Recipe: A Peanut Butter + Banana Smoothie, with Major Plant Based Protein

Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Protein Smoothie Smoothie

Our Journey to Becoming Dairy Free

For the past year (and some change), we've gone from restricting dairy - to completely eliminating it, to eventually landing somewhere inbetween.

Confession, my entire life I have been a lover of all things dairy. . A cold glass of milk was heavenly, a piece of aged cheddar - divine! This all took a sudden turn, when Stella started having  issues with her bowel movements. I decided to forgo the pediatrician, and head to my naturopath to decipher what was causing my than 18 month old, painful hard stools. . To my surprise, I was than tested for food sensitivities (apparently our immune system are underdeveloped before the age of two, and what showed as a sensitivity in me - would correlate to her, as I was also nursing her at the time)

Low and behold, my test results showed what I kind of secretly sensed . . Dairy, on all front's - with the highest level of sensitivity marked next to it. . Gah! It's like the rug was ripped from under me, and all of sudden all of my favorite food's were off limit's. . Yet, if cutting out this once loved food group could help my poor little toddler - who was having such painful bowel movements, that it was causing fear & the early stages of withholding . . I was game!

Fast forward to months of me gradually eliminating, to eventually cutting it out completely - and Stella was having regular, soft bowel movements - with no dietary supplements, or medicine needed. 

Since Stella's digestive system improved, we've become a little less strict with the dairy eliminating. At one point, I was reading ingredients on everything - and if a cracker had dairy listed in the ingredients, I didn't buy it . . Now, she can eat muffins - or baked good's that contain some dairy (not often) - but she can't have straight up dairy like ice cream, butter, yogurt,  or milk. . we tested this out, and her poor tummy just doesn't know how to digest it. 

This smoothie was actually inspired by our old dairy filled favorite, that we would drive to Carlsbad village solely for (it was that good!). 

Not only did I nail the taste, and swap out the dairy - but added some extra health boosting ingredients to make this a truly satisfying smoothie filled with lot's of plant based protein. 

Banana & Peanut Butter Vegan Protein Smoothie
Ingredient Flat Lay for Vegan Protein Smoothie

The Plant Based Power House

Looking at the photo above, you would think that all that creamy white stuff came from a dairy cow - but it's all pure plant based protein!

This, coconut yogurt is delicious and tastes just like dairy yogurt. I use the vanilla flavored one - to add a bit of pizzaz to my smoothies. 

My milk of choice, is my must-have dairy free item . . Ripple milk! Seriously you guys, they nailed it with this one. I can eat a bowl of cereal again, without pretending to like it - because It really tastes like milk . . I can't explain it. You just have to try it for yourself! Ps - it is made with peas, and therefore has lot's of protein (8g per serving)

For extra plant based power - I added these chia seeds, which are loaded with fiber, protein, and omega's. I also added some of these hemp seeds, for even more of a protein and omega 3's punch. . How much you use is up to you ! I used about a 2 Tbsp of each, but probably should put more since there is about 3 servings in this smoothie. 

Ingredients For Vegan Protein Smoothie in Vitamix Blender

tips to make this delicious everytime

I never use to follow recipe's when making smoothies - and would frequently end up wth some, not- so stellar results. So the last time I nailed this smoothie, I decided to finally write it down - so that I could not only share with you all, but have it yummy always!

Tips I've learnt to make this smoothie super delicious:
1. Frozen bananas yield the creamiest, iciest results! I've tried using ripe banana with ice, and it was watery - and not the creamy thick consistent you get with frozen bananas. . So buy lot's of banana's, and freeze them into chunks once they are over ripe. 

2. Agave nectar, just a little bit - really brings out the flavor or everything. I try not to use it, but when I really want to make this delicious - it's a must. 

3. High quality peanut butter can really add a lot of depth to this smoothie. In this recipe I used this peanut butter, which is great because it's organic - and powdered (so blend's easily) - but I just recently discovered the most amazing coconut peanut butter from our local Leucadia Farmer's market - and have been using that instead. 

Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Protein Smoothie Smoothie
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Vegan Peanut Butter & Banana Protein Smoothie
This is a creamy, filling smoothie - perfect for post work out, or as a breakfast meal replacement , or even as a yummy snack! All ingredients are plant based.
  • 1/2 Cup Coconut Yogurt
  • 1/2 Cup Peanut Butter
  • 1 1/2 - 2 Cups Dairy Free Milk
  • 1 Cup Frozen Bananas
  • 1-2 Tbsp Agave
  • 2 Tbsp Chia Seeds
  • 2 Tbsp Hemp Seeds
Add all ingredients according to your blender's manufacturer instructions (Usually liquid first, than frozen, than dry ingredients) - Blend until smooth. Serve immediately.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 3 Servings
Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Protein Smoothie Smoothie
Toddler Girl Drinking Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Protein Smoothie Smoothie

Toddler Approved

Stella thankfully loves smoothies - or as she so sweetly refers to them "moobies" . She will occasionally request me to make her one, and this is usually the one she wants. Even better, if it's later in the day and we are craving something sweet - I'll add coco powder. Yummy!

Toddler Girl Drinking Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Protein Smoothie Smoothie

Will you be trying this?

I'm so nosy! I want to know when you try it, and what you thought about it! Anything you'd add - or eliminate? Also - let me know if you've have tried Ripple milk yet, and if you agree that it tastes just like milk (in cereal) . . It's seriously all I ever talk about. Lol

Eats: A Banana Spilt for Breakfast ! A Healthy twist on the Classic

Healthy breakfast banana split with berries, nuts, yogurt, and drizzled honey

the queen of indulgence

I don't know what happened to me as a kid, but somewhere along the lines I developed an indulgent relationship with food. If you ask me a childhood memory, it will most likely revolve around food - or at least mention it in there. . It probably has something to do with my Mother, who refused to spend her single income on sugary processed food. Grocery shopping was the worst, I thought I was sooo sneaky putting in all those wishlist items while she wasn't looking - only to get swiftly denied at the cash register. She completely had my best interests in mind, but being deprived of those things - only intensified the cravings for them. Which is probably why, anytime I did have something indulgent (special occasions) - my brain immediately bookmarked the occasion. 

Fast forward to early adulthood - to where the biggest motivation for getting a high school job, was of course the incentive of being able to buy whatever I wanted; snacks included! As you could imagine, the indulgence ran wild, and thankfully to a fast metabolism - my vanity wasn't sacraficed. 

Times have most definitely changed! Now I am the Mother trying to curb my toddler's sugary obsession - all the while trying to maintain her healthy relationship with food (Oh, and that metabolism has most definitely waned)

Thus, snacks that are both fun & nutritional are a huge win. Not only is it good for her health, but also my waistline. WIN WIN. . Que this healthy breakfast / snack / dessert that pays homemade to the classically decadent Banana Split - but lack's all of the guilt! (scroll down for recipe) 

Freshly washed strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries ready to be used in a healthy breakfast banana split

Give me all the fruit

There is something so beautiful about freshly washed, fresh fruit. I wish I could claim these to be farmer's market fresh, but they were delivered fresh from instacart! Seriously you guys, this my number #1 life hack. It's so much easier than lugging around the girl's to shop - and I actually placed my order while laying in bed the night before, so that it's delivered first thing the next morning. Best $4.99 ever spent! Click this link to sign up, and get $10 off your first order (you won't regret it).

Toddler girl in rust jumpsuit eating fresh strawberries on kitchen counter

Thankfully, Stella thinks Strawberries are candies - and would eat an entire basket if I let her. 

Toddler girl with red bandana eating fresh strawberry with a huge smile on her face

Seriously, give her a basket of strawberries and see what happens . . She will be the quietest 2.5 year old for 20 minutes. 

