What Are Recommended Apricot Recipes?

Juicy, delicious apricots are full of beta-carotene and fiber. One of the first signs of summer, this happy orange fruit is a fabulous addition to the balanced diet of a breast-pumping mama.

The University of Wisconsin’s School of Health and Public Medicine recommends apricots as a natural galactagogue (promotes or increases milk flow). Apricots (especially dried apricots) contain phytoestrogens, which help to balance the hormones involved in lactation.

apricot recipe for breastfeeding
But wait. If you’ve been following our blog closely, you’re likely confused. The last post included apricots on a list of foods that may cause dehydration and should be avoided for breast-pumping mamas. So what’s the real deal with apricots?

Balance is the key.

In addition to the nutritional assets already mentioned, apricots are a healthy addition to your diet. They are high in Vitamin A, C, potassium and calcium. Calcium-rich dried fruits (like figs, dates, and apricots) are thought to help with milk production.

However, portion sizes—especially for dried fruits—need to be controlled. Read the packaging information for specific products in order to avoid consuming too much fiber, which could potentially lead to diarrhea and dehydration, or an imbalanced and body-taxing amount of sugar and calories.

Here are a few recipes: one highlighting dried apricots (available year-round) and one highlighting fresh apricots in anticipation of the soon-approaching summer harvest. (Apricots are in season in North America from May – August.)

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Quinoa Salad with Dried Apricots and Spinach
Source: The Eating Well Healthy in a Hurry Cookbook (2006)
Yields: 4 One-Cup Servings

Ingredients:

Moroccan-Spiced Lemon Dressing

• 1/4 cup lemon juice
• 2 tablespoons nonfat plain yogurt
• 1 1/2 teaspoons honey
• 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
• 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
• 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
• 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• 1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
• Freshly ground pepper to taste

Salad

• 1 cup quinoa
• 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
• 2 cloves garlic, minced
• 1/2 cup dried apricots, coarsely chopped
• 2 cups water
• 1/4 teaspoon salt
• 2/3 Moroccan-Spiced Lemon Dressing, divided
• 1 cup cherry tomatoes or grape tomatoes, halved
• 1 small red onion, chopped
• 8 cups baby spinach
• 1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted

Instructions: 

To prepare dressing:
Whisk lemon juice, yogurt, honey, cumin, cinnamon and ginger in a small bowl until blended.
Slowly whisk in 1/4 cup oil so the dressing becomes smooth and emulsified.
Season with salt and pepper.

To prepare salad: 
Toast quinoa in a dry skillet over medium heat, stirring often, until it becomes aromatic and begins to crackle, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a fine sieve and rinse thoroughly.
Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until golden, about 1 minute. 
Add apricots and the quinoa; continue cooking, stirring often, until the quinoa has dried out and turned light golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Add water and salt; bring to a boil. 
Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, until the quinoa is tender and the liquid is absorbed, 15 to 18 minutes.
Transfer the quinoa to a medium bowl and toss with 1/3 cup of the dressing. Let cool for 10 minutes.
Just before serving, add tomatoes and onion to the quinoa; toss to coat. 
Toss spinach with the remaining 1/3 cup dressing in a large bowl. Divide the spinach among 4 plates. 
Mound the quinoa salad on the spinach and sprinkle with almonds.

Broiled Apricots with Fresh Ricotta and Pistachios
Source: Martha Stewart Living, May 2013
Yields: 8 Servings
Ingredients:

    1 tablespoon sugar
    4 apricots, halved and pitted
    8 teaspoons fresh ricotta cheese
    2 tablespoons chopped pistachios

Instructions: 

¥ Preheat broiler.
¥ Place sugar in a small saucer. Dip cut side of apricots in sugar to coat and
transfer to a small broiler-safe baking dish.
¥ Broil, rotating once, until apricots are caramelized and juicy, 3 to 4 minutes.
¥ Remove apricots from oven and let cool slightly.
¥ Top with ricotta and pistachios and serve immediately.

*Note: This information was compiled by our resident Moms in the Know and is not informed by medical or legal experts. It is strongly suggested all dietary plans with your physician and/or lactation consultant.