Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie


October is here and once again pumpkin flavored products have flooded the market. You can find everything from coffee and espresso drinks, to pumpkin muffins, pancakes, cookies, and even poptarts (Trader Joes). Though they contain pumpkin (a nutritious  harvest vegetable) many of these foods and beverages are sugar bombs in disguise. Most of these products don’t have nutrition labels and you have to search to find the nutrition facts. If unaccounted for, these types of treats in your diet can lead to unintended weight gain. For example, a medium Dunkin Donuts pumpkin latte will run you 350 calories and 54 g of carbohydrates (most of those coming from added sugar). As unhealthy as the latte is, it is actually a good choice compared to the Dunkin Donut pumpkin muffin which runs 550 calories, 24 g fat (5 g saturated fat), and 78 g carbohydrates (41 of those grams from added sugar).  

 

Instead of reaching for a pre-sweetened coffee beverage, consider a brewed pumpkin flavored hot coffee and use a small amount of milk/creamer and your preferred sweetener.

 

This pumpkin pie smoothie recipe is a healthy option for a meal replacement or post-workout treat. Best of all, you can drink it and know that you are making a healthy and filling choice for a healthy diet. I use a sugar-free protein powder, but ¾ cup of Greek yogurt would do the trick as well!

 

Pumpkin Pie Smoothie

½ cup canned pumpkin (not the pumpkin pie filling) or cooked pureed pumpkin

1 scoop sugar-free vanilla protein powder

1/8 tsp cinnamon

1 cup ice cubes

½ banana

½ cup water, skim milk, or dairy alternative (almond, soy, coconut milk)

Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.

 

Nutrition Facts  

1 smoothie (made with water/sugar- free protein powder)

200 calories, 2 g fat, 26 g carbohydrates, 24 g protein

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