Of all the popular summer fruits, blueberries offer a big advantage as far as nutrition is concerned. With just 80 calories per cup, blueberries are loaded with fiber and are rich in vitamin C. The compound that makes blueberries blue is a potent source of health promoting, disease preventing antioxidants. When picking up fresh blueberries at McCaffrey’s Market, be sure to get the most out of your fruit. Storage is key. Keep berries in the refrigerator, either in the original plastic pack, or in a covered bowl or container. Should you see a spot that looks fuzzy or shriveled, toss it immediately to prevent anything from spreading to the rest of the container. Blueberries should stay good for up to a week, or more. The best way to keep berries fresh is to avoid rinsing them until ready to use. July is the time to celebrate blueberries – so get creative with this super fruit.
- In Smoothies: Add blueberries to a smoothie and enjoy for a snack or meal replacement. To boost protein, mix with milk, Greek yogurt and/or nut butters. Add avocado, nuts, chia seed, ground flax seeds and/or nuts for healthy fats. Including vegetables in your favorite smoothie will help balance calories and increase fiber content.
TIP: Extra smoothies can be frozen in small cups for a handy quick treat.
- In Salads: Add a subtle sweetness and boost nutrition by sprinkling blueberries in a salad. For a colorful and nutritious salad, top spinach leaves with blueberries, nuts, strawberries, and mandarin oranges.
- In Ice Cubes: Brighten up any beverage with blueberry ice cubes. Before filling and freezing an ice cube tray with water, drop 2-3 blueberries into each section. Add the fruited cubes to your favorite beverage and enjoy a surprise as the cube melts.
- In Fruit Kabobs: Make fruit kabobs by stacking blueberries, kiwi, and strawberries on toothpicks. Enjoy as is or dip them in low-fat vanilla yogurt.
- From the Freezer: Enjoy Frozen Yogurt Fruit Pops. This naturally cool pop is easy to make. Just mix yogurt, apple juice and blueberries together and freeze.
- More from the freezer: Frozen yogurt bark. No cooking needed!
To make frozen yogurt bark: Spread your choice of yogurt on a parchment lined cooking sheet. Sprinkle blueberries and other cut up fruit, if desired, over the yogurt. Gently push into yogurt. Freeze for 1-2 hours. Once frozen, break up the yogurt bark into pieces. Freeze the yogurt bark in a zip lock bag for a healthy and refreshing snack any time of the day.
- In Yogurt: Add blueberries to plain yogurt to perk up the flavor. Or make a parfait by layering blueberries, low-fat vanilla yogurt, low-fat granola, and pineapple to make a delicious snack or dessert.
- In Baked Goods: Make Blueberry Muffins: Simply add blueberries to your batter.
TIP: To avoid berries sinking to the bottom of the pan, spread half of the batter in the pan, spoon on half the blueberries. Top muffins with the remaining batter and add the remaining blueberries.