Category Archives: Smoothies

Breakfast Smoothies

Protein Acai Bowl Recipe and a $100 Naked Nutrition Giveaway!

Thank you Naked Nutrition for sponsoring this post. Make sure to read all the way to the bottom to learn how to enter this awesome giveaway!

I am on a major acai kick right now! Acai bowls are nothing new, and they’ve been incredibly popular here in LA for the last 5 years or so. I’ve had them at juice shops around here, but I usually find them to be way too sweet, and I never felt like I was truly eating something that healthy. It wasn’t until recently, per the great recommendation of my friend Kelly, that I started buying frozen acai from Whole Foods and making my own Protein Acai Bowls at home.

Protein-Packed Acai Bowl with Blueberries and Spinach! This recipe is gluten-free, vegan, and refined sugar-free! Plus, you can make it in under 5 minutes! // www.littlechefbigappetite.com

So, you might wondering, what the heck is acai anyway? You can think of it as a cross between a blueberry and a grape, and they grow on skinny palm trees in South America. Acai is so popular to eat because it’s very high in antioxidants (which keep us healthy and prevent illness), while being extremely low in sugar.

Protein-Packed Acai Bowl with Blueberries and Spinach! This recipe is gluten-free, vegan, and refined sugar-free! Plus, you can make it in under 5 minutes! // www.littlechefbigappetite.com

You can find acai packets in the frozen section of your grocery store. Make sure to check the ingredients, though, because some contain added sugar. I really like these organic smoothie pouches from Acai Roots and they contain 0g of sugar.

Protein-Packed Acai Bowl with Blueberries and Spinach! This recipe is gluten-free, vegan, and refined sugar-free! Plus, you can make it in under 5 minutes! // www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I love adding Naked Nutrition’s Pea Protein Powder to my acai bowls. Their products are called “naked” for a reason. There are no added colors, sweeteners, or anything artificial in their protein powders. In fact, the only ingredient in the pea protein powder is pea protein.  I add just one tablespoon of it to my acai bowl, and that contains 6-7 grams of pure protein. Because their protein powders are unsweetened (and unflavored), I always mix it with natural sweeteners like frozen bananas and dates.

Protein-Packed Acai Bowl with Blueberries and Spinach! This recipe is gluten-free, vegan, and refined sugar-free! Plus, you can make it in under 5 minutes! // www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I’ve been looking for a good non-dairy protein powder for a long time because I can’t digest whey or casein, but most vegan protein powders I’ve tried tasted so earthy. When you blend this Naked Nutrition Pea Protein with the right ingredients in a high-speed blender, you’d barely know it’s there. You guys know I’m all about eating natural, whole foods, and this protein powder fits the bill.

Protein-Packed Acai Bowl with Blueberries and Spinach! This recipe is gluten-free, vegan, and refined sugar-free! Plus, you can make it in under 5 minutes! // www.littlechefbigappetite.com

If you’re interested in trying a Naked Nutrition product, you can use the code LILCHEF for 10% off your order

Plus, Naked Nutrition is giving away a $100 credit to one lucky reader! To enter, leave a comment on this post letting me know your favorite way to use protein powder. I will randomly select one winner on Thursday, June 8th at 5PM ET. Good luck!

 

Protein Acai Bowl Recipe
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Serves: 1 serving
Ingredients
  • 1 packet frozen acai
  • ¾ cup almond milk
  • ⅔ cup frozen banana chunks (about ¾ of a banana)
  • ½ cup fresh spinach
  • ¼ cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 Tablespoon (1/2 scoop) Naked Nutrition Pea Protein
  • Granola and nut butter of your choice for topping
Instructions
  1. Run the frozen acai packet under hot water for 10 seconds. Cut the packet open and break the frozen acai into chunks.
  2. In a high speed blender, combine the acai pieces, almond milk, frozen banana, spinach, frozen blueberries, and protein powder. Blend for 1 minute, scraping down the sides and adding additional almond milk as needed. The consistency should be smooth, like a very thick smoothie.
  3. Pour into a bowl and top with your favorite granola and nut butter.
 

Protein Acai Bowl with Blueberries and Spinach! This recipe is gluten-free, vegan, and refined sugar-free! Plus, you can make it in under 5 minutes! // www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Breakfast Gluten-Free Smoothies Snacks Vegan

Gingerbread Smoothie

The holiday season turns me into a cookie monster! Everywhere I turn there are cookies and sweet treats: our office, holiday parties, ahhh! Give me aaaaall the cookies.

