Sunday, May 4, 2014

Acai Bowl Recipe


Inspired by my last few trips down to Southern California, where we had amazing Acai Bowls, I decided to make my own at home! Have you ever had one? If not, you are missing out! Smoothie bowls are becoming increasingly popular and because acai is a superfood antioxidant, it's the perfect recipe to try when you make your first smoothie bowl!

I knew the hardest part about this recipe would be finding a store that sells acai, since my local grocery store did not have it. After a bit of research, I found that WholeFoods sold it in smoothie frozen pouches. This is the kind I used:
I started with the Acai smoothie packs in the blender. I used two, but I was making bowls for a family of 5 for lunch, so I had much bigger quantities than probably what you'll need. At the end, I will do a recipe with my quantities, so you can see how to make it more or less for you and your family. The best part about this recipe, though? You can make it work for your family with the fruits you and your kids like! My recipe is taste-tested by my whole family and I can tell you that I did not hear one single complaint about lunch! And that isn't easy to do in my family.  
 After the acai, I added frozen strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries. I also added one scoop of vanilla protein powder (because everything, to me, tastes better with protein powder - I am one of those weirdos who LOVES the way it tastes!) and two tablespoons of chia seeds. *Note: I used frozen fruit, because we always have it on hand (we are a big smoothie family!), but if you prefer fresh fruit, just make sure to use a little less liquid! Once that was all in there, I added V8 Fusion Acai Mixed Berry 100% juice to it - just enough to make it moist enough to process in the blender. You do not want it as soft as a smoothie, because you're going to eat it with a spoon. You want a sort of ice cream consistency.
Once that was in there, I blended it all together! This is what the consistence should look like:
The only thing left to do, is add all your favorite toppings! My kids, hubby, and I all like strawberries, raspberries, bananas, and granola but the toppings you could add are unlimited. You could do blueberries, blackberries, coconut, peanut butter, mango, pineapple, chocolate chips, a raspberry drizzle, and any other fruit combination. I could totally see making this as a dessert and adding in chocolate chips. I think the flavor would be amazing!
 I like my acai bowls with the fruit toppings and granola, but my husband also likes a good drizzle of honey on top of his! The kids like it with and without honey!

Acai Bowl Ingredients for 4 acai bowls (or 2 adult and 3 smaller kid bowls):

  • 2 Acai Smoothie Packs from WholeFoods
  • 4 cups Frozen fruit. I used 2 cups frozen whole strawberries and 2 cups frozen mixed berry mix (with strawberries, raspberries, blue berries, and blackberries). Note: If you use fresh fruit instead of frozen, you'll need to adjust your liquid below.
  • 1.25 cups juice (I used V8 Fusion Acai Mixed Berry 100% juice) 
  • Optional: 1 Scoop Protein Powder - I used Muscle Milk Protein - Vanilla Shake flavor ( I buy it at costco)
  • Optional: 2 tablespoons Chia Seeds
Acai Bowl Toppings for 4 acai bowls (or 2 adult and 3 smaller kid bowls)
  • 5 strawberries chopped to desired size
  • 2 bananas chopped
  • 1 handful of raspberries
  • Granola (I used about 2 tablespoons of honey bunches of oats - honey roasted - per bowl)
  • Optional: honey drizzle
  • Other topping options: coconut shavings, blueberries, blackberries, pineapple, mango, peaches, fruit drizzles (raspberry drizzle, etc.), chocolate chips.
I hope you and your family enjoy this! We've made it twice now: once as a lunch (served with a quesadilla) and for breakfast (served with coffee for the hub and I) and both times it was delicious. I could also see serving this for dessert as is or with a few chocolate chips! So delicious! 

This recipe is paleo and vegan (if served without honey).


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