We’re all very busy, and it’s hard to make time for anything extra let alone healthy food preparation, especially not on a busy morning!
Most healthy foods require more preparation than just pulling out a yogurt cup or opening a package of pop tarts to eat on the go.
The beautiful thing about smoothie bowls is that they are quick and easy to make, while being super healthy.
Who can say no to breakfast or snack that can be personalized for you and tastes just like a dessert?
Read on to discover the tips, tricks, secrets and recipes that will make you a perfect morning or after workout treat.
Smoothie Versus Smoothie Bowl
You may be wondering what’s the difference between a smoothie and a smoothie bowl. There are actually two differences.
One is that the mixture your smoothie bowl consists of is thicker than what you’d drink through a straw in a typical smoothie. There’s more of a thicker consistency that will be closer to a frozen yogurt than a drink.
The second difference is the toppings. Most smoothies that you drink don’t have a lot of pieces of thick material that you need to chew because that would be a choking hazard. Plus, these types of thick ingredients tend to get stuck in the straw which takes away the enjoyment of the whole smoothie experience.
Smoothie bowls embrace adding toppings to up the taste, and add health benefits from the ingredients. There are no limits when it comes to what you add to your smoothie bowl.
What You’ll Need for Your Smoothie Bowl Preparation
There are a number of things that you'll need for a quick and easy smoothie bowl prep.
One of the most important things that you’ll need for your smoothie bowl preparation is the blender.
The bottom line on smoothies is that a good quality blender will make your prep a breeze and ensure that all of the ingredients are blended in a delicious uniform texture without chunks.
You’ll also need to gather up all of the ingredients that you’ll use for the smoothie itself and the different toppings that you’ll kick things up a notch with for your taste buds.
Each of the recipes included can be used as guidelines to help you to find the smoothie bowl taste that’s just right for you and your family. You may find that you’d rather use almond milk or whole milk, and so on.
The fun thing about smoothies of any kind are the substitutions that you can make to ensure that they work for your taste (or diet).
3. Eating Utensils
Finally, you’ll need your bowl and spoon to enjoy every last drop of your smoothie bowl concoction.
If you’re looking to save time with the preparation, you can blend the base in the evening or afternoon when you have more time, and store it in a container in the refrigerator where you can add your fresh and dried toppings later on.
Mason jars with lids are a great option for when you want to store your blend in the refrigerator overnight to enjoy on the go the next day.
One thing to keep in mind is that you can add some lemon juice to the smoothie to help it retain its freshness, and add a little extra kick of flavor.
General Smoothie Bowl Preparation
1. In general, you’ll want to take your recipe ingredients and blend them in the blender of your choice. If it happens to have a smoothie button, you can use that setting to get your bowl started right.
2. For smoothie bowl, as opposed to a smoothie beverage, you’ll want to have just enough liquid ingredients in your mix to help the smoothie blend up nicely - but not too much liquid.
If you find that your blender is getting bogged down with the ingredients, add a little more of the liquid that you’re using to help it mix easier.
3. You want the blend to be thicker since you’ll be eating it with a spoon.
If you notice that your smoothie bowl has more of a liquid consistency, you can add some of your other ingredients to give it a thicker consistency, such as adding a bit more yogurt or fruit.
For a complete guide on how to make your smoothie thicker or thinner, click here.
4. Pour your smoothie mixture into the bowl, and then add in your toppings to your taste.
Voila, your smoothie bowl is complete, and you’re ready to enjoy it at any time of day. You may feel as though you’re eating a sundae, but this is one guilt-free treat.
Smoothie Bowls for Beginners
Hopefully by now you’re really excited to start making your own smoothie bowls, and I’ve got 2 great recipes that are perfect for getting you started:
Party Time: Smoothie Bowl Bar
If you have kids or health conscious friends coming over for a party at your house, you may want to consider offering a smoothie bowl bar.
You can set up a table with a variety of pitchers filled with different smoothie bowl base recipes with little placards stating what is in each blend. Around each of the pitchers, you can then put out bowls of all of the fun toppings that your guests can enjoy.
