Step Up Your Tailgating Game

Posted by Gail Moraski on Mon, Sep 28, 2015 @ 09:09 AM

Whether it means adding more traditional or new fun foods to your tailgating menu, or simply setting a goal to no longer sit on the sidelines watching, but instead, enjoy the experience of tailgating first-hand, we’ve got lots of great ideas to help you step up your tailgating game.  

It’s All about the Four F’s (well, five if you include football J)

Let’s start with tips for the tailgating newbies. Whether it’s watching football at an NFL stadium, at your local high school, or from your couch, to be a terrific tailgater, it’s helpful to understand the history behind tailgating’s traditions. As you’ll learn from this great piece by GatorTailgating, whether its true origin lies with groups meeting up to watch soldiers battle or football players tackle, tailgating’s tradition stems from the gathering of good friends and family around great food to cheer on favorite teams.

And, while tailgating likely earned its name from people serving food out of the back of some type of wagon, we think as long as you’ve got the four f’s covered – good friends, family, and food, and a favorite team or favorite artist/performer to rout and holler for – you’ve got yourself a tailgate party. Whether it’s indoors or outdoors, prior to a game or performance – or during one, who doesn’t love a great excuse to be with friends and family for what’s sure to be a lively, fun, and possibly nail-biting, get-together?

You’ve Got to Have Heart

We couldn’t resist stealing the song chorus from the sports-related musical, “Damn Yankees”, for our header to get our point across about the type of food that tailgating guests look forward to and adore – hearty food. We mean food that’s particularly filling and often spicy – you know the type of food we all crave in cooler weather…home-made food that feeds both the heart and soul, while tasting like it was made with lots of love!

Our list of favorite tailgating foods could go on and on, but MVP awards go to:

  • Hot and cold dips and chips, and other finger food
  • Chili – turkey, beef, and chicken
  • Potato salad – traditional, German, or in any other form!
  • Chicken wings, skewers, and quesadillas
  • Pasta, meatballs, and meatloaf
  • Brownies and chocolate chip cookies

But, you know best what will warm your guests’ hearts and bellies, so don’t be afraid to add your and their favorite home-made treats to our list!

Game-changing Tailgating

Now, on to tips for both rookie and veteran tailgaters. While we’re leaving the friends, family, and favorite team or performer up to you, we’ve been collecting lots of great ideas over the last couple of months to help you change up – in a very positive way – your tailgating game. Check out our Touchdown Tailgating Pinterest board for recipe and decorating ideas as well as our recipes for the yummy, comfort, rib-sticking type of food tailgating guests love.

We’ll also be posting photos of lots of mouth-watering tailgate and other fall-flavor recipes on Instagram, so be sure to follow us and do share photos of your game-changing tailgates with us there or on Twitter (#gamechangingtailgating).

Tags: Tailgating tips, Tailgating recipes

Ape Over Apples

Posted by Gail Moraski on Mon, Sep 21, 2015 @ 14:09 PM


We don’t know about you, but now that Labor Day is over, we’re ready to fall for fall – both activities and flavors! If you’re one of our Facebook fans – and if you aren’t, please join us – you’ll see that over the next two months, we’ll be posting a series of tips about where and why to go apple picking, and how to make beautiful, delicious creations with your orchard treasures, like caramel and candy apples.

Just because, in many parts of the U.S., slightly cooler temperatures have got us transitioning from bathing suits to sweaters, it doesn’t mean we have to give up the much-enjoyed get-togethers with family and friends that revolved around life’s simple pleasures. We just have to change up the location from sandy beaches to apple orchards and from campgrounds to fall festivals and local farms.


Why We Adore Apples

One of the many reasons we’re all ape over apples here at Concord Foods – and we think there are so many reasons to be a bit crazy about them – is that you can center many a great family and friend get-together around apples. Here’s a couple of our favorite apple activities that provide the quality time and fabulous memories we all value, plus, other reasons to adore those activities.

  • Apple picking – it gets us and our families back outdoors – away from busy, stuffy classrooms and offices; it keeps us moving – other than when we’re enjoying the free hayride that takes you to the part of an orchard where picking is best J; and it provides lots of great exercise – walking among the trees searching for the most eye-appealing apples and reaching up to pick our prizes.

