Crazy for Cranberries

Living in upstate New York when I was younger, I fell in love with autumn and the transition to winter. The changing leaves, the scent of burning wood, the different shades of orange everywhere, and ohhhh yes, the cranberries and apples are back in season. What could be better?

There’s a ton of ways to use apples, including as the base of most juices, shakes, and smoothies. But what about cranberries? Cranberries are super versatile, not to mention a super-fruit. They are filled with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer properties. They are also low in calories but high in vitamin C and potassium. So on top of cranberries being yummy, they are so good for you, and the red hue makes them a perfect complement to any holiday meal.

I love cranberries a few different ways at this time of year:

  • One of my favorites is taking a bag of cranberries and boiling them up in fresh-squeezed orange juice and letting them simmer until they are thick. Then, once they are cooled down, I take a big scoop of that and add a tablespoon of Greek yogurt and some crushed almonds to it. Super, super yummy. Watch this video on how to make this:

  • Another favorite is putting the same concoction on a rice cracker smeared with a tablespoon of almond butter. Are you drooling yet? Wait, I’ve got another one to try.
  • If you are a smoothie fan, I like adding a large handful of kale (something else I’m crazy for), ½ banana, ¼ cup of Greek yogurt, 1 cup of apple juice (or orange juice), ½ squeezed lemon, 2 tbsp of honey and ¼ to ½ cup of raw cranberries. Blend, add ice, and blend more.
  • I also love making a smoothie out of almond or coconut milk, ½ cup of cranberries, a few drops of stevia, ice, and 1 apple or peach. Honey is a great addition, too, if you like it a little sweeter. I like it tart, so I don’t add too much of the sweet stuff. If you like spicy, a few drops of cayenne and ginger are super add-ons to these recipes for a little extra kick (and even more anti-inflammatory goodness).

So stay warm with layers and get to the grocery store soon. The bags of cranberries disappear quickly, but they last for months in the fridge so buy a few bags. You can even freeze them if you want cranberries all year long.

Enjoy the holiday season and get crazy for cranberries!

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