Smoothie Bowls for a Smarter Morning

Photo by: Min Kwon ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Min Kwon, 2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Smoothies are quintessential summer drinks. With the right ingredients, they can be healthy, portable and convenient — drinks you can feel good about slurping. While you may enjoy them for their refreshing, delicious flavors, some days you just might crave more texture and crunch. Enter the smoothie bowl, which swaps out the straw and cup for a spoon and bowl.

Instead of paying a hefty price for a store-bought bowl, make one at home with ingredients you already have on hand. If you haven’t dabbled in the smoothie-with-a-spoon concept (but have been inspired by extensive posts on Instagram), never fear.

It’s super simple! You can transform your favorite smoothie by using less base liquid or adding a thickener like avocado, chia seeds or even dried dates. If you don’t have a favorite go-to smoothie recipe, this is the perfect time to experiment.

Depending on your choice of ingredients, these thick, creamy, soft-serve-like bowls can be enjoyed anytime, as a snack, a quick meal or even as a dessert!

Photo by: Min Kwon ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Min Kwon, 2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Here are the key components of a smoothie bowl:

Vegetables: Kale, spinach, cucumber, celery, pumpkin, carrots, beets and other favorites are all great in smoothie bowls.

Fruits: Frozen fruits work the best. Fresh fruits will work, too, but you just need to add ice cubes for thickness and temperature.

Proteins: Protein powder (can be plant-based or whey), yogurt, chia or hemp seeds, and nut butters.

Healthy fats: Add avocado, nuts, seeds or coconut oil.

Liquid: Choose water, milk (dairy or non-dairy) or coconut water. Start with a little and gradually add a small amount at a time to ensure you achieve your desired consistency.

Toppings: Granola, unsweetened coconut, fresh fruit, seeds and nuts are tasty toppings. Avoid added sugars as much as possible.

While it’s tempting to dress up your creations with piles of fruit, granola and whatever else your heart desires, be mindful of portion size. If you’re not careful, all those extras can make the calories and sugar content skyrocket. Additionally, aim for a proper balance between your carbohydrates, fats and proteins. For instance, if you incorporate a heaping amount of nuts to the smoothie base, use them sparingly as a topping, or consider a different add-on, like granola.

Here are two basic recipes, but feel free to customize them to your liking. The possibilities are endless, and you never know what deliciousness you’ll uncover. Be adventurous and get your blender ready.

Smoothie Bowls

Prep: 5 min

Yield: 1 bowl

Directions:

Simply blend everything together in a blender. Depending on the power of your appliance, you may need to stop it, stir the ingredients and then continue blending. If the consistency is too thin, blend in some ice cubes. Transfer to a bowl, add toppings, then enjoy with a spoon!

Photo by: Min Kwon ©2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Min Kwon, 2015, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Berry-licious Smoothie Bowl

Ingredients:

1 cup frozen berries

1/2 medium banana, frozen

1/2 cup almond milk

1/2 cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt

Ice to thicken, as needed

Toppings of choice

Per serving: Calories 205; Fat 1 g; Sodium 148 mg; Carbohydrate 37 g; Fiber 5 g; Sugars 25 g; Protein 14 g

Green Smoothie Bowl (pictured at top)

Ingredients:

2 cups spinach

1 frozen banana

1/2 cup almond milk, unsweetened

1/2 avocado

1 tablespoon chia seeds

Ice to thicken, as needed

Toppings of choice

Per serving: Calories 294; Fat 15 g (Saturated 1 g); Sodium 137 mg; Carbohydrate 33 g; Fiber 12 g; Sugars 14 g; Protein 7 g

Related Links:

5 Savory Spins on Oatmeal BowlsMin Kwon, MS, RD, is a registered dietitian who specializes in food sensitivities. She has a passion for translating the science of nutrition into real-life, applicable advice and tips. In her healthy food blog, The Adventures of MJ and Hungryman, she focuses on sharing simple yet healthy recipes made from wholesome, REAL foods.

Keep Reading

Next Up

5 Breakfast Bowls for a Better Morning — Most Popular Pin of the Week

Wake up to a healthy morning meal with the help of these light, fresh breakfast bowls, this week's Most Popular Pin of the Week.

The Beauty of Smoothie Bowls (Yes, They're Smoothies—in Bowls)

Just when you thought the world of liquid meals was complete, along comes something new.

Have a Hammy Morning

Sometimes a hearty breakfast hits the spot. But when you have three small kids underfoot like I do, it has to be fast. Keep reading.

Quick Christmas Morning Brunch Menu

This year, instead of resorting to cereal and cocoa, serve a simple brunch, featuring hearty dishes that are ready in 30 minutes or fewer.

Early Morning Apples — Fall Fest

Instead of relegating apples to dessert, start strong by incorporating crisp, juicy apples into your breakfast regiment with these Food Network apple recipes.

Dairy-Free Coffee Drinks for Your Morning Buzz

These dairy-free coffee drinks make a great morning alternative.

Spotlight Recipes: Smarter Dips

Whether for a kid’s birthday party or having friends over to watch the game, dips are an easy to make crowd pleaser. Don’t let gobs of calories and fat weigh down your festivities – try our more figure-friendly picks.

21 Smarter Summer Desserts

What’s summer without fabulous desserts? All these delicious treats have 400 calories or under per serving.

Food Network Apps

In the Kitchen

Get over 70,000 FN recipes on all your mobile devices.

Facebook Messenger

Ask our bot for recipes, meal ideas and daily food trivia.

Amazon Echo

Just say "Alexa, enable Food Network skill" to get started.