3 Reasons To Eat More Cranberries (You’ll Be Surprised)Written by Kelsey Blackwell | Monday, December 19th, 2016

Sure, cranberries are good, especially when they’re not gelatinized into a formidable side dish, but do you know exactly how good? Recent research suggests that the humble cranberry could pack more of a punch than you know. This holiday favorite may offer a host of unexpected benefits beyond its already impressive nutritional profile. Here are a few reasons why we love delicious, organic cranberries.

cranberries-dried-organic-yogurt-toppings

Cranberries fight bacterial infections.

This may not come as news since cranberry pills and juice are commonly used to treat the bacterial infection that leads to uncomfortable urinary tract infections. Now scientists are discovering that the berry’s bacterial-fighting powers could be beneficial for treating other types of bacterial infections (think, strep throat, food poisoning caused by e. coli and meningitis). The phytochemicals in cranberries disrupt pathogens’ ability to move about the body and adhere to other cells.

Cranberries can protect your pearly whites.

Proanthocyanidine, a compound found naturally in cranberries, is shown to prevent plaque. This is the sticky substance that naturally collects on teeth, traps acid and leads to tooth decay and gingivitis. Proanthocyanidine is so beneficial for dental health that doctors are currently working on a mouthwash featuring the compound. Consider adding 100 percent cranberry juice to your diet to reduce plaque by up to 50 percent.

Cranberries contribute to gut health.

If you’re not familiar with the gut microbiome, it may be time to get better acquainted. This mini-ecosystem in the body is made up of thousands of microbes, which play a big role in regulating the health of the immune system and brain. These microbes also help the body balance energy and use carbohydrates and fat. Research shows that cranberries may support microbiome health by strengthening gut defense systems and protecting against infection – meaning they can help keep many important systems running smoothly. That’s big!

To get the most out of your fruit, avoid cranberry products that contain high-fructose corn syrup or unhealthy sweeteners.  Made In Nature Organic Cranberries are moist, sweet and free of refined sugars. We add just a touch of apple juice concentrate so you can snack in confidence.

If you need suggestions for cranberry snacking beyond grabbing handfuls from the bag, here are our favorite recipes.

Cranberry Mole
Granola with Cranberries and Raisins
Dried Apple Cranberry Conserve
Dried Cranberry & Apricot Braised Lamb Chops
Cranberry, Oatmeal & White Chocolate Cookies

Made In Nature Unleashes Its Full Line of New Organic Supersnacks™Written by Luke Rizzuto | Friday, June 24th, 2016

 PRESS RELEASE UPDATED: JUN 23, 2016 15:01 MDT

Boulder, CO , June 23, 2016 (Newswire.com) – Taking on the Snack Category With Products That Fuel You Up! Made In Nature™, the leader in healthy, organic snacking is unleashing a new line-up of Organic Supersnacks™ in new bold packaging at the Fancy Food Show in NYC this week. Finally, consumers will not have to make the choice between what’s healthy and what’s delicious when it comes to filling the void between meals. Their organic, ready-to-snacks include a new line of Figgy Pops, Toasted Coconut Chips, Dried Fruit Fusions, Fruit and Nut Fusions and Kale Chips.

“We are a snacking nation. Over half of all US consumers snack more than three times a day to stay nourished. Our mission is to satisfy that hunger with delicious, ready-to-eat snacks made from real fruit and real vegetables, without compromising flavor or fun,” said Doug Brent, CEO of Made In Nature. “We’re taking on chips and bars and all those other so called “better for you” snacks that are merely masquerading as nourishment. Our Supersnacks don’t just fill you up, they fuel you up.”

As part of their attack on the healthy snack category, Made In Nature is launching an entirely new package design. Andy Nathan, CMO of Victors & Spoils who led the design process said, “The new packaging was a great opportunity to reintroduce Made In Nature to the world in a bold, new way. Inspired by their ‘Nature Unleashed’ brand positioning, the packaging design is strong and vibrant, highlighting the beauty of their unadulterated product. And because they’re so grounded and authentic, we were able to juxtapose that with a very cheeky tone in a category that sometimes takes itself a little too seriously.”

