Sunday, February 22, 2009

Healthy Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothies (Gluten Free, Casein Free)

I will be the first to admit that I was not always a supporter of low carbohydrate diets. I thought diets based on this principal were generally unhealthy, high in saturated fats, and hard for the body to digest properly.

I have learned that low carbohydrate means different things to different people. While I do consume saturated fats, they are not the basis of my diet. More than anything, since I began eating low carb I have learned to prepare and cook more fresh vegetables than I've eaten in my last 30 years.

Just a few of fresh vegetables that I've started to eat on a regular basis:

- eggplant
- cauliflower
- yellow and green zucchini
- different lettuces (other than iceberg and romaine)
- asparagus
- broccoli
- cabbage
- red onions
- baby spinach
- acorn, butternut, and spaghetti squash

Not frozen, no longer canned... fresh, local if possible, real vegetables. I am very proud that we have started eating this way, and I'm actually quite surprised it's due to beginning a low carbohydrate diet!

One very quick meal that I rely on in the mornings is this large chocolate peanut butter breakfast smoothie. This smoothie reminds me of one of my favorite carbohydrate-filled foods: a Wendy's Frosty! It's a slightly sweet, chocolately smoothie that has the added bonus of peanut butter, which makes me one happy girl! It's fast, easy, and packs a heck of a lot of nutrition and protein in one travel cup!

Recently I've started to add a large handful of fresh baby spinach to the smoothie each morning. By doing this I'm incorporating at least one healthy serving of non-starchy vegetables to my daily diet and I love that it's simply "hidden" in the smoothie. You do not taste the spinach, although it may give a slightly green tint to your smoothie. Never fear, it will still take like a "peanut butter - chocolate" version of a Wendy's frosty!!


Carrie's High-Protein Chocolate Peanut Butter Breakfast Smoothie

1 cup low carb dairy beverage (such as Hood) or soymilk, or almond milk
2-3 tablespoons natural peanut butter
2 tablespoons cocoa powder
2 tablespoons coconut flour (optional -- adds extra fiber, but you can leave it out without compromising the flavor of the shake!!)
2-3 tablespoons vanilla whey (or rice) protein powder
2-3 tablespoons erythritol
splash sugar-free vanilla syrup
splash sugar-free chocolate syrup
2 cups ice
(extra soymilk or almond milk -- depending on how thick you enjoy your shake)


Pour all ingredients into blender and process on high speed for 3-5 minutes until very smooth and creamy. You can add additional milk if shake seems to thick. Feel free to toss in additional frozen fruit or greens of your choice for added nutrition.

This makes 2 medium sized smoothies, or one VERY large 3-4 cup (meal replacement) smoothie. I often have this shake for breakfast, or even for dinner if I don't have time to cook!

This smoothie contains 5-7 carbohydrates per recipe depending on the ingredients you choose to use!

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  1. Ooh, my favorite combination! It looks so good :) I will definitely attempt this one :)

  2. I love chocolate and peanut butter but have never put them together in a smoothie. Great idea!

  3. Oooh- I have to try this! I am a peanut butter devotee!
    Thanks for posting it!

  4. Hi guys!! You will LOVE this smoothie! It's so chocolately and icy and just sweet enough to seriously kick a sweet craving out the window!! This makes a HUGE smoothie that keeps me full for 3-4 hours before lunch! I cannot recommend it enough!!

  5. Carrie,
    Is there a sub for the coconut flour? I don't keep that on hand. Thanks!

  6. I've always wanted to be a breakfast smoothie person, but I've never had the guts to put ... spinach in them! Maybe this is the encouragement I need!

  7. Sarah -- You can leave out the coconut flour! I just add it for extra fiber! Coconut has TONS Of really good fiber in it, but if you don't have it on hand, just leave it out! It won't affect the taste of the smoothie!!

    Abby -- GO For it chic!! I was completely amazed! IT doesn't taste ANYTHING like spinach! only tastes like chocolate and peanut-butter, if you can just get past the slightly green tint, you'll be just fine! haha! I drink mine in a white to-go cup, so I can't actually see the shake as I sip it through a straw, so I pretend there isn't anything healthy in it! haha!!

  8. I'm going to have my son try this. He's been having a hard time filling up since going wheat free/casein free. I saw this post last night and thought it looked really good so I bought some vanilla protein powder for him today. Next time he come over I'll make some for him to taste. I'll let you know how he likes it!

  9. hi! just wanted to mention that I’m doing a post about favorite gluten free food products on absolutely not martha. I’d LOVE to hear what yours is--just leave me a comment (if you haven’t already).

  10. This looks fantastic, Carrie. I have been wantting to try some smoothie type drinks with spinach (and I have some baby spinach on hand). The green tinge will be just right for St. Paddy's Day! ;-)


  11. Wow. This looks amaaaaazing Carrie. And thanks for the dairy-free options!!

  12. Hey Carrie,

    Just wanted to say the hubby and I made versions of this smoothie twice this week for a post yoga dinner. We don't worry about carbs so I didn't bother with making them sugar free. Rather than spinach, I added swiss chard, since that's what we had. I really liked the peanut butter. Awesome idea.

  13. Could I use rice milk instead of soy or almond milk?

  14. AspieADHSGFG - YES, you can use whatever "milk" you would like in this smoothie! It will turn out fantastic! Enjoy!!

  15. Loks awesome - i can't wait to try it.

  16. oooh, that smoothie sounds delish. will be making that when i am able to eat peanut butter again!!

  17. I often use all the above ingredients but add a tsp of Almond Butter for extra protein.