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

Easy and Healthy Lentil Soup

Lentil Soup is so hearty, flavorful and healthy that I wonder why I don’t make it more often. This Easy and Healthy Lentil Soup is one my favorite lentil soup recipes. Hopefully, you have most of these ingredients already at home.

Lentils are filled with protein and fiber as well as iron, minerals and B vitamins. One-half cup of cooked lentils has:

Calories: 140

Fat: 0.5 grams

Carbs: 23 grams

Fiber: 9 grams

Sodium: 5 milligrams

Protein: 12 grams

Lentils come in three main varieties: brown, green and red. Most grocery stores carry brown lentils, usually dried. Green and red lentils may be found at specialty food markets. Unlike other legumes, lentils cook quickly without pre-soaking. Just make sure to rinse away any dirt, dust or debris before adding them to recipes.

High Antioxidant Superfoods Salad

Since I have been doing a lot of nutrition seminars and speaking engagements lately on superfoods and healthy eating habits, it has been so fun to experiment with various combinations of super healthy ingredients. Last week, I thew together this with this High Antioxidant Superfoods Salad. My newest favorite ingredient is broccoli sprouts, and my kids and I are infatuated with them. They are so healthy and are said to help prevent cancer, reduce inflammation and even help protect against ulcers. This salad is also filled with some of my other super food favorites including berries, pumpkin seeds and colorful greens. If you want a refresher on the health benefits of blackberries, read my post on “Top 10 Health Benefits of Blackberries.”  Feel free to add grilled chicken or shrimp along with your favorite salad dressing, or just simply use balsamic vinegar and oil.

Grilled Ambrosia

One of my kids favorite things to eat is grilled pineapple. Recently, I made this Grilled Fruit Salad, and it was devoured before I could turn around. This is an ideal healthy dessert option for Memorial Day, Father’s Day, baby or wedding showers, brunches or a light snack or dessert. Adding the coconut gives it a new twist similar to ambrosia, an old Southern favorite. Tune in as I’ll be on WMJJ Magic 96.5 FM Radio on Thursday at 5:40 a.m and 8:50 a.m and Monday at 5:20 a.m and 8:10 a.m talking about how to make this Memorial day healthier so tune in.

Gluten-Free Main Dish: Balsamic Chicken with Pine Nuts

I am so excited about sharing this simple, healthy main dish. In under 30 minutes, this recipe for Balsamic Chicken Cutlets makes a great healthy weeknight or weekend entree. This recipe is perfect if you’re following a gluten-free, Paleo or low carb diet. Pine nuts are a great source of protein, dietary fiber, magnesium and iron, and they add great flavor and crunch to this easy recipe.

No-Bake Paleo and Gluten-Free Cookies

These No-Bake Paleo Cookies were introduced to me by my friend, Tanya, who has been having success with the Paleo Diet. What I love about these cookies is that they are gluten free, high in omega 3 fatty acids, and best of all, taste great. This recipe is great if you’re on a gluten-free diet, trying to eat low carbohydrates or following the the Paleo Diet, which is based around eating quality sources of protein, fresh fruits, vegetables, lean meats, seafoods, fats high in omega-3 and low-glycemic carbohydrates. This is a low-carb diet which omits refined sugars and grains, dairy, trans fats, salt, high-glycemic carbohydrates, and processed foods. For more information see The Paleo Diet. Best of all, these cookies are no bake!

Super Bowl Sandwiches: Club Sandwich Recipe & Cookbook Giveaway

Super Bowl Sunday is almost upon us, and so many people have been calling me to purchase my cookbook, “400 Best Sandwiches: From Classics & Burgers to Wraps & Condiments”. (Honestly, I am just looking forward to the commercials and seeing Madonna). Anyway, a friend told me the other day that she is making something really simple: my  Club Sandwich recipe. In honor of Super Bowl 46, I thought I could give away one copy of my latest book filled with 400 Sandwich Recipes. Here are a few more selections from the book.

Ice Cream Sandwich

Lunchbox Sushi

Pear Pecan and Gorgonzola Crostini

To enter, see below. You can leave additional comments for each step. I will draw the winner on Super Bowl Sunday, February 5th at 8 p.m CST. Good luck!

1. Leave a comment below telling me who you are routing for or what you’re making for Super Bowl Sunday.

2. Like Ingredients, Inc on Facebook.

2. Follow me on twitter.

3. Follow me on Pinterest

4. Tweet the following: I just entered @alisonlewis cookbook giveaway for #400BestSandwiches

Recipe excerpted from 400 Best Sandwich Recipes by Alison Lewis © 2011 Robert Rose Inc. www.robertrose.ca Reprinted with permission. All rights reserved.

Valentine’s Day Trail Mix

Valentines is almost here, and I thought I would share my latest healthy idea of what you can snack on at home, in the office or at your kids’ class parties. This Valentine Trail Mix is filled with healthy nuts, yogurt covered pretzels and raisins. Feel free to add your favorite nuts and dried fruits. Top it off with a small amount of regular or peanut M & M’s, and you’ll have a winning Valentine’s Day treat that is fairly healthy too.