Featuring fresh, nutrient-packed blueberries, my Blueberry Granita is a great way to beat the heat this summer!
Thank you to the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council for sponsoring this post! As always, all blueberry-loving opinions are 100% my own.
If any of you have been to South Florida in the summertime, then you know how hot and humid it gets down here this time of year! We basically stay indoors as much as possible where there’s air conditioning and when we do go outside, we try to stay hydrated with lots of cool, refreshing drinks and treats! So I figured, what better way to celebrate both National Blueberry Month and the 4th of July than with a blueberry-inspired version of one of my favorite summer desserts- a granita!
My Blueberry Granita with Coconut Whipped Cream is packed with color and flavor and will definitely cool you off in this heat! A granita is basically like a grown up slushy. It’s easy to make and requires just a dish and a fork- no special equipment like an ice cream maker needed! You simply freeze a flavored liquid or puree in a shallow dish, stick it in the freezer, and scrape it with a fork every once in a while to give it a soft, flaky consistency.
I’ve posted a Mocha Espresso Granita recipe on the blog. But this time, I decided to use pureed blueberries as the base for my granita. One serving (one cup) of blueberries contains only 80 calories and naturally occurring sugars, and contributes essential nutrients, including vitamin C, vitamin K, manganese, dietary fiber and phytonutrients called polyphenols. This group includes anthocyanins (163.3 mg/100 g) , which are compounds that give blueberries their vibrant blue color. Just look at the beautiful color of this granita- who wouldn’t want to eat that?
You can use fresh or frozen blueberries in this dish. I always have frozen blueberries on hand in my freezer because they’re a great way to add a pop of nutrition and flavor to oatmeal, smoothies, yogurt and sauces. But I decided to use fresh blueberries in this dish. After all, it is peak blueberry season and my local farmers market was just brimming with these little blue dynamos! They’re positively bluetiful!
Granitas are very versatile- you can enjoy them as a fun, refreshing snack on a hot day or serve them as an elegant dessert at a dinner party. They’re also the perfect palate cleanser in multi-course meals. I like to serve them in nice glasses, dessert bowls or even shot glasses for a fun presentation.
You can top the Blueberry Granita with a dollop of coconut whipped cream and some fresh mint leaves if desired. My Coconut Whipped Cream is a simple, dairy-free whipped cream that you can make at home. You just refrigerate a can of full fat coconut milk overnight. Then, scoop out the solids and whip it up with an electric mixer along with a touch of vanilla and sugar. It doesn’t get easier than that!
- 1 pint 2 cups blueberries
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- ¾ cup water
- 2 tablespoons honey, agave or sweetener of your choice
Optional Garnish: Mint leaves
- Puree the blueberries in a blender until smooth. Strain through a fine mesh sieve, pushing down with a spatula or spoon to get all of the liquid out. Discard the solids. Stir the lemon juice, water and sweetener into the blueberry puree.
- Pour the blueberry mixture into a shallow baking dish and place in the freezer. Remove the dish after 30 minutes and using a fork, scrape the mixture, breaking up any icy clumps. Return the dish to the freezer. Repeat the process every 30 minutes or so, scraping it with a fork, to create a light and fluffy texture. It should take about 2 hours total.
- Scoop the granita into dessert bowls or glasses. Serve plain or with a dollop of coconut whipped cream (recipe below). Garnish with mint leaves.
Coconut Whipped Cream (Dairy-Free)
- 1 can full fat coconut milk refrigerated overnight
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- Refrigerate the can of coconut milk overnight. Open the can and scoop out the solid part that has risen to the top. Place it in a bowl and add the vanilla and sugar.
- Using an electric mixer, whip until fluffy.
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