Life is too short to waste on sub-par snacks. The NEWEST addition to the Made In Nature family is their line of Organic Figgy PopsTM ($9.99 for 16 oz., $4.99 for 4.2oz.) These unbaked energy balls are real Supersnacks, bursting with flavor. Figgy Pops are a blend of organic figs and other luscious fruits with nuts and power seeds — covered in coconut with the crunch you crave. These delectable morsels are made with certified USDA organic, Non-GMO Project Verified ingredients and NO refined sugar, allowing consumers to power through their day the healthy way.

Made In Nature’s Organic Toasted Coconut Chips are anything but ordinary! These zealously snappy, perfectly crunchy coconut chips ($3.99 for 3 oz.) are made from pure organic ingredients with NO refined sugars or artificial flavors. It’s a snack that’s energy packed and comes in a variety of exotic flavors like Maple Vanilla, Italian Espresso, Toasted Cinnamon, Ginger Chai and Spiced Cocoa. Permission to snack, granted.

Embracing the flavorful exotic food trend, Made In Nature also offers a line of Organic Fruit Fusions. Inspired by authentic, healthy flavors from around the world, the Fruit Fusion product line encompass both 1oz Single-Serve Dried Fruit Fusions (MSRP $5.99 for 5-pack and $1.49 for 1oz packets) and Fruit and Nut Fusions (MSRP: $6.99 for 5-oz bag).Both of these delectable products offer the perfect pairing between organic dried fruits and blends of seeds, spices and flavors. Fruit Fusions flavors include: Apple Cinnamon, Superberry, Tropical, and Mediterranean blends. Fruit and Nut Fusions flavors include: Maple Balsamic, Cinnamon Citrus, Pomegranate Ginger and Rosemary Harissa blends.

And Made In Nature really breaks the mold with their new line of dried, NEVER fried,Organic Kale Chips (MSRP $5.99 for 2.2oz). The perfect Supersnack to fuel your next adventure, these Kale Chips will light up your taste buds with a combination of organic kale and unique and outrageous spice blends. Flavors include: Bedda Than Chedda, Sriracha Chili, Olive + Sea Salt, Rosemary Truffle, and Stumptown.

Made In Nature is available nationwide at Costco, Safeway, Whole Foods Market, Walmart, Target, Meijer and wherever organic, healthy snacks are sold. To find out more about all of the Supersnacks from Made In Nature or to visit their store, please visit MadeInNature.com

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Made In Nature is a trailblazer in the organic food industry with a 25-year history of sourcing and creating snacks from real food with bold, vibrant and surprising, new flavors. The same old, same old has never been their style and that means kicking refined sugar to the curb and going all-out organic in everything they do. Made In Nature’s Organic Supersnacks™ are made without the use of GMO ingredients, sulfur synthetic preservatives, color or flavorings. Go to www.MadeInNature.com to view the company’s full product line of Supersnacks™ and Supersides™.

7 Healthy and High Protein FoodsWritten by Susan Thanavaro | Sunday, May 15th, 2016

Healthy Foods That Pack a Protein Punch

Whether you’re training for a big event like a marathon, or simply want to up your strength and muscle, a high protein diet can be a huge help. Protein helps repair and rebuild muscles, but remember — if you don’t also eat enough carbs or fats to satisfy your energy needs protein will be converted into energy, meaning fewer calories go to muscle repair. That’s why a balanced diet is so important!

Are you ready to up your protein intake? Give these 7 healthy and high protein foods a try!

1. Hard boiled eggs

Eggs - A high protein food and snack
Hard boiled eggs are one of my favorite high protein snacks to prep ahead of time. I generally boil a dozen, then they’re ready and waiting for me whenever hunger strikes. One large egg contains about 6 grams of protein.

2. Pumpkin seeds

Pumpkin seeds pack a surprising amount of protein… there’s nearly 10 grams in just a quarter cup. You can add them to trail mix, sprinkle over salads, or eat ‘em plain. Just be sure to watch your portion sizes, because a quarter cup also contains 180 calories.

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6 Delicious Fruits You May Not Have TriedWritten by Susan Thanavaro | Friday, May 13th, 2016

Apples are Great, But You’ve Gotta Give These Unique Fruits a Try

I love apples and bananas as much as the next fruit-obsessed person, but I also love trying new and unique fruits whenever I can. These six fruits aren’t your usual standbys but they’re just as delicious.

