I spent last weekend at Smuggler’s Notch in Vermont attending Blog Brûlée, a super-fun blog retreat (a.k.a. party) hosted by four amazing RD friends of mine. My attendance at Blog Brûlée was partially funded by the Sponsors of the event, but I wasn’t compensated to write this post.
The retreat was such a great time. It’s always fun to meet in person the people you connect with online every day. And this was a truly inspiring group of healthy food bloggers. The attendees were all affiliated in some way with The Recipe Redux and Healthy Aperture, both of which are the brain-child of Regan Miller Jones. She started these projects with the belief that healthy food bloggers could be successful in a world where the most popular blogs were posting ooey gooey desserts made with cream cheese and butter and stuffed with fudge and Nutella. Okay, so I’m being dramatic. But not really. The sad fact is the most successful blogs are those posting the most unhealthy food.
What did I learn at Blog Brûlée? There’s always something to learn with food photography and I got some very useful tips from Gretchen, who is an amazing food stylist and photographer (check out her gorgeous blog, Kumquat). I learned from Deanna how to take and edit pictures with my iphone that will amaze you (this Snap Seed app is a must-have). Deanna uses an iphone for all of her pictures on her blog, Teaspoon of Spice — can you tell?
All in all the weekend was part party (including wine, cheese, and chocolate tastings) and part educational, with presentations ranging from food photography and styling, SEO and marketing strategies, building a blog community, and how to work with food sponsors while staying true to your own brand.
The speakers included Anne Mauney, MS, RD of Fannetastic Food, Carolyn Ketchum of All Day I Dream About Food, EA Stewart, MBA, RD of The Spicy RD, Janice Newell Bissex, MS, RD and Liz Weiss, MS, RD of Meal Makeover Moms, and Brierley Wright, MS, RD, the Nutrition Editor at EatingWell Magazine.
By far the best part of the trip was meeting the other healthy food blogger attendees, all of which I can now call friends. I encourage you to visit their blogs if you’re looking for healthy recipes and reliable nutrition information:
- Jessica Levinson, ms rd – nutritioulicious
- Diane Boyd, mba rd – cape fear nutrition
- Kylie Held Mitchell – immaeatthat
- Meme Inge, rd – living well kitchen
- McKenzie Hall, rd – nourishrds
- Kara Lydon, rd – the foodie dieititan
- Kristina Larue, rd – love & zest
- Julie Harrington, rd – rdelicious kitchen
- Karman Meyer, rd – nutrition adventures
- Marisa Moore, mba rd – marisa moore nutrition
- Ann Dunaway Teh, ms rd – dunaway dietetics
- Holly Larson, ms rd – grass roots nutrition
- Jen Haugen, rd – down to earth dietitian
- Min Kwon, rd – the adventures of mj and hungryman
- Ashley Galloway, ms rd – the fresh beet
- Rachael Hartley, rd – an avocado a day
I also want to mention the very generous sponsors of Blog Brûlée. These are food companies I am proud to say I work with, and who were instrumental in making the weekend possible for us:
- Cabot Creamery
- Smugglers’ Notch
- Boyden Valley Winery
- The Soyfoods Council
- Mountain States Rosen
- Davidson’s Safest Choice Eggs
Okay, now on to the food!
In honor of my clean eating detox starting on Monday, I thought I would share some clean eating, detox-friendly recipes from a few of these great blogger gals!
McKenzie’s Raspberry Coconut Carrot Cake Muffins are gluten free, dairy free and have no added sugars. Perfect with a cup of herbal tea on a chilly detox morning.
Kristina’s Butternut Squash with Beets and Quinoa is a great option for a detox dinner or yummy lunch!
Meme’s Salmon and Avocado Burgers are a great way to whip up a satisfying dinner, along with a side green salad.
And finally Kara’s gorgeous Curry Roasted Baby Carrots, a simple and delicious side dish…and the perfect way to celebrate the flavors of fall.