Conquered the 10-Day Green Smoothie Cleanse? I knew you would. And here’s your reward: As you transition to a healthier eating plan, this great dessert alternative will keep you from backsliding into the land of Ben & Jerry’s.
Even if you’ve never heard of the cleanse, you’re open to healthier food options as long as it tastes good.
You’re looking at the photo below and giving me major side eye. Dessert? I know. Sounds like a stretch. I was as shocked as you are, but after experimenting with an odd assortment of ingredients I had laying around, I discovered the result was really, really good.
The surprise ingredient? Quinoa, a grain-like seed that originated in the Andean region of Chile, Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador and Columbia. You can find it all over the place these days, even at warehouse clubs like Costco. It’s high in protein and other nutrients, contains no gluten, and can be used anywhere you’d use rice. This recipe calls for cooked quinoa, which takes only 15 minutes stovetop. To save time, I cook a batch prior and store it in the fridge. You can get more information here.
Soaking the cashews for several hours beforehand is a crucial step here, so you need to plan ahead. As a rule, I’ve gotten in the habit of soaking cashews over the weekend, so that they’re always on hand when I go to prep my smoothies for the week. Simply put them in a small bowl filled with water, cover them and leave them on the counter overnight, or for several hours.
Treat this smoothie as you would any other treat, and consume sparingly. (Even though it’s chock full of healthy ingredients, it still contains natural sugars, due to the fruit.) This recipe will fill (2) quart-sized mason jars, yielding enough for two smoothies spread over two days, or four dessert servings. Enjoy!