If you haven’t tried these fruits before you’ll definitely want to sample them all. And if you have tried them, I’d be willing to bet this post will have you craving a repeat experience!

1. Goldenberries

Goldenberries are well-known throughout South America, and they’ve even been classified as a superfood. Their tart flavor will wake up your taste buds, but these chewy berries are an excellent source of fiber and a good source of Vitamin C. I like eating them on salads, in my oatmeal, and straight out of the bag.

2. Goji berries

Another superfood to add to our list of tasty fruits you need to try, goji berries are grown in certain parts of Asia, like Tibet. Dried goji berries are soft and chewy with a subtle sweet-tangy flavor that’s quite addicting. These berries also make a good topper, but if you find you aren’t a huge fan of the flavor, blend them up in a smoothie to reap the nutritional benefits. Goji berries are a great source of Vitamin A.

3. MulberriesFresh Mulberries

If you’ve noticed that I have a bit of a berry obsession, you have a keen eye. I can’t help it — there are so many unique berry varieties to try!

Dried mulberries are tender and soft, and you can include them in tons of different recipes. Give these ricotta and grilled mulberry peaches a try for a truly unique (and mouth-watering) flavor combination.

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3 Everyday Steps Toward Healthy LivingWritten by Susan Thanavaro | Wednesday, April 27th, 2016

A Healthier Lifestyle is as Easy as 1-2-3!

Living a healthy lifestyle doesn’t have to be too terribly difficult — the smallest changes can actually make a huge difference in your healthy living quest.

If you’re trying to lead a healthier life give these three simple, everyday steps a try. Your body will thank you and you might even be inspired to keep making changes. Don’t worry, the suggestions I’m going to share aren’t monumental… but you’ll feel monumentally better!

Limit the amount of unhealthy snacks that you eat

Healthy Living is just a few steps away!Most of the unhealthy foods I eat come in the form of snacks… oops. One of the easiest ways to clean up your diet is to watch your snacking and replace unhealthy snacks with healthier foods.

Let’s start with chips. You can easily replace them with kale chips. I’m also a big fan of easy veggie snacks like carrots and hummus. If you have a sweet tooth like me try snacking on Made in Nature’s Tart Cherry Fig FiggyPops or a few Made In Nature Dates with nut butter.

Of course, everything is best in moderation. You don’t have to completely cut out all of your favorite treats (that’s a surefire way to bring on a junk food binge.) Indulge in those snacks mindfully, pay attention to your portion sizes, and then get back to the healthy snacks.

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4 Healthy Snacks for Kids You Can Make at HomeWritten by Susan Thanavaro | Friday, April 15th, 2016

Try These Kid-Friendly Snack Ideas… They’re Healthy, too!

Would you be thrilled if your children’s snacks were healthier? I just love thinking about fun new snack ideas, and the ones I’m going to share today are all kid-friendly and super easy to make at home.

 

Energy Balls - Kids Snack Recipe

1. Fruit and Cheese Kabobs

Making (and eating) fruit and cheese kabobs is tasty and interactive. To get the kids involved prepare bowls of cut up fruit like apples, grapes, pineapples, bananas, and any other favorites. Set out another bowl with cheese cubes and show your snackers how to thread their fruit and cheese onto the wooden kabob sticks.

All in all, they’ll get a few servings of fruit, lots of fiber, some protein, and a happy stomach!

2. DIY Trail Mix

Trail mix, because it’s so easy to customize, which is perfect for picky palates. Plus, if you make your own you’ll know exactly what your kids are eating — no unnecessary preservatives included. Lately I’ve been loving this easy concoction:

This combo is a nice mix of tart and sweet, soft and crunchy. We sweeten our Tart Cherries with a touch of organic apple juice and the coconut chips add another layer of warm, toasty sweetness. If your kiddos aren’t ready for the bitter bite on the cacao nibs, feel free to swap them out for dark chocolate.

