Every year when I first spot the cherries at the grocery store I do a little happy dance in my head (or maybe a small happy dance in person, but not enough to get too many looks). Cherries just makes me happy, what can I say!
As much as I’d love to enjoy fresh cherries all year round, it is kind of nice to have them only for a short season as it just makes me appreciate them that much more. Every Summer I try to make at least one new recipe with this beautiful bright red fruit and this tasty smoothie bowl is my first of the year!
I took dark delicious cherries and blended them with sweet raspberries, frozen banana, Silk smooth unsweetened vanilla almond milk, collagen protein powder, and a dash of pure vanilla extract to make this creamy, dreamy, silky cherry smoothie base.
Cherries are loaded with antioxidants and they also contain a decent amount of dietary fibre. I’m sure I’m not the only one who has slightly overdone it on the fresh cherries and later found out it works much like a “cleanse of the system” shall we say. Not only do these tasty fruits contain vitamin C, A, and potassium, they are also a source of melatonin and tart cherry juice has actually been linked to improved sleep, particularly in those with insomnia!
The addition of raspberries and banana brings in more nutrients, fibre, and natural sweetness, and Silk unsweetened almond milk adds that perfect touch of dairy-free silky smoothness to the smoothie bowl. Silk’s almond milk is also a great source of calcium. You might be surprised to learn that it contains 50% MORE calcium than cow’s milk and also contains vitamin E. We have always been taught to “drink milk” for that calcium which creates strong bones but consuming cow’s milk actually has been shown to decrease bone density, likely because of its acidic nature. Just another reason to make the switch!
Now there’s probably one thing I love just a teeny-tiny bit more than cherries and that’s anything that is chocolatey. Combine the two, cherries and chocolate, I’m sold. That’s why I chose to top this delightfully cherry-filled smoothie bowl with raw chocolate brownie bits!
I recently came across this recipe from Minimalist Baker for Easy Raw Vegan Brownies and made an adaptation of the brownies without the ganache. They were so darn delicious I had to share the brownies over my Instagram stories. I had been craving rich, chocolatey brownies and wanted a healthier (gluten & dairy free) version and Dana’s recipe fit the bill. When I was brainstorming for this cherry smoothie bowl, I thought of those tasty raw brownies and knew that healthy raw brownie bits would make the ultimate smoothie bowl topping.
The brownie bits come together in a snap in the food processor with a perfect mix of almonds, walnuts, cocoa powder, dates, Silk unsweetened vanilla almond milk, and sea salt. How is it possible that these brownie bits taste so sweet and indulgent, yet contain ample amounts of omega-rich fats, protein, fibre, vitamins, and antioxidants? It just is. Whole foods are a beautiful thing.
With each bite of this bowl you get a perfect amount of cold and smooth cherry goodness with a touch of chewy, rich, chocolatey brownie. Heavenly!
I highly recommend this smoothie bowl as a healthy breakfast to rev you up at the beginning of the day or you can totally enjoy it in the evening as a tasty cold dessert, especially on a hot Summer night.
Special thanks to Silk for sponsoring this post. If you are looking to make a silky smooth smoothie bowl of your own be sure to sign up to Silk’s newsletter for recipes, life hacks, and a coupon!
- Smoothie Bowl Base:
- 2 cups frozen dark sweet cherries
- ½ cup frozen raspberries
- 2 small frozen bananas
- ¼ tsp pure vanilla extract
- 1½ cups Silk unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 2 heaping tablespoons collagen protein powder (optional, or add in protein powder of your choice)
- Raw Brownie Bits:
- ¼ cup raw walnut halves
- ¼ cup raw almonds
- 3 tablespoons raw cocoa powder
- pinch of sea salt
- ⅔ cup pitted dates, soaked for 10 minutes in hot water then drained
- 1 tablespoon Silk unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- Additional Toppings:
- 6 fresh cherries, halved and pitted
- Soak the dates for 10 minutes in hot water, then drain and set aside.
- In a food processor add the walnuts, almonds, cocoa powder, and sea salt and process until crumbly.
- Add in the soaked dates and process again for about 1 minute.
- While processing slowly pour the almond milk through the top opening of the food processor and the mixture will begin to clump together.
- Continue to process until everything has clumped together to form a ball.
- Remove the brownie batter from the food processor with a spatula and using clean hands press the brownie mixture together to form a ball, then wrap the ball in saran-wrap and set in the fridge to chill for 15 minutes.
- While the brownie ball is chilling create the smoothie bowl base.
- Add all of the smoothie bowl ingredients to a high speed blender and blend until smooth (you will likely need to use a tamper as the smoothie bowl base is quite thick!).
- Divide the smoothie bowl base between two bowls.
- Remove the brownie ball from the fridge and divide it into two equal portions.
- Crumble each portion into "bits" to top the smoothie bowl base then finish by garnishing each bowl with 3 fresh cherries.
- Enjoy immediately!
*Brownie bits adapted from Minimalist Baker
Have a wonderful Sunday!
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Silk. The opinions and text are all mine.