Well, it’s officially HOT in Pittsburgh. Okay, it’s kinda warm. Like, it’s nice to be outside and I’m rocking shorts regularly. Naturally, my meals are starting to reflect the sunshine and that means smoothies. I secretly want soups and stews, but it’s all about the cold stuff, salads included. The fun part about a smoothie? You can essentially put a salad in a blender with a banana and it’s dessert-y and delicious. I’ve been having one liquid meal a day to ease spending tons of time in the kitchen on top of some serious meal prep, and it’s nice to be able to get outside more often while having healthy choices to come home to. These are the three smoothies of the week that reign supreme. Make ‘em, sip ‘em, enjoy ‘em.
Chocolate Covered Cherries & Crème
Now, now. Before you think all that red came from the cherries, don’t be fooled. This smoothie bowl packs in an entire (rather small) cucumber and a heaping cup of arugula for some serious green action. This plus a bit of almond milk – about ½ cup – is the base of every smoothie because, why not? I remembered I had a single leftover beet from steaming a bunch during my meal prep, and I thought to toss it in. It offered up a vibrant pink that matched the flowers I got from Trader Joe’s with my smoothie supplies that afternoon! What a delight. Finally, I added a bit of raw cacao powder for some antioxidant boosting power. To make this a true meal, I packed in a scoop of cookies and crème protein powder and a scoop of Greek yoghurt so this baby had nearly 40 grams of protein, perfect for after my morning workout.
Avocadonana Green Power Smoothie
Even though the other smoothie was a green smoothie in disguise, this guy wasn’t so shy. He showed his true colors with ALL THE GREEN THINGS. We started with a base of arugula and cucumber as per usual, but their green friend avocado came strolling in. This added some wonderful texture for a creamy smoothie in addition to half a banana, making it sweet. I also added in a few cherries because they are my obsession recently. I blended this up with a bit of yogurt and protein powder – this time using hemp protein – and some stevia because hemp protein is gross. I had to say it. It’s just not good. But buying protein powder is expensive, so I do what I do. Anyways, despite hemp’s weird taste, this smoothie was the bomb dot com (if people still say that). Make it! It offers up serious energy with loads of healthy fats and protein. It’s a great power breakfast that will keep you full for hours to come.
TumeriCarrot Cake Smoothie
When creating this smoothie, I had a sunrise in mind. It turned out to be a nice shade of yellow despite having tossed a cucumber in there, so I was rather pleased. The worst part about smoothies is that they might end up with a brownish hue (often brought on by berries and greens mixed together), but taste delicious. Too bad nobody will ever know. This one, though. It’s spicy with cinnamon and turmeric, blended with yogurt and protein powder for a vanilla kick. I added carrots, mango, banana and even some strawberries for a tropical flavor profile. This one is anti-inflammatory and loaded with antioxidants and beta-carotene for a strong start to my morning.
What’s your favorite smoothie recipe? I’m only now realizing that I’m missing the BEST kind of smoothie – chocolate smoothies!
Alexandra Barone (aka Alex) is a healthy living aficionado residing in the lovely city of Pittsburgh, PA. She writes about all things real food with a focus on the paleo diet. When she’s not throwing it down in the kitchen, you can find her swinging kettlebells at Primal Fitness Pittsburgh, running through Frick Park, or walking dogs around the city. Please feel free to email her with any questions regarding Primal Fitness Pittsburgh at firstname.lastname@example.org