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LJWorld.com weblogs Eat Your Vegetables

Recipe: Blueberry Pomegranate Smoothie

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Sometimes, I just have to ask myself, "WHY must you love foods that STAIN so?"

Blueberry season is one of those times. My kiddo likes the little berries about as much as I do, and between the two of us, we're constantly spotted black-and-blue all summer long.

Same goes, in truth, for pomegranate season. Though, I have learned the best way for seeding a pomegranate to avoid a kitchen that looks like a murder scene (seeding it underwater is the trick — the seeds won't detonate on your backsplash and the pith floats to the top while the seeds sink), I still seem to stain my clothes, counter or kid with pomegranate juice.

That said, it's TOTALLY worth it. Both these fruits are super high in antioxidants because of their dark color, and are foods you should devour whenever you get the chance. Their antioxidants fight damage-causing free radicals and may even protect you from the possibility of cancer. Reason enough to sacrifice a few stained pieces of clothing, right?

Right. And thanks to the miracle of frozen fruit, I've been enjoying these two powerhouses together this winter. Fresh pomegranate seeds (or arils) mixed with frozen blueberries and other goodies have been the basis of more than a few smoothies recently. I seeded about seven pomegranates this weekend (I like to do several at once), and I've been alternating eating them out of hand as well as blended.

If you like pomegranate juice, but hate the price (it IS very expensive, no?), I totally recommend trying your hand at a pomegranate-tinged smoothie. Because they're in season right now, whole pomegranates cost about $1.50 a pop, and you'll get maybe a cup's worth of seeds with each one. That's a lot of cancer-fighting power, right there.

So, here's a truly tasty, healthy, power-packed recipe for your new year. The pic above shows about two-thirds of the recipe — my son drinks the rest in his own cup (and then begs for more). Bonus: He's less likely to make a mess with a smoothie than eating fresh berries and arils out of hand.

Blueberry Pomegranate Smoothie

1 cup blueberries (frozen or thawed)

1 handful (or more!) pomegranate seeds

1 banana

1 scoop protein powder (optional)

2 tablespoons cocoa powder

1 tablespoon hemp seed (optional, but good for Omega-3s)

2 teaspoons chia seed (optional, to sprinkle on top, good for Omega-3s)

1.5 to 2 cups water

Blend everything but chia seeds in a blender until smooth. To serve, sprinkle chia seed on top. Serves 1-2.

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