Can I use dried blueberries in place of fresh/frozen in recipes such as blueberry boy bait, muffins, crumb bars, etc.? I bought a huge bag, thought I would add them to granola but I don't like this particular brand after all and need a way to use it up!



nosebear January 6, 2011
Thanks so much for all of the info! I did end up trying it with some cereal and it wasn't as bad as just eating them plain. But I will be experimenting with reconstituting them, and some of the other suggestions above.
RobertaJ January 6, 2011
For applications like the bread posted above, scones, energy bars, trail mixes, granolas, etc., the dried should work fine. For scones I might reconstitute them in a bit of water, and then drain them well, but even straight from the bag, I'd think they'd be OK. For muffins, not so much because the texture of the finished product is so much more tender than the others. Even rehydrating the dried fruits would still yield, I think, a hard, chewy nugget in your soft, tender muffin.

I'd bet you could cook the dried berries down in a simple syrup (1 to 1 sugar to water), and make a sauce out of them for pouring over ice cream, pound cake, etc.
betteirene January 5, 2011
I've been using this recipe ever since I heard about it through the grapevine from the California Raisins, which would be, what 25 years or so? I've made this with every dried fruit imaginable--it works with them all, including blueberries. I've also substituted different liquids for the milk--apple juice works well. I make a version of this recipe about once a month, slice the bread and freeze it. This way, I can pull out only what I need.

The recipe directs you to place the dough in a deep, greased bowl: I mix it in the biggest bowl I own, and once I'm sure that I've scraped down the sides and every particle of flour is mixed in, I cover the mixing bowl with plastic wrap and let it rise. Why dirty two bowls when one will do?

Raisin Bread
1-1/2 c. milk
1/2 c. butter or margarine
1/2 c. sugar
2 tsp. salt
3 c. California raisins or other dried fruit, chopped if large
2 pkg. active dry yeast
1 c. warm water (110°F to 115°F)
2 eggs, beaten
7 to 7 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 c. California raisins

Heat milk to scalding; add butter, sugar and salt. Add dried fruit. Cool to lukewarm. Dissolve yeast in warm water; add to the lukewarm milk mixture. Stir in eggs. By hand, gradually beat in 5 cups flour. Work in remaining flour to make a medium-firm dough. Place in deep, greased bowl, turning to grease top. Cover; let rise in warm place until double in bulk, about 1-1/2 to 2 hours. Punch down dough. Turn dough out onto flour surface; knead slightly. Form into three loaves and place in well-greased 8 x 4-inch loaf pans. Cover; let rise in warm place until doubled, about 1 hour. Bake in bottom third of oven at 375°F for 30 to 35 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from pans; brush tops with butter and cover with cloth. Cool on wire rack.

But now you've given me inspiration for this month's version: blueberries and buttermilk go so well together in pancakes, why not in bread? Maybe a quick bread instead of a yeasty one. Thanks, you all.
Ophelia January 5, 2011
I would stick to things where the fruit isn't the main flavour, as a substitution for raisins in cookies maybe or an addition to braised meat rather than in a blueberry coffeecake. Although if they already aren't terribly good (from the question I surmise you like dried blueberries, but these ones don't taste right? or aren't the right texture?) you might end up with unpleasant results no matter how good the recipe might be if it were made with higher quality product. In which case I would feed them to the birds.
OnBlank January 5, 2011
I've had good luck with dried blueberries in weeknight waffles before. I'd venture as long as what you're making has a wet batter your finished product will be nice. It won't be exactly the same as using fresh or frozen, but it's better than throwing away the whole bag.
hardlikearmour January 5, 2011
I'd also think about doing a combo of frozen and dried in a pie or cobbler, or maybe adding some plumped dried blueberries to a fruit crisp. Maybe use in place of raisins in oatmeal cookies. Or in place of dried cherries in Amanda's hot toddy recipe.
nutcakes January 5, 2011
I wouldn't substitute dried cranberries for fresh so I just can't see it in blueberries either. Maybe the hydrating trick would work, but I'd look for recipes that use raisins and dried cranberries and sub in the blueberries. When I do blueberry or cranberry coffee cakes and bars, I'm looking for a wet bursted berry layer.
Verdigris January 5, 2011
Yes you could. For things like Muffins I would rehydrate them a while in a bit of hot water.
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