Flat lay of ingredients used for a healthy breakfast banana split: bananas, nuts, granola, raspberries, blueberries, honey, chia seeds, coconut yogurt

all the fixins

I'm a huge fan of "build your own" anything. What can I say? I love options, and feeling l have creative free reign. So these ingredients are merely just suggestions, let your imagination run wild! 

I opted for the classic fruit medley of berries & bananas, but it would be fun to do a tropical spin on this dish with pineapples + mangos. 

Ingredients I used: Strawberries, Raspberries, Blueberries, Shredded Coconut, Sliced Almonds, Chia Seeds, Coconut Yogurt (We try to avoid dairy in our house), Chopped Pecans, Granola, and Honey to drizzle (swap with Agave to make vegan), and of course - Bananas!

Shop ingredients through Amazon below (All I personally love, and use)

Honey being drizzled over a healthy breakfast banana split with berries, nuts, and yogurt
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Guilt Free Breakfast Banana Split
A cheeky twist on the decadent dessert classic, that look's indulgent but is a guilt free dish that can be eaten for breakfast, as a snack - or even desert! Switch out your favorite fixins and fruit to make this dish truly your own.
  • 4 Bananas
  • 1 Cup Sliced Strawberries
  • 1 Cup Blueberries
  • 1 Cup Raspberries
  • 1/4 Cup Sliced Almonds
  • 1/4 Cup Chopped Walnuts
  • 1/4 Cup Shredded Coconut
  • 1 1/2 Cups Granola
  • 1/4 Cup Chia Seeds
  • 32 oz Coconut Yogurt
  • As Desired Honey
1. Slice Banana's length wise, place side by side on plate - or halved into bowl 2. Top with generous amount of yogurt 3. Add your fixings of choice 4. Drizzle Honey over your gorgeous creation, and serve!
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 4 Servings
Honey being drizzled over a Healthy Breakfast Banana Split with Strawberries Raspberries Coconut Yogurt, and Nuts

Heathy Indulgence

See, being an adult is kind of like tricking your inner toddler. If you make something that looks like a banana split, but swap out the ingredients for nutritional ones - you can kinda have the best of both worlds!

Will you be making this for breakfast tomorrow, or dessert tonight? What kind of toppings will you be using?? Let me know in the comments below!

RECIPE: My Fave Muffins - Gluten Free, Dairy Free . . GUILT FREE

Guilt Free Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Muffins

These muffins are a frequent in our household - especially when I was pregnant with Lola.

The mixture of the comforting flavor of the oats, paired with the spicyness of the cinnamon - and sweetness of the chocolate chips is just so addicting to my tastebuds!

I'd say I'm more of savory over sweet type of gal, but it seems like every afternoon I'm reaching for something decadent to get me through till dinner. . and when I know I have these on hand, they totally stop me from reaching into the back of the pantry and gorging myself on something I'd regret later . . 

Flour and Chocolate Chips Ingredients
Eggs, Chocolate Chip, Flour, Ingredients for Healthy Muffins

These are Gluten free because we are using oat flour instead of wheat flour . . Although, to be technical, not all oats are certified "gluten free" because of cross contamination - which is more of a concern for those with an actual gluten allergy, and not for those simply avoiding it for dietary reasons . . . 

Flat Lay of Ingredients for Healthy Gluten Free Dairy Free Muffins

The full recipe is below - but here is the list of dream team ingredients  . .

Apple Sauce + Dairy Free Milk (I LOVE Ripple Milk) + Maple Syrup + Salt (I Use Himalayan Salt) + Cinnamon + Oat Flour + Baking Soda + Baking Powder (I didn't have any on hand, and have made these countless times without!) + Chocolate Chips + Eggs (I've made without, and didn't notice much of a difference) + Coconut Oil

Shop the ingredients below, all of which I use personally.
Also included. the tools I used! Sharing is Caring.