Apple picking season is already underway in many parts of the U.S., including the upper and middle portions of the eastern, mid-west, central, and western areas. Check out these two great resources for finding U-Pick farms near you: option=com_content&view=article&id=57&Itemid=47

  • Apple decorating – whether it’s caramel- or candy-coated apples you crave, or simply slices dipped in caramel, a decorating get-together allows you and your guests to both employ and show off your creative side – and we’ve got products and recipes to help make it easy; and, hey, any time – not just Halloween – is a good time to make and eat caramel or candy apples!
  • Apple baking and eating – both provide a fun and tasty reason to gather family to enjoy fall favorites like cranberry apple crisp; and like decorating, baking provides a welcome break from computers and hand-held devices and a chance for everyone to flex those artistic muscles!

In addition to providing fruit (hah, hah) for activities, apples have a lot of other great attributes. Whether you eat them plain or decorated, cooked or raw, apples provide wonderful vitamin C and fiber that all bodies need to get and stay healthy. Plus, I think we’ll all agree that shiny, red apples are beautiful to look at and drum up happy thoughts and memories of fall treats, festivities, and holidays.

Apple Acumen

We want to make it easy for you to become a member of the Apple Acumen Club – that way, you’ll be sure to enjoy apple’s many tasty and health-related benefits. So, we’ve gathered lots of ideas for making apple creations at Plus, to whet your apple appetite, we’ll share photos of recipes made with our products at

Show Us How You are Going Ape Over Apples

We want to see and hear how you are going ape over apples, so please do share your creations or activities, like apple picking, with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram (#apeoverapples).

Tags: apple picking

Mix Up Some Magic

Posted by Gail Moraski on Wed, Sep 16, 2015 @ 10:09 AM

If you’re like us, you’ve found yourself full-swing in the fast pace that mid-September brings, and the slightly slower-paced days you enjoyed with friends and family this summer seem like a distant memory. We bet you’re already longing for the quiet, simple, and very special moments that days or evenings spent at the beach or by a campfire bring.

While we can’t bring summer back, we believe you’ll be both pleased and excited about our newest special offer – one we think will have you believing that Fairy Godmothers really do exist. You’ll save $5.00 by mail when you buy ANY 2 Concord Foods Guacamole/Salsa Seasoning Mixes PLUS Disney’s Cinderella, which will be releasing on Blu-ray, Digital HD & Disney Movies Anywhere on September 15th.  For details and rebate form, go to

Pen It In!

So, why not insert some of those quieter, special times that you relished during summer into your fall and winter schedules by inviting family and friends to an extra-special movie night? Mix up some magic by serving up two favorites – chips and dips made with Concord Foods Guacamole/Salsa Seasoning mixes PLUS Disney’s Cinderella! In addition to mixing up some magic, we think you’ll be brewing up some life-long memories for your guests.

Even if you can’t get your favorite crew together for several weeks, you can send out a save-the-date invite now, so you and your friends and family know you’ve got a highly enjoyable and slower-paced activity on the calendar to look forward to. Then, check out some of our guacamole and salsa recipes, so you can start planning your scene-stealing movie night menu!

 Flaunt Old-Fashioned Fun!

We want to see how you and your guests enjoyed your magical movie night, so please do share with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

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Tags: food

Staying Strong in September

Posted by Gail Moraski on Mon, Aug 31, 2015 @ 12:08 PM

While we’ll never be ready to usher out the more laid-back days of summer, the barrage of back-to-school advertisements, as well as the slighter cooler temperatures here in New England – where Concord Foods is headquartered – have got us thinking about what we wish for ourselves, our friends and family, and particularly you, our dear readers, this fall. And, what we wish is that all of us will stay strong this September, and not let fall’s frenziness get us off track from the healthy eating and exercise habits we put in place this summer.

Staying the Course

Whether it was at walking or golf courses, we’re guessing you, your family, and friends spent a fair amount of time exercising this summer. Maybe you made a commitment to walk in your neighborhood after dinner or to meet for a weekly tennis or golf game, or swim. Didn’t you look forward to, enjoy, and feel great after? Well, we challenge and encourage you to keep those healthy habits going.

