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12 APRIL 2021

How to make breakfast smoothie bowls


The following article has been written by Bel from The Root Cause.

Studies show that eating breakfast improves memory and attention, with an overall positive effect on cognitive performance. Therefore, it goes without saying that breakfast is an important meal.

However, it’s also a meal that is often skipped – an Australian study found that 14.8% of children skip breakfast. Teachers estimate that when a child comes to school hungry, they lose up to two hours of learning per day.

These studies indicate that having something for breakfast is better than nothing. But, if we’re offering up breakfast, smoothie bowls are a great option.

A smoothie bowl is a super thick smoothie, served in a bowl (or in an overflowing mason jar in Instagram photos), that usually combines some fruit, vegetables, proteins, good fats, and some complex carbohydrates.

With one smoothie bowl, you can:

  1. boost nutrition
  2. increase the amount of fruit and vegetables your child eats
  3. do away with breakfast cereal, which tends to be high in sugar and/or salt
  4. increase your child’s fibre intake
  5. introduce new vegetables to your child without them realising it
  6. use a favourite smoothie recipe and turn it into a smoothie bowl

Fibre is important for your child’s gut health, with the fibre feeding your child’s beneficial gut bacteria. The fibre also makes their digestive system work a bit harder, so it will help keep them fuller for longer.

And the beautiful thing is they can be made simply, look fun and be super delicious too.


How to make a great smoothie bowl

A great smoothie includes a mix of fruit, vegetables, proteins, good fats, and some complex carbohydrates. You can use the template below to help you design your own great smoothie bowl. This is also a fantastic way to empower your kids to play a more active role in making their own breakfast bowl too.


1. Base ingredients

300g frozen fruit

  • Choose one or a mix of these: Banana, strawberries, blueberries, mango, pineapple, mixed berries.
  • The frozen fruit adds sweetness to your Smoothie Bowl and helps make it thick.

1/4 cup frozen vegetables

  • Choose one or a mix of these: Sweet potato puree, cauliflower puree, zucchini*, cucumber*, baby spinach*.
    * can be fresh
  • The vegetables add a great nutritional boost to your One Body For Life. Because vegetables are loaded with fibre, they help slow down how your body uses the sugar from the fruit. Frozen vegetables also make your Smoothie Bowl thicker.

1/4 – 1/2 cup liquid

  • Choose a one of these: Water, coconut water, milk, non-dairy milk, coconut cream, kefir.
  • The liquid is designed to help the blender mix up the frozen fruit and vegetables.


2. Boost ingredients

1 tbsp protein

  • Choose one of these: Yoghurt, raw cashews, nuts, seeds, hemp seeds, chia seeds, coconut flakes, coconut cream, almond meal, LSA, nut butter.
  • Protein is important for muscle growth and development and helps keep you full.
  • Some proteins also count as good fats.

1 tbsp good fats

  • Choose one of these: Avocado, yoghurt, nut seeds, nut butter, MCT oil, Coconut oil, coconut cream.
  • Good fats help your brain and they also help keep you full.

1 tbsp complex carbohydrates

  • Choose one or a mix of these: Rolled oats, hemp seeds, chia seeds, cooked quinoa, cooked brown rice, quinoa flakes.
  • Complex carbohydrates help give you longer-lasting energy.


3. Flavours, sweeteners, and topping ideas

Flavours

  • Choose one of these: Cacao, cinnamon, vanilla extract, lucuma, maca, berry choc chunk, etc.
  • Adding in a flavour is not always needed but this is your job to work out if you want to add some extra flavour to your Smoothie Bowl.

Sweeteners

  • Choose one of these: Medjool dates, date paste, 100% maple syrup, raw honey, coconut sugar, vanilla extract.
  • You don’t always need to add a sweetener because the fruit is naturally sweet but if you need it to be sweeter, just add a little.

Toppings

  • Choose one or a mix of these: Fresh fruit, goji berries, coconut flakes, granola, hemp seeds, cacao nibs, chocolate chips, nut butter, pepitas, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, oat crumble, chopped nuts, etc.
  • Decorate the top of your breakfast Smoothie Bowl with these foods so it looks extra delicious. Your toppings add extra nutrition to help your One Body For Life.


Method

  1. Blitz nuts, seeds, coconut flakes and complex carbohydrates to a find powder
  2. Add in your base ingredients and blend until smooth
  3. Add in sweeteners and flavours to taste – blend until smooth
  4. Spoon into your bowl
  5. Add as many toppings as you like


Tips for an extra creamy bowl

Choose one or more of the following ingredients in your BOOST options to make your smoothie bowl extra creamy.

  • Avocado – buy avocados in season, slice, and freeze.
  • Cashews – soak cashews in water to soften. Save time, do in a big batch and freeze.
  • Nut butter – my personal favourite ABC butter (almond, brazil, cashews).
  • Coconut cream, Yoghurt, Cooked brown rice.


Flavour combo ideas

Berry bite

  • 300g frozen mixed berries
  • 1/4 cup frozen zucchini
  • 1/4 cup coconut cream
  • 1 Medjool date
  • 1 tbsp chia seed

Choc banana

  • 300g frozen banana
  • 1/4 cup frozen sweet potato puree
  • 1/4 cup coconut water
  • 1 tbsp avocado
  • 1 tbsp hemp seed
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp cacao powder

Mango delight

  • 300g frozen mango
  • 1/4 cup frozen cauliflower puree
  • 1/4 cup coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp avocado
  • 1 tbsp hemp seed
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 tbsp cooked quinoa
  • 1 tbsp desiccated coconut
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract

Spinach mint moment

  • 270g frozen banana
  • 30g frozen strawberries
  • 70g frozen baby spinach
  • 1/4 cup coconut water
  • 1 tbsp hemp seeds
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • Handful of fresh mint


Time saving tips

Steam and puree a heap of your vegetables like sweet potato and cauliflower in batches. Then freeze them in silicon min muffin trays or ice cube trays. Once frozen, pop them out and store them in a container for ease of use.

You can even pop all the ingredients into one zip lock bag and store them in the freezer so that all you need to do is pull out the bag, pop them in your blender, then add the liquid.

I hope you enjoy trying out smoothie bowls for breakfast or even as a great wholefoods snack. When talking to your kids about smoothie bowls, you may prefer to talk to them about this being a breakfast ice cream. You can just adjust the liquid amount to make the smoothie bowl more like the consistency of ice cream.

To help to empower your kids to make better food choices, join Bel over at https://therootcause.com.au or follow her at Facebook or Instagram.