Health Benefits of Blueberries
The blueberry is truly a berry with benefits.
The blueberry is truly a berry with benefits. Not only is it a gorgeous and delicious summertime fruit, it's chock-full of nutritious vitamins and minerals that can have a seriously positive impact on your overall health. Here's what you need to know about tiny (but mighty) blueberries:
Benefits of Blueberries
The sweet and tart fruit has a lot going for it, nutritionally speaking. Blueberries are loaded with:
- Vitamin C, which can boost your immunity and protect against cardiovascular diseases. (The New York Times reported on a recent study whose authors "estimate that eating a cup of blueberries a day reduced the risk of any cardiovascular event by 13 percent.")
- Antioxidants, which can protect against diseases and reduce inflammation. The antioxidants in blueberries are also thought to improve memory and cognition.
- Phytochemicals and pigments that may reduce cancer, assist with the regulation of blood pressure, and lower cholesterol.
- Flavonoids that may lower women's risk of heart attack, protect against Parkinson's disease, and also offer assistance in maintaining a healthy weight.
- Fiber, which helps your digestive system run smoothly. Also, since blueberries are low in calories, their high fiber content makes them a great choice for weight management.
Sweet and Savory Blueberry Recipes
Blueberries are delicious and smart additions to so many recipes, both sweet and savory. Try them in smoothies, fruit salads, quick breads, and desserts. You can even toss them into savory dishes. Here are a few tasty ideas to get you started:
"Blueberries and zucchini baked up into delicious little summertime bread loaves!" — Laura Moody
"I love making up a few of these at a time for a quick, on-and-go breakfast." — sonjagroset
"Outstanding. My daughter and I picked blueberries this morning and I made it tonight. My family devoured it." — MOMZRIGHT
"A quick recipe...Great if you are trying to figure out what to do with those blueberries in the fridge or freezer! Also great on-the-go! Delicious and includes many foods that are a great way to start your day!" — Lisa Marie
"This a no-bake recipe, so on a hot summer day you don't have to turn on the oven, other than to bake your crust. If using frozen blueberries, drain them and use juice instead of water." -- Elaine
Now let's turn to some top-rated recipes that show off blueberry's savory side. In these match-ups with meat, the blueberry's sweet-tart flavor really stands out:
"Smoky, spicy meats have been paired with sweet-and-sour, fruit-based sauces since we've had cooks, so that this combo works beautifully is no big surprise. And yes, other juicy fruit like peaches, or other berries will work nicely." — Chef John
"Amazing! The blueberry sauce was a perfect mix of sweet and sour, my family & I absolutely LOVED IT." — Cait
Tender pork roast with a sensational port and blueberry sauce. Chef John uses pork shoulder, which is less expensive and way more succulent than pork loin. He roasts the pork with shallots and rosemary sprigs and then makes a quick pan sauce with fresh blueberries, port wine, and chicken broth. See how it's done!
Caring for Fresh Blueberries
Choose blueberries that are firm, deeply colored, uniform in size, and blemish free with smooth not wrinkly skins. Wash them just before you're ready to eat. They're best eaten right away, of course, but they'll stay fresh for up to 5 days. You can also freeze your fruit by arranging them on a baking sheet in a single layer. Then put them in a plastic bag or other container. They should last in the freezer until blueberry season next year!
More Blueberry Recipes
More blue-ribbon blueberry recipes for the win.