These toppings can run the gambit of being extra healthy to cheating on diets a little. Researchers are always finding out ways that chocolate can be more beneficial to our health than ever before, and that makes this sweet treat even better.
Putting out toppings in bowls gives your guests the opportunity to pick and choose which tasty tidbits they want to add, and how much they want to add. Often, there are some people that will love a particular set of flavors together while another will be repulsed by the same set of flavors. This makes it possible to please everyone.
This level of personalization is sure to make your smoothie bowl bar the talk of your party.
Ingredients That Work Great in a Smoothie Bowl
The great thing about smoothie bowls is that there isn’t one of these recipes that are set in stone. You can try a wide variety of things based on your personal taste, and keep experimenting.
Additional ingredients not listed above that you may want to try in your smoothie bowl experiments includes:
- Leafy Greens
Ingredients That Don't Work Well in a Smoothie Bowl
Stevia, maple syrup, and honey might be too much to add to the already existing natural sugars in the fruits you’ve added to your smoothie.
Taste your smoothie without, and then go in to add sweeteners if you find it’s still not to your taste. Chances are you might enjoy without adding more sugar.
Some greens like dandelion or mustard greens are too bitter for your smoothie to taste great. If you really want to add these types of greens, you may want to try adding a very small amount and using other tastes that will help to block it in a similar fashion to the Green Goddess.
- Store-Bought Fruit Juice: Your smoothie bowl will get plenty of punch from the fruits you’re adding, so store-bought fruit juice is not a good add. It’ll add more sugar than you need for your recipes.
Toppings You Should Try
In addition to the topping ideas in the recipes, some additional toppings you can try includes:
- Fresh Fruits and Berries
- Citrus Fruits
- Pumpkin Seeds
- Chia Seeds
- Hemp Seeds
- Bee Pollen
- Goji Berries
- Cacao Nibs
Additional Recipe Ideas
Peanut or Other Butters - This can be blended into a nice variety of smoothie bowl recipes. A great variation would be to use your choice of nut butter or sunflower butter, a whole banana, and vanilla yogurt.
Acai Berry - Acai is a very powerful antioxidant that researchers have found to potentially assist with blood sugar and cholesterol, but more research needs to be done. This can be either blended as part of the smoothie bowl base, or you can use as part of the topping.
Cooked Oatmeal - Oatmeal is another popular dish that’s making a comeback as a healthy breakfast treat, and you can combine your love for smoothie bowls with oatmeal. This is a filling duo that will be sure to power up your morning routine.
Avocado - This is one smooth and creamy addition if you’re looking for ways to improve on your smoothie bowl consistency. While this is perfect for green smoothies focusing more on veggies than fruits, you can try it out with your more fruit based smoothie recipes.
There’s a Catch...
As with everything that tastes great, there’s a catch when it comes to your smoothie bowls.
The catch is that depending on the ingredients in the bowl base and the toppings that you add, you’ll need to keep in mind the amount of natural sugars and calories that occur naturally in these foods.
This is still a very healthy treat that mimics dessert, but moderation can be key.
You may want to note all of the ingredients that you add to your typical bowl, and do a quick calculation as to how many calories you’re getting in your meal.
You may be well within a reasonable range with your smoothie bowl choices, but there’s the possibility that you may be adding more to your daily intake than you realized.
This will better help you to determine if you need to slim down your smoothie bowl or adjust the amount you eat at other times of the day.
The bottom line on smoothie bowls is that they are delicious, quick to make, and easy to personalize for your own tastes.
If you don’t like one ingredient, you can always throw in another that is more to your liking. Not sure if any of the recipes really work for you?
You can even make up your own recipes based on what flavors you like to put together.
Smoothie bowls are just the perfect way to reward yourself with something healthy that tastes like a divine dessert.
Are you a big fan of these smoothie bowls? What is your favorite ingredient blend? Are you planning on starting with one of these yummy treats?
Be sure to share your story below so others can enjoy the recipes that you’ve been loving. You don’t want to keep your smoothie bowl tips secret 🙂