Who’s ready for a new way to drink your pumpkin? Check out why this Pumpkin Pie Smoothie by nutrition Expert Emily Holdorf is the perfect way to start off your Fall mornings with dessert!
BY: EMILY HOLDORF, RDN
By this time in the Fall season, we’re often suffering from pumpkin overload. While your typical pumpkin recipes are yummy baked goods or the occasional savory dinner item, today I’ve got a slightly different recipe to share with you:
Pumpkin pie smoothies!
This smoothie is packed with nutrients and tastes just like a slice of good old pumpkin pie. As a person who isn’t a huge fan of the pie version, I love this smoothie! It’s like fall in a glass, has just the right amount of sweetness, and is a little better option for when you’re craving some pie.
Before we get to the recipe, let’s discuss some of the great nutritional benefits for a few of the ingredients in this awesome smoothie:
Packed with fiber, vitamin A, and potassium, pumpkin has several health benefits that make its cult following worth it. With 1 cup having more than 200% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin A, this orange squash packs a punch that helps with eye health and serves as an antioxidant to help rid the body of free radicals. The fiber helps keep you fuller longer, which can help you avoid overeating. 1 cup of cooked pumpkin also has more potassium than a banana, which is essential in balancing your body’s electrolytes and building muscle. Pumpkin is definitely a fall powerhouse!
By now, we all know the benefits of Greek yogurt compared to regular yogurt. Greek yogurt is higher in protein than its regular alternative, so it helps keep you fuller longer and more satisfied.
When shopping for yogurt, pay attention to the nutrition facts label and focus on added sugars. A quick refresher – look for words like sucrose, high fructose corn syrup, cane sugar, dextrose, sugar, and nectars to indicate if it contains added sugar. But keep in mind, your yogurt will always have some grams of sugar on the label because it contains lactose, a natural sugar.
Another great benefit of Greek yogurt are the probiotics that it contains, which boost your immune system and promote the growth of “good bacteria” that keeps your gut in balance.
Flaxseed is a great vegetarian source of Omega-3 fatty acids and dietary fiber. Omega-3’s are typically found in salmon, tuna, sardines, vegetable oils, walnuts and more. These fatty acids help lower your risk of heart disease and work to improve cholesterol levels. Buying pre-ground flaxseeds is a lifesaver, since these tiny seeds tend to be hard to grind yourself. Some easy ways to incorporate ground flaxseed besides in your smoothies are to sprinkle it over yogurt, cereal, or oatmeal, as well as adding it to baked goods like muffins, pancakes, and cookies.
Now that we know that this smoothie packs a nutritional punch, let’s get in the kitchen and blend one up!
- 1/2 cup pumpkin puree
- 1/4 cup nonfat vanilla Greek yogurt
- 1/2 frozen banana
- 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (any milk or milk alternative)
- 1 T ground flaxseed
- 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
- 1/2 T honey
- Splash of vanilla
Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth. Pour in a glass and enjoy!
Adapted from the original article.
Emily Holdorf, RDN is a Scranton, PA-based private practice dietitian on a mission to empower others to live a healthier, happier life. By emphasizing a non-diet approach to eating, Emily helps individuals form a better relationship with food by focusing on why there’s room for every food in moderation. Find out more about about Emily at EmPowered Nutrition.