Monday, May 1, 2017

Acai Power!

Let's be real — a lot of the talk about superfoods is just hype. Of course, superfoods — like lucuma and mesquite and maca — boast amazing health benefits. But so do your average, everyday fruits and veggies, like kale, blueberries, and spinach. That said, there's something decidedly exotic and appealing about these so-called superfoods that grow in faraway lands (at least, they seem faraway to most people living in North America). Eating them not only gives us a boost of nutrients (just like with not-so-superfoods), but the big difference — for me, at least — is the burst of new and interesting flavor we get from rarer foods like acai or goji berries.

I especially love superfoods that come in powdered form because they're easy to blend into my morning smoothies and smoothie bowls. I knew when Sari Foods shipped me their Organic Acai Powder that it'd very quickly find its way into my breakfasts.

Acai — pronounced ah-sigh-ee — is a low-glycemic berry with a high concentration of antioxidants, omega fats, and essential amino acids. Acai is also a great source of iron, calcium, fiber, and vitamin A. It tastes like a cross between a tart blueberry and chocolate, if that makes any sense.

When blended with light-colored fruits and plant milk, acai's bright purple color shines! That's from the anthocyanin compounds, which gives purple and red produce it's deep, rich color. Anthocyanin teams up with flavonoids to defend the body against free radicals. Here's some acai blended with banana and protein powder for a quick, week-day smoothie.

But acai smoothies and bowls aren't always purple! If you combine it with enough green stuff, you'll end up with a very green smoothie, like this Green Acai Smoothie Bowl.

This was a perfect post-run breakfast last week. You can top the smoothie bowl with any fresh fruit or nuts you want, but I used trail mix, chia seeds, and coconut flakes since that's what I had on-hand. Here's the recipe!

Green Acai Smoothie Bowl
Yields 1 serving

For the bowl:
1/2 cup plant milk (I used almond-cashew)
1 frozen banana
1/2 cup chopped kale
2 tsp. Sari Foods Organic Acai Powder
1 scoop vegan berry protein powder (I used Vega One Berry protein)

For the toppings:
2 Tbsp. raw trail mix (mine had almonds, pepitas, walnuts,  dried cranberries, & goji berries)
1 Tbsp. sweetened, shredded coconut
1 tsp. chia seeds

In a high-speed blender, combine the milk, banana, kale, acai powder, and protein powder. Blend until smooth and creamy.

Pour the mixture into a bowl and top with trail mix, coconut, and chia seeds. Eat!


Hillary said...

Unfortunately superfoods are almost always super priced so I stick with the everyday healthy foods not always labeled super that you mentioned. But Trader Joe's sells frozen Acai packs that are a little cheaper than other places. I might have to try them one of these days. Both your smoothie and your smoothie bowl look beautiful!

Sarah said...

Ooooh yum! I have the frozen açai that I need to use and I definitely see smoothie bowls in my future. The color of that smoothie is gorgeous and the smoothie bowl sounds delicious!