Hair Health: 7 Summertime Recipes by Sunny Anderson

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Summer is officially in full swing! Celebrate the season of fun in the sun with some of my favorite recipes by Food Network’s Cooking for Real host, Sunny Anderson!

1. Sunny Anderson’s Cajun Baked Shrimp and Grits


(Serves 4-6)

Compound Butter and Shrimp:

  • 1 stick salted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon seafood seasoning, such as Old Bay
  • 2 scallions (white and green parts), finely chopped
  • 1 large clove garlic, grated on a rasp
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 pounds frozen shelled and deveined jumbo shrimp, defrosted and roughly chopped


  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • Kosher salt and coarsely ground black pepper
  • 3/4 cup quick grits
  • 1 cup shredded smoked Gouda
  • Lemon wedges, for serving

For the compound butter and shrimp. In a medium bowl, add the butter, seafood seasoning, scallions, garlic and lemon zest and mash together until combined. Scrape the mixture into plastic wrap and make into a log, or cover it in the bowl. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Divide the shrimp into 2 foil packets, top each with 2 thick slices of the compound butter, fold up and bake for 8 to 10 minutes.

For the grits. In a large pot on medium-high heat, add the heavy cream, a pinch of salt, a few grinds of black pepper and 2 cups water. Bring to a gentle boil, then add the grits and cook, stirring, until thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the cheese.

Serve the grits in a bowl topped with a tablespoon or so of the compound butter and the shrimp. Serve with lemon wedges for squeezing.


For more on this Recipe: Sunny Anderson’s Cajun Baked Shrimp and Grits
Recipe courtesy of Sunny Anderson and


2. Sunny Anderson’s Bacon Burger Dogs

Source: / Photo Credit: Steve Grialt

(Serves 4)

  • 4 fresh pork bratwursts
  • 2 12 -ounce bottles lager beer
  • 1/2 pound ground beef chuck
  • 1/2 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 16 slices center-cut bacon
  • 4 hot dog buns, split
  • Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
  • 1/2 sweet onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese (about 4 ounces)

Put the bratwursts in a medium pot in a single layer. Pour in the beer, then add enough water to cover the bratwursts by 1 inch, if necessary. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium low. Simmer until the bratwursts are cooked through, 12 to 14 minutes. Remove to a plate and allow to cool completely.

Meanwhile, combine the ground beef, Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of pepper in a medium bowl. Gently mix with your hands and divide into 4 equal portions.

Lay out a piece of plastic wrap. Arrange 4 bacon slices side by side on the plastic to form a rectangle, overlapping them slightly. Position the bacon rectangle with a short end in front of you. Press a portion of the beef over the half of the bacon rectangle closest to you. Place a bratwurst horizontally on top of the beef. Using the plastic wrap to help, tightly roll the bacon and beef around the bratwurst away from you; remove the plastic wrap. Secure the bacon with kitchen twine in 3 or 4 spots. Repeat to wrap the remaining bratwursts.

Place the bacon-wrapped bratwursts seam-side down in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Cook, turning, until the bacon is crisp and the beef is cooked through, about 10 minutes. Remove to a plate, tent with foil and let rest 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the broiler. Drizzle the insides of the buns with olive oil. Place on a baking sheet and broil until golden brown, about 1 minute. Use scissors to remove the twine from the bratwursts. Place on the buns and top with the chopped onion and cheese.


For more on this Recipe: Sunny Anderson’s Bacon Burger Dogs
Recipe courtesy of Sunny Anderson, Food Network Magazine, and


3. Sunny Anderson’s Quick Tomato Salad



(Serves 4)

  • 2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves stripped and lightly chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pint heirloom cherry tomatoes, halved lengthwise

In a large bowl, add the vinegar, oil, thyme, a pinch of salt and a grind or 2 of black pepper. Whisk until the salt is dissolved. Taste and adjust salt, if needed. Add the tomatoes and toss until coated. Let sit at room temperature for 5 minutes before serving.


