Seared Oatmeal with Stewed Berries


We love a hearty, stick-to-your-ribs breakfast in winter. Oatmeal is one of the most filling breakfast foods out there, but it’s also, well, a little dull on its own. So we’ve been experimenting with ways to spice it up, and came up with this recipe for Seared Oatmeal with Stewed Berries.


This Seared Oatmeal with Stewed Berries recipe works for a number of reasons: it’s super easy to make, and you can make multiple servings and save them for later, so you don’t have to cook from scratch every day. It will also keep you full until lunchtime, so you’re not tempted to snack on unhealthy stuff before your next meal.


Best of all, Seared Oatmeal with Stewed Berries tastes amazing. We can’t think of a better way to jazz up oatmeal than with the sweet burst of berries. Because you’ll be heating them on the stovetop, this is the perfect way to use some of the less-than-perfect fruits from your summer farmers’ market haul; save the prettier specimens for topping cereal or granola, or eating as snacks straight out of the bowl.


Seared Oatmeal with Stewed Berries

Makes 4 large or 6 small servings



4 cups plus 1/3 cup water, divided

1 cup organic steel-cut oats

4 cups mixed berries—strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries

3 tablespoons honey or agave

1/4 teaspoon orange zest

1/3 cup water

Fresh mint (optional)

Whipped cream (optional)



  1. In a medium saucepan, bring the 4 cups water to a boil. Gradually stir in the oats. When the oatmeal starts to thicken, about 5 minutes, turn the heat to low and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

  2. Remove the cooked oatmeal from the heat and allow to cool slightly. Lightly grease an 8” x 8” baking dish. When the oatmeal has cooled for several minutes but is still a loose consistency, pour it into the prepared pan and smooth out the top with a spatula or the back of a spoon. Allow to cool almost completely, and then place in the refrigerator, covered with foil or plastic wrap, to set, preferably overnight. Cut into equal squares or rectangles.

  3. In a large saucepan, combine all but 1/2 cup berries, the honey, orange zest, and 1/3 cup water in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook, uncovered and stirring occasionally, for 8 to 10 minutes. When the berries soften and the juice turns syrupy, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the remaining berries.

  4. Place a small amount of butter, margarine, or canola oil in the bottom of a saute pan and heat over medium. When warm, add a slice of the chilled oatmeal, and cook until beginning to turn golden brown, about 4 minutes. Flip and sear the other side until golden brown, about five minutes. Repeat with as many servings of oatmeal as needed.

  5. Place a rectangle of seared oatmeal on a plate, and spoon the stewed berries over the top. Garnish with mint or a dollop of whipped cream, if desired.


Reinvent Your Holiday Leftovers with Berries


The holidays are all about friends, family, and relaxation. They’re also about great food—and lots of it! While we always look forward to enjoying holiday leftovers, we sometimes wish for a little novelty to make those favorite dishes seem new and exciting, even several days later.

One of the easiest ways to spruce up your holiday leftovers is by adding berries. Not only do they add a touch of sweetness to savory recipes and a nutritious boost to desserts, but they’re also versatile, complementing a wide range of flavors and cuisine styles.

Here are just a few ways to use some of those local farmers’ market berries you froze last summer or fall.


Salads. Thaw blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, or blackberries. Strain off the liquid and mix the berries into virtually any salad, from a classic Caesar to a peppery arugula, red onion, and Gorgonzola combination.


Ham. Switch out the traditional cherries and pineapple and spoon a simple mixed-berry compote over your sandwich or slice of ham. If you prefer spicier flavors, chop up a jalapeno and add it to the compote while it’s cooking.


Roast beef or duck. Make a grown-up sauce by combining strawberries with red wine and a little sugar or honey; allow them to reduce on the stovetop. The wine will deepen the flavor of the berries, which will add brightness to the meat.


Rice. Stir dried or thawed raspberries or blackberries into long-grain rice dishes and pilaf for a sweet-tart kick.


Mashed sweet potatoes. Who knew blueberries paired so well with sweet potatoes? Roasted or raw, blueberries can be gently folded into your leftover sweet potatoes. Add a handful of chopped pecans for some crunch.


Cranberry sauce. Shake up your traditional cranberry sauce by adding 1/2 to 1 cup of raspberries. Heat until warm and bubbly, then serve.


Christmas, bread, or raisin pudding. This is another simple addition: just choose your favorite berries to complement the type of pudding, thaw them out, strain them, and sprinkle over the top of the pudding.


