Picked a bucket of blackberries, but out of ideas of what to do with them? We’ve compiled our favourite recipes to get you started! From vegan, gluten-free, paleo, savoury, sweet, health-conscious to the absolutely decadent! Start your day with a blackberry protein smoothie and end it with a spiked vodka blackberry crush! This summer we’ve got you covered!
Blackberries can peak anywhere from July to August depending on the season. Ripe blackberries are deep black with a plump, full feel. The berry is ripe when it pulls free from the plant with only a slight tug. Berries that are red or purple, are not yet ripe. Avoid placing picked berries in the sunlight – try to find the shade of a tree while you gather them. Cool them as soon as possible. Do not wash the berries until you are ready to use or freeze them, as washing increases the risk of spoilage. Depending on how fresh they were when picked, blackberries can be kept in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Blackberries pair well with many foods and flavours, the following especially: lemon, vanilla, almond, pear, apple, other berries, goat cheese, meats, and white chocolate.
Glossary for recipes
C = Cup
T = Tablespoon
t = teaspoon
Blackberry and Goat Cheese Salad
Soft goat cheese is a wonderful accompaniment to blackberries, and there are so many varieties available! For this recipe we used Salt Spring Island garlic goat cheese, but experiment with different flavours. Toasted pecans bring an earthy flavour and the blackberry balsamic vinaigrette ties it all together.
1 small packet baby spinach
1 package of soft goat cheese – try garlic, fig, or herb flavoured
1/4C olive oil
1/4C balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper
- Toast pecans (Preheat over to 350F, spritz baking sheet with cooking spray, toast for approx. 5 minutes, be careful not to burn!)
- Toss together baby spinach, broken up and lightly crumbled goat cheese, toasted pecans, and blackberries.
- To make vinaigrette, mash berries with a fork to extract juice and strain into a small jar.
- Add olive oil, balsamic vinegar, honey and salt and pepper to blackberry juice.
- Shake jar vigorously to combine. Pour over salad, toss again and serve.
Serves 4 as a side
Blackberry-glazed Pork Chops
Blackberries make a wonderful glaze for all kinds of meat. This very simple recipe can be made on the stove or your grill this summer! It’s a sure winner for the mid-week meal! This dish is paleo, gluten and dairy free. Adapted from PaleoOMG
2 pork chops
1/2 t cinnamon
Pinch ground cloves
Salt and pepper
1/4 t fresh or dried thyme
1 cup blackberries
1/4 c balsamic vinegar
Pinch of salt
- Fire up your grill if you are using one.
- In a small pan combine glaze ingredients and mash lightly with fork, retaining some whole berries.
- Simmer glaze over medium heat for 3-5 minutes, be careful not to burn.
- Rub pork chops with cinnamon, cloves, thyme, salt and pepper on both sides.
- Fry or grill chops until just done.
- Strain half of glaze into a small bowl and brush one side of chops. Grill for a few minutes.
- Turn over and glaze other side and grill for a few minutes more. Be careful not to burn.
- Serve on plate with side salad and spoon remaining glaze and leftover cooked berries over chops.
Blackberries and white chocolate are a match made in heaven – which is where you will find yourself with this decadent treat! The black currant juice, although not essential, really brings out the blackberry flavor and adds a special something to this memorable dessert.
1T black currant juice*
1C white chocolate
1C whipping cream
2 sachets vanilla sugar
- Lightly macerate blackberries with 3T sugar and 1T blackcurrant juice. Cover and refrigerate thirty minutes. This allows the flavours of the blackberries to come out.
- Melt white chocolate (approx. 45 seconds in microwave on high) – be careful not to cook the chocolate, stop just before it melts completely as residual heat will finish the job!
- Whip whipping cream with 2 sachets of vanilla sugar (or add plain sugar and vanilla extract).
- Very slowly fold white chocolate into whipping cream.
- Layer mulled berry mixture with white chocolate and whipped cream mixture. A see-through glass bowl lets you see the gorgeous layers!
- Chill for at least one hour. Keeps very well overnight.
- Top with extra whipped cream if desired before serving.
