Three Ingredient Blueberry-Banana Ice

This Blueberry-Banana Ice is one of those recipes that is almost too basic (and good) to be true. Simple is sometimes better. Recipes with only three ingredients can be as fabulous and flavorful as if it had more. Who needs all of the fuss?

To prepare this recipe, purchase ripe bananas and in season blueberries and freeze them (I used zip-top plastic bags). Place these ingredients in the food processor or blender with a touch of honey. It’s that easy. Feel free to experiment with other berries if you wish. This is the perfect healthy dessert for summertime. It’s healthy, great for your immune system and all natural. It   truly hits the spot.

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

Quinoa Chicken Fried Rice Recipe

My oldest son, Alec, has been begging me to make homemade fried rice for a while. I decided to twist the basic recipe and make it with quinoa instead of rice. This Quinoa Chicken Fried Rice recipe is a hit for something new and different for your weeknight table, especially if you’re looking for something gluten-free, healthy and hearty. Feel free to substitute rice for the quinoa if you wish, but I love that quinoa is a gluten-free, nutty grain that is a complete protein which is high in fiber, low in calories and is high in iron, magnesium and calcium.

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.

Healthy Soup Recipes & 6th Annual Acoustic Soup Event

I have been on a soup kick this month, and I am so excited to judge this year’s Acoustic Soup in Birmingham, Alabama at Workplay on January 26th. This event will feature soup from talented Birmingham chef’s and restaurants benefitting VSA Alabama, which serves children and adults with chronic disabilities through the arts. Please come and bring your families for great food and a wonderful cause. Here are some of my favorite soup recipes such as my Chipotle Vegetarian Chili (pictured above) and others from my favorite magazines and blogs such as this Tortilla Soup from Sunset Magazine and My Recipes (pictured below).

Beef and Barley Soup from Better Homes and Gardens 

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Roasted Red Bell Pepper Soup from A Spicy Perspective

Healthy Warm Lentil Soup from Ingredients, Inc

 Rustic Roasted Tomato Soup from Family Fresh Cooking

Beef, Potato and Quinoa Soup from Skinny Taste

BCS Football Championship Recipe: Spinach Dip with Greek Yogurt

Roll Tide! I can’t believe an Alabama team is (once again) in the BCS National Championship. You have no idea what it’s like to live in this crazy, passion-filled football state (Alabama and Auburn) where red jeans and houndstooth are at a premium. I have had many, many requests, phone calls and emails for appetizer recipes. Since everyone is trying to get their new years off right, I thought I would share this Spinach Dip with Greek Yogurt recipe which I recently made this on television for NBC 13 “Daytime Alabama”. It’s so easy, and it’s always a hit. It is perfect for any party, Superbowl, or weekend starter with the family. Here are a few other favorites appetizers ideas including  Chicken Chipotle Dip

 Rosemary-Chipotle Spiced Nuts

Lightened Up Mexican Layer Dip

Almond Butter-Flaxseed Pancakes

Since I have been obsessed with almond butter for quite some time, I thought I would try my hand at making these Almond Butter Flaxseed Pancakes. You combine almond butter with your favorite homemade or store-bought pancake mix, flaxseed meal (which can be found at most local groceries), banana and even nonfat Greek yogurt. My kids went nuts over these, and I felt great serving them such an incredibly healthy breakfast. They called them, “Banana-Nut Pancakes” which was a great name. These pancakes taste great reheated, and they make a great healthy afternoon snack. Enjoy anytime of the year, but they are perfect for a healthy Christmas break, New Year’s or weekend breakfast.

No Bake Chocolate-Peanut Flaxseed Butter Bars

No Bake recipes bar cookie recipes are some of my favorite cookie/bar types of desserts, especially this time of year when I’m so busy. I quickly mixed up these up  one afternoon, and my kids told me these were a “home run” (well that was what the boys said). My daughter loved them even though she isn’t a coconut fan. These No Bake Chocolate Peanut Bars call for ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry. These make a great afternoon snack, dessert (with milk) and an easy homemade gift for Christmas or Hanukkah.

How to Maintain Your Weight During the Holidays

I was so excited last week to be asked to be on a very popular radio station in Birmingham, WMJJ Magic 96.5, and do a show on “Tips for Eating healthy during the holidays”. Before I went on the air, I thought about what I do personally, and I asked some of my friends on Facebook and Twitter for their input. The thing to remember is to eat everything in moderation. Also, make good food choices (such as my favorite Winter Radicchio Salad with Pomegranates). The radio show was so popular that I will be doing a monthly radio show with them, and I am so excited about that!

Here’s my list of Top 10 Healthy Holiday Eating Tips:

1. Exercise during the holidays.

2. Before you leave your house, eat a small snack and eat small meals throughout the day so you’re not binging at night

3. Eat breakfast on Thanksgiving and Xmas morning

4. Eat only what you love at the holiday table

5. Don’t rush to eat. Socialize as much as you can, but do it away from the holiday table.

6. If you’re drinking alchohol, drink a nonalcoholic version first

7. Drink a lot of water that day so it makes you feel full

8. Eat veggies everywhere you can, and fill your plate up with a lot of them

9. If there are 2 plate sizes, put your meal on a salad or dessert plate

10. When you’re done eating, wait and don’t go back for more.

Brussels Sprouts Salad with Cranberries and Walnuts

So, it’s Brussels Sprouts season, and I know people either love them or hate them. I happen to be a fan, and 2 out of 3 of my kids are too. This recipe for Brussels Sprouts Salad with Cranberries and Walnuts is one of my new favorites which I’ll serve on Thanksgiving this year. I used a simple apple cider vinaigrette mixture to flavor the Brussels Sprouts and tossed them with sweet dried cranberries and crunchy walnuts. For another healthy and easy Brussels Sprout side dish option, see Brussels Sprouts-Tomato Salad, which is another tasty way to serve this healthy vegetable.

5 Health Benefits of Brussels Sprouts:

1. Brussels Sprouts are high in Vitamin K which promotes healthy bones and brain function.

2. Brussels Spouts are high in fiber which helps in digestion, lowers cholesterol, prevents constipation, and aid in weight loss, making you feel fuller longer.

3. Brussels sprouts are high in antioxidants helping to fight against cancer.

4. Brussels sprouts are high in Vitamin C (1 cup contains over 161% of the recommended daily allowance) which helps boost the immune system and lower blood pressure.

5. Brussels Sprouts are high in iron and folate which helps maintain red blood cell count and prevents against diseases and birth defects.

FYI I will be on WMJJ 96.5 FM this morning talking about how to cook healthier during the holidays.