Have you ever tried spirulina or a similar thing like chlorella or “greens powder”? Or perhaps you’ve heard that it tastes rather…. disgusting?
When my mom asked me what I was eating the other day, I said that it was spirulina, or algae, and she responded with, “Like algae on top of the pool that you use chlorine to get rid of?!” Kind of, but not really. “How does that taste?!” Hmmm to be honest, kinda funky.
But, stick with me here!
Spirulina goes way back – Aztecs used to eat it, but it became popular when NASA wanted the astronauts to grow and eat it in space.
Spirulina is an organism that grows in fresh or salt water. It is jam packed with chloyophyll, which is the stuff that converts the sun into energy for plants. You’re obviously not a plant, so why is this relevant to you? Because this organism may be one of the most nutritious foods on the planet.
It contains all of essential amino acids (crucial for those that eat a plant-based diet), is high in B-vitamins, trace minerals, omega 6 and 3’s.
But, what does it do for you?
It is a powerful anti-oxidant, slowing oxidative damage from harsh chemicals, sun exposure, and basically just living day to day. It also has anti-inflammatory properties, strengthens the immune system, helps reduce fatigue, and may help to control blood sugars (say no to blood sugar crashes!).
Hopefully I’ve convinced you that spirulina is super super good for your body. So your body is worthy of this green goodness, but… your taste buds may disagree.
Yes, spirulina may taste funky if you put a whole Tablespoon into your smoothie or you’re eating handfuls of it. Start small, ¼ teaspoon in a smoothie. Pair it with flavours that are strong enough to mask it. I wouldn’t say you want things to be spirulina-flavoured, you just want the goodness that is contained in this powerful powder! It’s green, so the colour is hard to disguise, which is why it’s good in a green smoothie, but embrace it! Green is beautiful!
A bit on price…
I do want to acknowledge the fact that spirulina is expensive. This is coming from the girl who a few years ago wouldn't even buy white flour for baking, let alone almond flour, hemp seeds, and coconut butter. But buying the latest trendy foods doesn’t necessarily make you instantly healthy. I think of them as extras!
Spirulina, like in this smoothie bowl, is an investment that lasts a looong time because you’re only adding a bit to your smoothies or food! I get it, there’s tons of products out there that you can get that are good for you, or told to buy to make you “healthier.” But please note - I never want to make you feel that living healthily is unattainable or too expensive. Buying (or not being able to buy) spirulina, almond butter, cacao rather than cocoa, or an Instant Pot is not a reflection of you as a person! This may sound silly getting so serious, but you are loved with or without these things.
I am extremely fortunate and grateful to not have to worry about where my next meal is coming from, let alone the fact I can get “extras” like spirulina. I have chosen to learn how to make some things myself (like sprouts - see my Instagram story highlights!) and also made a few sacrifices so I can get some of these “extras."
Living well starts small. Small changes in your lifestyle, making changes to things that leave you feel energized and joy-filled, loving on others. Start there. Extras can come later!
I hope I encouraged you to find some spirulina in your local health store or even on amazon & then make the green smoothie bowl below! If spirulina is not your jam, just omit and you still have a tasty green smoothie!
Spirulina Powered Green Smoothie Bowl
Serves 1-2 // Vegan, Paleo, Raw, Refined Sugar-Free & No Sugar Added, Vegetarian, Gluten Free, Dairy Free
1 medium pear (155g)
1 1/2 cups (115g) steamed than frozen cauliflower (or just raw)
1 frozen banana (95g)
1/2 cup (20g) packed frozen spinach
1/4 tsp (1.25ml) spirulina (I like this brand)
Using a blender or food processor, blend together all ingredients.
Serve into a bowl or jar and top with anything you want really! Pictured toppings are listed in the ingredients.
Share your creations on Instagram by tagging @foodyfirst and using the hashtag #foodyfirst so I can see!