Smoothie bowls may be an Instagram star but are they really that healthy?

Nothing gives you breakfast envy like those gorgeous smoothie bowls on Instagram. But ‘health wise’, are they all they’re cracked up to be?

At the risk of stating the obvious, a smoothie bowl is essentially a smoothie in a bowl. And just like old fashioned smoothies in a glass, some are really balanced and healthy, and some are not.

Smoothie bowls can contain four or more serves of fruit - that’s double the recommended daily intake. If you’re really active that’s fine, but if you’re more sedentary, that can be a lot of extra natural sugar. If weight management is a focus for you, this is something to be aware of.

On top of this, smoothie bowls may have added sugars like agave or honey - so that’s another thing to check on the menu.

The good thing about blended smoothies or smoothie bowls is that all the fibre remains in the bowl. This is much better than juicing which leaves all the amazing fibre in the juicer. The fibre contains absolutely zero kilojoules, helps to keep us fuller for longer, and helps with digestion. So that’s a big ‘pro’ for smoothie bowls.

So are they worth $14? Probably not when you do the math - but half of the joy of going out to breakfast is someone else doing the preparing and washing up. So if you’re out and you feel like something refreshing - go for it! But check the menu to see what goes into it. Consider that you’re probably eating your daily fruit allowance and maybe ask for it to be made with no added sugars like honey, agave or syrups.

smoothie bowl with strawberries

Tips to make your own smoothie bowl

  • Go online - there are hundreds of recipes out there that you can tweak to suit you. Or check out our tips on how to make the perfect smoothie here or check out the videos below.
  • Try using frozen fruit for a better texture.
  • Stick to no more than two serves of fruit in your recipe and bulk it up with veggies like spinach leaves or chopped carrot.
  • Add some protein with Greek yogurt, milk, a sprinkling of chopped almonds or pumpkin seeds, or a drizzle of nut paste.
  • Add a punch with some grated orange or lemon zest.
  • Avoid adding too much sugar like agave and honey - the fruit should be sweet enough.
  • Pop your bowl in the freezer so it’s cold when you pour the smoothie in.
  • Have some fun with the presentation. Think Halloween, Christmas or Valentine’s Day breakfasts!
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