Gingerbread. Blueberries and gingerbread? Sounds unusual, but the taste is vibrant and sophisticated. Make an unsweetened or low-sugar compote—the berries and cake are sweet enough on their own!—then spoon it over the cake, and top with fresh whipped cream.


6 Strawberry Recipes You’ll Love for Spring & Summer

For us, spring hasn’t truly arrived until the first crop of strawberries is here. Since they’re almost here, we rounded up six fantastic appetizer, entrée, and dessert recipes for using your favorite fruit from now into summer.


Breakfast Flatbread with Ricotta and Strawberry-Basil Jam

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A breakfast version of pizza that combines the crunch of warm flatbread with the mild savoriness of ricotta and the floral-sweet flavor of a strawberry jam punched up with basil? Yes, please.


Blue Cheese Stuffed Strawberries

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Strawberries are a natural counterpoint to tangy cheeses. This simple recipe, with the extra zing of balsamic vinegar, makes an easy yet unexpected party hors d’ouevre. Save the scooped-out strawberry centers for making compotes, smoothies, or strawberry ice cubes.


Citrus Steak Salad


With its mix of oranges and strawberries, this take on sirloin is light, bright, and filling, and looks impressive, too.


Strawberry Horchata


A twist on the classic Latin rice-based milk drink, this berry version of horchata will satisfy the sweetest of palates. Make it vegan—and a bit more grown up—by substituting half of the condensed milk with coconut milk and half with a cream liqueur, such as Amarula or Guappa.


Chocolate Strawberry Slump (Cobbler)


Perfect for when you need a dessert that looks and tastes impressive but doesn’t take sophisticated kitchen skills—or a lot of time—to put together.


Chocolate-Covered Strawberry Fudge


Why let peanut butter, chocolate, or maple have all the fun? Strawberries make a delicious flavor and texture complement to this fudge, which is made entirely in the microwave.



Winter Doldrums Got You Down? Give Yourself a Berry Boost!


As the winter—with its cold, short days and long, dark nights—marches on, it’s not uncommon to start feeling low-energy, fatigued, or even down in the dumps. These feelings, plus our tendency to soothe ourselves with comfort foods during the winter months, can create stress that increases the number of free radicals in our bodies. An excess of free radicals can lead to a host of diseases and ailments, among them depression . . . and then the cycle perpetuates itself. But even though we still have a couple of months to go before we can start enjoying longer days and sunshine, we do have a potent weapon against the winter doldrums: berries.

Various studies have shown that the antioxidants in blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries can significantly decrease the incidence of depression. Blueberries can even combat genetic and biochemical tendencies toward the depression and suicidal feelings that are often associated with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). And because berries help prevent the release of cortisol, the well-known “stress hormone,” experts consider them one of the top foods for boosting mood and energy and improving concentration.

Start the day off on a positive note with a cup of green tea (another great stress reducer), followed by a berry-rich breakfast. If you love hearty breakfasts like pancakes and oatmeal, add a healthy serving of berries for a mood blast. But if a grab-and-go breakfast is more your style, try our Mood-Boosting Berry Smoothie. It’s vegan and gluten-free, and you can even prep the ingredients the night before and store them in the fridge (except the banana; it’ll turn brown in cold storage). If the berries are frozen, allow them to thaw at room temperature for at least 20 minutes, or in the fridge overnight. The next morning, toss everything in the blender, and you’re good to go!


Mood-Boosting Berry Smoothie

Makes 2 servings

1 cup mixed berries 

1 banana

1/2 cup fresh spinach

1/4 cup roasted unsalted walnuts

2 tablespoons chia seeds

1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk

Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend on high until smooth. If the mixture is too thick, add more almond milk until it reaches an easily drinkable consistency.

Berries for Breakfast: 7 Ways to Use Your Favorite Fruit to Start the Day


Berries are the undisputed champ of the breakfast table, and with good reason: they’re not just a healthy way to kick off your day, they’re also incredibly versatile and full of flavor. And did we mention crowd-pleasing? We can’t think of another food that’s universally loved by both adults and kids.

