DALLAS, March 29, 2017 – The American Heart Association and Fresh Avocados – Love One Today® have selected a first, second and third place winner in each of the three categories of their Take Avocado to Heart recipe contest. Each winner is taking home a monetary prize of up to $1,000 and will have their winning recipe published on the American Heart Association’s online Recipe Hub as well as promoted on social media.

For the Appetizer category, first place has been awarded to Melissa Lanes from Raleigh, NC for Velvety Avocado Pesto Dip, a creamy avocado dip with flavorful accents of basil and pine nuts!

“As a dietetic intern training to be a registered dietician, I love to cook and make healthier versions of recipes,” said Lanes.  “I recently began adding avocados to my cooking and I love them, I eat them a couple of times per week.”

The second place winner for Appetizers goes to Hidemi Wash from Centreville, VA with Avocado Ginger Lemon Vichyssoise,  a traditional French chilled soup recipe with a nice twist which includes avocado and tofu.  Selected for third place is a unique avocado appetizer recipe using jicama, the  Oaxacan Avocado Appetizer by Roxanne Chan from Albany, CA.  

The winner of the Entrée category is Amy Angelo from Pennsville, NJ for Rockfish Fajita Stuffed Tomatoes, a family friendly seafood meal!

“I like to cook using not too much salt so I use avocados as a way of adding extra flavor to my recipes,” said Angelo.

Second place winner is Emily Irvin, RD from Oxford, MS with the Avo-Fredo Zoodles, a fresh and lower carbohydrate alternative to pasta using zucchini noodles, and third place goes to Charlotte Martin, RD from Baltimore, MD with the Southwestern Avocado Bell Pepper Quiche Cups, quiche with a new twist to shake up your morning routine.

Lastly, the winner of the Desserts and Smoothies category has been awarded to Merry Graham from Newhall, CA for the fruity and delicious Zesty Avocado and Wild Blueberry Smoothie Bowl recipe.

“I love the challenge of creating healthy recipes for my family,” said Graham.  “Avocado is a fruit that is part of our diet almost every day because it’s a healthy ingredient to make great sauces.”

Second place prize goes to Julie Andrews, RD from Beaver Dam, WI with the delicious chocolaty Avocado Dark Chocolate Glazed Donuts.  Selected for third place is a delicious pudding dessert with creamy avocado, the Chocolate Avocado Chia Pudding from Doreen Brane from Broadview Heights, OH. 

“Fresh avocados are a staple in any heart-healthy diet and a great way to bring more “good,” monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats into the diet. Good fats do not raise LDL cholesterol levels and can help the body with the absorption of nutrients,” said television cooking host and American Heart Association spokesman Chef Hamlet Garcia, AHA spokesperson.

The avocado recipe contest was created in support of the American Heart Association’s Healthy For Good movement, helping to motivate, inspire and educate American consumers to live healthier lives. All finalist and winning recipes follow the American Heart Association’s nutrition criteria and can be found at www.heart.org/avocadorecipecontest.


About the American Heart Association

The American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke – the two leading causes of death in the world. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation’s oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. To learn more or to get involved, call 1-800-AHA-USA1, visit heart.org or call any of our offices around the country. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

About the Hass Avocado Board

The Hass Avocado Board (HAB) is an agriculture promotion group established in 2002 to promote the consumption of Hass Avocados in the United States. A 12-member board representing domestic producers and importers of Hass Avocados directs HAB’s promotion, research and information programs under supervision of the United States Department of Agriculture. Funding for HAB comes from Hass avocado producers and importers in the United States.

For recipes, tips and more information, visit http://www.loveonetoday.com/ or follow HAB on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and YouTube.

Accredited Media Inquiries Only:

Sandra Verduzco, American Heart Association; 214-706-1798; Sandra.verduzco@heart.org