A friend recently forwarded me this article from the Huffington Post introducing me to Acai Bowls. Have I been hiding under a rock somewhere? Why have I not heard of these before? It’s pronounced ä-ˌsä-ˈē. Yeah, I know, I get it wrong about every other time I say it. I won’t go through all its health benefits pretending to be an Acai expert. If health experts call it a super super fruit, then it belongs in my belly. What I do want to share with you is my first experience making an Acai Bowl in case you’re an Acai Bowl virgin as well!
I dragged the kids through Whole Foods looking for Sambazon’s Acai Berry Superfruit Packs. They were pretty easy to locate in the freezer section by the rest of the frozen fruit. Word to the wise, I almost picked up another brand name that I found on Amazon, but it contained some ingredients I was unhappy with like soy lecithin. I also found acai powder but read several consistent reviews that the powder just doesn’t get you the same taste and consistency as the frozen puree.
The frozen acai I purchased came in 4 single serve pouches. If you’re using it straight out of the freezer, just run it under hot water for a few seconds so that you can get it into your blender or food processor. The recommendation on the packets say to puree it with 1/4 cup liquid. In this case, I chose almond milk.
I also chose to add 1/3 of a large frozen banana (or 1/2 of a small banana) and 1 cup of an organic frozen antioxidant fruit blend I had on hand that contains cherries, strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries.
Some recipes I had looked up on Pinterest suggested adding some sort of natural sweetener, such as honey. But I opted to leave it out and was glad I did. It was perfectly and naturally sweet without it.
I used my Ninja blender, stopping it about four times to scrape down the sides to make sure that everything was blended until smooth. I definitely think that had I added more than 1/4 cup of almond milk the mixture would’ve been too liquidy. Instead, it had a really nice thick consistency.
I topped mine off with fresh organic fruit (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries), organic bran cereal, shredded coconut, bee pollen, slivered almonds, and chia seeds. I wouldn’t recommend wimpy cereal. Mine was the organic whole-everything clean your guts out kind of cereal, and it remained crunchy the whole time. If you are gluten-free you could replace the bran cereal with a gluten-free variety. You can also use granola, any type of fruit, goji berries, and cacao nibs. I’ve even seen it on Pinterest with peanut butter.
My second reaction was, “Where have you been all my life?”.
This was breakfast? And healthy? How was this possible? The puree was thick and almost creamy and just a tiny bit sweet. The fresh berries boosted the sweetness but also added a hint of nicely opposing tartness. Then all the interesting textures and tastes of the toppings followed. There were sensations of cold and crunchy and sweet and tart. They were not kidding. It was fabulous!
I loved the Huffington Post article but respectfully disagree with them on one thing. This was not at all difficult to make. It was as simple to make as any breakfast smoothie.
My kids like to top their Acai Bowls with their favorite organic cereal and coconut. They ask for it pretty much every morning. It’s like having ice-cream for breakfast. Smart kids!
Have I convinced you to try making your own Acai Bowl yet? You might want to wait ’til the snow thaws 🙂