It can be a real challenge to get enough protein in your diet when you’re in your pregnant and post-partum years (or really any time!). One of the best ways I’ve found to meet my nutrient requirements is a smoothie a day. I am usually able to get lots of protein, healthy fat, and an easy helping of greens all in one delicious drink!
All the Nutrition, None of the Guilt
Whether this Peanut Butter Cup smoothie will be your breakfast, snack, or dessert is up to you- but I promise it will not disappoint! With a whopping 42 grams of protein, lots of healthy fat, 2 huge handfuls of greens, and those miracle working dates for pregnancy, it has it all with an uncanny likeness to the peanut butter chocolate candy (and with none of the processed sugars and junk).
Ingredients for Healthy “Peanut Butter Cup” Smoothie
Milk: I use Straus Family Creamery’s non-homogenized whole milk. You can substitute whatever your preferred type of milk is depending on your preference and diet.
Yogurt: I love Nancy’s whole milk yogurt. The little bit of yogurt in this recipe adds a very slight and very satisfying tang, an extra 4 grams of protein, and makes this smoothie extra creamy.
Dates: Dates are pretty popular in the crunchy mama pregnancy world! This study of pregnant women suggests that “Cervical ripening was more favorable in women, who used date fruit, compared to the non-consuming group.” Plus, they add lots of natural sweetness without much flavor (sometimes you just don’t want that banana taste!). Most midwives recommend 6 dates a day for pregnant women who aren’t at risk for gestational diabetes.
Spinach: This is my favorite way to get my greens in. You can’t taste it at all and it makes this guilt free smoothie a superfood of sorts!
Cocoa Powder: Cocoa powder is a great source of copper, manganese, magnesium, and fiber! There is a small amount of caffeine in there, so if you’re sensitive to that you can use a bit less.
Peanut Butter: This study suggests that eating peanuts during pregnancy and breastfeeding can possibly help reduce your child’s risk of future allergy. I’d love to avoid a peanut allergy if I can, so even though I don’t normally eat a lot of peanuts, I’ve thrown them into my rotation. Of course, you can substitute another type of nut butter but I can’t guarantee it’ll taste like the Reese’s candy!
Protein Powder: This is probably what matters most in making this smoothie delicious. I am really picky about protein powders, from their sourcing to their taste. When I make this smoothie I use 2 different types, Vital Proteins Collagen Peptides (tasteless) and Design’s for Health Purepaleo Vanilla. The Purepaleo powder is sugar free but sweetened with Stevia (one of the only sugar substitutes I use). Both powders contain high quality protein from grass fed beef bones. I don’t want too much of the sweetness so I do 1/2 scoop Purepaleo + 1 scoop collagen (These collagen peptides are 2 scoops per serving).
Healthy “Peanut Butter Cup” Smoothie
- 1 cup milk
- 1/4 cup yogurt
- 2 each dates
- 1 heaping handful spinach
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 2 tablespoons peanut butter
- 1 scoop protein powder
- 1 cup ice
- Add all ingredients to blender. I leave the ice out and drink my smoothies on the rocks, just personal preference, so if you like thicker icier smoothies, go ahead and add that in!
- Blend until dates are completely pulverized (about 1 minute)
Wacky Craving Creations
Most of my favorite smoothie combinations are attempts to make a healthy concoction out of an unhealthy craving. Some of my favorites include my Flintstones pop (don’t even act like you don’t want to try this), carrot cake, pumpkin spice, and Healthy Happy Littles’ thin mint cookie! Stay tuned for recipes for all of these!