I get it... it's July. Pumpkin craze starts in September. But if you know me, you know that I know what I like and seasons need not apply. I drink red wine on hot days, eat nachos on Thanksgiving and am driving my third Nissan. Add pumpkin to my list of "un-seasonal love."
When I first made this pumpkin smoothie recipe, I was training for my fifth marathon and focusing on my fuel and nutrition as I was looking to improve my performance without significantly altering my training program. My admiration (read: runner crush) for Shalene Flanagan led me to follow many of her tips. One of her go-to pre and post foods includes sweet potato. Sweet potatoes are filled with vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B6 and potassium, all of which support energy.
But back to pumpkin. Since I was out of sweet potatoes, I opted to substitute canned pumpkin in my post workout smoothie. Because our bodies work hard at recovering and repairing muscles, choosing foods that are easy to digest allows energy to stay focused on doing so. Smoothies take much of the breakdown of foods out of the equation. Consider them a thank you to your body.
The result of this smoothie- un-seasonal love. I craved this for breakfast, dessert, pre-workout, post-workout and even tried turning it into muffins. (Haven't mastered that... yet). After rave reviews and recipe requests at a recent juicing workshop, I figured I would share it with you all.
This pumpkin smoothie is full of protein to replenish those hard working muscles and potassium to help you rehydrate. It's simple, filling, nutritious, gluten-free, dairy-free, refined-sugar free and YUMMY!
** I suggest tweaking the ratio of ingredients to match your flavor and texture preferences. I like mine heavily seasoned and moderately thick.
Pumpkin Pie Smoothie:
1/2 cup of canned pumpkin
(you can substitute sweet potato, if you do, add more pumpkin pie spice)
10 oz of almond milk
1 tbl. almond butter
1 banana (frozen)
1 tsp. of cinnamon
1/2 tsp. of pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Small knob of fresh ginger root or 1/4 tsp of ginger powder
3-4 ice cubes
Suggested booster: Maca Root Powder
Maca balances hormones, energy and has a great earthy flavor that pairs nicely with pumpkin. (but really, what doesn't pair well with pumpkin....)
Blend thoroughly and enjoy!