I tried my first açai bowl in Chicago this past year when I stumbled upon Chicago Raw (located at 51 W. Huron St) and when I realized I could make my own for a few dollars cheaper, I became an açai addict. At Whole Foods, the lovely brand Sambazon sells juices, sorbets, frozen smoothie packs and açai powder. I’ve only tried the smoothie packs when making my smoothie bowls instead of the actual powder, but either works.
Açai is filled with wonderful omegas and healthy antioxidants good for your body. Sambazon uses fresh, organic and non-GMO açai from the Brazilian Amazon – ooh, fancy. Four smoothie bricks are included in one pack and each one contains a minimal amount of sugar (if you purchase the unsweetened kind). They’re around $7 at Whole Foods so I don’t always purchase them but my one açai bowl at Chicago Raw cost me $11 so I think it is well worth it in the end. Lately they have been $1.50 off too so that’s a plus.
Sambazon’s website features a ton of different smoothie bowl recipes and due to the large amount of foodie Instagrams I follow, I see beautiful multi-colored bowls flowing through my feed every day. Tons of inspiration there. They can be made with added frozen bananas to give it an ice cream texture, additional berries, nut butters, dates – really whatever you prefer. They are usually topped with granola, more berries and bananas and some type of superfood (goji berries, cacao nibs, etc).
This morning I decided to make it pretty simple with bananas, berries, Ezekial flax cereal (as my granola) and sunflower seed butter. Here’s the recipe!
- 1 Sambazon unsweetened Açai smoothie pack
- 1 frozen banana
- ½ cup frozen mixed berries
- ¼ cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa
- A few drops of liquid stevia (or dates, maple syrup, regular stevia)
- ¼ cup blueberries
- ¼ cup strawberries
- ¼ cup Ezekial Flax cereal (or any granola you prefer)
- 1 tbsp Sunflower Seed butter
- Run your smoothie pack under water for 10 seconds to thaw slightly.
- Combine first 4 ingredients into your Vitamix or food processor, blend and add more milk if needed. Scoop down sides and continue blending until thick like sorbet or ice cream.
- Add in cocoa and liquid stevia - continue to blend.
- Pour into a bowl or large mug and top with berries, granola/cereal and Sunflower Seed butter.
Although açai bowls are usually pretty large considering they have so much fruit packed into them plus more fruit on top AND granola, they stuff you up but with so many nutrients, they’re a great start to the day.
I normally top mine with Purely Elizabeth granola which is hands down my favorite granola in this entire world. A recipe I spotted on Sambazon’s website includes figs, toasted coconut and organic coconut sugar – YUM. Check it out here!
I could eat these every single day. And that is why I need to move to California or Hawaii – where these are a huge staple in everyone’s life (and much cheaper).