The Many Choices in Breast Reconstruction Surgery

One aspect of a breast cancer diagnosis that requires careful consideration is choosing your reconstruction plan. Decisions about breast reconstruction can be emotional and confusing. Fortunately, you have several options from which to choose, but it’s important to know all the facts about each before you make a final decision that’s right for your body and your desired outcome.

If you choose to undergo breast reconstruction, you have the option to either have your breasts made from implants – saline or silicone – or from natural tissue flaps, which means they are made using your own skin, fat and muscle. There are pros and cons to each of these procedures.

Tissue Flap Reconstruction

Most women want to match the look and feel of their natural breasts, and there is a greater chance of successfully creating natural looking breasts by using tissue flap reconstruction. Using flaps to reconstruct your breasts will actually make them look and feel more natural compared to using silicone or saline implants. This is especially important as you age and your natural breast changes shape.

There are several types of flap procedures:

DIEP Flap: The most commonly used, DIEP flap procedure provides breast reconstruction and a tummy tuck all in one. That’s because this procedure uses your abdominal skin and tissue, but not your abdominal muscles.

PAP Flap: This flap procedure utilizes the tissues of your upper thigh to reconstruct the breast following your mastectomy.

GAP Flap: The tissue is taken from your buttock area, while the skin, fat and tiny blood vessels are removed through an incision that is hidden under your panty line.

SIEA Flap: This flap procedure is an option for the minority of women whose abdominal blood supply comes from the Superficial Inferior Epigastric Artery, which runs just below the surface of the skin.

Keep in mind that flap reconstructive surgery is a longer, more invasive procedure than having breast implant surgery. The good news is that flap reconstruction surgery hides the scars well from where your donor tissue was taken. It is also a procedure that does not need to be repeated in your lifetime, whereas silicone or saline implants may need to be replaced down the road.

Implant Reconstruction

When it comes to implant reconstructive surgery, you can choose to have the surgery at the same time as your mastectomy or at a later time. You can also choose saline or silicone implants. Saline are filled with a salt water solution. Saline implants start out deflated and are filled during surgery to the desired size. Silicone implants are pre-filled with a silicone gel.

Implant reconstructive surgery is less invasive than any of the flap surgical procedures, however they don’t provide as natural of a look as tissue flap reconstruction options.

There are other factors to consider when choosing a reconstruction option, including your current health status and whether or not you still need additional cancer treatment, such as radiation. Radiation can cause additional problems such as scarring that can cause delays in your surgery.

Discuss all of these options and their pros and cons with your surgeon to decide what’s right for you.

To learn more about natural breast reconstruction and find out if it might be the right choice for you, contact The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction at NaturalBreastReconstruction.com or toll-free at 866-374-2627.

The Pros and Cons of Primary Reconstruction Following Mastectomy

When a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer, she faces many decisions about her health and her treatment. If treatment includes a mastectomy – the surgical removal of one or both breasts to either treat breast cancer or reduce her risk of getting it – one of those decisions will be whether to follow it up with reconstructive surgery.

Reconstructive surgery is rebuilding the shape and the look of the breast. This can be done at the same time as the mastectomy, or at a later time. Whether or not to have reconstruction immediately following mastectomy (also known as primary reconstruction), is a big decision that depends on a variety of factors:

  1. Body Image

Many breast cancer patients choose reconstruction for both cosmetic and personal reasons. Reconstruction can make the chest look more balanced and enable women to feel more comfortable and confident in their clothing. Some women feel more confident looking at breasts they can call their own rather than the lack of a breast due to a mastectomy without reconstruction. Some women also feel that having breasts that look and feel like their own enhances their sexual relationship with their partner. After going through diagnosis, treatment, and mastectomy, breast reconstruction can help improve a woman’s confidence and help her feel like her normal self again.

With primary reconstruction, an additional procedure to correct any defects or improve symmetry is often necessary. Remember to communicate with your surgeon, and if your breasts don’t look and feel exactly the way you envisioned, your surgeon will be happy to work with you to help you achieve the results you desire and deserve.

  1. Avoiding Additional Surgery

Natural breast reconstruction uses tissue harvested from other parts of the body, such as the stomach, thighs or buttocks, and uses it to reconstruct the breasts (also known as autologous or flap reconstruction). Having primary reconstruction, breast reconstruction done at the same time as the mastectomy, eliminates the patient’s need for an additional major surgery and allows a woman to come out of surgery with a breast present.

