Our Zucchini Bread Smoothie totally counts as comfort food in our book, though it’s also totally healthy. This sugar-free smoothie gets its sweetness naturally from bananas and apple juice. And unlike other mood-boosting foods, this completely gluten-free and vegan zucchini bread smoothie will benefit your health in the long run, since it’s loaded with nutrients shown to boost your beneficial gut bacteria, quell inflammation, lower your risk of heart disease, and alleviate anxiety and depression. You’ll feel your spirits lift as soon as you take your first sip!
Ready In: 5 minutes
2 bananas, frozen
1/4 cup zucchini
1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 cup cashew milk
1/4 cup apple juice
1 teaspoon pumpkin spice blend
Place 2 frozen bananas in your blender or food processor.
Add 1/4 cup of zucchini and 1/4 cup of walnuts.
Pour in 1/4 cup of cashew milk and 1/4 cup of apple juice.
Finish with 1 teaspoon of pumpkin spice blend and a splash of vanilla.
Blend until smooth.
Banana: this sweet and creamy fruit is rich in resistant starch, which acts as a prebiotic inside your body, helping to increase the production of short-chain fatty acids your beneficial gut bacteria need to thrive.
Zucchini: is a wonderful source of antioxidants and phytonutrients that help flush toxins and free radicals from your body, which quells inflammation.
Walnuts: are significantly higher in omega-3 than any other nut, with 2.5 grams per 1-ounce serving. The omega-3 found in walnuts (alpha-linolenic acid, or ALA) is an essential fat that lowers your risk of dying from heart disease.
Cashew milk: is thicker and sweeter than other plant-based milks, with a subtle taste that blends beautifully into this zucchini bread smoothie recipe. Plus, cashews contain tryptophan, which increases your brain’s production of the feel-good hormone tryptophan.
Apple juice: research done with mice indicates that apple juice can decrease the production of proteins that form the brain plaques responsible for the progression of Alzheimer’s disease.
Pumpkin spice blend: depending on the spices used—most likely some combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and allspice—this blend has been linked to health outcomes like balanced blood sugar levels and improved digestion.
Vanilla: at least one study shows that vanilla can reduce anxiety and depression as effectively as fluoxetine, a prescription drug, and caused no unpleasant side effects.