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Friday, July 19, 2013

Blueberry Breakfast Salad and Why Alison Sweeney and I Should Be Besties

A month or so ago, a company reached out to see if I could attend a fun event in Los Angeles, where I would have the chance to meet and interview Alison Sweeney. Because of the move I couldn’t go to the event. And then, the very day of that event, I received an email from the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council to see if I would like to interview (you guessed it) Alison Sweeney! For real, the gods want us to be besties. Hopefully Alison gets the memo, too!

blueberry breakfast salad |

Our family loves blueberries, especially Miss Cate, so I was more than happy to work with the Blueberry Council and ask Alison a few questions! July is National Blueberry Month. (I think we should all eat lots of muffins to celebrate.) The council and Alison Sweeney are spreading the word about how dynamic blueberries are and how they can add energy and flavor to our daily routine. To find out more about these Little Blue Dynamos, click here to visit their website!

blueberry breakfast salad |

As I was poking around the blueberry website myself, I came across a recipe for a Blueberry Breakfast Salad. I was intrigued by the idea of getting greens into our breakfast routine and clicked through. The recipe for the salad dressing caught my eye and I knew I had to give it a try. People, this dressing is SO GOOD. The salad was good, too – I loved the sweet crunch of granola mixed in. However, the dressing is the real find here. It is surprisingly savory, with just a hint of sweetness from the blueberries. Nate and I had several salads this week! (See recipe below!)

Back to my new best friend Alison. Here is our interview!

Jane: What is your favorite savory dish that uses blueberries?

Alison: Hands down – Blueberry Turkey Burgers! My kids love the tangy blueberry surprise, such a burst of flavor in the burger. Plus, you feel very “Master Chef” preparing them – blueberries are the secret ingredient!

Jane: How do you fit in exercise as a busy, working mom? (I know that question seems so cliché, but I really am so curious what your techniques are!)

Alison: You must make it a priority to take care of yourself. Put your workouts on the calendar to ensure you make time to work out. Sometimes I’ll have time for a quick run, other times I’ll be able to take a spin or yoga class. If I can’t work out, I make sure I adjust my nutrition accordingly.

Jane: Kids will be kids…how do make sure they eat their healthy foods? (Again, sort of cliché, but would love your insight!)

Alison: Getting my kids involved in the kitchen is really important to me because eating habits form at a young age. One of our favorite hot-summer-day activities is making smoothies. Not only are they nutritious, they’re also easy and fun. Here’s a quick and easy blueberry smoothie recipe we love.

Here are a few more tips from Alison about kid-friendly recipes (something I am always thinking about!):

Now, for real, go eat some muffins and put this recipe in your recipe box!

blueberry breakfast salad |


Blueberry Breakfast Salad
Recipe type: Side Dish, Salad
  • Mixed, torn salad greens: 2 pounds
  • Blueberry Vinaigrette: Recipe follows
  • Fresh blueberries: 4 cups
  • Fresh orange sections or canned mandarin oranges, drained: 4 cups
  • Granola : 2 cups
  1. Toss salad greens with 1½ cups of the Blueberry Vinaigrette. Divide the dressed greens among eight large plates. Arrange ½ cup orange sections and ½ cup blueberries on top of each salad. Sprinkle each salad with ¼ cup granola. Drizzle remaining dressing on top and serve immediately.

Blueberry Vinaigrette
Recipe type: Salad Dressing
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries, thawed
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons minced shallot
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground pepper
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  1. Add all ingredients to a blender or food processor and process until mixture is smooth. Chill at least 30 minutes to blend flavors. Makes 2 cups.

Please visit the Blueberry Council on FacebookTwitterYouTube and Pinterest for more inspiration and feel free to share how you plan to #BeDynamic this month!
Thank you to the Blueberry Council for sponsoring this post. I was compensated for my work but, as always, all opinions are my own.


  1. 1

    I’ve always done salads for breakfast. I’ve even had baked sweet potatoes for breakfast also. That sounds weird I know. 🙂 off to check out the blueberry sight.

    • Jane Maynard

      you are doing a great job of getting veggies in at breakfast! I need to follow your footsteps 🙂

  2. 2

    You have convinced me to try salad for breakfast!!

  3. 3

    I have never had a salad for breakfast. But the blueberry factor might swing me over. And this awesome post, of course.

  4. 4

    I have pretty much loved all your recipes I’ve tried, but have to say this one (the vinaigrette) disappointed me. I even added extra blueberries. I just didn’t think it had much flavor and couldn’t taste blueberry. It was pretty, though. I don’t like posting a negative review, but want to give people a heads up before making it for company that they may want to try it first and see if they like it.

    • well, that is the nicest “negative” review ever 🙂 sorry it wasn’t punchy enough for you – I thought it was tasty, but maybe my blueberries were a different flavor. I would also maybe try experimenting with adding more mustard, s&p or paprika…but thank you for your feedback!

  5. 5

    I really wanted to love this salad and I may still, but I just made the vinaigrette and had to remake it. First one cup of olive oil and no vinegar just didn’t work so I added balsamic and a bit of apple cider vinegar. Also had to add some honey. Then some juice since it was too thick as the oil emulsified. In the end it tastes OK but the blueberry taste is gone.
    I will use it for the salad since I love the salad ingredients for my brunch but will probably try a different blueberry vinaigrette recipe next time.

    • thanks so much for your feedback – much appreciated it! sorry you didn’t love the dressing, but glad you love the salad…keep us posted on the dressing if you find another!

    • Rachelle

      My niece served this yesterday. I must say it was so delicious! My
      suggestion would be to cut down on
      the oil by 1/2C & add 1/4c orange juice & 1Tbsp lemon juice. The dressing will be lighter & have a bit more zing! Worth a try. I love experimenting. The salad is a WOW
      in my book! Thank you

  6. 6

    You need lemon juice to give flavor. I add about a quarter cup and then taste

  7. 7

    This recipe struck me right away and I knew I had to make to for my camping potluck breakfast contribution. However is it a mistake that the vinegar was omitted? Like the others said, it was missing the punch it needed. Plus the feel of oil in the mouth was too heavy. I ended up doubling the recipe so that I could add a cup of balsamic vinegar. I did also add the juice of half a lemon as was suggested but I really think your recipe would be good if you changed it to 1/2 c olive oil and 1/2 c balsamic vinegar.

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