if you’re not familiar with acai (pronounced “ah-sigh-eeee”), it’s basically a really powerful berry. personally, i like to picture it like a blueberry with biceps (can’t you see it?). anyway, acai is like a big thing in san diego. i think it’s all the yogis and health freaks that populate our town (myself included). and the most common way we seem to enjoy our superfood is in the form of an acai bowl.
essentially an acai bowl is a smoothie. except instead of being served in a glass, it’s served in a bowl and instead of eating it through a straw, you eat it with a spoon. bowls are also topped with additional fresh fruit, coconut and granola. so sorry smoothies, but acai bowls are totally your hotter, more athletic, and charming younger sister.
i’m pretty partial to the acai bowl from honey’s, but i’ve heard the one at swami’s just down the road is equally as delicious. there’s also sambazon in cardiff that’s basically an acai bowl cafe. but when a craving for a bowl hit recently and i was too lazy to venture down to any of the aforementioned local eateries, i decided to recreate the berry goodness on my own. i kind of came up with this recipe on the fly (mimicking the one from honey’s, but without the bee pollen), but this one is also a good place to start.
homemade acai bowl
(makes one really big and delicious bowl)
1 acai packet
1/2 cup frozen berries (i prefer the organic berry blend from trader joe’s which contains blackberries, strawberries, blueberries and raspberries, but use whichever you prefer)
1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (coconut milk or unsweetened apple juice are great alternatives)
1 stevia packet (i like things SWEET)
a few ice cubes (depending on your preferred smoothie thickness)
for garnish on top:
1 small banana
3-4 ripe strawberries
1/2 cup blueberries
1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/4-1/2 cup granola (i used some leftover paleo granola, recipe here)
mix the acai packet, frozen berries, almond milk and ice cubes together in a blender. pour the smoothie into a large bowl. top with sliced bananas, strawberries, blueberries, coconut, and granola.
to increase the nutrients in your bowl, i suggest adding in a handful or two of spinach (i promise, you can’t even taste it) and if you’re looking for a protein boost, a scoop or two of almond butter would be delicious as well.
slurp slowly to avoid a brain freeze.