Blueberry Cacao Dream Smoothie

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I have a serious sweet tooth, so I love this dream smoothie so much. It’s so rich and delicious and skin-healthy!

Smoothies, unlike juices, are rich in natural fruit fiber, something that is removed when you juice. If your juice is any color other than green, you’re spiking your blood glucose and insulin levels, and triggering inflammation in your skin. If I’m juicing, I stick primarily to green veggies. But, when I make smoothies, I never hesitate to throw in a variety of rainbow colored fruits. So get yourself a blender and get ready to indulge that sweet tooth in a skin friendly way!

Because I’m a blueberry fanatic and because they’re rich in antioxidants, I start with those. A handful of greens—baby spinach or baby arugula work here—adds a touch of collagen-friendly vitamin C while almond butter adds protein and skin friendly fats. I add frozen bananas for the thick and creamy texture they give. If your banana isn’t quite ripe, it’s a wonderful source of prebiotic (also known as the food for gut-friendly probiotics), however it won’t be as sweet.

Cacao, chocolate’s less processed cousin, is the real treasure here. It’s derived from ground cacao nibs which are dried and fermented cacao beans. Sugar-free and loaded with special polyphenols that have been shown to reduce the signs of aging, cacao has a naturally bitter taste that is tempered by the smoothie’s other ingredients. It’s also been shown to put us in a better mood with its dopamine-releasing effects. I call that a win-win!

Before starting this smoothie, make sure you have frozen bananas on hand. They make this so deliciously creamy. Just don’t make the mistake I did the first time, so be sure to peel the bananas before you freeze them! I often freeze a bunch at once, peeling and slicing into pieces before placing in the freezer.

Further Food Nutritionist Commentary:

As long as its unsweetened, in comparison to other types of milk, almond milk is lower in calories. Almond milk is a good source of vitamin A and D and is naturally lactose free. It should be noted that almonds should be thought of as a good source of calcium, which is important for those with osteoporosis and optimum bone growth.​ Blueberries are proof that great things come in small sizes. At 80 calories per cup, blueberries are full of dietary fiber, rich in vitamin C and a great source of manganese, which is needed in the development of bones, in converting proteins, carbohydrates and fat into energy.

By Nikki Nies, MS,RD, LD

Blueberry Cacao Dream Smoothie

  • Prep Time:1 minute
  • Cook Time:n/a
  • Servings: 2

Ingredients

1 ¼ cups unsweetened almond milk
1 tablespoon cacao powder
1 small banana, frozen in chunks
½ cup fresh or frozen blueberries
1 tablespoon almond butter
1 cup loosely packed baby spinach or ½ cup loosely packed baby arugula
2 ice cubes, if using fresh blueberries

Instructions

  1. Combine everything in a blender. Blend until smooth, about 30-60 seconds. Enjoy immediately.
Combine everything in a blender. Blend until smooth, about 30-60 seconds. Enjoy immediately.

Nutrition Information

Per Serving: Calories: 158; Total Fat: 6 g; Saturated Fat: 1 g; Monounsaturated Fat: 1 g; Polyunsaturated Fat: 0 g; Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 74 mg; Potassium: 330 mg; Carbohydrate: 24 g; Fiber: 5 g; Sugar: 12 g; Protein: 4 g

Nutrition Bonus:

Vitamin C: 20%; Vitamin A: 26%; Iron: 7%; Calcium: 26%

Further Food Collagen Peptides keep you feeling fuller for longer. 

 

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4 thoughts on “Blueberry Cacao Dream Smoothie

  1. Jane Vincello

    And if you added just one scoop collagen–it would increase the protein intake, as well as be low-sugar! Thanks!

    Reply
  2. Dr. Whitney Bowe

    Great idea! I love adding collagen peptides to my smoothies. The peptides plus the almond butter will slow absorption of the carbs, so you won’t have a spike in glucose or insulin.  Enjoy! Best, Dr. Whitney

    Reply

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