Adventures In Spirulina Smoothies

Lately I’ve been creating different smoothies because my schedule is so packed and having a liquified lunch is one way to get a ton of nutrients without spending too much time with food prep. My favorite new addition to my smoothies is spirulina, which is a blue-green algae that supplies a source of complete protein, vitamin K, vitamin A, B vitamins, and essential fatty acids (omega 3 & omega 6). You can find spirulina in any health food store in the supplement aisle. Although it’s not what one would call “delicious”, it’s nutritional profile makes it worth it, plus you can mask the taste by adding to a green smoothie with some fruit. Here’s the basic recipe for the spirulina smoothie I’ve been experimenting with.photo-46

Spirulina Smoothie

  • 1 frozen banana, cut into smaller pieces, or 1 fresh (unfrozen) banana + 3 ice cubes
  • 1/2 cup berries (strawberries taste pretty good in this recipe)
  • 1 cup vanilla coconut milk or almond milk
  • 1 tsp. spirulina
  • 1 cup chopped, raw kale, spinach, or other leafy green

 

In a blender, add ingredients and blend together until a smooth, liquid consistency is achieved. Pour into your favorite glass and enjoy!

 

-Jess

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Healthy Vegan Pumpkin Spice Muffins

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I’m obsessed with pumpkin flavored things, so this weekend I created a healthy, flavor-packed vegan pumpkin spice muffin! This recipe is not very sweet (because I didn’t use that much sugar) so it can be eaten alongside something sweeter or with a savory stew or soup. These muffins pack a punch of vitamin A and a good helping of fiber, so enjoy and know that it’s possible to make a truly healthy muffin.

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Ingredients (makes 12 muffins)

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour, or another whole grain flour (such as spelt, brown rice flour, etc.)
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil (melt in microwave)
  • 15 oz. canned pumpkin (nothing added, unsweetened)
  • 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or other milk alternative)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2.5 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 tsp. ginger
  • 1 tsp. cloves

Directions

  • Preheat the oven to 350Β°F and either spray a muffin tin with nonstick spray or use paper muffin cups/wrappers
  • In a large mixing bowl, combine measured dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and spices)
  • Create a well in the dry ingredients and add the canned pumpkin, applesauce, vanilla extract, almond milk, and melted coconut oil (melt the coconut oil in the microwave before mixing for about a minute)
  • Mix dry and wet ingredients until mixture is uniform in consistency
  • With an ice-cream scooper or large spoon, spoon portions of muffin batter into muffin cups/tin
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes (cooking time may vary, so use your judgment and keep an eye on the muffins during the last 5 minutes)
  • Remove from over, allow to cool down a bit and serve
  • Enjoy!

-Jess

Glorious Morning Ginger Juice

Some mornings I wake up and know that coffee alone isn’t going to do the trick to properly rouse me from my slumber. This is when I usually start thinking about what foods are energizing (or whether I should take a freezing cold shower, go for a grueling run, or some other form of Β minor self-torture.) This morning, I decided to be kind so I went with the former and created a nutrient-rich juice that’s sure to provide a burst of energy. Combining carrots, apple, ginger, and an orange, this juice is full of vitamin C, vitamin A, and has quite the flavor kick due to the ginger. Did you know that ginger has an anti-inflammatory effect in the body and can also help with the absorption of other nutrients? Ginger has been used in alleviating many health complaints/problems in medicine for centuries so it’s always a good idea to keep some in stock. Here’s the recipe for my latest juice creation

photo.PNG-12Ingredients

  • 3 large carrots
  • 2 apples
  • 1 orange (you can either remove the peel, or keep it on for an extra source of vitamins & flavonoids)
  • 3 inches of fresh ginger root

Directions

Wash produce and run through a wide-mouth juicer. Serve immediately and enjoy.

 

Have a gloriously energized morning!

-Jess

Yoga by Vitamin Valentine!

picstitch-5Greetings readers. I’ve decided to make this post a short, personal update because I’ve been extremely busy with school. Due to this, my recipe creations have taken a backseat to spending hours in front of powerpoint slides and textbooks. Somehow, despite being super-busy, I’ve decided to further my health/wellness-focused career and become a certified yoga teacher! I start 200-hr teacher training this upcoming saturday and I’m so excited! I’ve been doing yoga since I was 16, but didn’t get seriously into it until this past January when I needed a change in routine. I didn’t expect yoga would change me so much and lead to a much more stress-free, flexible approach not only to exercise but life in general. That’s all for now. Keep reading and I’ll keep you updated on everything I’m learning on and off the mat πŸ™‚

-Jess