This is a deliciously rich and smooth non-caffeinated energy drink/milkshake. It features the malty-flavoured maca: a rainforest herb, member of the potato family and important part of the traditional Peruvian diet for over a thousand years! Don’t let its ancient history deceive you…maca is a very relevant contemporary superfood. It is considered an adaptogen, meaning it helps support your body’s stress hormone producing glands. When we have high output that could deplete us, maca helps to “refill” our energy stores. It provides a good supply of B vitamins, calcium, magnesium, enzymes and essential amino acids, all necessary for fuelling the body when undergoing strenuous exercise or stress. In this chai-like smoothie, the dates and vanilla lend natural sweetness and balance out maca’s natural bitterness, the cinnamon adds anti-oxidants and a nice spice, and the almond milk and butter provide more protein, good fats and a creamy, smooth finish.
Note: If you have a nut allergy, the milk can easily be substituted with hemp, rice or coconut and the almond butter could be replaced with sun ower or coconut butter.
1 1/2 cups almond or other nut or seed milk
4 dates, pitted
2 Tbsp almond or other nut or seed butter
2-3 tsp maca powder (to taste)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp cinnamon
4-6 ice cubes
pinch of sea salt
optional: 1 Tbsp cocoa powder or cocoa nibs
The version without chocolate is my favourite, but the addition of some cocoa nibs or powder makes it more dessert-like with a little cocoa/caffeine boost. I am sure no one will complain.
1. Measure and add nut milk (or blend from nuts you soak the night before)
2. Add the dates, nut/seed butter, maca, vanilla, cinnamon and ice, and blend again until smooth
Yield: 2 servings
Optional mix & match toppings: cinnamon, a few sprinkles of ground cocoa powder or nibs, sliced almonds, cinnamon stick
1. Substituting almonds for cashews, the ratio is 1⁄4 cup almonds:1 cup water.
2. Drain nuts and rinse in a colander.
3. Place the nuts or seeds into a high-powered blender.
4. Add 1 cup water for every 1⁄4 cup nuts and blend until very smooth, about 30 to 60 seconds.