Cool off with this refreshing, creamy smoothie. It’s packed with colorful foods that combine into a gorgeous purple and a powerhouse bowl.
I double dog dare you to walk outside in Maryland humidity and not immediately crave a smoothie to cool off. If you come back inside as anything other than a visibly melting pool of sweat, then please, teach me your ways.
Until then, I’ll be over here, just better acquainting myself with my blender. We’ve already moved in together, so you know it’s serious. It’s sleek, sharp been with me for over a year now, and holds the spot for number one kitchen appliance in my lil’ foodie heart. Once it’s turned on, this Ninja works some serious smoothie magic. There are mornings when I bring it into my bedroom to use if my roommates are still asleep. Is that too much? I think I’m in love.
You’re probably chomping at the bit to get that blender action going by now, especially since I already made you go outside and get all sweaty. Your brain is projecting images of gorgeous acai bowls and glasses full of cold, multicolored layers, causing your mouth to water in anticipation.
Before you grab all the ingredients, think about what you’re reaching for already– a heaping cup of blueberries, a large handful of strawberries, two dates, and that overly ripe banana. When everything is blended, we literally lose sight of how many servings of fruit are being poured into one glass. It’s easy to tell ourselves that it’s normal, since it all fits in the cup, and it’s fruit, so it’s got to be healthy, right?
Ummm, not exactly.
Our bodies can only handle so much sugar at a time. Carbs are broken down into glucose in the bloodstream, providing fuel for us to burn. Blood sugar spikes cause myriad problems, not the least of which is Type 2 diabetes, when your pancreas can’t produce insulin. Fruit contains another type of sugar, fructose, which is actually metabolized in the liver. Despite the fact that fructose isn’t contributing to raised blood sugar levels, too much still poses a problem. The liver takes all that extra sugar and turns it into fat and stored in cells.
Not only can too much fruit lead to excess visceral fat, but many people suffer from fructose malabsorption, a condition where the cells in the small intestine designated for handling fructose don’t function correctly. Having a lot of fruit or other high-fructose foods makes people feel gassy, bloated, or even get diarrhea. Definitely not what you want to happen after having a smoothie.
It’s easy to combat these scenarios. Rather than a fruit-laden smoothie, use frozen vegetables to bulk up your drink. Friends make comments to me about this all the time, regardless how often they’ve seen my smoothie recipes, but I’m telling you, you can’t taste the greens!
While I started experimenting with spinach and kale towards the end of high school, it wasn’t until I got my Ninja that anything else entered the scene. Now, though, I won’t make a smoothie without including frozen cauliflower. In fact, cauliflower contains even more of the nutrients that fruit provides, making it a no-brainer in smoothies. (Want other ways to use cauliflower? Check here and here.)
Paired with blueberries and pineapple, you won’t notice the cauliflower, but will most certainly appreciate how thick your smoothie is compared to your pre-cauliflower-smoothie days. Also, these make a killer combination of nutrients. You’ll be getting a brain boost from the blueberries and cauliflower, as well as betacarotene, fiber, antioxidants, and digestive support from all three.
You’re still dripping all over the floor, though, so let’s hit pause on the lesson and start blending instead. Happy smoothie spooning!
If you try this recipe, I’d love your feedback. Leave a comment, save it on Pinterest, or tag #lensesandlentils on Instagram to share!
- 1 cup frozen cauliflower rice
- ½ cup frozen pineapple chunks
- ½ cup frozen blueberries
- ½ cup baby spinach
- ⅓ cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 scoop Vital Proteins collagen peptides (optional)
- 1 tbsp almond butter
- 1 tsp frozen ginger
- 1 tsp chia seeds
- TOPPINGS: chia seeds, frozen blueberries, almond butter, unsweetened coconut flakes
- Place all ingredients in a blender.
- Blend on high, scraping down sides as needed, until fully combined. This took me about 3 minutes.
- Pour into bowl and add toppings.