After hot, sweaty Summer runs the only thing I crave is a smoothie. Most morning’s I will walk directly to the kitchen following a run to whip up a breakfast smoothie bowl even before taking a shower. Recovery from both the heat and the workout happen much faster if I eat something with carbohydrates and protein within thirty minutes of completing a workout.
When the teams at Fit Approach and Bob’s Red Mill challenged me to showcase how their protein powders help me find balance among the summer chaos, I knew a quick, delicious and refreshing smoothie would be the perfect recipe to share with you guys. Since this smoothie takes just a few minutes to make from start to finish, it’s easy to make for breakfast, an afternoon snack or as a post-workout powerhouse. The box I received from Bob’s Red Mill included protein powder (chocolate, vanilla and chai) as well as a protein & fiber nutritional booster. Each flavor of protein powder is plant based, gluten free, vegan and includes not only powder but also chia seeds, probiotics and amino acids. The nutritional stats for the vanilla protein powder. which I used in this recipe. are quite impressive – 180 calories, 20 grams of protein, 12 grams of fiber and only 3 grams of sugar.
Cherry Vanilla Protein Smoothie
- 1/2 cup frozen or fresh (pitted) cherries
- 1/4 cup ice
- 1/2 banana
- 1/2 cup Almond Milk or your choice of liquid (milk, water, etc)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/3 cup Bob’s Red Mill Vanilla Protein powder
- 1 scoop Vital Proteins or other collagen peptides
- Optional toppings – goji berries, shredded coconut, granola or cherries
- Add first eight items to blender and pulse or blend until you reach desired consistency.
- Pour into bowl
- Top with your favorite optional toppings. I suggest some dried goji berries and Purely Elizabeth granola.
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Thank you to Bob’s Red Mill and FitApproach for sponsoring this post. As always, all opinions are my own.
On Monday, my first day of healthy eating after a long stint of indulgent eating, which led to tight clothes and hating pictures, I developed a mad craving for Mexican. As in I caught myself dreaming of guacamole, margaritas and chips at the early hour of 11 AM. Oops. Dreaming of high salt, calorie laden, yet delicious food is not the best way to start a week of healthy eating. Similar to what I did ten years ago when I initially lost 50 pounds, I am focused on eating healthy food Monday through Friday at lunch. Then Friday night through Sunday I can enjoy in moderation. This type of healthy eating has always helped me maintain or lose weight while also being moderate versus restrictive – a technique I try to avoid based on my history of disordered eating. Instead of pushing the cravings aside and ignoring them or restricting myself, I decided to do something better. Create a healthy alternative that would answer my craving and allow me a bit of Mexican flavor until I can sip a margarita this weekend.
Meet my new favorite salad – Grilled Mexican Shrimp Salad. This healthy Mexican salad packs the punch with flavorful tomatillos, tender charred shrimp and a tangy dressing. Thanks to the grill, it barely makes a mess in your kitchen and is quick and easy!
Grilled Mexican Shrimp Salad
Makes two salads
- 12-14 large shrimp – peeled and deveined
- Thinly sliced white onion
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 1/2 avocado, sliced
- 2 tablespoons Queso Fresco cheese crumbled
- 4 Campari tomatoes (or your favorite type of tomatoes), quartered
- 2 tomatillos, quartered
- Half jalapeno seeded, fire-roasted and thinly sliced
- One ear of corn, fire roasted and cut off the cob
- 2 teaspoons Chili powder
- 1 teaspoon Garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil for brushing shrimp
- 3 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil for dressing
- Juice of 2 limes
- Juice of 1/2 orange
- 1 tablespoon baking soda
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Pre-heat grill to high heat
- Dry shrimp and place them in a bowl
- Season shrimp with salt and sprinkle with baking soda, let stand for 15 minutes
- While waiting for the grill to pre-heat and baking soda to set into the shrimp, toss lettuce with tomatoes, tomatillos, white onion, cilantro, avocado and cheese
- Pat dry shrimp and stick on skewers, tight together
- Season with salt, pepper, chili powder and garlic powder
- Brush shrimp with extra virgin olive oil
- Cook shrimp and corn on high direct heat for 3-5 minutes per side, just until they pass the translucent stage
- Quickly char jalapeno for 30 seconds to one minute
- Remove all items from heat
- Cut corn off the cob and sprinkle on top of salad
- Top salad with charred, sliced jalapeno, to taste
- In a separate bowl, whisk lime juice, orange juice, and 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- Dress salads with dressing then top each with 6-7 grilled shrimp
As soon as I get home from a tough, early morning workout I walk directly to the kitchen and make two things as quickly as possible – hot coffee and a cold smoothie. This power couple helps get me going after an exhausting class and ensures that by the time I sit down at my desk upstairs, I’m energized for a great day.
There are a few key ingredients in this smoothie and 99% of the smoothies I whip up each morning:
- Protein powder
- Chia seeds – These little seeds add Omega-3s, fiber, protein and antioxidants to your smoothie.
- Ground flax seed – This ground seed is a good source of Omega-3s, fiber and essential fatty acids while adding a rich, nutty flavor.
- Acai powder – This acai powder captures all the benefits of the super fruit but in the easy to use powder form.
- Superfruit antioxidant mix – Just a teaspoon provides you with 40% of your Vitamin A for the day!
- Xanthan Gum – This powder is a simple way to thicken your smoothie and a 1/2 teaspoon is only 15 calories but 4 grams of fiber!
These ingredients are what I call lean, mean fighting machines. They add flavor, density and nutrients to the smoothie without adding unnecessary sugar and calories. Regardless the flavor smoothie I make, these are part of the recipe 99% of the time. If you haven’t tried Vega’s Sport Performance Protein Powder then you are seriously missing out. Each scoop is 150 calories but packs in 30 grams of protein and 6 grams of BCAAs, making this the perfect base for your post-workout smoothie. Even though it is a thick, healthy powder it blends smoother than most protein powders we have used previously and it is completely plant based and soy free!
After enjoying the same smoothie four times in one week, I knew it was too delicious not to share with you guys. This pink power house is filled with protein, fiber, vitamins and nutrients to help keep you satiated all morning long while also helping rebuild those tired muscles. It’s made with simple, healthy ingredients and the refreshing flavor will keep you cool all Summer long.
Here’s what you’ll need for this bowl or glass of goodness, depending on whether you like to sip or spoon your breakfast.
Raspberry Super Smoothie
- 1/2 scoop Vanilla Vega Sport Performance Protein Powder
- 1 frozen banana, cut into chunks
- 1/2 cup raspberries
- 1/2 cup of unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tablespoon ground flax seed
- 1/2 tablespoon chia seeds
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon Super Fruit Antioxidant Smoothie Powder
- 1/2 teaspoon Xanthan Gum
- 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon Acai powder
- unsweetened coconut flakes
- goji berries
- drizzled almond butter (Trader Joe’s Creamy is my favorite!)
- sprinkle of your favorite granola (I love Purely Elizabeth and Blissful Eats)
- Combine all ingredients in your blender and blend until smooth.
- Pour into bowl or cup then top with the optional toppings.
Your turn: What’s your favorite smoothie combination?
This is not a sponsored post but does contain affiliate links to some of my favorite products.