*available at Lifestyle Markets
Raw Vegan Blackberry Mini “Cheesecakes”
Single-serve lemon-infused cashew cream “cheesecakes” that not only taste good, but are also good for you! The secret is soaking the cashews for several hours, or ideally overnight. Coconut oil and cool temperatures are key to keeping them firm! This dish is completely raw, vegan, gluten and dairy free.
Pinch of salt
1T coconut oil
2C raw cashews, soaked overnight and drained
Zest of one lemon
Juice of one lemon
1/4C maple syrup or honey
1/4C coconut oil, melted
1t vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
Extra blackberries for decorating.
- Process crust ingredients in food processor until they begin to bind.
- Press crust into mini tart pans, or muffins tins lined with Saran wrap.
- Chill tart crusts in freezer for at least thirty minutes to set.
- Process filling ingredients in food processors EXCEPT for blackberries.
- When filling is smooth and creamy, divide in half.
- Spoon one half of filling evenly over each crust.
- Process remaining half of filling with 1/4C blackberries and layer over white filling.
- Decorate with blackberries and freeze to set for at least an hour.
- Store in freezer until just before serving, particularly in warm weather. In milder temperatures, remove thirty minutes before serving.
Makes 4 mini cheesecakes
Blackberry Apple Crumble
Apples and blackberries are a winning combination, topped with crunchy nutty muesli, this dessert will warm you up on a cool Pacific North West evening – yes, we get those even in summer! It can be prepared in a large lasagna or casserole dish, alternately in individual ramekins for a personal touch. Adapted from the BBC
3 Granny Smith apples
Juice of one lemon
2 C blackberries
1/2C packed brown sugar + 1/2C packed brown sugar for topping
3/4C untoasted muesli
- Preheat oven to 375F.
- Peel and chop apples and put in a large bowl.
- Cover with lemon juice.
- Add blackberries, 1/2C packed brown sugar, cinnamon and combine.
- Remove any fruit pieces from muesli and add them to the apples and blackberries.
- In another bowl combine muesli, flour and 1/2C packed brown sugar.
- Rub in butter with your fingertips.
- Spoon apple mixture into butter-greased dish.
- Top with oatmeal mixture.
- Bake until bubbling and running over, approx. 40mins. You may need to clean your oven after, but it will be worth it!
- Serve with cream or ice-cream.
Makes 4 individual ramekins
Lemon and Blackberry Muffins
Lemons and blackberries are another classic combination. These muffins are hearty and make a great quick breakfast. We used unbleached flour, but feel free to substitute whole-wheat flour, reducing the amount of flour used by about a third.
3C unbleached flour
zest of two lemons
1t baking powder
1t baking soda
1C packed brown sugar
3/4C light olive oil
juice of ½ lemon
1T vanilla essence
- Preheat oven to 350F
- In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients: flour, lemon zest, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
- Combine wet ingredients: eggs, sugar, milk, vegetable oil, lemon juice, vanilla essence.
- Make a well in the middle of dry ingredients and pour in wet mixture. Mix gently until just combined, be careful not to over mix! Stir in blackberries.
- Spoon batter into greased or lined muffin pan.
- Place in center of oven and bake until firm, about 20 minutes.
- Allow to cool for a few moments and then transfer to cooling rack.
- These keep at room temperature for a few days, but can also be frozen if wrapped individually.
- Delicious warmed up and served with butter!
Makes 12 muffins
Blackberry Protein Smoothie
Get your morning started right! Just add your favorite protein powder and you’re good to go. We really like vanilla whey, but chocolate or strawberry are just as good!
Half a banana
One cup blackberries
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
1/2 cup unflavoured yoghurt
Almond milk for desired consistency start with 1/2 cup and add more as needed
Stevia to sweeten or your favorite sweetener
Blend and enjoy!
Blackberry-Cranberry Vodka Crush
Cranberry juice and blackberries combine with a kick of vodka and an infusion of vanilla to take you into the weekend! You’ll be swept away by this heady mix!
1t unsweetened cranberry concentrate*
1/2C crushed ice
1/2t vanilla essence
1oz simple syrup
Shake all ingredients vigorously in cocktail shaker. Pour into glass. Blackberry seeds will settle at bottom of shaker. Enjoy!
*available at Lifestyle Markets