Growing up, my dad loved to make special-occasion trips to the grocery store to pick up a container of ice cream and bring it home to us. I still remember enjoying a bowl of pink peppermint ice cream as a child, and wishing it was a flavor that was available all year long, not only at Christmastime. I don’t think I ate that flavor more than a few times in my life, but I remember that cold creaminess melting down my throat and the refreshing peppermint taste that seems to make you breathe deeper. I remember being surprised it was pink, because I thought mint things were always green.
Peppermint is the next best thing after all the pumpkin spice. Here is a healthy treat you can make that feels winter-y and refreshing. You won’t even have to drive out in the cold to the grocery store or test your self-control with a whole half-gallon in your freezer.
I’m a big peppermint lover, and it has a lot of health benefits, too. I don’t know that one drop of it will provide benefits, but you never know. 🙂
To address the elephant in the room, the coconut whipped cream and crushed candy canes are not whole foods. But if I didn’t put them there, you’d think this was a strawberry smoothie in the bowl. Food photography requires a little pizzazz, so just know that you don’t have to put those on for it to be a really yummy treat!
You also don’t have to put protein powder in this. I’m not the biggest fan of protein powder since I prefer to get my protein from whole foods, but I have been using it more because 1) I’ve been sent a lot of free samples, and 2) my kids just don’t eat a lot of protein-y foods besides tofu, and protein powder just makes it that much easier. They eat beans and lentils sometimes but not in large quantities. Anyway, I have several recommendations for you if you’re looking for a good plant-based protein powder. There are pros and cons to each one. (I’m an affiliate for some of these but opinions are my own.)
- Juice Plus Complete Protein-–has your daily B12 needs met, is a water-washed soy that is higher quality, low-glycemic, contains soy, chickpea, rice, and pea protein. No artificial sweeteners, very low fat, and tastes really yummy. Although they’re all good, I like this soy-free variety best.
- Just Ingredients–-Very few ingredients, and really clean. Watermelon seed protein is pretty cool and has a good taste. It’s really creamy from the MCT oil. No added sugars (uses artificial sweeteners monk fruit and stevia), but higher in saturated fat. Five delicious flavors of their vegan varieties. Not fortified.
- Nuzest–-This brand is also very clean, and has a variety with added probiotics. Super good ingredients and sweetened with real coconut sugar as opposed to artificial sweeteners. Not fortified with anything though, so you have to get your B12 and vitamin D elsewhere.
Are you going to try this quick and easy treat tonight?!
Healthy and refreshing!
- 2-3 frozen bananas (2-3 cups of frozen chunks)
- 1 1-inch piece fresh or frozen beet, skinned (for the pink color)
- 1 drop peppermint essential oil or extract (careful to not use more than 1 drop!)
- 1/4 cup vanilla protein powder
- soy milk (or other milk)-just enough to make it blend
Blend all together in a blender until very smooth, adding a little milk and stirring frequently.
Serve on it's own or with coconut whipped cream and crushed candy cane on top--not healthy but looks more pepperminty!