Sunday, October 27, 2013

Pumpkin Pie Protein Shake

     This fall I have discovered something AMAZING. Pumpkin puree freezes extremely well and it makes to most delicious post-workout protein shakes! This treat seriously tastes sinful. Combined with frozen banana, it whips up into a fluffy, ice cream like bowl of awesome.

     Now, freezing both the banana and the pumpkin is what will give you the fluffy creamy consistency, so don't skip this step!

     To freeze the pumpkin, I bought a can of 100% pumpkin puree and using a 1/4 measuring cup measured out portions onto a cookie sheet, I then popped it into the freezer uncovered until set. Then I transferred the little pumpkin "pucks" in to a freeze safe ziplock bag. :) One 32 oz. can should yield you about 14 1/4 cup servings. For my protein shakes I use 2 servings = about 40 calories worth.

You will need:
1 frozen banana, peeled & chopped
1/2 cup frozen pumpkin puree
pumpkin pie spice
sugar free vanilla syrup or stevia (optional)
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
light vanilla soy milk or milk of choice
*you could also add ground psyllium husk powder for extra fiber

The pumpkin can be a little difficult to blend, so make sure you are using a food processor or blender with a little gusto. I use a Ninja.

Start off by adding the frozen banana in pumpkin in the bottom of your blender.

Pulse them together until they look like this:

You want things nice and chopped up without too many large chunks remaining.

Then add a dash of pumpkin pie spice (1/2 tsp maybe? just eyeball it)
1 TBL sugar-free vanilla syrup
1 scoop vanilla whey protein powder
splash of light vanilla soy milk
*always start off with less liquid and add more as you need to-this maintains the nice thick consistency.

Blend again, stopping to scrape the sides down. Add another dash of milk if needed. The more you blend, the fluffier it gets.

I like to eat mine out of a bowl topped with extra cinnamon and a sprinkling of pumpkin flax granola.

Pumpkin combined with banana and whey protein makes for a powerhouse of a recovery post-workout shake! Pumpkin packs a lot of nutritional benefits without a lot of calories. I've been eating this after my intense leg workouts on Sundays and also for breakfast during the work week. Although I like it so much I could eat it as dessert!
Give it a try and let me know what you think!

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