Smoothie bowls! They’re delicious, satisfying and a nutritious twist on breakfast cereal. Smoothie bowls are great to have for breakfast, lunch or supper, as a pre or post-workout meal, or even for dessert, depending on what ingredients you use.
So, what is a smoothie bowl? The short answer is that it’s a way to enjoy a smoothie with a spoon instead of drinking it with a straw. But there’s more to it than just a change in utensils. The smoothie bowl is thicker in consistency and typically uses toppings like homemade granola and muesli to add a bit of crunch. View the smoothie bowl base as the “milk” and the toppings as the cereal.
The frozen fruits used in smoothie bowls are great for not only thickening the smoothie, but also for adding natural sweetness and creaminess. Frozen bananas in particular are a perfect foundation for a smoothie bowl.
The great thing about smoothie bowls is that you are the master of your own yummyness! The combinations you create are limited only by your imagination and whatever happens to be in your fridge and pantry. Every smoothie bowl can be a unique and exciting adventure. No more boring meals.
Here’s a list of key components you can refer to when designing your own smoothie bowl:
- 1-2 parts greens and other veggies – kale greens, spinach, romaine, celery, cucumber
- 1 part frozen fruits – bananas, apples, pears, kiwis, pineapple, peaches, mango, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, papaya, lemons, limes, grapefruit, oranges, blood oranges, figs, dates, plums, acai etc.
- 1 part protein – protein powder, hemp seeds, chia seeds, nut butters, low fat Greek yogurt etc.
- 1 part healthy fat – chia seeds, avocados, coconut oil, hemp seeds or any other nuts and seeds you have on hand
- Superfoods – bee pollen, maca powder, cocoa nibs, spirulina, chlorella, cinnamon, cayenne, young coconut meat, unsweetened shredded coconut, coconut water, avocados, chia seeds, hemp seeds, matcha tea powder, nut milks, raw gluten-free oats, etc.
- Liquid – almond or other milks, coconut water, filtered water, etc.
- Optional sweetener – if your smoothie base needs a little additional sweetness try raw honey, pure maple syrup or coconut palm sugar
- Fresh fruit of choice, granola, muesli, oats, vegan chocolate etc. to place on top of your smoothie bowl
Tip: When freezing larger fruits, peel the fruit first, slice or chop, and then store the chunks in a freezer bag for easy use.
Here’s my scoop on the smoothie bowl: I start off with a large frozen banana cut up into small pieces, 1/4 cup of frozen berries (you can add vegetables like kale or spinach if you prefer), 1/2 cup zero fat Greek yogurt (my choice is Liberté), a half scoop (15 grams) of pure, unadulterated New Zealand whey (see Do you know what’s in your whey protein?), a teaspoon of pure bee pollen and a teaspoon of pure vanilla extract.
Add in your liquid of choice (I use unsweetened, organic Eden Soy milk, which is high in amino acids) and puree the ingredients until combined. Remember, this is not a drink, you do not want the smoothie thin and the texture should be similar to a soft ice cream or thicker depending on the strength of your blender.
I then pour the base into a bowl and add up to a cup of fresh (not frozen) berries and fruit, topped off with six chopped, raw, unsalted almonds and a teaspoon of pure maple syrup. My favourite fruit mix or blend is mango. The sweetness of a mango offsets the tartness of Greek yogurt.
Remember that the ingredients you add will affect consistency, so you may need to experiment with different combinations and ratios in order to end up with your ideal smoothie bowl. If you prefer your smoothie bowls very thick, protein powders work wonderfully and add creaminess plus all the added benefits of the amino acids found in protein. Healthy fats such as avocado and nut butters are also great ways to increase the creaminess of a smoothie bowl.
The nutritional value of my smoothie bowl: The smoothie itself packs a nutritional wallop with 380 calories per serving, 12 grams of healthy fat, a mere 1.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 trans fat, 0 cholesterol, a mere 25 mg of sodium, a healthy dose of 1,220 mg potassium, 46 grams of high energy carbohydrates, twice the recommended serving of fiber at 7 grams, 24 grams of sugar from the fruit and a whopping 29 grams of muscle-popping protein. Adding the additional fruit and/or vegetables, plus the topping, only adds to the nutritional punch.
This is a high energy, high protein, nutritionally dense and delicious way to get all your nutrients in one place at one time. This will keep your tank full and your body ready to go for hours. You’ll have more horsepower than your horse!
“Achieve Peak Performance Through Optimum Nutrition!” – Ian Harris