We believe that, with a little creative and flexible thinking, you can maintain your summer exercise stride. And speaking of courses, why not make fall a time of investing in and beginning classes and activities for the body, not just the mind? Why not try that yoga or Zumba class at your gym or one offered through a local adult education program. Or, check out the pool at your local high school?

Pack It Up to Prevent Packing It On

We loved the August 9, 2015 edition of Parade Magazine – particularly its cover photo (shown below) – that focused on what Americans are packing for both themselves and their children for lunch these days.


 We’re huge fans of the great new “bento” lunchboxes, such as those in the photo, because their separate compartments allow you to pack and store several healthy smaller snacks such as cut-up fruits and vegetables and dips like yogurt and guacamole, and hummus. Hey, we all know kids don’t like it when different foods run together, and if you’re like us, we’re betting you’re not a big fan of it yourself!

Because summer offers such a great bounty of enticing fruits and vegetables, it’s likely you made produce – like berries and summer squash – a key component of summer snacks and meals. Regardless of the type of pail, box, bag, etc. you use, as we did regarding summer exercise habits, we encourage and challenge you to pack up healthy lunches and snacks for you and your family so you don’t pack on the pounds this fall. Check out or revisit our blog posts regarding packing a power picnic and vegging out for ideas about packing – or simply making and serving – snacks and meals that incorporate lots of healthy produce. And, don’t forget that grab-and-go smoothies such as the kale and apple and blueberry banana ones you can make with our Nutritious Smoothie mixes are an easy way to continue to incorporate lots of healthy produce in your and your family’s diets this fall and winter.

Show Us How You are Staying Strong

We want to see and hear how you are staying strong in September, so please do share how you are meeting this challenge with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram (#stayseptstrong).

Smoothie Love

Posted by Gail Moraski on Wed, Aug 19, 2015 @ 15:08 PM

Call it a craze or a phase, but as you’ve likely noticed -- particularly in the last year or two – both nationally and globally, many individuals are recognizing the numerous health and convenience benefits of smoothies and jumping on the smoothie bandwagon. While smoothies have been around for many years, the fact that they’ve gone more mainstream – meaning more and more individuals of all ages, income levels, genders, etc. are enjoying their daily smoothies – has encouraged both food companies and food establishments, including fast food restaurants, to offer smoothies containing a variety of delicious and beneficial ingredients.



At Concord Foods, we’ve long since recognized the multitude of benefits smoothies provide, and have been offering delicious and easy smoothie recipes made with our mixes since 2009. Wanting to offer smoothie recipes that were even more nutritious, we launched two new smoothie mixes in the last nine months – Kale & Apple with Protein and Blueberry Banana with Flaxseed – to create what we like to refer to as our “dynamic duo” of “Nutritious” smoothies. And, to encourage you to check out and reap the many benefits of recipes made from our new Nutritious smoothies mixes, we’re offering a smoothie summer savings promotion.

What’s Trending

Because of how they can serve as a nutritious “grab and go” meal, as well as the increased public awareness of how incorporating healthy ingredients like kale, blueberry, flaxseed, and protein in them can benefit your body, we think smoothies of some type will be around for many years to come. Still, we wanted to share some new and fun ideas we’ve heard about recently. Like smoothies, you can find “bowls” on many restaurant menus and many grocery store shelves. Whether they’re rice or quinoa bowls, or bowls containing other yummy ingredients, we all seem to be loving the convenience and deliciousness of food favorites being combined in one container. So, we weren’t surprised to see and love the idea of smoothie bowls. Learn how to get started making and enjoying your own bowl creations with great tips from Food Network at

Another popular and growing trend among smoothie makers and drinkers is incorporating exotic fruits in your beverage creation, so you can enjoy the delicious juice and nutrition associated with those fruits. We’re not talking fruits like mango, papaya, guava – those are so yesterday – we’re talking even more exotic ones that many local grocery stores carry to meet their customers’ demands for more diverse produce. These include passion, dragon, and star fruit, ambarella, jackfruit, camu camu, rambutan, and more!


