Smoothies are a great way to sneak superfoods into your diet. There are so many to choose from, all offering their own benefits and “super” qualities. One of my favorites is spirulina, a blue green algae that adds a strong green color, and an awesome protein punch!
Spirulina is 55-70% protein by weight, making it the highest form of plant protein available. It is a complete protein containing all the essential amino acids, so it is a great substitute for those staying away from animal sources of protein. This super green superfood is rich in B vitamins and gammalinolenic acid (GLA), which helps to reduce inflammation in the body. When you include spirulina into your diet, whether it be in your smoothie or otherwise, it provides you with all of this goodness PLUS it promotes immune health and works to protect your body from environmental stress. Are you ready to dive in and give it a try??
You will need:
1 cup almond milk (or nut-milk of your choice)
a super green smoothie
1-2 handfuls of baby spinach
1 green apple, diced
1 ripe banana
1 cup frozen pineapple
2 teaspoons spirulina
½ cup water
Simply place all of these goodies into your favorite blender and watch the green magic appear as you blend, blend, blend.
I usually add spirulina to smoothies, but after reading a recipe recently, I was inspired to add it to my salad last night. Although it sounded a bit strange, I figured it was worth a try and I ended up REALLY liking it! Spirulina actually has more protein than soy, more iron than beef, is a great source of Vitamin A and is loaded with protective phytochemicals.
Serving Size: 1
bunch of lacinato kale
mixed sprouts (I used The Sproutman brand, yoga salad variety – most health food stores carry this or something similar)
raw sunflower seeds, 1 tablespoon
chopped raw walnuts, 1 tablespoon
sea salt, cayenne pepper, celery seeds, dulse flakes, nutritional yeast to taste (I used a sprinkle of each)
spirulina powder, just under a tablespoon
apple cider vinegar, to taste
juice of ½ a lemon
extra virgin olive oil, to taste
Wash the kale leaves and tear them off of the stem. Rip the kale into small pieces using your hands (you can chop it with a knife if you’d like but I think using my hands is easier!).
Take a handful of mixed sprouts and toss it in with the kale. Add the walnuts.
Peel the carrot and once you’ve peeled the outside, continue peeling the carrot so that you end up with thin carrot ribbons. Add this to the salad. Once you get near the core of the carrot you won’t be able to peel anymore. I usually eat the rest of the carrot while I’m fixing the the salad. 🙂
Add the lemon juice. Add the apple cider vinegar and olive oil, to taste. Add the salt, cayenne, celery seeds, dulse flakes and nutritional yeast. Massage the kale with your hands to help soften it up. Your hands will definitely get a bit messy but using your hands really softens the kale and makes it easier to digest. Add the spirulina powder AFTER you’ve massaged the kale – it’s quite a deep green color and will be too messy. Mix the spirulina in with the rest of the salad. Top it off with the sunflower seeds. Enjoy!