New Favorite Smoothie

by Gena on November 29, 2010

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You’d never know it, given his modesty, but M is a great cook. He is, as we know, master of the pressure cooker. And he’s also pretty incredible with stews, grains, soups, and beans. The last time he told me he had “made breakfast” while I was at the gym, I walked into the apartment to find scrambled tofu, vegan hash browns, English muffins with natural jam, vegetable juice, and hot oatmeal. That’s not a breakfast. It’s four. We should all hope to be as easygoing and effortlessly gifted in the kitchen as he.

M is also pretty handy with a blender, and makes what might be my favorite smoothie—dare I say it—ever? I know I’ve probably said that before. After all, I do love my mellow green smoothie, my sinful smoothie, and my butternut squash smoothie. But M’s morning smoothie, which is a mix of bananas, peanut butter, mixed berries, and—the magic ingredient—frozen cherries, almost puts all other smoothies to shame. It’s rich , delicious, and full of nutrition, and it’s made from the simplest ingredients. For two people, simply…

Begin with 2 cups of frozen mixed berries:

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And add 2 frozen bananas, 2 cups of almond milk, 2 teaspoons of cinnamon, and 2 heaping tablespoons of peanut butter:

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Blend, adding more almond milk as needed. When the mix is blending well, add about a cup of frozen cherries, and keep going until the mix is this smooth and creamy:

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For those of you who don’t have Vita-Mixes, this may tax your blender a little, but as you can see from the photos, M makes his smoothies in a regular blender. So those of you who are scared of raw food prep sans Vita should take heart: it’s perfectly possible to make delicious beverages without one.

I like to top mine with frozen cherries, which are so delicious:

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I can guarantee that it tastes as incredible as it looks! Try it soon, and prepare to be amazed.

And now, it’s early on a Monday, and I’m preparing myself for the rocky transition back into the work week. It’s tough recovering from holiday weekends. I do, though, have plenty of food porn to share throughout the week, so I’ll be back bright and early tomorrow!

In the meantime, happy Monday to you all.

xo

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{ 51 comments… read them below or add one }

Anon November 29, 2010 at 8:33 am

Hi Gena? How many servings does this make (1-2 people?). I don’t have a vita-mix, so it may not be possible for me. Do you think it might be good for someone with a very up and down digestive system?

Also, I try to buy nut butters with no added ingredients. But recently I have been wanting to try cashew butter and the only one I could find has roasted cashews and sunflower oil in it. So I’m eating it. Is sunflower oil fine?

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Gena November 29, 2010 at 8:40 am

Serves two! Thanks for asking me that. And yes, the oil is fine.

Also, my post mentioned that this is NOT a VitaMix required recipe.

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chocolate-covered katie November 29, 2010 at 8:38 am

Oh Gena, your photography in this post is gorgeous!
I especially love the last picture. Hmmm, and now I’ve just realized I didn’t even read the recipe; I was too busy looking at the artistic qualities of the food photography… strange? :)
*Goes back to actually pay attention to the food*

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Jeni Treehugger November 29, 2010 at 8:59 am

Where did you get your cup from? I LOVE it.

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Gena November 29, 2010 at 9:00 am

No idea! It’s M’s. I’ll ask him.

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Gena November 29, 2010 at 1:24 pm

So M got the cup in Japan, Jeni. Sorry it’s not easier to find! Maybe you might find something like it here: http://www.holymtn.com/catalog/cups-gaiwans-japanese-ceramic-cups-c-121_122_172?sort=20a&page=7

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Jeni Treehugger November 29, 2010 at 1:28 pm

Thanks for the link and tell M I LOVE his cup.

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bitt November 30, 2010 at 4:21 am

I have one almost exactly like it. He has good taste. In people and mugs.

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Faith @ lovelyascharged November 29, 2010 at 9:25 am

Mmm, cherries are my favorite in a smoothie. Glad to know a VM isn’t necessary…I have a little Black and Decker that isn’t the best but it seems to work fine for now.

