Celebrating Raisins

Did you know that raisins were discovered by accident?  As early as 2000 BC, grapes were found withered on their vine from the heat.  Since they didn’t want to waste food, they tried them and they quickly became a part of the diet of Mediterranean countries.  Raisin’s popularity then spread to the rest of Europe and eventually made its way across the Atlantic Ocean.


Today, Fresno, California is the raisin capital of the world.  It became the raisin country similarly to how raisins were discovered, by accident.  In 1873, a random hot spell withered the grapes on the vine before farmers could pick them.  A grocer in San Francisco then advertised those shivered grapes as “Peruvian Delicacies” to keep consumers interested, and the rest is history!


Today is National Raisin Day and it’s the perfect day to celebrate this accidental, but delicious food that goes great with everything!


Colors of Raisins


The color of a raisin depends on how it was dried.

  • Dark purplish/black color = dried by the sun
  • Light to medium brown color = dried by an oven
  • Golden to bright yellow color = dried by an oven and then treated with sulfur dioxide to retain color


Eating Raisins


Raisins can be added to anything and everything.  They are a versatile food that gives you the chance to play around with recipes and find your favorite way to enjoy them.


Here are 6 ways you can add raisins to your meals:


  1. Add raisins to your morning oatmeal or cereal. They’ll add a bit of sweetness that’ll make your breakfast even more satisfying.


  1. Spread peanut butter on celery and stick raisins on top for a nutritious and delicious snack. This is the perfect snack for kids AND adults that’ll keep you full until your next meal.


  1. Make homemade oatmeal raisin muffins for a quick, on-the-go snack that will also satisfy your sweet tooth!


  1. Top your next salad with raisins and pair with balsamic vinaigrette dressing for a delicious lunch.


  1. Mix sautéed asparagus and green beans with raisins for a slightly sweet twist on your favorite side dish.


  1. Add raisins to homemade zucchini, banana or pumpkin bread to add a crunchy texture to your bread while also adding more flavor and sweetness.


You only need a small amount to add flavor to your dishes because they are highly concentrated in sugar.  Keep this in mind when you are adding raisins to meals.


Your Turn to Take Action:  How will you add raisins to your meals this week?  Let me know in the comments below!


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