A quick, not-too-sweet smoothie with plenty of good fiber and protein... Creamy Coconut Avocado and Hemp Smoothie is sure to get your day off to an energetic start!
Do you like smoothies? I love them, but I rarely think to make myself one. Having seen a plethora of smoothies while working on social media lately, it occurred to me that I ought to be making them more often. After discussing smoothies with my husband
and partner-in-crime Mark, we decided to give smoothie recipe creation "a whirl."
We looked for inspiration at our local natural food store, and I knew we wanted to include a good amount of protein. My Creamy Coconut Avocado and Hemp Smoothie recipe does not include protein powder, but if you're so inclined, feel free to add it!
Creamy Coconut, Avocado, and Hemp Smoothie: Introducing a New Ingredient
What comes to mind when you hear the word "hemp?" To be perfectly honest, my first thought was cannabis... second was rope. I'm fairly certain you don't want either in your smoothie. 😀 When we were perusing the aisles at Sprouts, the hemp seeds and hemp hearts just jumped right out at me. Say what? Why is that on the shelves at Sprouts?
So if you've heard the "buzz" about the many health benefits of hemp seeds, you may be reluctant to put it in your food lest you fail a drug test, right? No worries there! The hemp plant is actually a different species of cannabis that contains very little of the THC (active ingredient in marijuana) that gives marijuana its dubious reputation. Hemp seeds are loaded with healthy fats, protein, and essential nutrients, and make a great addition to your well-stocked pantry and healthy diet! For more on hemp seeds see What the Benefits of Hemp Seeds from Livestrong. A word of caution - hemp seeds are calorie dense with 170 calories per 3 tablespoon serving. That serving provides 10 grams of complete protein, though, so eating it mindfully is fine.
As I've mentioned before, I really don't often want sweet (ie. Salsa Sunset: A Savory Margarita). My Creamy Coconut Avocado and Hemp Smoothie is not sweet. If you love sweet, add a bit more of your favorite sweetener, and let me know how you like it? I use 1 teaspoon of agave nectar. Keep in mind 1 teaspoon of agave nectar provides 1.5 times the sweetness of sugar.
Mark and I both loved the combination of the tropical fruits - coconut, avocado, and banana - with just a hint of sweetness, and the added benefit of uncooked oatmeal and hemp seeds. Just to add a touch of the exotic, I call for fresh ginger and fine sea salt. If you're skeptical, they're optional.
Lastly, I need to distinguish between the "lite coconut milk" and the "coconut non-dairy beverage/milk" in the recipe. The lite coconut milk is typically found in the international foods aisle and is the "milk" of the coconut. The coconut non-dairy beverage is also labeled "milk," but it is a non-dairy substitute for milk. Another good alternative is nut milk. You may prefer plain old milk. There's certainly nothing wrong with it. I minimize dairy, usually limiting it to aged cheeses and Greek yogurt.
I love this Creamy Coconut, Avocado, and Hemp Smoothie for a quick breakfast or lunch, and it's great as a post-workout drink. Add a scoop of protein powder to boost the protein if you need to. I love having new options in my repertoire for breakfast and lunch as I get bored eating the same old thing day after day. Are you a lover of routine, or do you like to switch it up like me? Inquiring minds would love to know...
If avocado (and green smoothies) aren't your "thing," be sure to check out my Best Ever Chocolate Meal Replacement Smoothie with Orange, and Pomegranate! It's super healthy, but you might think you're having dessert. 😀
I do want to alert you to the fact that this smoothie comes in at 534 calories. It's the avocado folks. With 20 grams of protein, this is a meal substitute IMHO. However, you might wish to share it with your workout buddy for a post-workout snack. You want to keep an eye on the overall daily intake!
- 1 6 ounce carton nonfat Greek yogurt - coconut flavor, (see notes)
- 2 tablespoons lite coconut milk, (see notes)
- ½ avocado
- ½ banana
- 1 tablespoon hemp seeds, (see notes)
- ½ cup oatmeal
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, very finely minced
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 teaspoon agave nectar, (optional)
- ¾ cup coconut non-dairy beverage, (see notes)
- ice cubes, optional
- Combine all ingredients in blender. Blend until very smooth.
- Pour and enjoy!
Chobani makes a good coconut Greek yogurt, but it's lowfat rather than my usual nonfat. You may be able to find a better one, but avoid any that include artificial ingredients (I won't name brands 🙂 ). Alternatively, you can substitute vanilla, banana, or even another tropical flavor.
When I specify "lite coconut milk," I am referring to the "milk" or liquid from the coconut. When I refer to "coconut non-dairy beverage," I am referring to the carton in the dairy section that is a milk substitute. You can use nut milk or dairy milk if you prefer.
Hemp seeds are available at natural foods stores and in the health food section of many grocery stores.
Agave nectar is my "go to" sweetener as it's all natural, and given that it is 1.5 times sweeter than sugar, honey, and maple syrup, I use less. That 1 teaspoon is 20 calories, while 1.5 teaspoons of sugar is 24, maple syrup is 25.5, and honey is 31.5. I tend to avoid artificial sweeteners. You can certainly substitute your preferred sweetener.
If I start with cold ingredients, I don't add ice as I'm prone to "brain freeze." If I do add ice, I add just enough to make it cold. Again, this is just preference.
This is not a low calorie smoothie! It is intended to be a meal replacement rather than a snack.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 534