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Clean Eating – Finding Clean Food in the Grocery StoreWritten by Susan Thanavaro | Tuesday, March 29th, 2016

Making Clean, Healthy Food Choices When Shopping

You want to make healthy choices when shopping for you and your family at your local grocery store, but it can be so hard to sort through the marketing messages and hype to find what’s truly wholesome, minimally processed, and actually good for you. Clean Eating - Finding Clean Food at the Grocery Store

That’s why so many people have turned their focus toward “clean” eating. Clean eating is essentially the same thing as healthy eating, because there’s a big focus on eating a balanced diet full of fruits, veggies, whole grains, healthy proteins, and healthy fats. On the flip side, clean eating just takes it a step further by eliminating things like processed foods, refined sugar, preservatives, and other unnecessary additives.

How can you learn what’s really “clean” in the grocery store? What are some dead giveaways on the nutrition labels of unhealthy foods? Keep reading to learn more about how to figure out what’s healthy, and what isn’t, in the grocery store.

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Quick Healthy Breakfast IdeasWritten by Susan Thanavaro | Sunday, March 27th, 2016

Fast Breakfast Recipes for a Healthy Start to Your Day

Rumor has it that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and I’m not one to argue with established logic… especially if eating is involved. Make your first meal a healthy one by trying out one of these quick, healthy breakfasts.

Quick Healthy Breakfast IdeasOvernight Oats

Overnight oats are, hands down, one of my favorite quick and healthy breakfasts. And making them is so, so simple:

Ingredients:

  • ½ cup old fashioned oats
  • ½ cup almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 2 teaspoons flax meal
  • 2 tablespoons natural peanut butter
  • ½ tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:

Mix everything together in a mason jar or other container with a lid, pop the jar in the fridge, refrigerate overnight, and enjoy! It’s that simple. Make sure to experiment with different ingredients, too. Protein powders mix in well, cashew butter is decadent, coconut milk tastes wonderful, berries are the perfect topping… well, you get the idea.

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New Uses for Kale Chips!Written by Susan Thanavaro | Tuesday, March 8th, 2016

Put Down the Bowl and Try Kale Chips in Your Favorite Recipes

Kale chips are fantastic and there are so many different ways to prepare them: with some extra heat from spices or sprinkled with parmesan and garlic, to start. But, you don’t have to eat them straight from the bowl every time a craving hits (though we wouldn’t blame you if you did).

Kale Chips - Great for Snacking and Cooking!

I love it when people get creative with their food, thinking outside the box to create delicious new combos – and lately I’ve seen tons of interesting ways to eat kale chips. Surprisingly, there are plenty of alternative uses for kale chips that you may not have thought of before, and I’m so excited to share them with you!

If you’re running low on time or just want a hassle-free way to turn kale chips into your next power snack, we’ve got you covered. Personally, Made In Nature’s Bedda Than Chedda and Sriracha Chili kale chips are two of my favorite flavors.

Using kale chips as a snack topping

Once you’ve spiced your kale up and dehydrated the fibrous leaves into a crunchy chip (or bought your favorite kind from the store), try using them as a topping on some of your favorite snacks:

  • Crumble your kale chips and toss them in with some air popped popcorn. Chips flavored with salt and olive oil taste great, but don’t be afraid to get creative.
  • If you’re like me and tend to cover your pizza in parmesan and red pepper flakes, try making some kale chips with those same flavors. Then, you guessed it – use those kale chips as your new favorite pizza topping.
  • Who doesn’t love toast smothered in creamy avocado? Personally, I’m a huge fan. Switch up the flavor of your avocado toast by adding crispy kale chips as a topping.

Kale chips as a topping for pastas, soups, and chili

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4 Sugar Substitutes We LoveWritten by Susan Thanavaro | Tuesday, August 13th, 2013

We’re big fans of indulging at the Made In Nature offices, and nothing delights us more than a sweet treat midday just because. Of course, our favorite way to give in to sugar cravings is with a delicious slice of dried fruit which in addition to hitting our sweet spot tempers the rise in blood sugar levels since it also includes fiber. Next time you’re looking for a not-so guilty, indulgent treat try our recipe guru Stephanie Stock’s favorite, dried bananas smothered in creamy almond butter–convenient, delicious and a good source of protein.