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Dianne November 29, 2010 at 9:37 am

Frozen cherries in smoothies are superb. I can’t believe how smooth you got it with a regular blender!

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Jess - The Domestic Vegan November 29, 2010 at 9:51 am

I looooove peanut butter in my smoothies! Frozen cherries really are the best, aren’t they?

M sounds like quite a catch! ;)

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Little Bookworm November 29, 2010 at 10:09 am

That smoothies sounds (and looks) amazing!

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Evan Thomas November 29, 2010 at 10:26 am

I’ve always thought breakfast is the sexiest meal. And it’s so underrated! I’m glad M understands that. You’re in good hands ;-)

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Teresa November 29, 2010 at 11:50 am

Looks like an amazing smoothie! But it is next to impossible to find frozen cherries – I’ve tried many times before. The Whole Foods in Canada used to carry them, but doesn’t anymore. Suggestions?

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Gena November 29, 2010 at 12:20 pm

Hey T,

M and I used these guys, which I’ve found at health stores and whole foods. Hope you can get your hands on them! http://www.cascadianfarm.com/products/product_detail.aspx?cat=9&upc=0-21908-56001-4

G

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melissa @ the delicate place November 29, 2010 at 11:52 am

mmm i love new smoothie combos. i’d love to try it without the banana and with almond butter. i’m weird and hate the smell of bananas, i only end up eating them if it’s a last resort (read: i’m starving hungry)

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Christin@purplebirdblog November 29, 2010 at 11:55 am

Frozen cherries definitely take a smoothie to a whole ‘nother level… I love cherries and raw cacao powder together!

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Shady November 29, 2010 at 1:27 pm

Yum. I’ve never had frozen cherries in a smoothie but now I’m excited to try. And for those of you without a VM, this recipe is totally doable in a regular blender. I have an old Black and Decker and I make smoothies several days a week using frozen fruit and greens and I’ve never had a problem.

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Caleb November 29, 2010 at 2:03 pm

I’ve made this exact same smoothie before, and I can testify, it’s truly amazing! I made mine with almond butter though. I’m not opposed to using organic peanut butter on occasion though.

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Dorry November 29, 2010 at 3:27 pm

Mmm – I love cherries. And adding peanut butter makes smoothies a million times better and with lasting effects for fullness. I’m adding frozen berries to my grocery list!

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Ela November 29, 2010 at 3:29 pm

That sounds out of this world delicious. I had a smoothie with pb/banana/spirulina in Anchorage last week and was so blissed with it – but I hadn’t had a banana in about a year and a half (yeast issues) and am scared of peanut butter for all kinds of reasons. It’s cool to see you presenting it as something good and nutritious!

love
Ela

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Gena November 29, 2010 at 3:43 pm

Hi Ela,

Don’t let raw extremists terrify you of peanuts. They’re definitely less nutritious than almonds, mostly bc they tend to be a sprayed, GMO crop, but the organic stuff ain’t gonna kill ya! In fact, it’s a nice source of protein. Almond butter is a cleaner choice, but PB tastes awesome, and is hardly a big deal now and then instead!

G

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Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) November 29, 2010 at 3:54 pm

3 cheers for Peanut Butter! I don’t eat a ton, but when I want it, I enjoy it…aflatoxins? Overrated I’m sure :)

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Namaste Gurl November 29, 2010 at 3:37 pm

Love your mans smoothie recipe– Definitely haven’t tried it with frozen cherries, so I will most definitely be trying that tip! And beautiful, well- taken photos, by the way!

Have a good monday, Gena! :)

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Laura C November 29, 2010 at 3:43 pm

That is essentially what I call my PBJ smoothie! I usually use a mixed bag of berries from TJs (includes cherries), almond butter (sometimes peanut butter but I prefer almond with cherries), bananas, almond milk or water, and sometimes some hemp protein. It’s one of my favorites too! Although I have to say, the BEST PBJ smoothie I have made was very heavy on blackberries. Blackberries + banana + nut butter = heavenly. Tahini also goes amazingly well with bananas and blackberries.
Looks like you’re getting great mileage with M! (I type this from 39000 feet in the air… pretty cool- I think it’s my first airborne blog comment!)

