Merry Christmas y’all! I’m spending the holiday in beautiful Delray Beach with my family this year. A tropical Christmas is honestly my favorite type of Christmas. I know people say that it doesn’t feel like Christmas without the snow but I say its all about perspective. The things that make me happy are my family and friends, the sun on my face, the ocean breeze, and good food and I have all of that right here. The holidays are about love, not snowmen (though snowmen are pretty cute and whoever first decided to build one is a genius). Maybe I’ll try to build and sandman later and let you know how it turns out.
On this day, I wanted to share something that has been near and dear to me for the past few months. It’s no surprise that I am a smoothie fanatic. They are so versatile and you can pack so many nutrients and vitamins into one cold glass. Made with the right ingredients, you can mask the taste of more bitter vegetables like kale and other leafy greens, making the perfect gateway food those transitioning into a healthy lifestyle. This particular smoothie has been my morning ritual since it started getting a little chillier outside. The color perks me right up in the morning and the creaminess makes for such an enjoyable treat. It is a nutritional powerhouse too with kale and a boatload of other fruits and vegetables, hemp seeds, spirulina, and maca powder.
Creamy Spirulina Smoothie
3 Tbsp hemp seeds
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup water, more as needed
3-4 heads of kale, broken up into pieces
1/2 organic zucchini, thickly sliced
1/2 organic apple, chopped
1/4 cup pumpkin puree
1 Tbsp cinnamon
1 Tbsp maca powder
1-2 Tbsp powdered spirulina
1/8 tsp sea salt
1 frozen banana, chopped
5 ice cubes
- Place hemp seeds, vanilla extract and water in blender. Blend on high until completely smooth. (You are basically making hemp milk here. Hemp seeds are part of the contribution to the creamy nature of this smoothie. You can also replace this step with another dairy-free milk like almond or coconut milk, but this is so easy and saves me from having to buy store-bought brands which are heavy in undesired chemicals.)
- Add kale, zucchini, apple and pumpkin puree. Blend on high until smooth. (I blend these items first to make sure they really break down and you don’t have any large chunks of kale left.)
- Spoon in cinnamon, maca powder, spirulina and sea salt. Blend.
- Add in the frozen banana and ice last. Blend again on high until there are no chunks left. Pour into a big glass and enjoy!
I play around with the spirulina amount depending on how I am feeling and what I know my body needs. If I know I need a lot of greens and vitamins, I use 2 Tbsp. If I am really just looking for a more fruit-powered smoothie, I use 1 Tbsp. Spirulina can be a bit of an acquired taste, so I recommend starting with less and building your way up. I love the taste now, but since it is completely new to people, your first try and be a bit surprising. Remember that you can always add more but you can’t take away! This is pretty much my golden rule of smoothie making.
A frozen banana is not a requirement- but it does make for a super frosty smoothie! I keep a large ziplock bag full of peeled bananas in the freezer just for my morning smoothies. But a regular banana will serve just fine.
So you might be asking by now, what the hell is spirulina? Totally justified – it’s definitely not a common staple in our food society. Which is sad, because it is so incredible for our health. Spirulina is an algae and one of the most potent forms of nutrition available to us. You can buy in in capsule form and take by the mouth daily, or you can buy it in powder form and incorporate it into your recipes like I did here. It contains chlorophyll, protein, essential amino acids, and iron. It also have over 25 the amount of calcium that milk contains. I personally buy this 1 lb bag online that lasts forever and you can also purchase it from any health food store. As I said earlier, it is an acquired taste and I don’t think you’ll ever enjoy it by the spoonful. But it is so so good for you so I urge you to find ways, whether by just taking the supplement or finding recipes like this to mix it into your foods, to add it into your diet. Your beautiful body will thank me.
BeLeaf in green to start off every morning.