Head to the farmer’s market in the autumn, and you’re destined to come home with a bounty of fresh Pacific Northwest-grown produce. Think kale, pumpkin, apples, beets and pears. But once that canvas bag full of beautiful produce reaches your kitchen, you may realize that you have more than you know what to do with.
Enter: Seasonal smoothies.
Smoothies are a great way to utilize all of those farmer’s market goodies in a way that is both quick and healthy. Looking for inspiration, we scoured our favorite Northwest food blogs and found five creative smoothie ideas worth exploring. Try whipping those fresh, local ingredients up into one of these tasty — and nutritious – treats.
This sweet potato-based beverage is the perfect blend of sugar and spice. It is one of many simple seasonal recipes created by farmer/foodie Andrea Bemis, who owns and runs Tumbleweed Farm (with her husband) in Parkdale, Oregon. Bemis is also the brains behind the wonderful Dishing Up the Dirt blog.
Just in time for Thanksgiving, this paleo-friendly recipe from Portland-based blog A Girl Worth Saving is a yummy mix of coconut milk, banana and cranberry sauce.
Put those Honeycrisp apples and Bartlett pears to good use with this smoothie from food blog Nourishing Meals, produced by husband-and-wife duo Tom Malterre, M.S., C.N., and Alissa Segersten, of Seattle-based Whole Life Nutrition. In addition to fruit, their Harvest Green Smoothie also includes ginger and three different types of greens (spinach, kale and collards), jamming a ton of vitamins and minerals into just one glass.
‘Tis the season for pumpkin, but that doesn’t mean the famous root vegetable always has to come in cookie, pie or bar form. For a healthier seasonal treat, the Oregon Dairy Council suggests blending pumpkin puree with milk, vanilla yogurt, maple syrup and seasonal spices instead.
To make this smoothie, Andrea Bemis of Tumbleweed Farm (mentioned above), pairs naturally sweet beets with banana, dates, almond butter, chia seeds, coconut milk, almond milk, vanilla extract, cinnamon and ginger, for a surprisingly smooth and creamy treat.
A final piece of advice: Feel free to get creative with your smoothie-making. Seasonal spices like nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves will always add the feeling of fall to your food, so work with a wet base (think milk, almond milk or coconut water) and experiment with adding various seasonal fruits, vegetables and spices.