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Issue 002

Each week we bring you news, trends and ideas to inspire you. When it comes to your food blogging, we want to help you be your very best!

We’ve got a lot of interesting stuff to dish out today, so let’s get started...

TRENDS IN FOOD AND BLOGGING

    Functional Food

Last week we brought you information about Caulifloodles and pumpkin-flavored Spam. This week we’ll discuss “functional food.”

A recent study revealed that 37% of consumers want their food to be functional. That is, to provide them health benefits.

Nobody wants to eat food that will make them fat, of course. But functional food is a step beyond slimming. It is meant to improve one’s health.

Let’s look at some examples. Here are some trending ingredients – and the health benefits believed to be associated with them...

(This report was put out by Tastewise which advises the restaurant industry. It has obvious implications for food bloggers, too.)

Sweet potatoes, considered good for brain health. Fries courtesy of Ella Olsson

For brain health, sweet potatoes and sauerkraut are currently at the top of the conversation.

To help with sleep, asparagus is believed to be helpful. (Along with “golden milk” and “moon milk,” two items we were not familiar with. But on this one, apparently we are late to the party.)

Weight loss is always on people’s minds. Trending foods in this category include cranberries and provolone. Maple syrup is getting buzz as a healthy option among sweeteners (Tastewise reports that maple syrup is up 88% on menus and social media from last year.)

Gut health (wouldn’t that be a good name for a rock group?) can be helped with watermelon, peppermint, and leafy greens.

Kiwi, considered good for skin health, via Ashish Vyas

Skincare mentions on social media relating to food are up 44% in the last year. For healthier skin, people are consuming kiwi, goji berries and avocado.

The report also lists foods meant to help with topics such as brain health, stress relief, energy, immune system, depression among others.

Obviously in coming months people are going to be looking for recipes that use these ingredients. That’s something to keep in mind when you’re casting around for ideas.

Probably don’t just use all the ingredients in the same recipe. A sauerkraut-kiwi-anything is just not going to be well received!

    TL;DR

Have you seen this abbreviation floating around the internet lately? It’s been around for a while.

Your readers generally love what you have to say. Sometimes, though, like everybody else in the world, they are busy.

That’s where TL;DR comes in. It stands for TOO LONG; DIDN’T READ.

Authors frequently nutshell their articles or posts in the TL;DR, so that readers can get the main points without committing to a long read.

Idea / How you can use this. You could add a TL;DR at the top of your recipes. A ‘jump to recipe’ link could appear right below it.

Your TL;DR could be a bulleted list of topline thoughts, like this:


TL;DR

• I got this recipe from my grandmother, Sonya. For years, she (lovingly?) resisted my request for it.


• This recipe contains no weird ingredients, no chilling, etc. It is just straightforward – and delicious!


• I think these cookies may have inspired my now-husband to propose to me five days after I first made them for him. (Full story below!)

A further idea would be to have your TL;DR entice readers to actually read the full post. You can tease the most intriguing and interesting aspects of what you are sharing. After all, it is nice when people stick around and are engaged by what you are sharing!

IDEAS FROM TOP FOOD BLOGS

Footer Photos

Check out Cookies & Cups for an example. Its bottom-of-page photos are large and beautiful. Clicking any image there takes you to the recipe in question, of course – it’s very easy to use. (And by the way, the Texas Sheet Cake Cookies at Cookies & Cups are also super creative. Must try these next cheat day. Make a note. Wait – are we starting to talk to ourselves here??)

Kirbie Cravings also has a great-looking row of photos at the bottom of its pages. These images definitely caused us to explore more of Kirbie’s recipes. That’s the good news. The bad news is that one of the photos there – for Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Mug Cake – has caused that recipe to be calling out to us all week. Constantly calling! It looks delicious.

footer from a page at cookinglsl.com

Cooking LSL also has a stripe of clickable photos at the bottom of its pages. (And Mira’s Pumpkin Magic Custard Cake Recipe does indeed look like something that would get Dumbledoore drooling.)

One more cool thing to point out to you . . .

footer from a page at cookinglsl.com

The Girl Who Ate Everything has a great looking slider of images not at the bottom of her page, but right under the header. Yes, other food blogs do similar things, but we were impressed with how high up on the page the Girl Who Ate Everything has got her photos. The images and slider grab interest right off the bat, we’d say (and they get mouths watering, too!)

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COMING NEXT WEEK

We're already hard at work on next week's batch of food blogging goodness. Here are a few stories to watch for...

✓   Three free tools to make your writing sound even better and smarter

✓   A spice that's trending up – and one that is clearly slumping

✓   Encouragment for you to give away free stuff to your blog subscribers

✓   Ideas, analysis and just a digital cavalcade of fun

Nothing above is sponsored content. All the opinions are our own. Thank you for being here!

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