Gingerbread Smoothie Recipe - Vegan and Gluten-Free

But seriously, I have little self control around dessert, so I make an effort not to keep any in the house during the holidays because there are enough temptations elsewhere.

That means, when I have a sugar craving or need something sweet after a meal, I have to get creative. That’s why I LOVE this Gingerbread Smoothie! It’s deliciously creamy and it has the same flavor profile of your favorite gingerbread cookie recipe.

Gingerbread Smoothie Recipe - Vegan and Gluten-Free

The Almond Breeze Almondmilk Cashewmilk blend makes this smoothie a bit creamier than using regular almond milk (however, I am sure that would work fine, as well).

I also added a couple tablespoons of plain greek yogurt for added protein and creaminess, but that’s totally optional.

Gingerbread Smoothie Recipe - Vegan and Gluten-Free

Now don’t skimp on the molasses and spices here – that’s what makes it taste like gingerbread.

Enjoy this smoothie for breakfast, as a mid-day snack, or whenever a sweet craving strikes. Happy Holidays!

 

Gingerbread Smoothie
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Serves: 1 Large or 2 Small
Ingredients
  • 1 cup Almond Breeze Almondmilk Cashewmilk Blend
  • ½ frozen banana
  • 3 large ice cubes
  • 2 Tablespoons plain greek yogurt (optional for additional protein)
  • 1 Tablespoon molasses
  • Dash each cinnamon, ground ginger, nutmeg, to taste
Instructions
  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until desired consistency. Garnish with a sprinkle of nutmeg and drink immediately.
 

This post is sponsored by Almond Breeze Almondmilk. Enter for a chance to win the Ultimate Kitchen Prize Pack, get great savings and ideas for delicious Blendabilities at AlmondBreezeBlendabilities.com. As always, I greatly appreciate your support with sponsored posts!

Breakfast Smoothies Vegan

Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie

Monday night I came home from work and our apartment was HOT. I knew Travis wanted a “real” meal for dinner, but cooking was the last thing I felt like doing. I had just picked up lots of fresh produce at the grocery store, and the only thing that sounded appealing to me was a cold, fresh smoothie.

I know, that is so unlike me. I typically would consider a smoothie a pathetic dinner, but I really wanted something refreshing and my body could use the greens.

 

Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

I threw lots of leafy greens, part of an avocado for creaminess, and fresh fruit into the blender along with some almond milk to get things moving.

Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

You really don’t taste the kale and spinach in this smoothie because they’re masked by the sweetness of the banana and mango. If you feel the smoothie isn’t sweet enough for you, try adding two pitted dates – they add a delicious sweet flavor.

Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

This smoothie was SO good – I know I will be making it regularly throughout the summer. It’s healthy, vitamin-packed, filling, and so tasty.

Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie

 

This “Easy as Breeze” post is sponsored by Almond Breeze Almondmilk. For more “Easy As Breeze” recipes made with five ingredients or less, visit Almond Breeze on Facebook. As always, I thank you for your support with sponsored posts.

 

Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Serves: 1-2
Ingredients
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • ½ cup fresh kale
  • ¼ cup fresh spinach (optional)
  • ¼ cup avocado
  • ½ frozen banana
  • ½ cup frozen mango
  • 2-3 dates (optional for added sweetness)
  • 2 ice cubes
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend on high for 30 seconds, until desired consistency.
 

 

Delicious Vitamin-Packed Green Smoothie Recipe! ll Vegan, Gluten-Free and Refined-Sugar Free ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Breakfast Smoothies Vegan

Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie

This post is sponsored by Almond Breeze Almondmilk. The recipe and all opinions are my own.

 

Hi guys! How is your week going so far? I have a deeeeeelicious smoothie recipe to share with you all today.

In my last job, I had to wake up very early in order to squeeze in some gym time before work. Given that my time in the morning was limited, I was always searching for fast breakfast options that I could inhale in under 2 minutes or easily bring in the car on the way to work. Protein smoothies quickly became my go-to, especially in warmer weather. I loved that I could prep everything the night before and the next morning I would have a nutritious breakfast in under one minute – no cooking required!

Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Currently, I am very fortunate that my new job allows me a lot more time in the morning. I now have time to cook myself a meal for breakfast (usually eggs or protein pancakes) so protein smoothies have gone to the wayside.