We understand though, sometimes you need something a little more devilish. For those days when only a brownie, cookie or piece of cake will do, you can still give in without devastating your diet.  The key? Sugar substitutes. Readily available options taste as good (or better) than they’re crystal cousin and often have fewer calories and less impact on your blood sugar. Here are a few of our favorites.

Dates: Dates are nature’s dessert, so it only makes sense they’d make a great sweetener. In fact, they’re 55 percent fructose. Date sugar is made from dehydrated, ground dates and makes a great replacement for brown sugar. It has a wonderful figgy sweetness that’s perfect for baking.

Coconut sugar: Has a low glycemic index (meaning it won’t spike blood sugar like sugar) and carries the added bonus of also delivering magnesium, potassium, and zinc. We also love that it has a delightful caramel flavor. Try coconut sugar as a one-for-one replacement to brown sugar.

Erythritol: Don’t worry, this sweetener is not as scary as it sounds. Erythritol is actually sugar alcohol found naturally in fruits, vegetables and even cheese. It’s nearly as sweet as table sugar but, bonus, is virtually calorie free. Substitute half the white sugar in recipes with erythritol. Trust us, no one will taste the difference.

Stevia: Though it has zero calories, stevia is actually 300 times sweeter than table sugar. Derived from a plant native to South America, Stevia has been used by native people for hundreds of years. We’re glad it’s finally made its way to the States. Because a little goes a long way, we like to use Stevia in drop form to sweeten beverages. Add fresh lemon juice to water and 1 to 2 drops of stevia for a cleansing lemonade. Refreshing and tasty!

Make your own preserves, with no sugar added!Written by Susan Thanavaro | Wednesday, June 19th, 2013

Oh, the delight of sinking your teeth into a buttery biscuit smeared with homemade jam.  Grandma (and maybe even mom) made it a tradition to preserve seasonal fruits so you could enjoy strawberries and peaches year round but in today’s go-go-go world, who can spare the time?  Well, with this done-in-a- snap recipe, you do! Beyond the lip-smacking delight of homemade preserves spread on well … anything, here are a few other reasons doing it yourself can’t be beat. Mango Preserves

 1.     Quality Control. We know exactly what fruit is going into our preserves (USDA Certified Organic of course) and exactly how much added sugar (none please!). If your family is as big a fan of jam as we are, these are two areas you’ll want to monitor. When you buy non-organic jam you can bet that in addition to the fruit listed on the label, each jar contains a host of pesticides. It’s also likely full of sugar since the sweetener is a natural preservative.  Because fruit is naturally sweet, we don’t think it needs much.

2.     Diversity. Craving plum preserves? How about mango or cranberry? They’re all within reach since many of our dried fruits can be used to easily prepare preserves that aren’t found anywhere else. Then the real fun begins—pairing and savoring. How about fig jam with brie on walnut toast points? It’s at your fingertips.

 3.     Cool points. Life just seems to come a little easier for some. Who doesn’t want to be in that crowd? Make your own preserves to earn instant wow-factor points and make your mark as a do-it-yourself gift giver. Jars can be paired with cheese and wine in a festive gift basket, or even better deliver a bag of your favorite Made In Nature Fruit and the below recipe. Now, that’s the gift that truly keeps giving.

Making your own preserves is as easy as 1, 2, 3–which you’ll see in the below video. We love these homemade mango preserves used as salmon topping or simply eaten as is. Enjoy!

 

Non-GMO Project VerificationWritten by Wendy Goldner | Monday, June 17th, 2013

Made in Nature Announces Non-GMO Project Certification

All products are verified as meeting the highest GMO avoidance standards

BOULDER, Colo. (May 21, 2013) – As the leading and longstanding brand of premium, organic dried fruit Made In Nature is committed to providing the highest quality, best-tasting products available. The company is thrilled to have taken the additional step of supporting the Non-GMO Project and obtaining their Non-GMO Project verification.

Non-GMO Project Certification verifies that all of Made In Nature’s organic ingredients are produced in compliance with the Non-GMO Project Standard, including ongoing testing of any potential risk ingredients. The Non-GMO Project is currently North America’s only independent verification for products that are made according to the best practices for GMO (genetically modified organism) avoidance. GMOs have never been properly tested for human consumption and have yet to be proven safe.

