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Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Breakfast Smoothies (Wheat, Nut, Fish, Soy and Egg-Free, Can Be Milk-Free)

If you are a follower of my blog, you know that I've recently had to revamp my diet.  I've had to cut out all sugar (except for honey), avoid foods with added sugars and/or too many carbs, and avoid all forms of caffeine.  This has been quite the challenge, and it's been especially difficult when it comes to breakfast time when I want something quicker to eat and when it comes to wanting something a little on the sweet side.  Enter my breakfast smoothies to the rescue.

This is a recipe that I came up with that satisfies my need for something a little sweet, but that doesn't send my heart racing due to a lot of added sugar (I normally make it with berries and honey, so the glycemic load is a lot lower, too).  It can be enjoyed at breakfast time or any time, but we normally make these for breakfast.  They are thick like a milkshake (thanks to the Greek yogurt), so they make you think you're eating ice cream for breakfast.  I vote for that. :)

This recipe is free of 7 of the top 8 allergens (if all of your ingredients are), and can easily be made dairy-free, too (see variations).  It can even be made with an alternative sweetener as well if you can't eat honey or don't eat it.  And did I mention it is only (at most) 4 ingredients and whips up in minutes?  Yah, it's awesome.  Give it a try, and see if it doesn't become a summer breakfast staple for you like it has for us.

Breakfast Smoothies

frozen fruit of your choice such as berries, cherries, peaches, mango, pineapple, bananas; any combination
(As I mentioned above, we normally use a combination of berries, and the smoothie pictured is made with only strawberries.)

soy-free, gluten-free plain Greek yogurt
(We use full-fat plain Greek yogurt whenever possible, but you can use non-fat or 2% fat with success.  We always use plain, too, as that allows us to control the amount of sweetness, and plain yogurt (especially full-fat, Greek) tends to be very allergy-friendly without a lot of added junk (that said, avoid yogurts that use cornstarch - the best Greek yogurts to use contain milk and/or cream and yogurt cultures only).  If you're looking for a good brand, FAGE is a good one.)

(We always use whole milk, but you can use whatever you have on hand.)

honey (optional)
(We always add this.)

1. Place desired amount (about 1 Cup per person) of frozen (yes, it MUST be frozen) fruit in a blender.

2. Add desired amount of yogurt (start with 1/4 Cup or so per person) and milk (start with about 1/2 Cup or so per person) to reach the desired consistency. (Note: You may have to pulse the mix at first until it is slightly blended, then continue full boar.  Also, if you want the smoothie thicker, add more frozen fruit or yogurt.  If you want it thinner, add more milk.)

3. Taste the mixture.  If you like it as is, feel free to enjoy it as is.  If you find it too tart, add honey (I would recommend starting at about 1 Tablespoon per person, re-tasting and then adding more if desired) and re-blend until well incorporated.  (Note: Occasionally, I find that a dash of salt is needed to bring out the sweetness, so before you add more honey if the mixture tastes just about right but is missing "something", try a dash of salt and blend well and re-taste to see if that doesn't work for you.) 

Variations (Please keep your individual dietary needs in mind when using variations):
  • Dairy-Free: Use a dairy-free milk and a dairy-free yogurt in place of the regular milk and yogurt.  You can also just use dairy-free milk and no yogurt, if desired.

  • Yogurt Substitution: You could use vanilla yogurt, flavored yogurt or just milk and no yogurt if you prefer and those things fit your dietary needs better.  I would think (though I have not tried it) that avocado would be a good yogurt substitution, as well.
  • Sugar Substitution: You could use agave, sugar, jam or preserves, maple syrup, molasses or other sweetener of choice for the honey.
  • Add Some Spice: If you like basil or thyme with your fruit, you can add a pinch of that.  You could even add some cinnamon or even some Cheyenne pepper, if you choose.
  • Hidden Greens: If you are trying to work more greens into your diet, you can add them here.  Spinach and kale are both good choices.  If you add just a small amount (no more than 1/2 Cup per 1 Cup of fruit), you shouldn't be able to taste the greens at all, but you may need to add a little more sweetener.
These smoothies are great, but you don't have to take my word for it.  Just ask my soon-to-be-10-year-old daughter.

She says, and I quote, "YUM!"
Try them today - you won't regret it!

Have a great day!

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