3/19/14

Dietitian's Top Pick: Berries PLUS Vanilla Fruit Salad and Spinach Berry Salad



Berry season is among us.  Have you tried the fresh berries this season?  They are excellent.  The strawberries are super sweet and so juicy.  The blackberries and blueberries are so good you can eat them like candy.  Not only are these berries very good right now.  They are also good for you and your family.  Eating berries on a regular basis can reduce the risk of a heart attack and dark leafy greens like spinach have been linked to reduced risk of high blood pressure and lowering bad cholesterol.  So today we have 2 ways you can add more berries to your diet with our Spinach Berry Salad and our Vanilla Fruit Salad.

Spinach Berry Salad
Even though berries have so many health benefits, I struggle trying to get my husband to eat them.  However, I have found that if I put berries into a pretty salad, he will gobble them up.  So, make this salad for the ones you love….its soo good for them and beautiful!  Not to mention…it’s delicious.  I like to pair it with a nice balsamic dressing.  You can use a Greek dressing or anything you would like.

Spinach Berry Salad Ingredients
 
Toasted Pecans

Finished Spinach Berry Salad



Spinach Berry Salad
Ingredients
6 cups fresh spinach, torn into bite size pieces
1 cup blueberries
1 cup thickly sliced strawberries
½ cup blackberries
1 small red onion, thinly sliced, pulled into rings
½ cup toasted chopped pecans
½ cup feta cheese crumbles

In a skillet over medium heat, toast the pecans for 5-10 minutes until lightly brown.  They are done when they are fragrant.
Assemble all ingredients and serve.  Enjoy this beautiful berry delicious salad!

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Vanilla Fruit Salad

I love color and I love for my meals to have lots of color, therefore I love this dish.  It is just beautiful.  This salad is not all about the looks, it is also delicious.  I have taken this to several events and it is almost always devoured quickly.  It’s amazing how a little vanilla and cinnamon can make fruit sing in your mouth.

Vanilla Fruit Salad Ingredients
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and stir until sugar is dissolved.

Chill for 30 minutes before serving.




Vanilla Fruit Salad
Ingredients
2 cups sliced strawberries
1 cup blueberries
1 cup blackberries
1 cup fresh or canned pineapple chunks
1 cup cantaloupe chunks
2 kiwis, peeled and sliced
¼ cup confectioners’ sugar
2 teaspoons McCormick Pure Vanilla Extract
¼ teaspoon McCormick Cinnamon (optional)

Instructions:
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and stir until sugar is dissolved.
Chill for at least 30 minutes before serving.
Serve and enjoy.  To mix it up, you could always try using a different flavoring instead of vanilla.  For instance, raspberry or lemon flavoring would change it up! 

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