I threw this together recently while working on limiting my consumption of the holiday related decadent dessert sweet treats. It’s chock full of healthy fat from coconut milk and antioxidants from the sweet spices and fruit. The flavor just hit the spot for me and I keep making it several times per week as a dessert or snack. I use my Ninja blender with the single serve attachment to make it, but you can easily multiply the recipe by however many servings you need.
For the coconut milk, make sure to use canned full fat coconut milk without any other ingredients. Do not use the drink milk versions, which are typically those in the 4 c/32 oz rectangular cartons in the isle with the non-refrigerated Soy and Almond milks. Most healthy food stores (e.g. Whole Foods, Sprouts, Henry’s Markets, New Leaf, etc.) carry canned coconut milks and they are perfectly adequate. Trader Joe’s version is Light and I haven’t bought it in a while, but may have sugar added, regardless, it’s not the right kind. There are two brands I stock in my pantry from Amazon, they are: Natural Value and Aroy-D.
My limited brand selection is based on my decision to buy those with the only ingredient being coconut milk (commonly guar gum is added to these milks). I made the decision after reading Chris Kresser’s free mini e-book “Food Additives,” which can be found on his page (may require signing up for his site, but it’s worth it and he’s not a spammer). The gist regarding guar gum is: no, it’s not harmful at the small dose exposure in something like this milk, with the caveat that people with digestive diseases and autoimmunity would be best advised to avoid them.
I use the Natural Value for cooking. Many recipes with coconut milk in a main dish call for a can (13.5 oz), which make this easy. I have used this one for smoothies, but I don’t like it, it doesn’t blend into a super smooth creamy texture and consistency. It might just be my experience. This is partly the problem with/what I dislike with the Ninja blender, which I realized when I made my first smoothie, but partly the milk stays in tiny chunks that just makes it like fine cottage cheese, e.g. not smooth like ice cream.
Aroy-D makes your smoothie smooth like ice cream; it’s incredible! I love it!! So I typically save this one for the times I’m not cooking (it’s in an 8+ oz small carton) the coconut milk.
- Handful of ice (I fill about 1/4 to 1/3 of this single serve container)
- 1/3 c full fat Coconut Milk
- 1 small Banana, green-tipped or ripe
- 1/3 c Raspberries (fresh or frozen)
- 1 slice of Lime or Lemon (peeled)
- 1/4 tsp fresh Ginger, mashed
- 1/4 tsp Vanilla Extract
- A dash of these spices: Cardamom, Cinnamon, Coriander, Turmeric
- 1-2 drops of Stevia liquid, optional
- Place the ingredients into your blender (single serve cup, if available to you), blend and enjoy!
Note: I love the above spice blend, with just a dash it’s barely imparting taste, yet it gives it a sweetness. If I measured it out in the future, I’d try 1/8 tsp each. I just shake some in 1-2 times when I make this to keep things quick.