Here are two things I like: ice cream and breakfast. Oh right, and chocolate.
Normally, these two, or three, things don’t mix (I’m going to pretend I’ve never dipped a spoon into a pint of ice cream before 9 am). But now, we have smoothie bowls, possibly the greatest, and simplest, discovery ever made. Make a super thick smoothie, pour it in a bowl and top it with fresh fruit and granola. It’s pretty straight forward, but the result is an ice-cream-like breakfast, overflowing with antioxidants and nutrients. It doesn't really get much better than that. And to make it better, it’s extremely customizable so you never get bored with the same bowl every morning.
My favorite smoothie bowl starts with the obvious: a whole mountain of frozen fruit. Just toss it all in the blender. I personally love acai but, since I don’t live in the tropics where acai is grown and the smoothie packs are hard to find, I usually end up using frozen blueberries as the base. In this case I used a mixture of blueberries, raspberries and blackberries, adding strawberries and chopped mango as well. In goes a half of a banana for smoothness, and a few small handfuls of spinach for brownie points and greenness. Finally, it is sprinkled with a couple small scoops of cocoa powder, which is incredible. It mimics the slightly chocolatey and cocoa-y flavor of the acai, adding a depth of flavor that tones down the tart sweetness of the berries.
The mixture is blended with unsweetened almond milk (I like mine super thick so I always get quite a workout using the tamping stick with my Vitamix…). All in the name of ice cream for breakfast, right?
Once completely combined the fruit is poured, scraped and scooped out of the blender and topped with crunchy and sweet granola, cacao nibs and sliced fruit.
Smoothie Bowl Tip: save a few tablespoons of granola for additional sprinkling as you eat your smoothie to ensure every bite has a bit of crunch.
Cocoa-Berry Smoothie Bowl
Serves 1 generously
1 cup frozen berries (raspberries, blueberries and/or blackberries)
0.5 cups frozen strawberries
0.25 cups frozen mango
0.5 of a banana
1 to 2 teaspoons of cocoa powder, depending on taste
a few handfuls of spinach
0.5 to 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (or other non-dairy milk), depending on desired consistency
1. Put serving bowl in the freezer, this will help keep your smoothie nice and cold as you eat it.
2. Add frozen berries, strawberries, mango, cocoa powder, banana, spinach and 0.5 cups of almond milk to the blender. Blend until thick and well combined, adding more almond milk as needed.
3. Remove bowl from freezer and pour in mixture, smoothing the top with a spatula. Place back in the freezer while you prepare the toppings.
4. Top with sliced fruit, cacao nibs, chia seeds and granola, reserving some of the granola to add in as you eat.
I hope you try a smoothie bowl for your next breakfast and, if you do, snap a picture and show me on Instagram or Facebook, or leave a comment. A huge part of a smoothie bowl's amazing-ness is in its presentation, just scroll through popular posts on social media and you’ll see what I’m talking about. So, get creative, I can’t wait to see what you come up with!
I will also be selling at the West River Farmer’s Market in Londonderry, VT this Saturday. I'll have donuts, cakes and other special sweets so I hope to see you all there!