Show Us Your Smooth Side

We want to hear and see how you demonstrate your love of smoothies, so be one of the first five individuals to share a picture of you making or drinking one of your favorite recipes with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram (#mysmoothside) and we’ll send you our dynamic duo of nutritious smoothie mixes.

Tags: Smoothie Mixes

Savoring Summer’s Simple Pleasures

Posted by Gail Moraski on Tue, Aug 04, 2015 @ 17:08 PM

The month of August is here and you may be feeling like summer’s already over. Particularly if you have children you have to get ready for school – or you may be going back to school yourself – your head may be starting to spin with all the shopping and other planning you need to do. But, dear readers, we want to encourage you not to sell your summer short. After all, summer is a very special gift that is ours until September 22nd! So, let’s continue to make the most of this season that lends itself so perfectly to savoring life’s simple pleasures.

Speaking of lemonade, what goes better with it, or tastes better after a day of hosting a lemonade stand, than food cooked on the grill? Whether it’s hotdogs, hamburgers, steak, chicken, fish, or vegetables – or all of the former – food cooked on the grill is surely one of summer’s most savory simple pleasures. We think your friends and family will love this great grilled shrimp recipe from, and when you make it using our lime juice – in keeping with this blog post’s theme – you can keep things simple, by avoiding the mess of cutting limes. You can find more tasty cookout recipes to help you savor summer at


Another simple pleasure we know you, your family, and friends will savor is picking and eating summer’s bright, beautiful, and bountiful produce. Whether you select it from your favorite grocery store, snag it at a farmers’ market, or pick it yourself from a local farm – in many parts of the U.S., you can pick strawberries and blueberries throughout the month of August – is there anything that tastes as heavenly as fresh, in-season fruits or vegetables? A bright red ripe tomato sprinkled with olive oil and a little salt – now that’s definitely a simple pleasure of summer, for both the eyes and ears, to savor!

We want to hear and see how you continue to savor summer’s simple pleasures in August and September, so please do share with us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.


Tags: Lemon Juice, Recipes

How To Pack A Power Picnic

Posted by Gail Moraski on Thu, Jul 16, 2015 @ 10:07 AM

Particularly for those of us who endure colder winter temperatures, one of summer’s greatest pleasures is dining outdoors. Doesn’t just the mention of the word “picnic” call up lots of great memories or make you look forward to time spent in the warm, fresh air enjoying life’s simple pleasures with family and friends? If you’re like us, though, we know there’s times you struggle with what food to pack. We’re here to share tips that make sure guests love and eat what we serve – and as a fortunate consequence – mean we don’t have to throw out a lot of left-over food that’s been sitting in the warm sun all day!

Make It Grabbable!

Our experience with picnic lunches or dinners for a trip to the park, beach, or other favorite outdoor venue is that it’s best to pack a lot of finger food or at least food that doesn’t require cutting with a knife. Since snacks and meals eaten at the beach or a park are often consumed while sitting on a blanket or a bench, it’s best not to serve food that requires guests to keep their plastic or paper plates perfectly level or steady. Plus, just by its nature, a picnic is usually served where and when there’s lots of things to distract your family and friends from eating, such as waves to be waded in and volleyballs to be punched. You’ll want to offer food that can be grabbed and eaten easily on the go.

Pack Up the Produce!

But, just because food should be easy to grab and eat, doesn’t mean it can’t still be yummy and healthy. In fact, we think some of the yummiest and most vitamin- and antioxidant-rich food is the most grabbable! Due to the ease of eating them outdoors, sandwiches and chips may have been your go-to picnic food, but we’re here to share why we believe you should move “beyond the bread.”

When you wash and cut fruits and veggies for a picnic – and you can easily pack them in a large zip-lock baggie – you’re packing what we like to call power food – food that packs a healthy punch. Your friends and family will get healthy carbohydrates to keep them energized for the day’s activities. Plus, since fruits and vegetables contain a fair amount of water, you’ll be helping loved ones stay hydrated on a warm day. And, your guests will be getting other great things their body needs like vitamins and fiber.