Made In Nature supports sustainable organic farming not only because it produces the best tasting fruit on the planet, but because it is safe and healthy for their consumers as well. They are committed to developing products without the use of GMOs and will hold their products accountable to ongoing testing of GMO risk ingredients. Made In Nature believes their customers have a right to know what is in their food and deserve the healthiest food available.

Made in Nature, the #1 organic dried fruit brand in the U.S., keeps its promises to its customers and Mother Nature taking the path less chosen in dried fruit production and never uses added sugar, sulfur or artificial additives, colors, flavors, genetically modified organisms, preservatives, pesticides, herbicides or fertilizers.

 

For more than 25 years Made In Nature has remained committed to environmental stewardship, helping to convert thousands of acres of land to organic farming. Many of these farms use renewable energy and provide shade and habitat for endangered species. By procuring only 100 percent certified organic fruit from dedicated organic farmers from around the globe, the company believes they offer the best tasting and most nutritious dried fruit on the planet. Made In Nature is available nationwide at Whole Foods Market, Sprouts, Costco and leading natural, specialty and regional grocers. Made In Nature also offers organic fresh produce and organic artisan frozen pizzas.

Do You Want To Date? Recipe ContestWritten by Wendy Goldner | Friday, June 14th, 2013

Imagine yourself on the shores of Tunisia with wine in one hand and sun-dried Deglet Noor Dates in the other. Sounds heavenly right? Well now you can enjoy them without paying for the airfare as Made In Nature is proud to announce this delicious fruit as a brand new member of the Made In Nature family! To celebrate this addition, we’re asking, do you want to date? To inspire you to participate in the celebration, Made In Nature will send you a FREE sample of our luscious sun-dried, unsulfured, pitted Organic Deglet Noor Dates when you participate in the Made in Nature Do You Want To Date? Organic Recipe Contest! Dates6oz_72RGBMade In Nature’s certified-organic sun-dried Deglet Noor Dates are prized the world over for their translucent blond color and soft caramel-like flavor that distinguishes them from all other dates. Our dates are the sweetest, moistest, most delectable dates under the sun. Just the way nature intended. How do we do it? We work with the most dedicated family of farmers to grow the best-tasting, organic fruit on the planet. Our organic dates are handpicked from small farms in Tunisia where the terrain is rich with sunlight, clean and abundant ground water, and fertile soil. As we like to say, our dates grow with their feet in the water and their heads in the sun!

How can you participate?

It’s simple. E-mail us at news@madeinnature.com by 06/20/13 to receive your 24 oz sample bag and then get cooking! There will be three categories you can enter your recipes in.

  1. The Best Date: the best overall recipe
  2. The Speed Date: the best quick and easy recipe with 5 ingredients or less
  3. The Date Night: A fancy, formal dinner recipe

• 1st prize in each category: $150 and 15 FREE bags of Made In Nature Organic Deglet Noor Dates for Reader Giveaways

• 2 runner-up’s in each category: 10 FREE bags of Made In Nature Organic Deglet Noor Dates for Reader Giveaways.

We’ll judge your recipe on taste, creativity, and readers’ responses—so be sure to send your fans to like and share your dish on social media and tag us in any posts so we know what’s happening. If you post any recipes on your blog, just make sure to email us a link at the email address posted. The contest will run through 07/15/13. As a bonus for our dates launch, now through July 15, if you buy one 28 oz bag of Made In Nature Organic Dates and two other products (any size or fruit), you get free shipping. Make sure you spread the word. Join the Made In Nature Do Want To Date? Recipe Contest today! E-mail us at news@madeinnature.com for your free dates by 06/20/13, then start posting!

IMPORTANT DATES 06/20/13: Deadline for emailing news@madeinnature.com to participate. 7/15/13: End of contest date. THINGS TO REMEMBER – There are 3 categories: speed date, best date, and date night. You can enter in any or all of them. – You must find a way to let us know about your recipe, preferably through tagging us in a social media post, but email works too. – This contest is about sharing, so make sure the recipe ends up on your site or your facebook or our facebook. Somewhere for the world to see!