Chocolate Mango Smoothie
EVENT: A- Z RECIPE CHALLENGE
THEME : AN INGREDIENT BEGINNING WITH THE LETTER U
RECIPE: CHOCOLATE MANGO SMOOTHIE – USING UNSWEETENED COCOA
Chocolate Mango Smoothie, using unsweetened cocoa is a delicious, exotic, filling and healthy smoothie to enjoy as breakfast, as a snack or as a light meal. I made this as our Valentine’s Day treat, chocolatey but without any sugar or any other sweetener at all. So yes totally a healthy smoothie and diabetic friendly. Actually, didn’t need to add any sort of sweetener as the mango was sweet.
What is Unsweetened Cocoa
Quite often when I feel like having a chocolatey smoothie for breakfast I reach out for unsweetened cocoa. Cocoa powder as its mostly available, tends to be unsweetened, that is, no sugar is added. However, it does vary from country to country so best to read the ingredient label. Cocoa powder is basically prepared from cocoa beans or cacao. The beans are fermented, roasted and cracked into pieces or nibs. The nibs are then pressed to remove the cocoa butter. The pasty chocolate liquor left is then dried. After that it is ground into unsweetened cocoa powder.
While in countries like UK, Kenya and India we get cocoa powder which naturally is unsweetened and drinking chocolate which has sugar added to the cocoa powder, thing are a bit different in Canada and US. Don’t go looking for drinking chocolate as you may not find it! I learnt the hard way during my niece’s wedding. I wanted to prepare home made chocolates and walked down the aisles looking for drinking chocolate. Came back home a little flustered. Eventually, gave the shopping list to my sister in law and she came with sweetened cocoa… it was like a ‘dah’ moment for me.
Lesson Learnt – ask the locals for the alternate name. Or you can google the American/ Canadian name before going shopping.
Smoothies and Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
Often I use either cocoa/cocao powder, or cacao nibs for my smoothies. It does taste a bit bitter but then cocoa powder has its own health benefits.
- Rich in polyphenols, this antioxidant helps to reduce blood sugar, improves cholesterol and helps to control blood sugar levels.
- Cocoa powder helps to reduce mental depression and has a calming effect on the brains.
- I tend to use unsweetened cocoa more often in smoothies as it gives us the taste of chocolate and helps to control blood sugar levels in my diabetic hubby. Its better to pair unsweetened cocoa with a naturally sweet fruit than to have sugar laden chocolate.
- My collection of smoothie recipes are on my Instagram. Please check out the variety of smoothies, saved as Smoothies.
- Mango Yogurt Smoothie
- Banana Peanut Butter and Oats Smoothie
- Strawberry Finger Millet Smoothie
- Carrot Cake Smoothie
A bit about the group
A – Z Recipe Challenge group started by fellow bloggers Vidya and Jolly, is themed based. This month we have to use any ingredient whose English name begins with U. Now that is the most difficult letter …or I think we are heading for harder times with letter X just round the corner. There is Ugli fruit which I never seen here and Urfa Biber, a Turkish pepper. None of these are available in my country. If I had planned properly much earlier, then I could have photographed Udon Noodle dishes that I prepared when I was in Bali.
Letter U was proving to be difficult for all the participants of the group. So to was decided that we could use unsalted nuts, butter, unsweetened khoya, mawa, cocoa, etc. I chose unsweetened cocoa. You may think that there are quite a few dishes beginning with U but no we have to use a natural product.
Ingredients Required for Chocolate Mango Smoothie:
- Ripe Mango – the more ripe the mango is the better as its naturally sweet.
- Cold Milk – can replace it with a nut milk of your choice for a vegan smoothie.
- Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
- Oats – can replace the oats with roasted finger millet flour or roasted pearl millet flour.
- Cinnamon Powder – I used cinnamon powder for flavour. Can also use cardamom powder or vanilla extract.
- Almond Powder – can replace with a protein powder
CHOCOLATE MANGO SMOOTHIE - USING UNSWEETENED COCOA
- 1 cup chopped mango about 1 large mango
- ½ cup cold milk
- 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 4 tbsp oats
- 2 tbsp almond powder
- ½ tsp cinnamon powder
- Peel, and chop one large ripe mango into pieces.
- Add all the ingredients into a food processor or blender.
- Process or blend till smooth.
- Pour into glasses and serve.
- Can replace oats with any grain of your choice like roasted finger millet flour, roasted pearl millet flour, cooked quinoa, cooked barnyard millet, etc.
- Replace almond powder with protein powder.
- If the smoothie is not sweet enough for you, add honey, coconut sugar or maple syrup or a sweetener of your choice.
- Can add ice cubes for a super cold smoothie.
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