However, after undergoing a mastectomy, many women opt out of reconstruction – either delayed or immediate – because they do not desire to undergo another operation or simply do not want implants. Women should know that choosing to not undergo reconstruction is always an option as well.

Reconstructive surgery that is done using the patient’s own tissue – such as the DIEP (deep inferior epigastric perforator) flap and the GAP (gluteal artery perforator) flap – typically involves a longer recovery than with implant reconstruction, and scars on both the breasts and donor site are to be expected. Be sure to consider your schedule for the two months or so following your reconstruction, as recovery following DIEP/GAP procedures is typically 6-8 weeks. If your schedule requires that you are able to resume normal activities quickly, take this into consideration before proceeding with mastectomy with primary reconstruction using the DIEP/GAP flap. 

  1. Eligibility

In addition, not all mastectomy patients are eligible for reconstructive surgery due to age, prognosis, medical history, etc.

To make the best decision for you about mastectomy and reconstruction, be sure to create a personalized plan with your doctor to ensure that the outcome you desire aligns with the best choices for your overall health. It’s also a good idea to speak with other patients who have undergone the same surgery to better understand the experience from another’s perspective.

Remember – your doctor may recommend that you do both procedures immediately (primary reconstruction), wait until later for reconstruction (secondary reconstruction), or do part of it at the time of the mastectomy and part of it after you complete chemotherapy/radiation. Do your research, weigh all your options, and then make the right decision for you.

To learn more about natural breast reconstruction and find out if it might be the right choice for you, contact The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction at NaturalBreastReconstruction.com or toll-free at 866-374-2627.

New Technology Can Help Restore Sensation After Mastectomy

According to the most recent statistics from American Cancer Society, 1 in 8 women will develop breast cancer during her lifetime. For many of these women, a mastectomy – which is the removal of most or all of the breast tissue – will be one of their primary, life-saving methods of treatment. A mastectomy, however, comes with various side effects, including loss of sensation to the breasts.

Tingling, numbness and loss of sensation to the breast area, and under the arm from the removal of lymph nodes, is one of the most unwanted side effects. This happens because the procedure severs nerves that provide sensation to the breasts, and the numbness often remains even after breast reconstruction is complete.

Regenerating Nerve Tissue
One Florida-based company dedicated to peripheral nerve repair is changing this life-altering outcome. AxoGen has taken steps to address this numbness, once thought to be a permanent side effect, with a new technology called ReSensation. They use allograft nerve tissue, or donated human peripheral nerve tissue, to regenerate feeling to the breasts.

The Way It Works
ReSensation sounds complex, but it isn’t. The breast surgeon takes donated nerve tissue and attaches it to a patient’s remaining nerve tissue in the affected area. Over time, that donated nerve becomes part of the patient’s body and helps to regenerate nerve-endings in that area. 

“With this new surgical method, we are not only able to provide patients with a more natural-looking breast, but the possibility that the breast will feel more natural to them as well,” says James E. Craigie, M.D., with The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction. “ReSensation is an exciting development in care that we hope will help bring our patients that much closer to feeling like themselves during and after treatment.” 

Patients interested in ReSensation face few limitations, and the procedure is performed during breast reconstruction. Breast implants pose one limitation in that they are artificial and do not contain nerves, therefore this procedure does not pertain to patients undergoing breast reconstruction via implants. ReSensation is best used for patient’s who choose to reconstruct the breasts using their own tissue.

Once the ReSensation procedure and breast reconstruction is complete, patients can feel confident that they took all steps possible to hopefully restore their breast sensation and therefore achieve an even more natural result. 

What Should You Do Next?
If you are a breast cancer or mastectomy patient, the next step should be to talk to your breast and plastic surgeon about reconstruction options. If you haven’t had a mastectomy yet, your breast surgeon can tell you what you should expect with surgery and recovery from the mastectomy. Your plastic surgeon can also determine if the ReSensation technology is right for you. Keep in mind that the answer is different for everyone. Your current medical conditions and breast cancer treatment plan help determine the final decision.

“We’re excited to offer this cutting-edge procedure to our patients and are committed to offering the women the best care possible,” continued Dr. Craigie. “It is our goal to make sure every patient understands her options for reconstruction and provide access to pioneering surgical treatments that could help improve her quality of life.” 

Is ReSensation right for you? Visit NaturalBreastReconstruction.com to learn more, or call toll-free at (866) 374-2627.

Flap Procedures for Natural Breast Reconstruction: Understanding Your Options

gap flapWhen a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer, she will be faced with many decisions including “Do I want breast reconstruction?” and if so, “What kind of reconstruction is best for me?” With numerous options available, it is important to evaluate each choice and decide which is best for each woman individually.

Breast reconstruction using the patient’s own tissue, also known as autologous tissue reconstruction, is becoming more and more popular for many reasons. Here, we’ll discuss two options in more detail – the deep inferior epigastric (DIEP) flap and the (gluteal artery perforator) GAP flap.

What is the DIEP Flap?

The DIEP flap procedure reconstructs the breasts using tissue from the patient’s abdomen. The tissue consists of mostly skin and fat and never includes the muscle.

What Is the GAP Flap?

The GAP flap reconstructs the breasts using tissue from the patient’s buttocks. The tissue consists of mostly skin and fat as well and never includes the muscle.

What Are the Benefits of Each One?

Women who are considering natural reconstruction often choose one of these two flap procedures according to what benefits her individual needs. The DIEP flap is popular with many patients because of its potential to provide “tummy tuck” results – a flatter appearance to the lower belly. Meanwhile, patients who elect the GAP flap might prefer the benefit of removing tissue from the buttock area instead. In either case, muscles are spared, reducing recovery time. It is important to note that both procedures can be used for unilateral cases (only one breast needing reconstruction) or bilateral cases (both breasts needing reconstruction).

What Results Should a Patient Expect?

With both the DIEP and GAP flap procedures, the result is a breast reconstructed from the patient’s own bodily tissue. For this reason, patients are often more satisfied with a natural reconstruction than with implant reconstruction. However, the recovery time can be longer than with implant reconstruction and scars on both the breast and donor site are to be expected.

How Should a Patient Choose One Procedure or the Other?

A patient should first decide if natural reconstruction surgery is a viable option for her. Some women are not ideal candidates due to vascular (blood vessel) issues, as healthy blood vessels are necessary for the flap procedure to succeed. Once the patient decides on natural reconstruction, choosing reconstruction via the DIEP or GAP procedure depends on the health of the “donor site” from where the tissue is removed.

No woman should have to choose the best procedure for her alone – it should be an ongoing discussion with her medical professionals. At the Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction, these and other issues are addressed in person within a compassionate and professional environment.

Want to know more? Call toll-free at (866) 374-2627 or visit NaturalBreastReconstruction.com.

Considering Nipple Tattoos? 4 Things Patients Should Know

nipple tattoo

When a woman is diagnosed with breast cancer and begins the journey of considering which reconstruction option is best for her, the hope for a natural looking and feeling breast is normally at the top of her list. A mastectomy may involve removing all of the breast tissue, including the nipples. Thankfully there are now many ways to restore the natural appearance of the breasts following mastectomy and reconstruction. If the original nipples must be removed, many patients with breast cancer opt to have their nipples reconstructed using their own tissue and, as part of the reconstruction, decide to get nipple tattoos.
Curious about how a nipple tattoo works and whether it might be a good option for you? Here are five important things to know.
1. A Nipple Tattoo is the Final Stage of Breast Reconstruction
Nipple tattoos are a beautiful solution to create natural-looking nipples, and most women are candidates for the tattoos. Tattooing is usually done 3-4 months after a woman’s final in-hospital surgery. This is normally when the skin has healed enough from any reconstruction surgeries. If surgical scars aren’t completely healed and mature when the tattoo is created, there is risk of the tattoo becoming distorted over time.
2. The Nipple Tattoo Is Customized to Look Real
The inks used for nipple tattooing are mixed to create the most realistic appearance possible for each patient. The tattoo artist strives to create a shade that resembles the patient’s original nipple and complements her natural skin tone. This is one of the reasons it is important to have a tattoo artist perform the procedure – there is an art to making each nipple unique to each patient.
nipple tattoo3. The Best Tattoos are Done By a Tattoo Artist
Some patients have the option to have their tattoos done within a medical setting by a medical professional; however, there is a fine art to nipple tattooing. This makes finding a tattoo artist who specializes in nipple tattooing key to achieving the best, most realistic results.
Tattoo artist Shannon Purvis Barron, owner of Indigo Rose Tattoo in Columbia, S.C., has been giving breast-cancer survivors tattoos for years, and provides her services once a month in the offices of The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction.
A lifelong artist, she shifted her focus in college from oil and canvas to ink and skin. She’s seen up close the toll breast cancer can take on women’s bodies and spirits, and believes feeling confident in their bodies is an integral part in the recovery process.
Barron, who will be in The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction office on September 27, 2018, says she can’t even count the number of scars she has covered with flowers, tree branches and feathers, or botched nipple tattoos she has fixed.
4. The Nipple Will Look Real, Thanks to 3-D Techniques
The 3-D nipple tattoo is a work of art that looks like an authentic nipple. Shading, shadows and other artistic skills make the tattoos look just like real nipples, and helps patients feel confident in their breasts once again.
Women who are interested in learning more about nipple tattoos within a medical environment can contact The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction at 1-866-374-2627 or online at NaturalBreastReconstruction.com. Call the office to request an appointment for nipple tattooing with Shannon Purvis Barron for our next available date, September 27, 2018.

Debunking 5 Misconceptions about Breast Reconstruction

“Breast cancer” are two of the scariest words for women. Adding to the pain and fear, options for breast reconstruction after a full or partial mastectomy or lumpectomy are fraught with myths and misinformation.

That’s why it’s important for women to separate the facts about breast reconstruction from the myths and mistruths, and make informed decisions that improve their health and self-image.

Here are five common misconceptions about breast reconstruction that need to be debunked.

  1. Breast Reconstruction Is Only for Complete Mastectomies

Breast reconstruction is not just for women who have had the mastectomy procedure. Because breast reconstruction has come a long way medically in recent years, more and more women are eligible, even if they have only had a lumpectomy. Of course, an individual’s health and history play a part as well, but options are more available than ever.

  1.  Breast Reconstruction Equals Artificial Implants

Good news for women who want to remain all-natural and still have reconstructed breasts: reconstruction methods nowadays offer the opportunity to obtain natural tissues from the woman’s own body, including her thigh, tummy or even rear end. Known as autologous breast reconstruction, these methods are constantly evolving through science and technology and, as a result, are becoming safer and more successful.

  1.  If I Have Chemotherapy or Radiation, I Am Not Eligible for Breast Reconstruction

Many women believe that if they opted to undergo radiation or chemotherapy as a form of breast cancer treatment (or if they plan to undergo such treatments in the future), it will render them ineligible for breast reconstruction. While it is true that certain treatments can mean limitations – again, this depends on the individual woman’s health and history – it does not mean reconstruction is impossible. Many times radiation will force a delay in reconstruction, but not prevent it altogether. This is a subject for each individual patient and her doctors to discuss.

  1.  After a Certain Age, Breast Reconstruction Is Not Possible

Even a woman who is diagnosed with breast cancer in the later years of life can still opt to seek breast reconstruction. While it is true that the body heals differently in our “golden years”, age should not be a factor when considering breast reconstruction, primarily because older women can still benefit from improved self-esteem following reconstruction. Federal law requires most insurance plans to cover breast reconstruction after mastectomy, irrespective of the age of the patient.

  1.  Breast Reconstruction Hinders Diagnosing the Return of Cancer

After successfully battling breast cancer, the idea of a recurrence is scary, but that fear should not deter women from seeking breast reconstruction. While it is true that certain factors can affect the risk of recurring cancer, breast reconstruction neither increases nor decreases the risk, according to the American Cancer Society.

To learn more about natural breast reconstruction and find out if it might be the right choice for you, contact The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction at NaturalBreastReconstruction.com or toll-free at (866) 374-2627

Making Peace with Your Body Post Breast Cancer

laughing women wearing pink for breast cance

Regardless of the severity, breast cancer takes a toll on your body.

Between chemo, radiation, and surgeries, many women struggle with their physical appearances after they’ve won their battles.

In a study published in The European Journal of Breast Health, researchers found that many of the 20 study participants who went through breast cancer treatment held a belief that breasts symbolize femininity, beauty, and motherhood.

As a result, after mastectomies, some of the participants felt that half of themselves were missing, as individuals and women.

Fortunately, there are ways to rebuild your self-esteem and body image after surviving breast cancer.

Read on to discover five tips to make peace with your body post breast cancer…

#1: Surround yourself with supportive friends and family.

Supportive family

(Source)

As the author S. Kelley Harrell writes, “we don’t heal in isolation, but in community.”

Without the support of our loved ones–whether they be friends or family–getting through rough periods in our lives may seem insurmountable.

Don’t be afraid to express your feelings of shame, self-doubt, insecurities, or beyond with those who love you and are there to support you.

Loved ones are necessary sources of warmth who will remind you of the wonderful qualities that make you who you truly are.

#2: Acknowledge that some of your body’s changes may only be temporary.

Another important point to keep in mind is that not all physical changes will be permanent.

For example, though you may gain or lose weight during treatment due to side effects of medication, you can instill changes to get back to your pre-treatment weight once your body is ready.

Of course, your body may not bounce back to “the way it used to be,” but remembering that some things will eventually return to normal is a healthy practice in positivity.

#3: Give yourself time to adjust and accept the new you.

With any physical change–even those unrelated to breast cancer–it can take time to accept and get accustomed to the change.

It’s not realistic to expect that you’ll be able to accept your new body right away.

Perhaps you used to pride yourself on certain physical characteristics that have changed considerably since you went through your breast cancer experience.

Give yourself the time to adjust your perspective on what beauty means to you.

Focus on finding new aspects of your appearance or personality that you want to emphasize or embrace–and let them shine!

#4: Eat healthy and exercise.

balanced health and diet

(Source)

Although you may be used to hearing your doctor provide the following advice, we’ll chime in here for good measure:

If you want to maintain or improve your appearance to reflect one of improved health, follow a healthy diet and incorporate exercise into your weekly routine.

Eating well and exercising will not only make you feel good from the inside out, but will also help you regain strength in your recovery process.

#5: Consider reconstructive options.

As mentioned before, for many women, breasts symbolize femininity and other values that can be hard to let go of permanently.

Thanks to the miraculous nature of modern day surgery and medicine, reconstructive options for your breasts after a mastectomy are possible.

If what you truly desire is to bring back your shape, reconstructive breast surgery is always an option.

Talk to a doctor and see what your options are. If you’re interested in seeing what our options are, check out our website here.

As a breast cancer survivor, there is a lot to be proud of.

Though physical changes to your body can be incredibly difficult to experience and acknowledge, there are ways to make peace with the changes.

Keep these five tips in mind in your journey to living life with a new normal.

Have any additional suggestions for what you do to feel beautiful in the skin you’re in? Share them in the comments below!

Breast Reconstruction: What Are My Options after an Unsuccessful Reconstructive Surgery?

Making the decision to undergo breast reconstruction surgery is a decision that is not taken lightly.

That’s why it breaks our hearts when we discover that there are women out there who are unhappy with their reconstructive results.

Over the past few months, we’ve heard from several ladies who want to know what their options are when their surgery doesn’t turn out as planned.

We thought our insight would be helpful to others who are facing the same problems as these courageous women.

Here are our answers to what your options are after an unsuccessful reconstructive surgery.

What Are My Reconstruction Options after a Failed Implant Reconstruction?

Question: Do you do reconstruction after ex-plants from a ruptured implant?

Answer: If you have had mastectomies, we will attempt to do reconstruction no matter what has happened, as long as you want it, and it’s medically safe to do so.

If your breast sustained damage from a ruptured implant placed for cosmetic reasons, we will still be happy to help you, but this might not be covered by your insurance.

I hope this helps.

See the full post here.

I’m Unhappy with My Reconstructive Result from Another Surgeon – Are You Able to Make It Look More Natural?

Question: Three years ago, I had a double mastectomy and am now cancer free.

My plastic surgeon did a terrible job with the reconstruction.

The left side implant is way off to the outer side and looks larger than the right side. The right side is way too far to the outside. There is zero cleavage.

Is there any way to reposition the implants more to the natural position of the breast?

I do not expect perfect, but don’t like looking like a botched job. Thank you.

Answer:  I’m glad to hear you have been cancer free and have your treatment for breast cancer behind you.

At The Center for Natural Breast Reconstruction, it is part of our mission to help women move on with their lives after breast cancer. We focus our efforts on helping women get their bodies back together with permanent “natural results.”

I’m sorry you are disappointed with your reconstruction.

If you have had radiation, then it may be very hard to have your breasts match with implant reconstruction. If you have not had radiation, then perhaps your implants could be revised or adjusted for an improvement.

Unfortunately, these corrections are all too often temporary. It is possible that using your own fatty tissue would be a more permanent option without implants.

Sometimes it is hard to start over with another approach, but it may be necessary if you desire a more natural and permanent result.

If you would like more information about natural breast reconstruction with your own tissue, let me know.

See the full post here.

I Have Implants But They Feel Horrible and My Reconstruction Looks Terrible. Is There Any Hope after Reconstruction?

Question:  I have implants. I do not like them, they feel horrible, and my reconstruction looks terrible.

Is there any hope after reconstruction?

Answer:  Fortunately, your previous experiences with implants in all probability do not affect our ability to get you a satisfactory reconstruction using only your own tissue.

See the full post here.

Do you have breast reconstruction questions? Send us your questions here

5 Books to Add to Your Summer Reading List

reading

Summer…

The perfect time to relax poolside (or on the beach like us in Charleston) and catch up on some reading.

Not sure what to read?

No problem–we’ve got you covered.

Check out these 5 books we recommend you add to your summer reading list.

#1 – The Woman in the Window

 

the woman in the window

If you enjoy thriller novels, A.J. Finn’s book, The Woman in the Window, is a must-read for you this summer.

This book starts out with the main character, Anna Fox, spying on her neighbors from her Harlem townhouse.

Poor Anna suffers from agoraphobia and is house-bound.

While watching her neighbor, she believes she witnesses a crime.

Was she right? If so, what was the crime and who did it?

Read the book to find out!

See if it’s in your local library or order it here.

#2 – Girl, Wash Your Face

girl wash your face

As women, we tell ourselves a lot of lies.

For instance, you might have said to yourself…

  • “I’m not good enough.
  • “I’m not thin enough.
  • “I’m not a good parent.

If you have, this honest, yet light-hearted look into the lies we tell ourselves each day is a must-read.

Join author Rachel Hollis as she gives advice on how to get rid of a limiting mindset that destroys self-confidence and keeps you from moving forward.

See if it’s in your local library or order it here.

#3 – Little Women

little women

There’s nothing quite like revisiting the treasured classic Little Women.

In this epic tale, you’ll take a journey with the author Louisa May Alcott who tells the story of what it was like for her and her three sisters to grow up in Concord, Massachusetts, in the 1860s.

All in all, the story tells of how the sisters grow up, find love, and find their place in the world.

See if it’s in your local library or order it here.

#4 – Brave New World

brave new world

Brave New World, written by Aldous Huxley, is based on a scientific empire that manufactures its citizens in the laboratory on a eugenic basis.

The story follows the fortunes of John, the illegitimate son of a senior governor, who has grown up in America, outside the new empire.

Will John be able to find a place in this new society?

Find out by reading the book!

See if it’s in your local library or order it here.

#5 – Yes Please

yes please

If you’re in need of a laugh, we highly recommend picking up a copy of Amy Poehler’s book, Yes Please.

In this book, Amy shares comical and heartwarming stories about life, her time on SNL, and being a woman in show business.

Regardless of whether you know Amy from SNL or movies, she shares many stories that any woman (in show business or not) can relate to and connect with.

See if it’s in your local library or order it here.

What are your favorite books? Let us know in the comments below!

3 Tasty and Refreshing Homemade Ice Cream Sandwich Recipes

icecream sandwiches

I scream…

You scream…

We all scream for ice cream!

Satisfy your ice cream cravings with the following tasty and refreshing homemade ice cream sandwich recipes…

S’mores Ice Cream Sandwiches

Smores icecream

Nobody should have to choose between eating a delicious bowl of ice cream or an ooey gooey s’more.

For that reason, we suggest combining the two classic summertime desserts into a s’mores ice cream sandwich.

Here’s how to make this yummy treat…

Ingredients:

  • 7 ounces miniature marshmallows (about 4 cups)
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 cups half-and-half
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon fat-free milk
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable shortening
  • 2 teaspoons light-colored corn syrup
  • 6 tablespoons powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa
  • 8 graham crackers, halved crosswise

Directions:

  1. Preheat broiler to high.
  2. Place marshmallows in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment coated with cooking spray. Broil 30 seconds or until golden brown and toasted. Cool.
  3. Combine half-and-half and granulated sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat; bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Place yolks in a medium bowl; stir with a whisk until smooth. Gradually add hot half-and-half mixture to egg yolks, stirring constantly with a whisk.
  4. Return egg mixture to pan; cook over medium heat 6 minutes or until mixture thickens slightly and reaches 160°, stirring constantly.
  5. Strain through a fine sieve into a large bowl set over a larger ice water-filled bowl. Let stand until cold, stirring occasionally. Place half-and-half mixture, marshmallows, and vanilla in a blender; process until smooth.
  6. Chill mixture 3 hours.
  7. Pour marshmallow mixture into the freezer can of an ice-cream freezer; freeze according to manufacturer’s instructions.
  8. Line an 11 x 7-inch freezer-safe dish with plastic wrap, allowing wrap to extend over ends of dish; spread ice cream in bottom of dish.
  9. Freeze 3 hours or until firm and then enjoy!

Recipe Source: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/smores-ice-cream-sandwiches-0

Fruity Pebbles Ice Cream Sandwiches

fruity pebbles icecream

We firmly believe that the two most important meals of the day are breakfast and dessert!

So, why not mix these two mealtime staples together?

Indulge your sweet tooth with this sweet, cereal-coated ice cream sandwich.

Give it a try…

Ingredients:

  • 3 tbsp. butter
  • 10 oz. bag marshmallows
  • 6 c. Fruity Pebbles cereal
  • 1 pt. vanilla ice cream

Directions:

  1. Grease a medium sheet pan.
  2. In a large saucepan over low heat, melt butter. Once completely melted, add marshmallows and stir until completely melted and smooth. Remove from heat and quickly stir in Fruity Pebbles until well coated.
  3. Using wax paper or spatula, press mixture into sheet pan until about 1/2″ thick. Let cool at least 20 minutes.
  4. Using a cookie or biscuit cutter, punch out 8 circles.
  5. Place 1 big scoop of vanilla ice cream in between two Fruity Pebble circles and press down. Repeat to make 3 more sandwiches.
  6. Freeze until ready to serve.

Recipe Source: https://www.delish.com/cooking/recipe-ideas/recipes/a47654/fruity-pebbles-ice-cream-sandwiches-recipe/

Blueberry Pie Ice Cream Sandwiches

blueberry icecream

Add fruit to your ice cream, and your dessert automatically becomes healthy, right?

We think so!

Get a full serving of antioxidant-rich blueberries when you give this delicious blueberry ice cream sandwich a try.

Here’s how it’s made…

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • 5 tbs. sugar
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 1/2 sticks cold, unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup of ice water
  • 2 cups of blueberries
  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • pinch of lemon zest
  • 1 tsp. cornstarch
  • 1 egg
  • vanilla ice cream

Directions:

  1. Sift flour, sugar and salt into the bowl of a food processor. Cube cold butter into small squares and place inside food processor.
  2. Pulse until butter is no larger than the size of a pea.
  3. Slowly stream ice water in the feeder, a few tablespoons at a time, until the dough just slightly starts to hold together. If the dough is a bit too wet, meaning it sticks to your hands when you pick it up, you can dip your hands in some flour and give it a few good kneads.
  4. Divide the dough in two, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for a couple of hours.
  5. Toss blueberries in lemon juice, zest and cornstarch and set aside.
  6. Preheat oven to 350° F and line the bottom of a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  7. Dust a surface with flour and roll out one of the dough halves until it’s very thin but not too fragile.
  8. Use a round cutter (I used a 2.5″ biscuit cutter) and cut out 20 rounds
  9. Place 10 on the baking sheet and spoon a few blueberries onto each round.
  10. Cover the blueberries with the other 10 pie crust rounds and press down the edges. I like to use the end of a chopstick, dipped in flour. If the two crusts don’t stick, you can seal them with an egg wash.
  11. Once all the pie cookies are sealed, brush with an egg wash.
  12. Bake for 15-18 minutes or until the pies are a nice golden brown.
  13. Cool on a wire rack for a few hours.
  14. Sandwich a small scoop of vanilla ice cream between two pie cookies.
  15. Serve immediately or keep covered in the freezer until ready to serve.

Recipe Source: https://honestlyyum.com/13887/blueberry-pie-ice-cream-sandwiches/

What is your favorite type of ice cream sandwich? Share with us in the comments below!