And since there’s evidence that eating something sweet with breakfast can actually help you lose weight and keep it off, we think it’s a great time to make strawberries, blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries a regular part of your breakfast routine. Here are seven of our favorite ways to enjoy berries for breakfast:

  1. In smoothies. Mix with cow’s milk or yogurt (or non-dairy milk or yogurt) and a banana for a rich, creamy texture. Or for a powerful antioxidant boost, blend with a handful of spinach or kale, plus a teaspoon of fresh ginger for a zingy wake-up drink.
  2. Fresh on top of oatmeal or cereal. Gluten free or low-carb? No problem! Try this nut porridge recipe, and sub out the apples and raisins with your favorite berry mix.  
  3. Fresh on top of pancakes or waffles, or a bowl of yogurt. We also love them cooked into the pancakes or waffles—just drop a handful of berries into the batter, once you’ve poured it into the waffle iron or skillet—with yogurt drizzled over the top! Add a handful of chopped walnuts for extra protein.
  4. Blended with acai, another superfood, to make acai bowls. Blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries all lend sweetness to the acai, and the combination creates a vitamin, mineral, and antioxidant blast that’s unmatched by any single food. Top with granola and more fresh berries, or for a tropical twist, add mango and pineapple chunks.
  5. In baked treats like muffins, scones, popovers, coffee cake, and sweet breads. Use a .5:1 mix of wheat and all-purpose flour for extra fiber, or try experimenting with almond flour for a gluten-free, protein-rich, flavor-packed breakfast you can grab on the go.
  6. Cooked into conserves or jams and spread over freshly made warm bread or toast.
  7. In homemade granola bars and oat squares. We’re partial to this vegan berry oat square recipe, featuring blueberries and strawberries, mixed with oatmeal, spices, and maple syrup.


8 Raspberry Recipes to Enjoy This Fall

If you live in an area with local farm stands that grow fall raspberries—and we hope you do!—we’ve rounded up eight amazing breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert recipes that are perfect for weekdays or for serving to guests.


For a heartier breakfast on chilly mornings, use a half-and-half mix of whole wheat or almond flour and all-purpose in these Lemon Poppy Pancakes with Raspberry Sauce. Or use all almond flour for a gluten-free version.


Forget the jam; use this velvety Raspberry Butter on toast, pancakes, muffins, even fresh corn. Make a double batch and freeze half to use later.



This tangy Fresh Raspberry Vinaigrette goes with any salad—hot or cold.

Food Network Raspberry Basil Limoncello cocktail recipe.jpeg

Looking for a grown-up alternative to raspberry lemonade? Try Raspberry Basil Limoncello, a sophisticated combination of fruit, herbs, and liqueur.



A chewy, hearty flavor blast, this easy Black Rice and Raspberry Salad is also full of other healthy ingredients like sprouts and herbs.



The Chipotle Raspberry Sauce in this slow-cooker taquitos recipe can be used with almost any baked, grilled, or roasted meat or fish dish.



Light, fluffy, and bursting with crunchy almonds and sweet raspberries, this Raspberry Almond Cake takes just two bowls and a few steps to whip up.



Not for the short on time or patience, this multistep Raspberry Spice Cake recipe pays off in a huge way with a cake that looks as impressive as those at a high-end bakery, plus the unexpected combo of fall-friendly spices with delicate raspberries.


Snack Roundup: The 10 Best Blueberry Recipes

New York State berries best blueberry recipes

With blueberries at their peak for the next few weeks, we’ve rounded up our favorite blueberry recipes—savory and sweet—to keep this sweet and superhealthy fruit in your menu rotation all week long.



Anytime we hear blueberry and cake in the same sentence, we’re in. We’ll be starting the day with this Blueberry Breakfast Cake all summer.

Blueberry Breakfast bake Whole Foods


This delightful morning variation on bread pudding is assembled the night before you serve it, making it perfect for when you have guests or when you want to present your family with something special on the weekend.

Two things we love (besides berries): naan and pizza. And we love them even more when combined with blueberries into this savory-sweet Blueberry, Feta, and Honey-Caramelized Onion Naan Pizza.


Use this Savory Blueberry Sauce to top roasted chicken or pork.

Blueberry mozzarella honey crisps

Who knew bruschetta could taste this good by swapping out the traditional tomato topping with blueberries?


This Scandinavian-style Blueberry Soup is a one-pot wonder that works equally well with fresh or frozen berries, so you can enjoy it all year long.

Delish Berry Cheesecake Bars recipe

Pull out a few of those fresh strawberries you froze last month and put together this heavenly combo of blueberry and strawberry Cheesecake Bars.


Try pairing the zing of ginger with the natural sweetness of cooked berries in this Blueberry Ginger Pie.

Blueberry pecan galette bon appetit recipe

This Blueberry Pecan Galette looks as impressive as it tastes, but it’s not difficult to make. Whip up the crust up to two days before guests arrive, then mix together the filling and bake.

Lucious Blueberry Cinnamon Smoothie recipe

Packed with protein, antioxidants, and tons of flavor, this smoothie is the perfect midday pick-me-up, especially when you’re trying to avoid sugary snacks.