Pumpkin and Spice and Everything Nice

I am a total fall junkie.  I love the crisp mornings paired with crisp apples (…also apple crisp).  I fall head over boots for anything flannel.  And, like every other food-oriented person, seriously can’t get enough of pumpkin.  Even though pumpkin is actually available year round, it seems wrong to have pumpkin spice anything before the first leaf turns.  So I hold off until September 22nd, but then all fall breaks loose.

My first pumpkin foray this year took the form of a pumpkin spice smoothie.  I love the pumpkin spice, but can’t get myself to fully commit to the Starbuck’s version.  Props to them for creating a cult following, but 16 ounces of artificial pumpkin spice syrup mixed with coffee just isn’t the best way to fuel your day.  So I took up the task of creating a smoothie that resembled the iconic drink- pumpkin, spice, but everything nice (with nice being defined as REAL food that will keep you satiated but also happy).

IMG_2243.JPGI made mine with some vanilla protein powder from the folks at 3Fu3L, but feel free to substitute your own brand, or leave it out entirely.  The powder gives the smoothie an extra thickness (and protein boost), but isn’t essential to pumpkin spice flavor.  That said 3FU3L does make a coffee flavored powder…so you could bring this up another notch and really replicate the pumpkin spice latte phenomenon.

Topped with some fresh figs and Purely Elizabeth’s Pumpkin Fig Granola (THE BEST), you’ve got yourself fall in a mason jar.

IMG_2241.JPGPumpkin Spice Protein Smoothie

The stuff

1/2 cup full fat plain greek yogurt

1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk

1/3 cup pumpkin puree (make sure it is just plain pumpkin and not pumpkin pie in a can!)

1 tablespoon maple syrup

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon almond butter

1 scoop vanilla protein powder

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

5 ice cubes

1 frozen banana

The How

  1. Add ingredients (putting the first ingredient in first and going down the list- you want the frozen stuff to be nearest the blades!) and blend until smooth.  I blend mine for 60-90 seconds.
  2. Top with anything and everything, and enjoy!

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