Anti-Inflammatory Acai Smoothie with Turmeric (Vegan)
This anti-inflammatory acai smoothie with turmeric is a delicious vegan smoothie bursting with antioxidants, fiber + omegas. Cherries and bananas add sweet creaminess!
Whew! It has been A WEEK. Make that two. Moving is no joke and I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. We are almost completely unpacked (finally!) and are feeling pretty settled in our new loft, but man, I am exhausted.
Between moving, and closing on our house, unpacking and redecorating, holiday weekending and working full-time, I’ve had almost no time to cook.
Which I really hate. I just don’t feel like myself without some time in the kitchen, and my body can certainly tell the difference between greasy takeout and wholesome, homecooked meals.
Honestly, as much as I would love to just be able to eat whatever the heck I want and not notice any difference, after weeks of eating pretty poorly, I have to admit that my skin is broken out, my digestion has slowed and I’ve put on a few pounds.
BUT the good news is this is all just proof that food is medicine and it really can heal and nourish your body.
Not to say that I’m a fan of breakouts and constipation, but it’s sometimes nice to get confirmation that the anti-inflammatory diet I follow really does work. When I eat that way, my skin is clear, my weight is down, my digestion is regular and my mood stabilizes.
It’s honestly kinda crazy to see just how impactful food can be in that sense. These last two weeks were a great reminder of the power of nutrition.
So, now that we’re settled into the loft, fall is upon us and we’re getting back into our regular routine, I’ve been back in the kitchen experimenting with some new smoothie recipes using my new favorite ingredient, Samabazon Superfruit Packs.
You guys, these things are amazing. Not only are they a nutritional powerhouse bringing new meaning to the term superfood, but they’re super easy to throw into smoothies with minimal effort and incredibly tasty results every time. Let me break it down:
- Sambazon makes 4 varieties of superfruit packs: Original, Pure Unsweetened, Supergreens and Performance Protein, each of which is based in organic and GMO-free ingredients sustainably sourced in the Brazilian Amazon. Because I prefer to sweeten smoothies myself, I usually opt for the Pure Unsweetened packs (it’s just pure açaí puree) and the Supergreens (which adds kale, banana, spinach, spirulina, flaxseed and coconut milk to the açaí).
- These packs are bomb.com, as they’re bursting with nutrition–each pack is a good source of fiber, antioxidants and healthy omegas–and the Supergreens contains 1.5 servings of Fruits & Veggies.
- There’s also no added sugar in the Pure Unsweetened, Supergreens and Performance Protein packs. In fact, did you know that açaí is the only fruit in the world that contains no sugar!?! Crazy, right?
- Add to the list of perks, these superfruit packs make smoothies and smoothie bowls a cinch to make–we’re talking as easy as adding a pack to liquid and you’re done. Of course you can fancy it up by adding other fruits, greens, protein powders, healthy fats (flax, chia, hemp), etc. But they’re even delicious on their own!
- And even though açaí may be a fairly new-to-the-masses ingredient, Sambazon’s packs are available at most major grocers, including Whole Foods, Costco, Safeway, Publix, Albertsons and Vons, in the freezer section near other frozen fruits. And you can buy some of their other açaí products on Amazon.
Okay so for those of you who are still scratching your head wondering what all this açaí business is about, here’s a quick primer:
What is Açaí?
Sometimes referred to as açaí berry, açaí is a small, round, black-purple drupe (it looks kinda like a small grape or blueberry) often found in the Brazilian Amazon.
It’s a super deep purple color, grown on South American palm trees, and has a taste that’s slightly reminiscent of wild berries and chocolate (yes, ya heard that right!), but less sweet.
There’s been some controversy over the sustainability of the fruit, which is why Sambazon established USDA Organic certification for their açaí palm plantations in 2003 and implemented fair trade certification.
So how do you pronounce açaí? I’ve been told it’s like “uh-sigh-ee” (so says Youtube), but I find myself most often mispronouncing it and just calling it “uh-sigh”. Let’s be real, I’m definitely not fancy enough to put the “ee” on the end.
Health Benefits of Açaí
Like any good superfood, there’s a laundry list of health benefits of açaí, namely due to its crazy high antioxidant levels, which studies have shown to be higher than cranberries, raspberries, blackberries, strawberries and blueberries.
Like I mentioned before, açaí is also rich in fiber and heart-healthy fats, both of which also aid in digestion, weight loss, beautiful skin/hair/nails and a slew of reduced risks for cancer, heart disease, diabetes, etc.
Açai Smoothie with Turmeric
Because I can never leave well enough alone, and if you’re going to be drinking a smoothie, you might as well pack as much nutrition in as you can, I decided to up the anti-inflammatory ante on this smoothie by adding turmeric, which contains the healing compound curcumin.
Curcumin not only reduces inflammation, it also helps with depression, pain, diabetes, IBS and cholesterol. In fact, a number of studies have even reported that using curcumin is more advantageous than certain prescription drugs (source).
To keep the color from getting too muddied, I used black cherry juice as my liquid of choice, which also added a hint of sweetness.
I highly recommend finding a clean brand of juice that doesn’t add tons of sugar and other additives, rather keeping the juice very pure. R.W Knudsen Family’s Just black cherry juice is made with just one ingredient: juice from ripe, whole black cherries. Bingo!
A banana helped with the sweetness, too, and made the smoothie extra creamy, while lime juice brightened the smoothie right up and added a subtle zing.
I added one pack of Sambazon’s Pure Unsweetened and one pack of the Supergreens to this smoothie, as I like the combo when trying to get in my greens while maintaining a nice color on the smoothie.
Have you tried Sambazon’s Superfruit Packs? Share in the comments below!
If you try this recipe, let us know what you think! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag the recipe #rootandrevel/@rootandrevel on Instagram.
Run the Sambazon packets under warm water for 10 seconds. Using a knife, slice the packets into thirds and empty the contents into a high-speed blender (I recommend Vitamix).
Add the remaining ingredients to the blender and blend until smooth and creamy. Serve immediately!
Thanks to our friends at Sambazon for sponsoring this post!
Photo Credit: Heidi Geldhauser
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