Two weeks ago, I found my protein powder buried far back in my pantry and realized how long it’s been since I’ve made one of my favorite smoothies. The next day this Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie was born. If you love mint chocolate chip ice cream (like me!), this smoothie is right up your alley! Fresh mint is key here. I’ve tried this with peppermint extract and it not nearly the same (that version tasted very artificial).

Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

A handful of spinach lends this drink its bright green color, but I promise you won’t be able to taste it at all! The mint are chocolate are the flavors that really shine through.

Try this smoothie for breakfast or even dessert! If you don’t have any chocolate protein powder on hand, I think 1/2 cup greek yogurt and some cocoa powder would be a good substitute. You may need to add a bit of stevia for extra sweetness.

Enjoy!

 

Mint Chocolate Protein Smoothie Recipe
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 1 cup Almond Breeze Almondmilk Coconutmilk
  • 1 scoop Chocolate Protein Powder
  • 1 handful fresh spinach (about ⅓ cup)
  • ½ frozen banana
  • 3-4 fresh mint leaves, to taste
  • ½ Tablespoon almond butter
  • 2 ice cubes
  • cocoa powder (optional)
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend on high until smooth. Garnish with fresh mint leaves and cocoa powder.
 

Breakfast Smoothies Vegan

Chia Seed and Turmeric Smoothie

Turmeric is going to be the hot new health trend this year — I promise you. This powerful spice detoxes your liver, has the ability to kill cancer cells in the body, and protects your brain from Alzheimer’s disease. Betchya didn’t know all of that, did you?

Try this healthy and detoxifying Chia Seed & Turmeric Smoothie Recipe! It's vegan, gluten-free, and refined sugar-free. ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Turmeric is most commonly used in curry and other ethnic dishes, so it might be a bit surprising for some of you to see it used in a smoothie. When Williams-Sonoma reached out to me to participate in their “Not Your Typical Smoothie” week, I knew turmeric would be the perfect ingredient to change things up.

Try this healthy and detoxifying Chia Seed & Turmeric Smoothie Recipe! It's vegan, gluten-free, and refined sugar-free. ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

On its own, turmeric has a fairly bitter taste, so if using it in a smoothie you really have to mask it with other yummy ingredients. The dominant flavors in this smoothie come from mango, banana, cinnamon, and ginger. The turmeric and chia seeds (healthy fats, antioxidants, and protein galore!) are hidden in there for an extra nutritional boost.

This smoothie is great to drink right when you wake up in the morning – especially if you are looking for something to cleanse your system. It really couldn’t get healthier than this!

 

Chia Seed and Turmeric Smoothie
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk or coconut milk
  • 3 large ice cubes
  • 1 frozen banana
  • ½ cup frozen mango
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ⅛ teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon chia seeds
  • Stevia (optional)
  • Unsweetened coconut flakes (optional)
Instructions
  1. Place the almond milk, ice cubes, banana, mango, turmeric, cinnamon, and ginger in a blender and blend until almost smooth, about 30 seconds. Add the chia seeds and blend for an additional 15 seconds until smooth. Taste the smoothie and add stevia and coconut flakes as desired.
 

This post was inspired by Williams-Sonoma, but the recipe and all opinions are my own. Thank you for your support.

 

Try this healthy and detoxifying Chia Seed & Turmeric Smoothie Recipe! It's vegan, gluten-free, and refined sugar-free. ll www.littlechefbigappetite.com

 

Breakfast Smoothies Vegan

Mango Coconut Smoothie

Travis and I have a trip planned to Hawaii in about a month, so I have everything tropical on my mind. Mangoes were on sale at Whole Foods this weekend for 4/$5, so I immediately grabbed a few because usually they are at least $2.50 a pop.

Mango Coconut Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.comMangoes always remind me of summer. My mom used to buy a giant box of them at Costco and we would go through them like candy, just the two of us.

Mango Coconut Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

This Mango Coconut Smoothie is a variation of my Basic Protein Shake recipe. It was incredibly refreshing after my very sweaty workout this weekend. If you’re able to plan ahead, frozen mango gives this smoothie the best texture, but otherwise fresh mango will still be delicious.

Mango Coconut Smoothie Recipe l www.littlechefbigappetite.com

Now if only I was lounging on a beach chair and someone magically transformed this drink into a Mango Sunrise….now that would be perfect!

