. Just defrost before using, unless you are adding them to a smoothie or smoothie bowl recipe.

Have a great weekend and enjoy! Alison

Banana Dark Chocolate Chip Muffins

I am excited to share this recipe for Banana Dark Chocolate Muffins. This recipe is a twist of my very popular banana bread recipe from 10 years ago, which is one of my top posts ever.  What’s great about this recipe (besides the taste) is that all of the ingredients can be combined in one bowl, and no mixer is needed. I add nonfat Greek yogurt which adds moisture and increases the protein in the recipe.

These muffins are amazing, and my kids went wild over them. I almost wasn’t able to take a picture of them before they ate them all. Substitute semisweet or milk chocolate chips for the dark chocolate chips if you like (I personally like dark chocolate) Enjoy these muffins for a wonderful breakfast treat, afternoon snack, lunch, or dinnertime dessert during quarantine or any time.

Alison’s Chicken Pasta Salad

If you’re looking a great pasta salad with chicken recipe, look no further. The first time I made this pasta salad, I knew I wanted my name on it. Alison’s Chicken Pasta Recipe makes a great lunch or light dinner that can be ready for hungry kids or spontaneous guests. You may want to double the recipe because it goes so fast.

This is a recipe I developed for a recipe collection I worked on with Canolainfo.org. I like to grill extra chicken and use the leftovers to make this recipe. Serve it on a bed of mixed greens or as a light main course served with a nice glass of Pinot Grigio. It is a terrific recipe to take on a picnic or make at the lake or the beach. This recipe is healthy, fresh, easy and fantastic. I can’t give it any more props than that. Try if for yourself and let me know what you think. Happy May everyone!

NUTRITIONAL ANALYSIS

Per Serving

Calories 270
Total Fat 6 g
Saturated Fat 1 g
Cholesterol 40 mg
Carbohydrates 34 g
Fiber 4 g
Sugars 5 g
Protein 21 g
Sodium 190 mg
Potassium 377 mg

Tuna Checkerboard Sandwiches

With kids at home right now, I wanted to share a twist on the basic tuna sandwich. Make it fun by mixing and matching different types of bread to jazz up the kids’ sandwiches. These Tuna Checkerboard Sandwiches are my healthier version using fresh lemon juice and white wine vinegar instead of mayonnaise. I also add freshly chopped basil or dill to mine if you have that at home or in your garden. This recipe is light, flavorful and a great new way to get the kids to eat more tuna. Let me know how your kids like it. Stay well!

This recipe is in my first internationally published cookbook, “400 Best Sandwiches: From Classics & Burgers to Wraps & Condiments” published by Robert Rose, Inc. If you’d like to purchase a copy, purchase here.

Gluten-Free Fresh Cherry and Almond Muffins & Gluten-Free Muffin Cookbook Giveaway

Gluten-Free muffins? Yes! It’s hard to believe that making muffins gluten-free can taste fabulous, and Cookbook Author, Camilla Saulsbury, shows us how in one of her latest cookbooks “150 Best Gluten-Free Muffin Recipes”. This book is a collection of great recipes, expert baking tips, expert baking techniques and even a gluten-free ingredient glossary to help the novice as well as the expert gluten-free baker. Recipes such as Rocky Road Muffins, Bacon Scallion Muffins, Indian Spice Coconut Muffins and Sour Cream Muffins are just a few calling my name. These Fresh Cherry Almond Muffins (pictured above) were out of this world. Before I could turn around, my 3 kids devoured them. These are perfect for this time of year when fresh cherries are at their peak. For a chance to win a copy of this book, leave me a comment telling me what type of muffin is your favorite. For additional chances to win, follow the steps below and leave me a comment telling me you did so. Good Luck! Winner will be drawn June 12th at 8 a.m CST. 

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Tweet the following link “I just entered 150 Best Gluten-Free Muffin Recipes book giveaway by @alisonlewis”

No-Bake Mini Healthy Bites: Gluten-Free and Passover

I love to experiment with “No-Bake” cookie recipes, especially those that are gluten-free, Paleo Diet or perfect for Passover which starts this week. I was excited to make this recipe for No-Bake Mini Energy Bites which I made and tweaked from a recipe I saw on the blog, “Gimme some Oven”.  Her recipe is great, but if you want a Passover or gluten-free version, try grinding your favorite nuts and omitting the oatmeal. These are incredible, and I honestly could not keep my hands out of the container. My 3 kids had absolutely no idea there was flaxseed in them. Feel free to use almond butter instead of peanut butter and any of your favorite nuts.

My Top 4 Favorite Passover Desserts

I can’t believe Passover is right around the corner starting the evening of April 6th. I have had so many requests and emails about recipes I featured last year. Here are my top 3 favorite desserts. The first one is Passover Strawberry Bars (pictured above). All of these three Passover desserts are so easy to make, budget friendly, and they do not taste like your average Passover dessert. Trust me.

The Best Passover Brownies 

Classic Mandel Bread

No Bake Cookies

Fitness Friday: Top 3 Budget-Friendly Workouts

People ask me all of the time. How do you have 3 kids and work more than full time and stay fit? While I don’t have a magic formula, sometimes being short on time and resources isn’t a bad thing. Some of my favorite, easy, low budget workouts can be done at home or for almost free. So, what are they?

1. Running-All you need is a pair of shoes and a road. That’s it. No excuses. Just start slow and build up over time.

2. At home workouts-Purchase a jump rope, dumbbells, a resistance band, fitness DVD or stability ball. This will take care of strength training, cardio and muscular training in the comfort of your own home.

3. Hidden Exercise-Take the stairs as much as possible, park further than you have to and grocery shop. These are all activities that are daily activities that sometimes do not seem like exercise.

Photo from Pinterest and Pinterest

 

 

 

Three Berry Antioxidant Juice

My 3 kids absolutely love homemade juice, and I mean “love”. Lately I have been getting so many questions daily about a “juice cleanse”, and my thoughts on that… I like to tell people I believe everything in “moderation”. Regardless, this Triple Berry Antioxidant juice is antioxidant-packed and made with blueberries, raspberries and strawberries. It is a homemade juice that is great for hydration, boosting your metabolism, cancer prevention, your skin and more. This recipe makes a great morning pick-you-up or kid’s afternoon snack. I was trying to save some I made this afternoon, and my daughter finished it before I could turn around.

Boosting Your Metabolism: Speaking Event Saturday

How can you boost your metabolism? I’ll be speaking this weekend at Bikram Yoga Birmingham on Saturday at 11:15 (immediately after the 9:30 class) on this important topic. I’ll be talking about the top foods, drinks, tips and types of workouts that will maximize your metabolism to its fullest potential. If you can’t attend, check out my “small group coaching series online” this month being held online for The FoodLife Project.