by Elizabeth Gilhuly, Contributor, Health Lifestyle Coach
Gone are the days of boring smoothies. You remember them: strawberry + banana + orange juice. We have advanced and gotten more creative with countless fun and thrilling options. Yes, I am thrilled by a good smoothie.
After I became adept (some would say expert) at cutting up fruit and blending, I thought, why stop there? Let's top them with more delicious bits!
Since I start most of my days with a delicious breakfast smoothie (admittedly sometimes eh-delicious if the new experiment doesn't turn out as planned, but always good for me nonetheless!) I like to top it with breakfast granola. I love granola! I once painstakingly took time to make a fully sprouted grainless granola from scratch (as in I did ALL the sprouting, dehydrating, etc.) I'll have to share that recipe one day! But, for the less advanced granola eaters, there are a couple store brands I like...
- Purely Elizabeth Granola - And no...I don't only like this brand just because it has a super great name (though it does), but because it's made with no yucky industrial oils or refined sugars.
Elizabeth, a lady after my own heart, uses coconut oil and coconut sugar in her products. TOO MANY granolas use heart-disease promoting oils and insane amounts of sugars (and eek white sugars!) You can't go wrong with coconut. Coconut oil is a healthy fat and coconut sugar is low glycemic and unrefined. You may not know, but "The sap used to make coconut palm sugar is collected from the coconut palm tree, from the flower bud that will eventually form a coconut." (Tropical Traditions) So coconut syrup is a bit like maple syrup, but it's collected from coconut palm tree flowers. Pretty cool!
- Emmy's Super Cereal - I love this sprouted, organic and raw (and also coconut sugar sweetened) buckwheat cereal and the variety of flavors... including Apricot Vanilla, Blueberry Cashew and Cacao Coconut (I've got a box of this right now!).
- Swamp Mix Granola by Sweet Water Baking Company - It's sprouted and only lightly sweetened with rapadura sugar, another unrefined sugar. Rapadura is a pure form of cane sugar. Read the Livestrong.com blog post for more info on that.
If granola isn't for you, you can try goji berry sprinkles (just look for ones that are soft like raisins and not hard like rocks), or other berries!
Do you have another creative smoothie topping? Please share!