 

Mango Coconut Smoothie
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • ¾ cup frozen or fresh mango
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder*
  • ½ Tablespoon shredded coconut (or more to taste)
  • 3 large ice cubes
  • 1 teaspoon coconut oil (optional for a serious coconut taste)
Instructions
  1. Blend all ingredients until smooth. Serve with additional shredded coconut.
Notes
*You can substitute ½ cup Greek Yogurt for the protein powder if you wish. You may need to add a bit of honey or vanilla extract for additional sweetness.
 

Breakfast Smoothies

Basic Protein Shake + Variations

On weekday mornings I am always in a rush because I work out in the morning before work. I’ve been doing the same routine for about a year now, so from the moment my alarm goes off at 5:00AM, I have my morning schedule locked down to the minute. I have to squeeze in my workout, shower, getting dressed, and breakfast all before I rush out the door to hit the road (read: traffic).

Given this mad dash to get out the door in the morning, I try to minimize my time making breakfast to as few minutes as possible.

IMG_3103

I’ve already shared with you two of my favorite protein-packed breakfasts: Overnight Oats and Protein Pancakes. Another one of my go-to breakfasts, especially when I am crunched for time, is a protein shake.

It took me awhile before I found a protein powder and shake consistency/texture that I really enjoyed. I try to avoid dairy in my diet, so whey protein powders were never an option. My favorite protein powder is Jay Robb’s Egg White Protein Powder (which I use in my Chia Protein Bars). I love the Vanilla and Chocolate flavors. Both taste delicious (just like a milkshake), and they mix very well so there are no gritty bits or strange aftertastes like you can get with other powders.

IMG_3124

I like my shakes thick, so I add lots of ice and half a frozen banana to get this consistency. The shake comes together in under 3 minutes, so it is perfect for a fast weekday breakfast or to enjoy after a workout to refuel.

IMG_3108

If you guys have any other non-dairy protein powder recommendations, I would love to hear them! I am always looking for great-tasting protein powders with as short of an ingredient list as possible.

 

Basic Protein Shake

Ingredients

1 cup Unsweetened Vanilla Almond Milk

3-4 Ice Cubes

1/2 Frozen Banana

1 scoop Vanilla Protein Powder

Instructions

Blend all ingredients in a blender until smooth, about 30 seconds.

 

Variations

Peanut Butter Banana Protein Shake: Add 1 Tablespoon of all-natural peanut butter to the mixture.

Strawberry Banana Protein Shake: Add 4-5 frozen or fresh strawberries to the mixture.

Mocha Protein Shake: Substitute chocolate protein powder for the vanilla. Add 2 teaspoons of instant coffee to the mixture.

 

 

Breakfast Smoothies

Peanut Butter and Banana Smoothie

Earlier this week my friends and I had a debate over the difference between a smoothie and a milkshake.  Some people said that smoothies always include blended ice. Others said that milk never goes into a smoothie and only in a milkshake.  And then one person insisted that a milkshake has ice cream, milk, and ice.

Then given all of that, I really don’t know what this drink is, but I am going to go ahead and call it a smoothie, okay? It has milk, no ice, and no ice cream, but it’s a smoothie. Great, glad we’ve settled that.

For this smoothie I used Peanut Butter & Co. Mighty Maple Peanut Butter – one of my favorites. Peanut Butter & Co. makes ten different peanut butters in the most delicious / incredibly addicting flavors. If you’ve never tried their PB, you have to check them out. Their website is called ilovepeanutbutter.com….I mean c’mon already!

Oh, and did I mention no hydrogenated oils?

Peanut Butter and Banana Smoothie Recipe

Their Maple Peanut Butter is perfect for this smoothie because it compliments the agave very nicely, but any PB you have on hand will also taste great.

Peanut Butter and Banana Smoothie Recipe

This peanut butter and banana smoothie is great for breakfast…or as a snack in the middle of the day…or as a healthy dessert (because for all we know it could be a milkshake, right?)

Peanut Butter and Banana Smoothie Recipe

Simple Things: Peanut Butter and Banana Smoothie
 
Prep time
Total time
 
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 1 cup milk (I used skim, but almond, coconut, or soy will work)
  • 1 frozen banana, cut into chunks
  • 2 Tablespoons peanut butter (any kind)
  • 1 teaspoon agave (or honey)
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until there are no more banana chunks. Pour into a tall glass and enjoy right away.