Healthy Pumpkin Smoothie with Almond Milk
We are well into October and I’ve been having a ton of fun making all sorts of different foods with pumpkin (I hope you have too!). But in that process, I realized I haven’t posted a smoothie recipe in a long time. Now, I know some of you are going to be thinking, “It’s cold though. Why would I want to have a smoothie in the middle of October?” Well, you probably don’t live in the south. But even if it’s cold, smoothies are just a great way to get a dose of some good fruits and vegetables. Just don’t drink it outside.
Pumpkin makes some awesome smoothies. You can use it in combinations with all sorts of fruits and come out with something really great! But for now, I wanted to start with something very easy and simple to make. So today, I’m going to show you how to make a healthy pumpkin smoothie with almond milk. It tastes like a pumpkin pie without the calories (or crust). It’s completely vegan and very easy to make. And best of all, as the title suggests, it’s healthy! And seriously, who doesn’t like pumpkin pie?
This pumpkin smoothie recipe uses fresh pumpkin but you can also use canned pumpkin if that’s what is available. However, I will stress how much better fresh pumpkin is compared to the canned stuff. It will not have any added sugar or salt and it is a thousand times tastier than it’s canned siblings.
Also, making your own pumpkin at home is incredibly easy too. If you have never bought and baked a pumpkin before, I have a post that will walk you through the process here.
Plus you get the seeds! So you get a great tasting puree and a healthy snack to boot! How much better can it get, right?
If you are looking for a good savory snack to make with those seeds from your Halloween jack-o-lantern or pie pumpkin, go here.
Tips For Making A Smoothie With Frozen Fruit
Here are some tricks I’ve picked up over the years that make for the best smoothies.
- Buy a good blender. I’m not kidding about this one! You need a high-performance blender with variable speed settings. This is the only way to get the kind of smoothies that come out like an ice cream shake. The one I use is a Vitamix 5200.
- Freeze your bananas when they are overripe. You want them to be the kind that you’d use for baking. They are sweetest and blend up perfectly. Just get a freezer safe container and break the banana into thirds. Pop them in the freezer and wait at least a day before you use them.
- Be conservative with the almond milk and coconut water. I usually shoot a little under what I think I will need for the liquid and slowly add more while the blender is running until I get just enough that the blades start turning properly. Just be careful! I have a tendency to overtax my machine doing this. If it’s screaming at you it is being pushed too hard.
- Do not blend any longer than needed. The blades will heat up while in use and will melt the fruit and make the drink runny.
Also, if you have never made a smoothie before or one using frozen fruit, I have a Smoothie 101 post that could help you get started making any kind of smoothie you can dream up.
Lastly, I thought I would mention that the instructions I put together are for using a high-performance blender like the Vitamix 5200. This is my favorite blender for making smoothies and many other things! If you haven’t ever used a high-performance blender or are thinking of buying one, I’ve got a Vitamix 5200 review that shows you how this appliance can become one of your most important tools in the kitchen.
So with all that said, on to the recipe!
Like a good pumpkin pie? So do I! That was the inspiration for this recipe. It tastes like a creamy pumpkin pie but without calories (or the crust). This recipe is completely healthy, vegan, and gluten-free.
- 1 cup frozen banana approx. 1 large
- 1/2 cup pumpkin
- 1 tbsp. almond butter (optional)
- 1/4 tsp. cinnamon ground
- dash clove ground
- 1/8 tsp. allspice ground
- 1/8 tsp. nutmeg ground
- slice fresh ginger approx. 1/4" thick
- 1 tsp. coconut oil
- 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 1/4 cup coconut water
Place everything besides fruit, almond milk, and oil in the blender first.
Then add the bananas and pumpkin.
Add the liquid until it sits about an inch under the very top of the fruit.
Turn on blender at the lowest setting and let it run until everything is starting to blend together. Add more liquid if needed to reach desired thickness.
Slowly turn the setting to high.
Once the smoothie is thoroughly blended (and you are getting the vortex at the top) add the oil and blend for another 5 seconds.
If you prefer it sweeter, you can either add 1-2 dates or use sweetened almond milk instead. If you do not have almond butter, substitute with a tablespoon of almonds. Hemp milk also works great for this recipe. If you don't carry all those ingredients in the kitchen, replace the spices with about 1/4 tsp. pumpkin spice mix or make it heaping if you'd like it really spiced.
And there you have it! This is one of the best pumpkin smoothies recipes that I have come up with and it’s safe for almost any dietary restriction out there as it is gluten and dairy-free, vegan, and no added sugar. It makes a great breakfast or meal replacement drink or just as a snack to get through the day. Since it has no added sugar and packed with healthy fats and nutrients, it’s also great for kids. My 16-month-old daughter loves it!
I hope you enjoy my spiced pumpkin smoothie recipe! If you have any questions, I’m always happy to assist. Likewise, I would love to hear your feedback on how the recipe worked out for you or if you have another pumpkin smoothie recipe you’d like to share. Please just leave me a comment below and I’ll get back to you within 24 hours.