Oat Flour in Bowl with Gold Whisk for Gluten Free Muffins

DIY Oat Flour

You can buy oat flour mostly everywhere you buy all purpose flour - and I have made these before with pre-made oat flour, yet to be honest  - I'm not sure why, but it tastes SO much better with freshly blended oat flour!

It's super easy, you literally take old fashion oats - put them in a bender, blend ; and voila - oat flour!

Mom and Baby Daughters in Kitchen Baking Guilt Free Gluten Free Muffins

Baking, cooking - well basically anything with a toddler - and now a newborn, seems to take a lot longer, and has become a lot messier. . Baby Lola did not want to miss out on any of the fun, so in the sling she went . . to where she almost immediately fell asleep!

Mom and Baby Daughters in Kitchen Baking Guilt Free Gluten Free Muffins
Mom and Baby Daughters in Kitchen Baking Guilt Free Gluten Free Muffins
Mom and Baby Daughters in Kitchen Baking Guilt Free Gluten Free Muffins
Mom and Baby Daughters in Kitchen Baking Guilt Free Gluten Free Muffins
Mom and Baby Daughters in Kitchen Baking Guilt Free Gluten Free Muffins
Mom and Baby Daughters in Kitchen Baking Guilt Free Gluten Free Muffins

Chocolate Chip Monster

I may, or may not have bribed Stella with chocolate chips . . and she took FULL advantage of that, trying to grab nearly every chip out of the mix!

Mom and Baby Daughters in Kitchen Baking Guilt Free Gluten Free Muffins
Mom wearing ring sling stirring muffin batter

Oil your pan!

I prefer no muffin liner's - because I personally think they get in the way of me eating my muffin as quickly as I need to . . ha! To avoid the liner's, and sticking - follow the tips below.

When you heat your coconut oil up, use the little bit left in the cup - dip some paper towel in there - and quickly grease your muffin tin by rubbing it all over . . it works like a charm! Haven't had these stick one bit . . EVER!

Mom baking with newborn in ring sling, pouring muffin batter
Guilt Free Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Muffins Fresh Out of Oven in Muffin Tin

The Finished product!

It's so hard letting these babies set for 10 minutes while their heavenly scent wafts through the air . . They are moist, with melted chocolate chip hiding throughout - and hints of cinnamon that dances on the tip of your tongue! 

I've already ate my fair share of these, but even writing about them makes my mouth water!
Tip; these pair so well with coffee!

Guilt Free Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Muffins Fresh From the Oven on Wood Board

Please try these for yourself, and let me know in the comments how they turned out for you!

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Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Guilt Free, Chocolate Chip Muffins!
These little chocolate chip morsels are the perfect weekday, mid afternoon fix - when you need something sweet, without the guilt. They taste like a classic chocolate chip muffin, just with a little extra pizazz from the cinnamon .
  • 2 Cups Oat Flour
  • 1/2 Cup Chocolate Chips
  • 1 Tsp Baking Soda
  • 2 Tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 1/2 - 2 Tsp Cinnamon
  • 1/2 Tsp Salt
  • 2/3 Cup Maple Syrup
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1/3 Cup Coconut Oil
  • 1 Cup Apple Sauce
  • 1/2 Cup Dairy Free Milk
1. Preheat oven to 450F2. Combine the dry ingredients (oat flour, chocolate chips, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt), mix3. In a separate bowl, combine the wet ingredients (maple syrup, eggs, coconut oil, applesauce, and milk), whisk until smooth4. Pour wet ingredients into bowl of dry ingredients, mix well until combined.5. Grease muffin tin lightly with coconut oil, pour batter into tin6. Bake for 10 minute at 450, than lower temperature to 400 and bake for another 10 minutes.
Prep time: Cook time: Total time: Yield: 12 Muffins
Guilt Free Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Muffins Fresh From Oven on Wood Board
Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Muffins

Recipe adapted from

Photos: Mattie Taylor