Healthy Carrot Cake Dessert Thickie: (Green Smoothie of the Week) Indulgent but amazingly healthy
This Healthy Carrot Cake smoothie will be the last Dessert Thickie in the series, unless I come across one during Green Smoothie of the week. Although I absolutely adore Dessert Thickies and I have made many more of them, I feel the need to move on to something a bit lighter. Which is why my next Green Thickie series will be called ‘Simple, Seasonal and Save’. It is time to move away from the rich heavy indulgences of winter and embrace summer and all the vibrant fresh food that is on offer. This next recipe series will feature recipes that include seasonal fruit, the recipes will be simple with minimal ingredients so anyone can get hold of the ingredients. Less ingredients also make the smoothies much easier for the body to digest. The focus will be on the seasonal fruit and less ingredients will enable you to actually taste the fruit rather than spices or additional flavourings. And finally these recipes will enable you to save money, so they are great if you need to cut back on your food expenses. Seasonal fruit is always much cheaper so it makes sense to eat it when it’s at it’s best, for it’s ripeness and reduced price. Eating seasonal food is also better for the environment as you will be eating more locally grown fruit and veg, so there will be less food transported across the world.
You are very welcome to make any of the recipes at any time of year though, and if you can get hold of frozen fruit it shouldn’t break the bank too much. I find in the UK frozen fruit is generally cheaper than fresh fruit.
Another very good reason not to go overboard with dessert thickies is that most of them don’t include greens. I have to admit that while I was testing these recipes at the weekend I didn’t feel as lively as I usually do when I have a portion of greens in my smoothies, so you might have noticed towards the end I started making one dessert thickie for my husband and one with greens in it for my baby and I. I have pretty much had a green smoothie for breakfast almost every day for the last few years so it’s strange not to have them. When I added greens to these dessert thickies I felt back to my normal self, full of energy, I couldn’t taste the greens and it still felt like an indulgent treat for breakfast. However these particular thickies are higher in calories than a lot of other Green Thickies, but they will keep you going for a lot longer. In fact you may be able to drink the same portion for breakfast and lunch. You could also drink a quarter of the recipe for half the number of calories listed. I don’t actually count calories. I just let my hunger guide me and try and eat healthily. It works most of the time. (I have bad food days as I am human but they are getting less and less the more greens I consume) I know a lot of people do count calories and I’m always interested to know the calorie count, so I include them anyway.
So this recipe for Healthy Carrot Cake Smoothie is a bonus recipe – not only is it a gorgeous dessert thickie (one of my favourites) but it’s a green thickie so you’ll get your usual energy boost from the greens without being able to taste them. Plus it actually includes 10, yes 10 carrots! It made a full blender’s worth of smoothie so the quantity increased but this is mainly due to the carrots, all other ingredients stayed the same. So if you want some more inspiration for making this smoothie (not that you’ll need any more once you taste it) I can tell you that the full recipe contains over 9 cups of fruit or veg portions. If you drink half of this for one meal you’ll have 4.5 cups. Basing the fruit and vegetable consumption on serving sizes is now a thing of the past, and the USDA is now advising you measure your fruit and veg intake in cups. They say a person on a 2000 calorie diet should be eating 2 cups of fruit and 2.5 cups of vegetables per day. This is 4.5 cups which is exactly how many cups half of this recipe contains. So you’ll meet the daily recommendations just from this one meal!
OK so that’s not an excuse to eat rubbish for the rest of the day, as we’re aiming for improved health here, but by drinking this smoothie you can definitely have your cake and eat it!
I used a high powered blender for this smoothie, so if you are using a standard blender you might want to chop your carrot small enough for your blender to handle and add it in piece by piece to test it. It might not end up ultra smooth but at least it will encourage you to chew your food. I heard a great expression the other day: ‘Chew your liquids and liquidise your solids. So basically chew everything until it becomes liquid in your mouth. If you don’t chew your smoothies your stomach won’t be prepared, (your saliva sends a signal to the stomach to produce enough stomach acid) and you might end up with a stomach ache. It sounds funny but it makes the world of difference if you let your mouth pre-digest your food.
Who needs a juicer for carrots when you can have carrot cake smoothie!
This smoothie was inspired by the Carrot cake green monster smoothie on Full Measure of Happiness. I originally tried the recipe with only 2 carrots and I wanted a stronger taste of carrot but I’d run out of them. I liked this recipe so much I went to buy a big bunch of10 carrots and didn’t expect to use them all but the flavour was perfect with all 10, very reminiscent of a carrot cake. I did buy carrots with the green tops attached and planned to use them but they were getting past their best, but feel free to use them if you like them.
If you missed my latest ‘How To’ post, this Ultimate Guide to Green Smoothies, will answer all your green smoothie questions and more.
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