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This healthy copycat of the Starbucks Cherry Blossom Frappuccino will fuel you up for breakfast or a snack. Enjoy these sweet and creamy Matcha Swirl Strawberry Banana Smoothies.
Matcha Swirl Strawberry Banana Smoothies
Disclosure: Cabot Creamery Cooperative provided me with a race entry for the Cherry Blossom 10 Milersponsored the Cabot Fit Team and paid for all travel and accommodations for the Middlebury Maple Run. Cabot also provided the products for this giveaway. No other compensation was received, and, as always, all opinions are my own.
It was just over a year ago that I laced up my first pair of real running sneakers and hit the pavement. Well, I attempted to hit the pavement before, and only ended up hitting my couch in pain because I did too much too soon, didn’t stretch and train the right way, and ultimately just gave up. But last year I was chosen to be part of the Cabot Fit Team to run the Beach to Beacon 10K. Yes, this girl who, though fit, could barely run a mile, was committing to running 6.2 of them. I had plenty of reasons why I wanted to push myself outside my comfort zone, but I was still nervous. But even though I Never Thought I’d Be a Runner, I soon realized that the only thing you have to do to be a “runner” is to run – it doesn’t matter if it’s a mile or a marathon. And if you aren’t a runner, it’s cool, but being active some way, some how, is important to be healthy in body and mind. And that’s what #CabotFit is all about.
In the days leading up to the race, I wasn’t sure if those 6.2 miles would be the last ones I would ever run, or if I would keep going. But I finished my first 10K in under an hour. And guess what? A few days later, I was back at it, building up the mileage over the following months. I even got a treadmill so that I could keep at it through the winter, though I do still struggle with long runs indoors. Running has become part of my regular fitness routine, but for months I was running just to run, which felt great, but I needed a new goal. So I was thrilled to be selected as part of the 2016 Cabot Fit Team, this time running the Middlebury Maple Run Half Marathon.
Yep, I’ll be clocking 13.1 miles in just a few short weeks. Luckily Cabot provided me with the opportunity to do a little tune-up with the Cherry Blossom 10 Miler right nearby in Washington, DC. It was cold and windy (people were holding signs that said, “Run Like the Wind… isn’t blowing sideways), but it was an amazing experience to be part of over 15,000 runners on the tidal basin in our nation’s capital. And I am totally thrilled with my pace of about 10 minutes per mile, especially with the conditions. I ran another 12 miles last week, and have one more long run ahead of me before I taper and rest my legs a bit before the big day! It’s been a journey, but I have learned a lot about my ability to persevere and reach my goals.
What I have also learned through this journey is that I need fuel, and plenty of it. So in honor of my Cherry Blossom 10 Miler (and the fact that the Middlebury Maple Run will be during the height of Apple Blossom Season in Vermont), I created this…
I’m not sure if this was just a regional thing, but I know in the DC area during Cherry Blossom season, Starbucks was offering the Cherry Blossom Frappuccino. Strangely it has no cherries, but from the description, it was basically a Strawberry Frappuccino with a white chocolate and matcha green tea syrup swirl. I thought I’d make a healthier version of this, perfect for fueling your training, post-run recovery, or just enjoying because it tastes so darn good. A bit of vanilla gives the strawberry smoothie a rich flavor to go along withits creamy texture, and the sweet matcha swirl made with pureed bananas and milk (along with some spinach for good measure) added a little something extra to the berry flavor. I’m not even a green tea fan, but I really loved how it tasted swirled into this smoothie. Plus it’s a natural energy boost to go along with the chia seeds for some omega 3’s.
After my 12 mile run, I also felt like I needed a little protein boost, so, while this is totally optional, I added a scoop of Cabot Whey Protein Powder. I’m not typically a fan of protein powders, and others have seemed very gritty to me. But Cabot sent me some of their whey protein, and I’m loving it. It doesn’t have any flavor or sugar, and it blends right in, though I think it does add a bit of frothiness. You can find out where to buy it near you or purchase it online on the Cabot website.
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Matcha Swirl Strawberry Banana Smoothies
For the strawberry smoothie:
- 1/2 cup cottage cheese or plain Greek yogurt
- 1 cup almond milk or traditional milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon chia seeds
- 1 scoop Cabot Whey Protein Powder optional
- 1 1/2 cups frozen strawberries about 8 whole berries
- 1/2 cup ice cubes more or less depending on desired texture
- honey sugar, or other sweetener, to taste
For the matcha swirl:
- 1 cup baby spinach
- 1 frozen banana cut into chunks
- 1 teaspoon matcha green tea powder
- 1/2 cup almond milk or traditional milk
- Combine the ingredient ingredients for the strawberry smoothie in a blender and blend until smooth.
- Using about two-thirds of the smoothie mixture, divide between two glasses and set the remaining smoothie aside (in a separate cup if you do not have two blender containers).
- Combine the ingredients for the matcha swirl in the blender and blend until smoothie.
- Using about half for each smoothie, pour the matcha swirl mixture down the sides of the glass.
- Divide the remaining strawberry smoothies between the glasses.
Enjoy this Matcha Swirl Strawberry Banana Smoothies recipe!
Here are some more “berry good” smoothies…
- Chocolate-Covered Berries Green Smoothie
- Blueberry, Peaches and Cream Green Smoothies
- Strawberry Cheesecake Smoothie
Plus a few from my fellow Cabot Fit Team members…
- Tarragon Berry Smoothie from Food Confidence
- Wild Blueberry Streusel Smoothie from Dietitian Jess
- Pomegranate Berry Smoothie from GreenLiteBites
- Cherry Wild Blueberry Chia Smoothie from The Wholesome Dish
And since sometimes you just need chocolate, Skinny Chocolate Recovery Shake from Healthy Seasonal Recipes, which also uses Cabot Whey Protein Powder.