I am obsessed with green smoothies. They are my go-to, and I went through a period of having them for breakfast everyday for about 4 months! But eventually I ran out of variations to try, and decided to create my own. This flavour has been my biggest success yet!
When I first heard about the superfood spirulina I was blown away. I was browsing Instagram and suddenly these amazing smoothie bowls of such a deep blue-green colour emerged. I kept researching until I found the key ingredient to be spirulina: a high protein plant-based superfood which is derived from algae… Sexy right?
It was then I knew I had to try it, so I ordered a packet online almost instantly. I was so excited to try it, I could hardly wait. When the package showed up at my home, I immediately researched a smoothie recipe and threw all of the ingredients into a blender, including a hefty teaspoon of spirulina powder. From the words I read on Instagram and the beautiful pigmented colours of the smoothies, I had high hopes for the flavour of spirulina.
I poured the green smoothie into a glass and desperately took a sip. And that’s when it hit me. Disgust. Oh my effing God it was horrible.
The taste of the smoothie was so bad it’s actually hard to describe in words. It was like no flavour I’d ever tasted before, and I really didn’t agree. I kept drinking, hoping I would get used to the spirulina and the appreciation for the powder would come soon after. But it never happened. I had to pour it away. It seems the taste of spirulina for a first-time drinker is a mix of some sort of hippy ceremonial slime and the dregs from a stagnant pond. Ew.
The packet of spirulina made it’s way to the back of my cupboard, not to be seen again until today. When I was travelling in Bali, I tried the most delicious spirulina mint raw dessert: something I’m going to recreate in the near future. I was surprised how the overpowering spirulina was hardly noticeable, meaning I could enjoy both the indulgent flavours of the dessert and reap the benefits of the superfood. I then realised that the answer to cooking with spirulina were simple: find the right flavoured foods to pair it with, and use it sparingly.
I had been told that the flavour does become more manageable as time goes on, and that’s when you can start to increase your spirulina intake and still enjoy the tasty flavours of whatever you’re cooking it with. But for now, at least, I’m going easy…
This smoothie is refreshing, nutritious, but most of all delicious. It delivers the cooling and healthy flavours a green smoothie should always deliver. I really do recommend this recipe, as I think it’s my favourite smoothie yet.
A lot of the recipes I find use honey or dates to sweeten smoothies. I’m not a huge fan of this, as I feel it’s a lot of added natural sugar. I use melon to sweeten this smoothie and it adds a slight subtle flavour which really compliments the rest of the ingredients too.
HAZELNUT SPIRULINA GREEN SMOOTHIE
- One large handful of frozen spinach (I use the frozen spinach that come frozen in blocks, and I took a handful of blocks)
- One small-medium sized banana
- One small handful of frozen strawberries
- One small slice of snowball melon, chopped (honeydew also works well)
- Half a teaspoon of spirulina powder
- One heaped teaspoon of nut butter (I used peanut, but hazelnut will add to the flavour more if you have it!)
- 200ml of Hazelnut Milk (if you want a thicker smoothie use 150ml)
Place the frozen ingredients in the blender first, followed by the milk, and finally the other ingredients. Blend until a smooth smoothie has formed and enjoy!
I feel we should always mix up our smoothie flavouring, even if they’re always green ones! We can forget how many variations we can create and it really relights our palates when we try something new!