This weekend’s lovely weather motivated me to get outside, soak up some sun, and to be as active as possible! I stayed in my running shoes all day yesterday, and it felt fantastic. It’s amazing what a little sunshine can do to a girl.
This time of year always sneaks up on me. I go from the depressing aftermath of the holidays (January and February) to the hopeful but never trustworthy month of March, all without really recognizing that spring really is just around the corner. April surprises me every year. It’s a wonderful surprise, too.
On Sunday, we grabbed a quick breakfast and headed to the local park for the morning. We walked, we watched soccer games, we ran around on the playground, swung on swings, and then walked some more. It was gloriously wonderful. Such a simple way to spend a weekend morning, but it was just what we all needed. Kieran was tuckered out and Dan and I were invigorated and motivated to keep the good vibes going all week long.
Which brings me to today’s smoothie. This smoothie is a great example of the “don’t judge a book by its cover” rule. It may not look too exciting or even appetizing with that brownish-bluish chocolate color, but I promise you, it’s delicious. Like, really delicious.
I have been whipping up a version of this smoothie for weeks now, and it tastes indulgent and rich without a ton of sugar or fat. It all started with my Daily Harvest delivery. Back in January, I decided to treat myself to a subscription to their smoothies, just to switch things up a bit and try out some new smoothie flavors and ingredients. Not only have I loved almost every one of their smoothies that I’ve tried, but they’ve also inspired me to recreate some of their varieties at home.
I don’t order them every week because it can get a little pricey, and also because I have figured out some of the recipes at home, but nothing beats a quick and easy smoothie that is ready to go! I highly recommend you check out their services (for the record: none of this is sponsored. Just sharing something I’ve been enjoying as of late!).
The blueberry chocolate smoothie is probably my favorite one. It’s loaded with a ton of delicious things and packs a nutritional punch. Both of which are requirements for any smoothie I am going to consume. This version is my take on the Daily Harvest original, and I have to say, I think I came pretty darn close. It tastes fantastic going down and keeps me full for hours.
We’ve got lots of baby greens (I did a mix of spinach and kale), frozen bananas, frozen blueberries, almonds, pitted dates, vanilla bean, maca powder, hemp seed, and cacao nibs for some deeply chocolatey flavor. I love making this smoothie with unsweetened vanilla almond milk, but you can really do this with any liquid/milk you like. It’s completely customizable. And sooo, sooo good for you.
Also, to make my life easier and to mimic the convenience of the mail-order smoothies, I often will make smoothie packs with these ingredients. I portion out enough for 4-5 smoothies at a time, and freeze all the ingredients in individual plastic baggies. Then, on a busy morning, I’ll throw the contents of a baggie into my blender with some almond milk and whir it up in seconds. Voile! A perfectly rich and creamy smoothie that takes barely any prep (or thinking) at all.
Besides, you’ll never have to ask me twice to incorporate chocolate into my daily routine. To do so in a healthy way is even better!
1 cup warm water
¼ cup raw almonds
1 tablespoon cacao nibs
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or milk of choice)
1 banana, sliced and frozen
1½ cups frozen blueberries
2 cups baby greens (I used half kale, half spinach)
1 tablespoon hulled hempseed
½ tablespoon maca powder
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 pitted Medjool dates
½ teaspoon pink Himalayan sea salt
To a measuring cup, add the warm water, almonds, and cacao nibs. Allow to sit until the water reaches room temperature, 15-20 minutes. This allows both the almonds and cacao nibs to soften up just a bit before you blend the smoothie. You can also do this ahead, like the night before you want the smoothie.
Pour the water mixture into a blender, followed by the almond milk.
Add in the remaining ingredients and blend on high until completely blended and smooth. Add ice if a thicker consistency is desired.
Pour into glasses and enjoy while cold.