What picnic guest doesn’t love to snag a fresh strawberry or a piece of cantaloupe that they can quickly dunk in some yogurt dip before running off to play wiffle ball? Or, some fresh carrots or cherry tomatoes that they can dunk in guacamole? We think your guests will also love to grab and gobble vegetables and fruit skewers like these from As they describe them, “this is basically fruit salad – on a stick!” What’s not to love about them?

Be Dippy!

As we mentioned above, you can make the fruits and vegetables you serve extra-special and extra-tasty, by serving healthy, yummy dips with them. Check out our ideas for dips for vegetables that you can make with our Guacamole and Salsa seasoning mixes, and to keep your picnic powerful, think about packing some low-fat/low-sugary yogurt dip vs. chocolate sauce for guests to dip their fruit in too.



We want to hear and see the power picnics you serve friends and family this summer, so please do share with us on Facebook or Twitter.



Tags: Picnic

Lighten Up to Slim Down This Summer

Posted by Gail Moraski on Thu, Jul 02, 2015 @ 12:07 PM

Summer always feels like the ideal time to lighten up the snacks and meals you make for yourself and your family.  Regardless of where you live in the U.S., hotter temperatures make us all want to eat less-heavy dishes that include fresh – and refreshing – vegetables and fruits.  It’s likely our body craves fresh fruits and vegetables because they seem lighter than other food options like starchy pasta or potatoes, and because their water content makes them thirst-quenching.

Regardless of your reason for wanting to serve lighter, healthier fare to your family this summer – a practice we hope you will carry over into non-summer months – we’re here to help you with your goal of introducing slimmed-down, healthy dishes this summer.  Once again, we’ve teamed up with our friends at Brooks Tropicals to offer some fun and healthy recipes.  These “Skinny Guacamole” recipes instruct you how to make crowd-pleasing dishes that include a lighter guacamole made with Brooks Tropicals SlimCado avocados and Concord Foods guacamole mixes.  


SlimCados are 100% natural, have 50% less fat and 35% fewer calories than drier climate avocados. Learn more about them at Brooks Tropicals’ really fun web site.  We know the yummy images there will just having you craving fruits and vegetables even more – particularly, tropical ones!

But, we don’t want you to just feel healthier this summer – we also want to give you a chance to possibly become wealthier, so we’ve also brought back our Skinny Guacamole Sweepstakes.  Be sure to enter between July 1 and August 31, 2015 to automatically be included in our grand prize drawing of $500 cash, plus weekly prize drawings.

To keep you on track with lightening up to slim down this summer – hopefully, both your meals and your body – check out our Skinny Guacamole Pinterest board to get more great ideas on how you can incorporate Slimcados, and other mouth-watering fruits and vegetables, in summer dishes your family and guests will simply love!

We want to hear and see the special meals you served or things you did to lighten up to slim down this summer, so please do share with us on Facebook or Twitter



Tags: Skinny Guacamole

Become a Pro At Vegging Out

Posted by Gail Moraski on Fri, Jun 26, 2015 @ 14:06 PM

With such a large and diverse group of produce to choose from, we believe it’s possible for everyone – even those who are a bit vegetable-timid – to creatively incorporate vegetables into their and their family’s daily diet. We’re sharing our favorite ideas for “vegging out” to make sure our readers and their families benefit from the great taste, vitamins and antioxidants, and high fiber of a vegetable-rich diet.


Kitchen-Sink Your Dishes

That’s right, we’ve made “kitchen sink” a verb in our households because, to us, it’s an easy and fun action we can take to add more vegetables into the meals we make. Kitchen-sinking means throwing as many types of vegetables as you like or happen to have around into dishes that lend itself to it. 

Let’s start with soup. Whether you start with broth made from scratch, or simply open a can of soup like chicken rice or noodle, you can really bump up the soup’s or broth’s nutritious-ness and delicious-ness by adding your and your family’s favorite vegetables. We find it’s quite fun figuring out what to include, brings out our creative side, and makes us feel good about serving soup to our friends and family – even when it’s canned – when we make soup extra special and extra healthy with veggie add-ins.

