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cranberry

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Cranberry, orange, almond smoothie

You may think of cranberries as a fruit option only between Thanksgiving and Christmas when popular dishes like cranberry sauce and cranberry baked goods prevail. But there are plenty of reasons to eat the fresh, ruby red fruit all year long. Cranberries have long been known to help reduce the likelihood of urinary tract infections. They also contain important vitamins such as C, E, K, manganese, fiber, and loads of antioxidants. Antioxidants are known to limit the damage caused by free radicals in your body, and help reduce signs of aging as well as helping to fight cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. Cranberries may also reduce bad cholesterol, help fight gum disease, and boost your immune system. Get the picture yet? Eat more cranberries! You can add fresh or dried cranberries to any number of salads, salsas, smoothies, or dishes, but eating them fresh delivers the most health benefits. This…

Baked brie with cranberry jalapeño jam

I am, without a doubt, an appetizer person. It’s where all the best foods are found! They’re always so cheesy, gooey, warm, and dunkable — This spicy baked brie with cranberry jalapeño jam appetizer is no exception. This recipe is great around the holidays because you might already have fresh cranberries are your house. You can substitute a cup of homemade cranberry sauce for the fresh cranberries if you have leftovers. Plus, just look at those colors! They’re a perfect pop to any holiday table. This delicious sweet and spicy brie recipe comes together without a whole lot of work involved. Just warm the brie and top with a simple 10 minute cranberry jalapeño sauce. It’s so creamy and such an unusual combination, it will be gone in no time! Serve it with crackers, apple slices, and/or sliced baguettes. Baked brie with cranberry jalapeño jam Serves 8 as an appetizer…

Brie, cranberry and pecan stuffed mushrooms holiday appetizer

You can never have too many simple and tasty appetizers up your sleeve. These delicious stuffed mushrooms are impressive at any gathering, but are easy enough to whip up for yourself on a weeknight. They’re warm, filling and have just the right about of sweetness, creaminess and crunchiness to satisfy your cravings. Brie, cranberry and pecan stuffed mushrooms Ingredients 12-18 large white mushrooms or mini Portobello mushrooms 1/4 cup dried low-sugar cranberries 4-6 ounces of creamy Brie, cut in small cubes 3 tbsp pecan pieces 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil Fresh cracked black pepper Directions Preheat oven to 350ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil. Wipe mushroom caps with a damp cloth or remove dirt or residue, then carefully remove the stem. Brush mushroom caps with olive oil and place on baking sheet. Sprinkle with pepper. Stuff each pepper with several cubes of brie, cranberries and…

Spicy cranberry and pomegranate, brie crostini bites

Crostini literally means “little toasts.” But don’t let that simple translation fool you into thinking this is some bland breakfast. These tiny bites bring big flavor to the party. The sweet pomegranate seeds pair perfectly with the tart cranberries, creamy brie, crunchy baguette and just the right amount of kick from a jalapeño pepper. (You can leave out the pepper if you must, but you’ll miss out on that delicious sweet heat.) It’s the closest thing to appetizer perfection that can come out of your kitchen this holiday. Cranberry and pomegranate Crostini Crostini Ingredients 1 quality baguette, cut into 1/4 inch thick slices 2-3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil 2 tbsp salted butter, melted 8 ounces of brie cheese, softened Cranberry Relish Ingredients 1 pound fresh cranberries, rinsed 1 cup sugar 3/4-1 cup pomegranate arils or seeds 1 jalapeño pepper (adjust according to your love of spice), finely chopped Directions Preheat oven to 425ºF. Line a…

Cranberry, spinach pinwheels make a perfect holiday appetizer

These cranberry tortilla pinwheel wraps are a perfect holiday appetizer. They’re just bursting with festive color. Red cranberries pop against the creamy white cheese and dark green spinach. The flavor is a perfect blend of sweet and savory, and they’re filling, too. If you need to feed a lot of people, these will help you get there. For a little crunch, try them with the addition of walnuts, too! Cranberry, Spinach Pinwheels Serves 4 as an appetizer  Ingredients  2 large spinach tortillas 1 package cream cheese (8 oz.), room temperature 3/4 cup feta cheese, crumbled 1 cup baby spinach leaves, loosely packed 3/4 cup dried low-sugar cranberries 1/4 cup green onion, thinly chopped 1/4 cup walnut pieces (optional) Directions Wilt spinach by zapping in the microwave for 10-20 seconds. Spinach will shrink in size and should be easy to stir with other ingredients. If spinach is still too fresh, microwave another 10-20 seconds. In…

Fresh Cranberry bars are a festive, tart treat

While Americans consume nearly 400 million pounds of cranberries every year, 20 percent of those are during Thanksgiving week alone. And the rest — nearly 2.3 pounds per person — are consumed almost entirely in the form of juice. Only five percent of the cranberry harvest is sold fresh. Someday, Americans will wake up and realize this nutritious, flavorful little fruit has so much more to offer than just sauce. Cranberries rise to the top of many healthy food lists. Besides being a great source of vitamin C, manganese, and fiber, cranberries contain phytonutrients, which are essential for overall health. This means that among other things, cranberries are great for reducing inflammation, reducing incidences of UTIs and ulcers, and protecting against cancer. Not to say that a dessert recipe with cranberries is somehow a health food. But if you’re going to eat dessert anyway, you might as well add a little of this…

Healthy cranberry, apple anytime smoothie

Why not start your resolution to eat healthier right now? This seasonal cranberry, apple smoothie will wake you up with it’s delicious tart flavor and keep you full until lunch. Cranberries are full of antioxidants, vitamin C and fiber. They’re also known to promote urinary tract health. Chia seeds provide a great fiber boost along with omega-3s. Apples add even more fiber along with phytonutrients, which help protect the body from detrimental free radicals. Apples also help promote digestive health, which is important around food-heavy holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas. Toss this cranberry smoothie together the morning after the Thanksgiving feast for a filling, healthy head start to all those Black Friday sales. Cranberry, apple smoothie Serves 1 Ingredients 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries 1 apple, cored (leave peel intact) 1/2 frozen banana 1/2 cup skim milk or coconut milk 1 tsp chia seeds 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon Optional: 1/2 scoop of…

Roasted Brussels sprouts with pecans, squash and cranberries

Think you don’t like Brussels sprouts? This recipe will change your mind. Brussels sprouts have made a major comeback, and for a good reason. They’re loaded with vitamin C, antioxidants, folate and fiber that will help keep you full and regular while lowering your change of heart disease and stroke. But if all you’ve had are mushy green sprouts soaking in some flavorless liquid, no wonder you don’t list them among your favorite foods. The key to enjoying brussels is the texture acquired while roasting. Brussels have thin leaves that become addictively crispy when done right — like a more filling kale chip. Blanching brussels first allows you to roast them at a higher temperature and achieve maximum crispiness. This gluten-free, vegetarian side dish of Brussels sprouts, cinnamon, squash, cranberries and pecans is a perfect addition to the Thanksgiving table — or any table. Brussels Sprouts salad with fall…