Friday, February 28, 2014

Feed My Face: Açaí Bowls

I'm all about trying new things for breakfast. I get sick of having the same stuff over and over again. Once, when I was probably 9 years old, I got really into Frosted Mini Wheats and ate them every morning and any other chance I got for probably the next two months. It was probably Kellogg's best quarter ever, but after that two months was up I never wanted to eat another Mini Wheat again. The same goes for Texas Toast and Swedish Fish, but that's another story. When the days start to get warmer, I shun my toast and oatmeal for something that is cooling and delicious. I used to just make a lot of smoothies, but I was looking for more. That's when I discovered the Açaí Bowl, or as my coworker and I call it "dessert chili". It was a smoothie, it was granola, it was healthy, all in one bowl. You can make it as simple or as complicated as you want to, but the basic concept is all the same. There's no "right" way to make an Açaí bowl, but here's a guideline as to what you can do to make a really good one!

Açaí Base
1 Package Sambazon Açaí unsweetened Smoothie Pack*
1/2 Frozen Banana
1/2 Cup chopped pineapple (pref. frozen)
1 Tbsp ground flaxseed
Approx. 1 Cup Coconut Water, milk, orange juice, whatever you desire

Blend together until smooth.

Topping Options
Granola (My favorite is Nature's Path Coconut Chia)
Unsweetened Shredded Coconut
Slivered Almonds
Crushed Macadamia nuts
Sliced Strawberries
Sliced Kiwi
Sliced banana
Mango Pieces
Bee Pollen (weird but gives a satisfying crunch)
Raw Honey
Agave (for the vegans)

*Now, if you don't want to shell out the bucks for special Açaí smoothie packs, you can buy the Sambazon Açaí that are almost always on sale at my local grocery store, freeze them in an ice cube tray and use three of those per bowl you're making. Can't find any Açaí where you are? Substitute it for a frozen berry mix. If I can't find frozen Açaí or nothing's on sale, I get a blueberry, raspberry, blackberry, cherry medley and it works really well. Açaí is so popular because of all the antioxidants it packs in; try and get the real stuff if you can, but berry mixes are just as good. Another option if you can't find acai is Pitaya (dragon fruit); it tastes super good, has a fabulous fuschia color, and is really good for you. You can purchase pitaya smoothie packs here!

These bowls are great for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and every meal in between and if you have everything prepped beforehand they can be made pretty quickly. They have quickly become my favorite way to start the day. Açaí bowls have been popping up in shops all over the place, but get adventurous and make your own at home!

Photo: Tumblr

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