Healthy Breakfast Recipes

Use Your Frozen Pineapple To Make This Gut-Friendly Dietitian-Approved Smoothie Bowl

Emily Laurence

Photo: Frances Largeman-Roth
Recently, MyFitnessPal released new data showing how our eating habits have changed during the pandemic.  Along with consuming more pantry staples, the report revealed that we're also stocking up more on frozen fruits—especially pineapple. It's the frozen food people are buying the most, and consumption is up a whopping 275 percent since last year.

Honestly, I get it. Not only is pineapple high in immunity-supporting vitamin C, but its tropical flavor also brings vacation vibes in a year where no one is going much of anywhere. If the only traveling you're doing is from your kitchen to your makeshift home office, you might as well be sipping on a blended pineapple smoothie that tastes like you're somewhere far, far away.

Registered dietitian Frances Largeman-Roth, RD, is a fan of pineapple for another reason: It's good for your gut. "Pineapple, whether fresh or frozen, contains the enzyme bromelain, which helps stimulate digestion," she says. Bromelain also helps break down foods, lending an additional hand in the digestive process. One cup of pineapple also offers three grams of fiber, which makes it a doubly great gut-healthy food.

If you really want to do your gut some good, Largeman-Roth has the pineapple smoothie recipe for you. In her book, Smoothies & Juices: Prevention Healing Kitchen ($15), she has a smoothie bowl recipe that's full of digestive-supporting ingredients. Besides pineapple, it's made with Greek yogurt, cashews, vanilla, shredded coconut, chia seeds, orange, and grapefruit. "The Greek yogurt is full of gut-healthy probiotics and the orange, grapefruit, and chia are all high in fiber," Largeman-Roth says, adding that the citrus and chia serve up prebiotic fiber, which provide fuel for probiotics.

The chia seeds and cashew nuts also add protein—a full 12 grams per serving, in fact. (You want to aim to get roughly 75 grams a day, depending on how active you are.) The nutrient balance makes it well-rounded enough to have for breakfast or a post-lunch snack to help power you through the afternoon.

Largeman-Roth says that since both fresh and frozen fruit work equally well in this recipe, you can enjoy it year-round. Below is the recipe straight from her book so you can give it a try. And if you want to accessorize it with a little umbrella, go for it.

Gut-healthy pineapple smoothie bowl

Makes 2 servings

Ingredients
For the smoothie:
1/2 cup fat-free Greek yogurt
1/2 cup frozen pineapple chunks
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 navel or Cara Cara orange, segmented
1/4 ruby red grapefruit, segmented

For the topping:
1/4 cup fat-free Greek yogurt
2 Tbsp raw cashews, coarsely chopped
2 Tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut
2 tsp chia seeds
1/2 navel orange, segmented
1/4 ruby red grapefruit, segmented

1. Blend yogurt, pineapple, vanilla, orange, and grapefruit in a blender until the mixture is smooth. Divide between two bowls.

2. Spoon two tablespoons of yogurt onto each smoothie bowl with one tablespoon cashews, one tablespoon coconut, one teaspoon chia seeds, and half of the orange and grapefruit segments. Serve immediately.

Watch the video below for more tips on eating with gut health in mind:

Get more smoothie recipes in Well+Good's Cook With Us Facebook group.

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