Squash your chocolate craving the healthy way with this super-satisfying, antioxidant-rich zucchini squash, apple and cacao smoothie!
Cacao is the purest form of chocolate we can consume. It is free of all the unhealthy sugar and additives found in most processed chocolate but rich in essential minerals and natural mood-boosting agents. Furthermore, cacao is packed with health-promoting flavonoid antioxidants, which are believed to reduce the risk of hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.
Zucchini is extremely low in calories (only 33 calories per medium zucchini), yet packed with vitamins, minerals and disease-fighting phytochemicals. Furthermore, zucchini has a high water content and is rich in fibre. This means that it helps you hydrate and feel full & satisfied.
Research suggests that zucchini consumption can improve digestion as well as insulin and blood sugar regulation. It may also have benefits for thyroid, adrenal and prostate function.
Quick Tip: When zucchini is at the peak of its season in late summer and early fall, it's a great time to pick-up extra for freezing. I freeze it in 1 cup portions for convenient use in smoothies.
For 2 servings, blend together until smooth:
1.5 cups unsweetened almond milk
1 cup steamed-then-frozen zucchini
1 cup steamed-then-frozen cauliflower
1 cored diced apple
2 Tbsp almond butter
2 Tbsp raw cacao powder
1 to 2 tsp gelatinized maca powder (optional)
raw honey (nonvegan), pure maple syrup or stevia to sweeten as desired
optional 1 to 2 Tbsp collagen peptides and/or 1 scoop unflavoured or vanilla protein powder
Note: This recipe was first published on September 4, 2017.