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Elle November 30, 2010 at 3:22 pm

I love the PBJ smoothie name. Hilarious!

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Melomeals: Vegan for $3.33 a Day November 29, 2010 at 3:46 pm

Wow.. that looks and sounds sooo good!

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Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) November 29, 2010 at 3:55 pm

What a delish looking smoothie! And what appeals to me at this very moment is that anyone who is sick, or has a sick child, or a sore throat..those frozen cherries sound like the best thing for a sore throat. The frozen version of a Luden’s cherry cough drop…which I admit as a kid, I ate like candy, but I digress :)

Great smoothie, M & Gena. Have a great week!

:)

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Lissa November 29, 2010 at 5:08 pm

I LOVE frozen cherries in my smoothie. They are delicious. My second favorite being mangoes. :)

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ainslie November 29, 2010 at 6:12 pm

Yes! I used to work at a veg restaurant where a staff fave smoothie was the “pb&j sandwhich smoothie” – banana, frozen cherries, pb & soymilk. It’s like drinking a pb&j sammich. Definitely reviving this old fave in my own kitchen, thanks for the reminder!

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Aj November 29, 2010 at 6:37 pm

Oh delish! I’ve been ona smoothie kick recently, I now I’m getting mixed berries and cherries to add into my rotation! I sometimes let the fruit thaw overnight in the fridge if I’m worried about the impact on my poor little blender. And I break up my bananas before freezing for the same reason.

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Erika @ Health and Happiness in LA November 29, 2010 at 7:10 pm

Frozen cherries are incredible. They also taste really good with a little cocoa powder.

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Christine (The Raw Project) November 29, 2010 at 7:52 pm

This smoothie looks divine thanks to your beautiful pics! I was making smoothies in my pre-Vita-Mix days and it works, even if the smoothies are a little grittier. :-)

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sarah November 29, 2010 at 9:34 pm

I am looking forward to this! I’m in such a smoothie rut recently… none of the ones I normally make are tasting as good as normal. I’d say it’s the 95 degree heat, but I think that’s just the reason that I should be enjoying my smoothies even more!

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Maryea @ Happy Healthy Mama November 29, 2010 at 10:11 pm

Oooh I love smoothies with berries+pb, but the cherries look like they take it to a whole new level! Gonna grab some frozen cherries next time I’m at the store.

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Natalie November 29, 2010 at 10:43 pm

M sounds awesome! This is much like MY favourite breakfast smoothie except mine is sans cherries… The cherries are a divine idea though!

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Pure2raw twins November 29, 2010 at 11:03 pm

Glad to hear M is good in the kitchen!! Always a good sign ;)

Smoothie looks perfect!!

~Michelle

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Diana (Soap & Chocolate) November 29, 2010 at 11:27 pm

I daresay I prefer frozen cherries to fresh ones. Kristens choco-cherry smoothie rocks my world, so I can only imagine how much I’d love M’s recipe. :)

Just spent like 45 minutes catching up on probably 2 weeks of CR – I am on vacay in CA and have hardly been present in blogland, but I can always make time for CR. Miss you, hotness! xo

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BroccoliHut November 30, 2010 at 12:28 am

Cherry-banana is one of my favorite fruit combos, but I love the idea of adding PB to the mix!

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Kelli November 30, 2010 at 12:53 am

I’m still waiting for that pressure-cooker follow-up post you promised! After reading your pressure cooker post, I’ve been daydreaming about cooking beans in half an hour… a pressure cooker is at the top of my Christmas list!

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bitt November 30, 2010 at 4:24 am

Yes a regular blender will work just fine for most smoothies that aren’t green. Kale in a regular blender though–it’s a icky mess to me. So I just do spinach then or green powder. I would like to the see the rest of the breakfast too! Or was it eaten too fast?

