This cinnamon jam donut smoothie recipe is from the second edition of my Inspired Smoothies ebook, and it’s still one of my favourites!
It’s a great example that not all smoothies necessarily have to be green to be good for you. Even though it has a decadent name, it’s actually a very healthy smoothie and is a great energy and protein.
The best way to describe this smoothie is a thick and creamy, vanilla milkshake with hints of cinnamon, banana and caramel. And when topped with raspberry chia jam it really is reminiscent of a jam donut.
This cinnamon jam donut smoothie has a base of cashews nuts which are a great source of plant protein and are high in magnesium which is vital for bone health and helping your body and muscles relax.
Bananas are one of the best sources of manganese which jump starts the metabolism and encourages wound healing. They’re also a good source of vitamin B6 (vital for so many processes!), vitamin C (boosts immunity, reduces inflammation, and slows the ageing of skin) and copper (essential in the development of blood cells).
Dates are also high in vitamin B6, vitamin A, potassium, iron, phosphorus, calcium and fibre.
Raspberries are a naturally low fructose fruit and are also a great source of antioxidants and fibre.
Last but not least, chia seeds are a great source of omega-3 alpha-linolenic acid which is beneficial to the brain and heart, and contain all 9 essential amino acids making these little seeds a complete plant protein.
You need to plan ahead a little for this recipe as the cashew nuts require soaking for 2-4 hours beforehand to ensures they blend into a super smooth and creamy smoothie. However, if you don’t have time or just want this smoothie ASAP, you could use boiling water to soften them faster. Or do away with the soaking step altogether provided you have a high speed blender!
Mmake sure you have frozen bananas on hand as these really add to the thick, creamy chilled texture. A great tip is to keep a stash of peeled, chopped bananas in your freezer so that you’re always smoothie or nice cream ready!
Smoothies are a fantastic way to get a lot of nutrients into your body in one go. Take a green smoothie for example, you can literally pack an entire salad or plate of greens into one glass, yet it’s easy to finish and you don’t feel overly full afterwards.
The reason for this is the ingredients have already been partially broken down by the blender blades which means they are more readily digested and absorbed by your body. This in turn means your body doesn’t have to put as much energy into digestion and can turn its attention to other important processes such as detoxification and healing.
The other amazing thing about smoothies is the ingredients are entirely raw which means all the nutrients are in their original unprocessed state and not affected by heat. This means all the the vitamins and minerals remain intact, as well as the foods inherent living enzymes. These enzymes assist the absorption of the nutrients which futher takes the pressure off your digestive system.
So essentially, by drinking smoothies you can maximise your nutrient intake in a very easy way.
When choosing ingredients that you’ll be eating raw, consider buying organic, spray free produce if you can. Or at the very least, take note of the dirty dozen and clean fifteen as identified by the EWG and try and avoid the dirty dozen if you can’t get them organic/spray free.
Cinnamon Jam Donut Smoothie
Serves: 2 large or 4 small glasses
Prep time: 2-4 hours soaking time (optional); 10 minutes to make the smoothie
2 cups soaked cashew nuts
2 small frozen bananas
1/4 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp vanilla powder or essence
2 Medjool date, pitted
2 cup filtered water
1 cup ice
Raspberry Chia Jam
1 cup raspberries, fresh or frozen
2 Tbsp chia seeds
Make sure you have frozen bananas, plan ahead and put them in the freezer a couple of hours beforehand or better still keep a stash in the freezer ready for smoothie and nice cream making.
To soak the cashew nuts, place them in a bowl and cover with filtered water and leave to stand for for 2-4 hours. Drain and rinse well.
Prepare the chia jam by washing the raspberries well. If using fresh raspberries, place them in a bowl and simply crush with a fork until they become juicy. Combine with the chia seeds and stir well. If the raspberries are frozen heat them a little either in the microwave or in a small pan over low heat until they become soft and juicy. Transfer to a bowl, combine with the chia seeds and stir well. Set the raspberry chia jam aside to thicken, which should take about 5-10 minutes.
To make the smoothie, place the cashew nuts into a blender jug with the frozen bananas, cinnamon, vanilla, dates, water and ice. Blend on high until all the ingredients are well combined then pour into your serving glasses.
Spoon a layer of raspberry chia jam onto the top of each smoothie and swirl with a spoon. Sprinkle with a little cinnamon and place a couple of extra raspberries (fresh or frozen) on top. Serve and enjoy!
Note: If you want to make these smoothies ahead of time, keep the chia jam separate and store in sealed containers in the fridge for up to 3 days. When ready to serve top with the chai jam, cinnamon and raspberries.