I've been struggling with my weight-loss goals lately, which has me feeling a bit blue.

Instead of letting slip-ups and stress get the best of me - which inevitably leads to more weight gain - I decided to pull myself out of my slump by refocusing on eating better.

Drawing inspiration from my blue mood, I bought a bunch of blueberries at the store last week.

They're one of my favorite fruits and are starting to be in season again, which means I can switch from buying frozen ones to fresh.

Blueberries are packed with vitamin C, fiber and manganese and are rich in antioxidants, making them a great fruit to eat.

In cooking, blueberries are versatile - they can go in sweet or savory dishes because they're a little tart.

I've been pouring a cup on top of oatmeal for breakfast and having another cup for a snack.

I've also put them in pancakes, smoothies and salads, including the recipe I'm sharing below.

While one week isn't enough time to get the scale back at a number I'm happy with, at least the blueberries I've been eating have done a lot to improve my mood.

Blueberry breakfast salad


2 pounds mixed, torn salad greens (I use a mix of baby romaine and spinach)

Blueberry vinaigrette (see recipe below)

4 cups fresh blueberries

4 cups fresh orange sections or canned mandarin oranges, drained

2 cups low-fat granola


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 and drizzle remaining dressing on top.

Serve immediately.

Serves: 8

Blueberry vinaigrette

In a food processor container, combine 1 cup olive oil, 1 cup frozen blueberries (thawed), 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 2 teaspoons minced shallots, ¾ teaspoon kosher salt, ½ teaspoon ground white pepper and ½ teaspoon paprika. Process until mixture is smooth.

Chill at least 30 minutes to blend flavors. Makes 2 cups.

­- blueberrycouncil.org; adapted from Lynn's Paradise Café in Louisville, Ky.

News/Design Editor M. Clare Haefner enjoys cooking for family and friends. Contact her at chaefner@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7551. Follow her on Twitter at KDHnewseditor.

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