As with soup, we’ve believe brightening up a home-made quiche with lots of colorful vegetables a no-brainer as far as ensuring our families get the nutrients they need. We love adding whatever vegetables are in season, so we get to enjoy both the great taste and health benefits! Right now, we’re loving throwing in things like slices of fresh summer squash, zucchini, cherry tomatoes, and spinach leaves.

Remember, a little can still go a long way as far as providing the vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber your family needs. So, if large pieces of tomato or broccoli in their food will have your kids running screaming from the lunch or dinner table, include more finely-cut pieces of vegetables in your kitchen sink dishes.

Make Wellness Whimsical

One of our other favorite ways to make sure we and our families get the benefits of eating a variety of vegetables is to display them on a plate in a creative way, such as in the shape of an animal or some other object that children love. And, we’ve found that our kids, and even our significant others, are more likely to try and eat new vegetables when they’ve helped us build some fun vegetable creations such as these from The Art of Nutrition blog. What’s not to love about the tomato scarecrow and cucumber giraffe, right?

Get More

Welcome more great ideas for incorporating healthy, delicious veggies in your meals? Check out these great ideas from Eating Well for making summer meals “produce-packed” and our delicious and easy egg recipes that hold the ham while bringing on the veggies!

We’re such believers in the importance of including lots of veggies in your diet, we welcome hearing and seeing your creative ideas for doing so. Be one of the first five to share them with us on Facebook or Twitter, and we’ll send you a five-pack of our guacamole mixes that pair well with lots of different veggies.





Fire Up Your Father’s Day

Posted by Gail Moraski on Thu, Jun 11, 2015 @ 16:06 PM

Doesn’t thinking of how your dad made you feel so protected as a child during a thunderstorm or watching your husband give your daughter a pep talk after she struck out at bat make you want to do something extra special for him for Father’s Day this year?  Regardless of what man you want to honor this Father’s Day – remember, it’s Sunday, June 21st, and just around-the-corner – we’ve got you covered with a lot of great ideas to fire up Father’s Day for your special men.

Great Grill Grub

If your dad is like most dads, he probably loves a hamburger, steak, hot dog, or piece of chicken fresh off the grill.  Even if your father’s a vegetarian, we bet he enjoys an ear of corn or a skewer of vegetables that has that just-can’t-be-duplicated flavor of being cooked on the grill.  So, why not fire up your grill and make this Father’s Day one that your dad or other fathers in your life – like your husband, brother, or uncle – are sure to both appreciate and remember?



Whether it’s Father’s Day or some other special summer occasion like a graduation celebration or Fourth of July, we’ve put together some cookout recipes that all your guests, particularly any honored ones, are sure to love.  We’ve also pulled together some of our favorite ideas for yummy appetizers, main dishes, side dishes, and desserts (think North American blueberry season J) on our “Fire Up Father’s Day” Pinterest board.

Keep The Fire Where It Belongs

While nothing makes us relish summer more than an outdoor porch or backyard barbecue with family and/or friends, we all need to make sure that we don’t get so caught up in the enjoyment that we lose sight of being and keeping our guests safe.  Make sure a safety mishap doesn’t spoil your or your guests’ fun by following these grilling safety tips from the National Fire Protection Association:

Heat Things Up Without The Grill

Not a fan of grilling?  No worries.  We get that some people just aren’t grill people – whether it’s due to taste buds, diets, or logistics like no outdoor space for grilling, or time, money, and materials involved.  We’ve got other great ideas for you to fire up your Father’s Day get-together such as adding extra spice and heat with our Cinco De Mayo recipes that you can enjoy any time, not just May 5th. Or, heat things up with our one of tailgate recipes – no car necessary!

Sweet & Savory Food That Will Still Fire Things Up

And, for those of our readers who are neither fans of grilled nor Mexican food, we’ve still got something up our sleeves for food that’s still extra-special and sure to impress and please the fathers in your life. Your guests of honor will feel just that – honored – when you serve delicious, unique dishes, like Thai chicken satay and chicken stuffed with feta and sun-dried tomato you make using our sweet & savory recipes.

We want to hear and see the special meals you served or things you did to ignite the Father’s Day of the men you care about, so please do share with us on Facebook or Twitter




Tags: Father's Day

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