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falalaraw November 30, 2010 at 5:01 am

i heard fruit should not be combined with anything except fruit and raw veggies, what is your take on mixing it with peanut butter? I am scared to add anything in my morning fruit smoothie that isn’t green or fruit, but i start to fade out by mid day. comment?

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elizabeth November 30, 2010 at 7:16 am

I have a pretty sensitive digestive system (meaning, doesn’t take much to throw it off) yet for some reason, I can do the frozen fruit and protein or hemp powder and/or nut butter/nut milk smoothies. With no problems. Truly, I think the blending has something to do with it. In Ayurveda, there’s this concept of the “one pot meal” where cooking foods together alters the digestive profile. And I think the blender works like that, to pre-digest the food in a way, making it all more assimilable. Of course, the only way to know for sure is to give it a try. If it doesn’t agree with you, you know better in the future. Food is so individual … I actually digest a vega protein and banana smoothie much better than a spinach and banana smoothie – go figure.

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Gena November 30, 2010 at 8:24 am

Falalaraw,

Peanut butter and fruit would be a no no if you practiced food combining, which I don’t (I did in the past, and no longer believe in its logic or efficacy). But even if food combining DOES work for you, I think that Elizabeth’s excellent comment points out that there are all sorts of bodies and responses to different combinations, so you shouldn’t get orthodox in any direction. Experiment and see what works.

G

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falalaraw November 30, 2010 at 10:11 pm

Thank you ladies so much, its the food combining laws that i try to incorporate for a weight loss/health approach. I want to be as healthy as I can and don’t want to “break” any rules. Seeing your beautiful nutrient salads with kombucha squash and a nut dressing looks absolutely scrumpious. I will give my smoothies a try with some raw butters. See how it goes. I found i felt i was developing food allergies the cleaner i got, that nuts/wheat started to cause lots of pain. So now just fear of the foods but gotta try it out anyways! Love your feedback on food combining.

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elizabeth November 30, 2010 at 7:26 am

I eat so many cherries in season (it’s the one food where I lose portion control – I eat them a pound – or two – at a time) that I never think to buy them frozen, even though I buy frozen blueberries year round. And I’m guessing frozen cherries retain their flavor better than frozen blueberries. I must give them a try in a smoothie.

As for peanut butter, I don’t think I’d ever add it to a smoothie, only because my smoothies have plenty of calories, fat, and flavor as is, but it is the quintessential comfort food, and I agree, now and then, it has its place in a healthy “high raw” diet. It’s not just the body we’re feeding, after all.

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Gena November 30, 2010 at 8:25 am

E,

Unlike you, I’m not much of a cherry fiend (I like them, but rarely snack on them in season). But honestly, I was DYING over these frozen guys! Popping them in my mouth with delight. Totally worth your buying a bag :) I think you will love them.

G

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Sara December 1, 2010 at 4:05 pm

Oh my gosh!! I just made this (changing it a little as to what I had on hand) and it was so good! I make smoothies everyday and for some reason, I never thought to add cinnamon!! It totally changed it to awesome! I will be doing this more often now. Thank you!!

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Louise NZ July 4, 2012 at 11:19 pm

wow, this was the best smoothie ever, my teenage son (who is very picky) loved it, we made it on Hazelnut milk and as we only had raspberry’s used them not the mixed berries. When I was first reading the recipe I was not sure about the cinnamon, but I have to say that all the flavors work so well, I would not change a thing! A perfect smoothie. I am now going to look for more gems on this web site!

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Kelly S April 24, 2013 at 6:29 pm

Oh my gosh, this is my new favorite post-workout smoothie. Absolutely delicious! I tossed in raw almond butter (my fave!) and holy cow, your combination is perfect! :D Thanks for sharing another amazing recipe!

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Gena April 25, 2013 at 9:29 am

Hooray! So glad you liked.

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