Monday, October 21, 2013

Pumpkin Pie Green Smoothie



Pumpkin recipes are all over the place right now. Pumpkin spice this and that, pumpkin breads, pumpkin cakes, pumpkin donuts, pumpkin pastas...and least we ever forget, pumpkin pies! With fall at our feet we are falling to our knees to pack as many pumpkins into our bellies as humanly possible. I should know as I have been enjoying quite a bit of pumpkin lately -- from pumpkin soup to pumpkin curry -- I even made a gluten free pumpkin pie for Canadian Thanksgiving and served it with homemade vegan pumpkin ice cream. Delicious.

As I mentioned at length in my last post, I am trying to cut back on desserts at the moment. I have been craving them a lot and I don't want to get into a bad routine where I eat dessert all the time. My current strategy to get out of this rut is to satisfy my sweet cravings with homemade green smoothies. In my last post I shared my recipe for the delightful concoction I've named the Blue Lagoon Smoothie. Today I am sharing a very different green smoothie -- a creamy dessert smoothie packed with vegetables, protein and fruit inspired by the flavors of classic pumpkin pie!


There's organic pumpkin purée hidden in this sea of vibrant green! A lot actually. There's even a little nutty pumpkin seed butter to take the flavor to a whole new level. But these key ingredients will taste nothing at all like pumpkin pie without a good dose of ginger and cinnamon. To me these are the flavors that are non-negotiable in anything labeled pumpkin pie. They are must haves this season. And why not? Cinnamon with its anti-viral and anti-infective qualities wards off the flu season that is Fall so I say bring it on! And ginger soothes the stomach and enhances digestion -- pretty essential after the Thanksgiving feast! 

The best part about this smoothie is that I made it on an evening I was fighting a serious dessert craving and it hit the spot like nobody's business. And it takes a minute to make! No slaving over a hot oven to get that pumpkin pie flavor you crave and no compromises for any diet you may be following. Awesome.



Pumpkin Pie Green Smoothie
(vegan, gluten-free, naturally sweetened, paleo)

 
Makes 2 smoothies or 1 huge smoothie.
  • 2/3 cup organic pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup frozen spinach
  • 1 cup chopped ripe pear
  • 1 cup water
  • 2-3 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp powdered ginger or fresh ginger
  • 1 tsp raw honey
  • 1 tsp maple syrup
  • 1-2 tbsp coconut milk or coconut cream or another non-dairy milk
  • 1 tsp pumpkin seed butter
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla bean powder or vanilla extract
Blend all ingredients in a blender until very smooth. Taste! Add extra raw honey if not sweet enough or more spices or coconut cream or pumpkin puree if desired.
Top with a spoonful of coconut cream and a dash of cinnamon.