For more on this Recipe: Sunny Anderson’s Quick Tomato Salad
Recipe courtesy of Sunny Anderson and


4. Sunny Anderson’s Root Beer BBQ Chicken Wings



(Makes 12 Wings)


  • 2 cups root beer
  • 2/3 cup ketchup
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 cloves garlic, grated on a rasp (not minced)
  • One 2-inch piece fresh ginger, cut into 1/4-inch discs
  • 1 ghost pepper or habanero pepper, pierced with the tip of a knife


  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 chicken wings, tips intact and not trimmed
  • Peanut or vegetable oil, to fry
  • 2 lime wedges, for garnish
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons black sesame seeds, for garnish

Special equipment: a deep-fry thermometer

For the glaze: In a pot on medium-high heat, add the root beer, ketchup, sugar, lime juice, garlic and ginger. Whisk together until the mixture begins to boil and the ketchup and sugar are dissolved into the root beer. Lower to a simmer and when it begins to reduce in volume and thicken, turn off the heat and add the pepper. Allow to steep in the residual heat for 10 minutes, then discard the pepper and stir the glaze.

For the wings: In a large paper bag, add the flour, cornstarch, a nice pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Crimp it shut and gently toss it to mix the contents. In batches, add a few wings and toss them from side to side to fully coat. Remove to a wire rack and allow to rest until the flour soaks into the skin, about 15 minutes. Repeat the process for 2 dry coats. After the second resting period, the wings are ready to fry.

In a deep fryer or deep heavy pot, add enough oil to fill to about 4 inches. Heat the oil until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350 degrees F. Add the wings in batches to keep the temperature and fry each batch 12 minutes. Remove the wings to a paper towel-lined plate and sprinkle immediately with a pinch of salt.

In batches, add a bit of the glaze to a large bowl and a few wings, then toss them to coat. Remove the wings to a platter, top with a spritz of lime and a sprinkle of sesame seeds and serve.


For more on this Recipe: Sunny Anderson’s Root Beer BBQ Chicken Wings
Recipe courtesy of Sunny Anderson and


5. Sunny Anderson’s Kiwi Snow Kone


(Serves 4)

  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 3 kiwis, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 8 cups ice

Bring sugar and water to a boil in a small saucepot over medium-high heat. Cook until sugar is dissolved and liquid is slightly reduced, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and cool. Transfer to a blender, add the kiwi and puree until smooth. Pour into a pitcher and stir in lime juice. Keep cool. Finely shave ice in a food processor and divide among 4 cups. Pour kiwi mixture over ice and serve immediately.


For more on this Recipe: Sunny Anderson’s Kiwi Snow Kone
Recipe courtesy of Sunny Anderson (2009) and


6. Sunny Anderson’s Beer Punch


(Serves 4)

  • 4 strawberries, chopped
  • 1/4 cup blueberries
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons grenadine
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 (12-ounce) bottles beer, cold (recommended: Corona or a pilsner)

In a bowl add the strawberries, blueberries, sugar, grenadine, and lime juice. Stir to dissolve as much sugar as possible. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, stirring a couple of times to agitate and help create juices.

When ready to serve, divide the mixture among 4 low ball glasses. Pour 6 ounces beer into each glass and give a gentle stir. Drink!


For more on this Recipe: Sunny Anderson’s Beer Punch
Recipe courtesy of Sunny Anderson (2010) and


7. Sunny Anderson’s Blackberry Gin Fizz Float


(Serves 4)

  • 1 pint blackberries
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1/2 cup roughly chopped mint leaves
  • 8 ounces gin
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • Ice, for serving
  • 24 ounces ginger ale
  • 1 pint blackberry sorbet or vanilla ice cream

Heat the blackberries, sugar, and water in a small pot over medium-high heat. While warming, smash with a potato masher, until a thick even consistency is reached, about 8 minutes.

Pour the blackberries through a sieve, into a bowl, pushing some flesh through with the juices, making sure to catch the seeds. Cool in the refrigerator for at least 10 minutes.

Fill a cocktail shaker with 2 tablespoons of blackberry puree, 2 tablespoons of the mint leaves, 2 ounces of gin, 1 tablespoon lime juice, and a handful of ice. Shake vigorously 5 to 6 times until the drink is ice cold. Strain the mixture into a tall glass. Top with 6 ounces of ginger ale and stir lightly. Repeat for the remaining 3 servings. Finish and serve with a scoop of sorbet or ice cream.


For more on this Recipe: Sunny Anderson’s Blackberry Gin Fizz Float
Recipe courtesy of Sunny Anderson and


Bon Apétitt Curly Queens!


Sources: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7
All images sourced via Pinterest