Thursday, February 23, 2012

Banana, Almond, and Oat Breakfast Drink

You know how they say that you shouldn't shop hungry. Well, maybe you shouldn't look at the Pinterest home page hungry either. Yes, definitely not. I'm lucky that I stumbled onto a banana smoothie instead of, like, Quadruple Chocolate Bipass Brownies. Anyway, I don't know what it was about this picture--there were almonds and a banana and some oatmeal, but the Pinterest link to the recipe wasn't even working and I didn't let that stop me. I was hungry; I was dedicated; I had to do a manual search on the internet where I typed in key words. I assure you that it was a grueling 47 seconds. But I did it all for you. Okay, I didn't. I did it for me. And I'm really glad I did. And you'll be glad I did too. Because this is so ridiculously good and I don't even know quite why. The flavors, they're just meant for each other.

And now I gush. I realize that I posted a smoothie yesterday and that it is surely against some type of food blogging commandment to post two smoothies in a row. Which is partly why we'll be calling this a breakfast drink. The other reason is that while it could perfectly well be called a smoothie, it really is a sort of breakfast drink. It's filling (nuts, oats, banana, milk, and yogurt) and well rounded (protein, whole grain, fruit, dairy, healthy bacterial cultures, calcium) and very satisfying to drink. Also, it takes two minutes to make. Also, the way I made it it could be a raw food. Also, my version is--if I don't mind tooting my own horn, and where good food is concerned I really don't--my version is approximately 700 times more amazing that their version in taste, ease, and even healthiness (and potential for rawness). Chiquita's recipe used cooked oatmeal (in a smoothie--ehhh, I don't know) and ice, which my blender simply cannot handle and which waters the whole thing down so that it requires honey or sugar to sweeten it). With this recipe, you throw frozen banana, nuts, quick oats, yogurt, and milk into a blender and there you go. I wasn't sure how the nuts and oats would do in my cheap-o blender, nor did I know how the texture would be with oats and milk hanging out together (would it thicken into an unbearable consistency/texture?). On both counts I was really pleased with the results. I have a lame blender, but I'll be darned if those nuts or oats gave me any trouble. And the texture (while not perfectly smooth and therefore not acceptable to some members of this family) was, in my opinion, perfectly perfect in every way and not gloppy or gooey at all, which had been my concern. Seriously, it's an awesome drink. It's like taking the best of oatmeal and the best of banana smoothies and creating a perfect offspring. And if that's not good enough, it's so so fast--no more than 2 minutes. And so transportable. I'm not going to advocated eating on the run because we all know it's not the best habit in the world, but if the need arose you could totally consume this in the car on your way to work, soccer practice, or the gym (where it is especially well suited as it's a filling, but not heavy-feeling energy-giver). Move over Slim Fast. In fact, why don't you take a nice ride down the porcelin express. We won't be needing you and we certainly won't be wanting you any more (if, um, we ever did).

Banana, Almond, and Oat Breakfast Drink
adapted from chiquita banana
Serves 1-2
Prep time: 2 minutes
Cost: $.75
banana: .15, milk: .08, yogurt: .10, nuts: .40, oatmeal: .02)
Calorie count, should you care for that sort of thing (about 400 calories if eaten as 1 serving)

Note: Your banana must be frozen in order to make this smoothie. I always have frozen bananas on hand since I take my old ones and break them into chunks and throw them into Ziploc bags. However, if you are not me, and don't have any on hand, you can freeze them fairly quickly by slicing them and putting them single layer on a tray or cookie sheet in the freezer. (They should be smoothie-able in about 20 minutes.)

Another note on banana: The riper, the better. Not rotten, mind you, but brown spots=good.

1 banana, frozen and broken into chunks
3 Tbsp yogurt (I used vanilla since I'm out of plain, but the banana has enough sweetness to carry plain yogurt)
scant 1/4 C or about 25 almonds (other nuts are good too; I made it with walnuts this morning and I think peanuts would rock as well)
1/4 C quick oats (old-fashioned oats would probably work wonderfully too)
1/2 C milk
1 tsp crunchy peanut butter (optional, but I like it)

Throw it in a blender and blend until smooth.

If you want to be a super star with this, you can also add 1/3 C baby spinach (you won't taste it and you'll barely see it, although there will be a greenish hue to your drink) and 1-2 Tbsp kefir (again, you won't taste this amount and it'll give you a little probiotic boost).



  1. Interesting idea. I think I will give this a try (minus almonds) tomorrow. There are some bananas in the freezer begging for their glory day in the hot sun.

    1. You ought to try some raw sunflower seeds or a tablespoon or so of sun butter since you're allergic to nuts. The nutty feeling gives it a little something something.



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