Healthy for Cinco de Mayo: Piña Kale-ada!
Everyone loves piña coladas. Not everyone loves kale. But if you bathe the leafy green in the creamy tropical drink you, too, can love kale. It is the mysterious magic of smoothies.
Pineapples are a wonderful source of Vitamin C, which supports your immune system and provides antioxidant protection. Pineapples are also an excellent source of manganese, vital to your body's energy production.
We've all heard a lot about kale as a nutritional powerhouse. It is chock full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory nutrients; it is loaded with Vitamin K, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, and fiber. I use frozen kale in this smoothie because it's not yet farmer's market season here so I don't have huge amounts of it; keeping blanched, frozen kale makes it easy to throw into soups and smoothies. You can buy it frozen or do it yourself (great when you do have an abundance from your garden or the farmer's market). If you're using fresh kale, use more like 1 to 1 1/2 cups of it.
Simply put: this smoothie is really good for you. Bonus: it's easy and tasty.
(yields about 12 ounces)
- 2/3 c frozen chopped kale, partially thawed
- 2/3 c light coconut milk (unsweetened)
- 1 1/4 c pineapple chunks, fresh or frozen
- 1 tsp shredded coconut (unsweetened)
Kale can be a bit tough, so I blend it in the coconut milk before I add the pineapple.
Once the kale is fully blended in the coconut milk, add the pineapple and blend until smooth.
I should note that my first attempt at this included a bit of frozen banana. It was sweeter and a touch creamier, but (for me, anyway) it tasted too much of the banana and not enough of the pineapple and coconut. But if you love banana, you might want to try that. You could also add another green, like the more tender baby spinach, instead of the kale. But then you can't call it a Piña Kale-ada. And you know you want to.