It’s summer time, which ultimately means it’s the best time of year to get the sweetest and juiciest berries. With antioxidants that will keep your body feeling and looking good, berries are the perfect summer snack you’ve been waiting for.

Rather than just popping them straight from the container–which we are all guilty of doing–branch out and try a few of these ideas to make the best of this seasonal favorite.

1. Berry Iced Green Tea


Photo by Rebeka Alvarez-Heck

Kick your tea up a notch by adding a handful of berries that have been tossed in a few packets of Splenda (this helps break down the fruit). Pour the berries into green tea, let it sit for an hour or so to infuse the flavor, and voila, you now have your own economically friendly version of the Starbucks’ Very Berry Hibiscus Refresher.

2. Berry Smoothies


Photo by Rachel Piorko

Whether you have ’em for breakfast, lunch, or a snack, smoothies are a summer necessity. Throw in your favorite berries to your usual smoothie and enjoy a refreshing and healthy treat.

3. Macerated Berries


Photo by Alia Wilhelm

Already sweet berries combined with more sugar–yum. All you have to do is mix the produce with Splenda to make this killer berry topping.

Impress your friends (or just yourself) by topping your favorite pancakes, waffles, ice cream sundaes, cheesecakes, or anything else you can think of with this sweet treat. Get creative.

4. Salads and Salad Dressing


Photo by Scott Harrington

With summer comes lots and lots of salad, and we all know that can get old pretty quickly. Don’t be afraid to switch up your salad by adding some berries on top of your plate of veggies.

If you’re feeling even more adventurous, you can dress your salad with a variety of berry infused dressings found at your local supermarket.

5. Granola


Photo by Maggie Gorman

Granola is a fast and healthy option for those of us who continuously run late to work or class this summer. Simply put some berries in your granola for added texture and a hint of sweetness.

6. Sangria Slushy and Mixed Drinks


Photo by Kelly Logan

With these fruit filled drinks, getting drunk this summer doesn’t have to be a total buzz kill for your waist line. Add some berries, ice and wine to a blender to create this awesome sangria slushy.

If you want something a little boozier, use straight vodka and shake in the berries for a homemade fruit cocktail. Drinking can be healthy, right?

7. Marinade


Photo by Devon Carlson

Summer is synonymous with grilling. Rather than just using barbecue sauce for your chicken or salt and pepper for your fish, step it up by adding a balsamic marinade that has your fresh berries (strawberries and balsamic work well together) soaking in it. Nom.

Check these out for some more summer tricks: