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Press release from Business Wire

Betty Crocker Tips off College Basketball Excitement with the Betty Bracket: “Battle of the Beer Party Foods”

<p class='bwalignc'> <i>Mario Lopez and Betty Crocker Team Up to Create a Bracket of 16 Fan Favorite Recipes – America Votes to Determine the Top Party Food</i> </p>

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Betty Crocker Tips off College Basketball Excitement with the Betty Bracket: “Battle of the Beer Party Foods”08:11 EDT Tuesday, March 13, 2012 MINNEAPOLIS (Business Wire) -- This March, college basketball will inspire celebrations both on and off the court, and to help fans plan their get-togethers, Betty Crocker has created 16 super-snackable party food ideas for the second annual “Betty Bracket” recipe showdown, tipping off today. All 16 recipes in this year's bracket leverage one of the hottest trends in the world of food today – cooking with beer – to give a modern twist to “fan favorite” party foods like nachos, sliders, cupcakes and frozen pops. Fans will vote on the 16 recipes to determine the top party food. Betty Crocker has also tapped a special teammate – sports-loving actor and popular TV personality Mario Lopez – to create this ultimate recipe face-off between savory and sweet. Betty Crocker has teamed up with sports-loving actor and popular TV personality Mario Lopez to create an ultimate recipe showdown between savory and sweet. The 16 recipes in the second annual "Betty Bracket" leverage one of the hottest trends in the world of food today - cooking with beer - to give a modern twist to "fan favorite" party foods like nachos, sliders, cupcakes and frozen pops. (Photo: Michael Darter) “Nothing brings friends together like the fun and excitement of watching live sports,” said Mario Lopez. “And even when we're cheering for different teams, the one thing we can usually agree on is great food – it brings people together. The Betty Bracket combines the things I love most about sports – good friends and good food – and I'm excited to share these amazing party food ideas with other fans like me.” All-new for 2012, the Betty Bracket program will feature both savory and sweet ideas that leverage the trend of cooking with beer. The eight savory “Beer Meets Bar Food” recipes include “Cheesetastic” ideas like Mario's favorite Beer Queso Nachos – a delicious, meatless take on traditional nachos - and “Meaty Eats” ideas like Beer Mi Asian Meatball Subs inspired by the popularity of the Vietnamese Banh Mi sandwich. The eight sweet “Beer Meets Bakery” recipes include “Chocolate!” ideas like a Tall, Dark and Stout Chocolate Layer Cake inspired by the revival of the layer cake and “Sweet Treats” ideas like Black and Tan Beer Pops which play upon the current craze for frozen pops. Beginning today, fans will be able to vote online at www.BettyCrocker.com/bettybracket with three rounds of voting to determine the top party food. “At Betty Crocker, we're all about creating memorable connections with family and friends through food,” said Susan Klobuchar, Food Content Marketing Manager at Betty Crocker. “Our Betty Bracket took inspiration from the current trend of cooking with beer to create 16 ideas that give a unique twist to party food favorites. We are so excited to partner with Mario to share these ideas with other sports fans who are planning their basketball viewing parties this March, and we can't wait to see which idea will ultimately win the bracket!” Three rounds of voting will begin today and run through Wednesday, March 28. After each round of voting, recipes will be eliminated and the top picks will move on to the next round. The winning recipe will then be announced on March 29. All 16 recipes will remain available at www.BettyCrocker.com/bettybracket so fans can incorporate them into their party planning throughout the March basketball season. The super 16 making up this year's Betty Bracket include: Cheesetastic BracketBeer Queso Nachos – Nachos smothered with beer-spiked queso dip are sure to be a hit at any party. Mac and Beer Cheese Cups – Beer and two kinds of cheese meet in these savory mac and cheese cupcakes. Garnish with beer brats or popcorn. Buffalo Chicken Beer Bread Pizza – Spicy buffalo chicken and three kinds of cheese give a kick to a homemade beer bread pizza crust. Beer Battered Grilled Cheese Sandwiches – Melty cheese, smoky bacon and beer-battered bread make this grilled cheese the ultimate comfort food. Meaty Eats BracketBeer Mi Asian Meatball Subs – Say hello to Beer Mi, a spicy, beer-spiked meatball sub inspired by the Banh Mi, a popular Vietnamese sandwich. Double Meat Dudewich – This manly sandwich is all about extremes. Two meats – beer-soaked barbecued pork and beef smoked sausage – are piled high on an onion bun with coleslaw and pickles to top it off. It's a messy but awesome creation. Beer-B-Q Chicken Sliders – Enjoy your favorite chicken sliders – Beer-B-Q style – with hints of whiskey and beer flavor. Mole Chicken Chili – Spicy chicken chili flavored with fire roasted tomatoes, beer and a hint of chocolate. Chocolate! BracketTall, Dark and Stout Chocolate Layer Cake – Rich layers of chocolate cake, combined with stout beer and caramel, make for an extra-dreamy dessert indulgence. Dark Chocolate Stout Cream Pie – Stout beer adds big flavor in this dark and rich chocolate cream pie. Triple Chocolate Stout Whoopie Pies – Three kinds of chocolate plus a good glug of stout beer gives these fun little whoopie pies big flavor. Beer and Pretzel Chocolate Chip Cookies – Rich chocolate stout frosting and crunchy pretzels take this chocolate chip cookie to a whole new sweet and salty level. This is a cookie you don't want to miss! Sweet Treats BracketLemon Shandy Cupcakes – Like a beer and lemonade shandy? You'll love this light and refreshing shandy cupcake. Toffee Brown Ale Cheesecake Bars – Malty brown ale pairs perfectly with the rich flavors of toffee and caramel in these layered cheesecake bars. Black and Tan Beer Pops – Beer pops! We took a well-known beer drink – the black and tan – and turned it into creamy frozen pops. Over the Moon White Ale Cupcakes – Fans of Belgian white ale will be over the moon for these ale and citrus cupcakes. About Betty CrockerSince her creation in 1921, Betty Crocker has enjoyed a distinguished history as a multimedia superstar. Featured in radio, TV, print, and now online, this cultural icon has rightfully earned her reputation as the “Original First Lady of Food.” Minneapolis, Minnesota is the home of the Betty Crocker Kitchens, where a team of culinary experts develop food ideas that combine trends with consumer needs. BettyCrocker.com is one of the top websites in the food category. Betty Crocker's Facebook community has nearly 1.6 million fans who enjoy interacting with the brand, and millions have downloaded Betty Crocker's mobile app. Betty Crocker branded products garner more than $1 billion in sales annually. For more information, visit www.bettycrocker.com. Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available: http://www.businesswire.com/cgi-bin/mmg.cgi?eid=50200702&lang=en For General MillsMary Jo Exley, 952-835-1306Exley PRmj@exleyPR.comorTara Moore, 310-854-8166Rogers & Cowantmoore@rogersandcowan.com