Smoothie bowls aren’t always practical when you live a busy lifestyle; this is why I always keep a good stash of frozen fruit in my freezer. Not only does this save money since you can bulk buy your fresh produce, it means that you can make quick, nutritious breakfasts for when you’re on the go.
Below I have listed some key items i keep in my frozen fruit drawer. These items change from time to time, though I always ensure I have a good stash of bananas, raspberries, blueberries and pitaya for those crazy mornings when time is of the essence.
Bananas are a great source of vitamin B6 (15% RDI) which plays an essential role in energy metabolism; 10% Of your daily potassium intake can also be obtained by eating a single banana which can assist in regulating blood pressure and reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease. They are also great at regulating your blood sugar levels and are also a wonderful long lasting energy source due to their low glycaemic index.
Blueberries are the king of all antioxidant foods. An article published by Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, showed that blueberries had amongst some of the highest cellular antioxidant activity of most commonly consumed fruits. Anthocyanin (the potent antioxidant found in blueberries) has been associated with lowering LDL cholesterol, assisting in blood pressure regulation and possibly preventing arterial stiffness – all of which lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. Anthocyanin has also been linked to an increase in neural signaling within the brain centres associated with memory function, hence reducing the risk of memory loss/dementia.
Pitaya (dragonfruit) is considered to be a very nutrient dense fruit due to its extremely low-calorie content vs. it’s fibre and vitamin C content – 3% and 34% RDI per 100 grams respectively. It is also a great source of iron, which is essential in the production of haemoglobin and red blood cells – a shortage of which is a common cause of fatigue in vegans and vegetarians alike. Around 50% of the pitaya’s seeds are made up of essential fatty acids which are great for aiding in the reduction of LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) and increasing HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol) levels.
Raspberries, like bananas, are a great source of potassium – 1 cup provides 4% of the recommended daily intake. They are also a good source of calcium for bone growth and development, as well lutein and zeaxanthin which can help prevent the onset of macular degeneration.
* Frozen acai pulp would usually be on this list, however I found it to be more cost effective and user friendly to purchase the freeze-dried/powdered acai, since it can be utilised in other food forms – i.e. cookies, granola, etc.
The pictured creation utilises bananas and raspberries from the freezer, as well as a healthy dose of cacao and home-made raspberry infused coconut yoghurt to top (optional). Refined sugar-free and packed full of nutrients, this is a ‘berry nice’ way to start your day.
The below recipe creates one (large) serve.
- 1 small frozen banana
- 1tbs cacao powder
- 2/3 cup almond milk*
- 1/4tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup frozen raspberries
- coconut yoghurt (optional)
* Any milk substitute will work, however I found soy to be a bit overpowering due to the other flavors being so subtle.
- Blitz the banana, cacao, vanilla and 1/3 cup almond milk in a good blender until smooth.
- To create the dappled effect, separately blend the raspberries and other 1/3 cup almond milk.
- Pour simultaneously into a glass/jar, then give a quick stir to muddle the colors.
- Top with whatever your heart desires (raspberries, strawberries and coconut yoghurt pictured above).