One of the best things about Fall has to be the abundance of pumpkin in food and drink. From pumpkin pie, to pumpkin spiced lattes, pumpkin froyo, pumpkin beer, pumpkin pie and even baked pumpkins, pumpkins are surely the star of the food-world this time of year. Unfortunately, most of these pumpkin treats are packed with artificial flavouring and sugar. So, why not incorporate pumpkin into something healthy that many people eat (or drink)? A smoothie. Smoothies are quick to make, create minimal mess and are a great way to pack a whole lot of nutritional value into something delicious. In terms of health benefits, pumpkin offers: eyesight preservation, an aid in weight loss, heart health, an immune system boost, and a source of high fibre and potassium. Click here to read on about 8 Impressive Health Benefits of Pumpkins covered by the Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/09/04/pumpkin-health-benefits_n_1936919.html. Here’s my attempt at creating a healthy pumpkin spice smoothie:
1/2 cup of pumpkin puree
1/3 cup of plain, non-fat, natural yogurt
1 cup of unsweetened almond milk
1/2 tsp of vanilla extract
1/8 tsp of cinnamon
A pinch of ground cloves
A drizzle of honey
A handful of ice
Put all ingredients into your blender, blend until smooth and give it a taste-test.
T H E V E R D I C T ?
My first impression was that this smoothie needs a sweetness factor. I tried adding another drizzle of honey and some more vanilla extract, but something still didn’t taste right. Try substituting the plain yogurt for vanilla yogurt and the plain almond milk for vanilla almond milk. Adding vanilla frozen yogurt or ice-cream would be even more delicious. Hey, it might not end up as health-conscious as planned, but maybe some things are just meant to stay sweet! Pumpkins are only around a certain time of year, so you may as well make them taste great. Don’t miss out on your last chance to stop by the Airdrie Farmer’s Market this Wednesday, Oct. 8 from 3:30 to 7:00. For more info, connect with the Airdrie Farmer’s Market on Facebook or visit their website: http://www.airdriefarmersmarket.com/. Have a Happy Thanksgiving and enjoy all your favourite pumpkin treats! Who knows, maybe this will be your new favourite, sweet or not.
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