Peanut Butter… and a Smoothie

     Have you ever tried making your own peanut butter? A few years ago we decided to stop buying store brand peanut butter to avoid the sugar and extra added ingredients. We started buying natural peanut butter at our bulk food store. The taste was good, but it was too hard to spread. Then my dear, sweet husband bought me a Vitamix blender– wow! I started making peanut butter and we will never go back again! It is just as easy as pouring some unsalted peanuts in the blender, turning it on, and waiting. I do add just a pinch of Real Salt to give it a little more flavor. The finished product comes out like this- smooth and creamy (yum!).

     The only problem with making peanut butter comes after the fact- cleaning out the blender. To remedy this problem, we make a smoothie! I don’t have an exact recipe since I am more of the “throw it in until it looks and tastes right” type of girl, so here is the best I can come up with!

peanut butter left in the blender (about 1/4 cup)
1 can of coconut milk
2-3 Tbsp. cocoa powder
1 Tbsp. Chia Seeds (optional for added nutrition)
several dates, raw honey, or Stevia to sweeten
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Blend these ingredients until smooth. Add in about 4 cups of ice and blend again. Here is the finished product.
     This smoothie reminds me of a Frosty, but even better! I have actually used this smoothie as a meal replacement several times because it is so filling. It is very easy to adjust the ingredients too. We have added bananas to it before and that was great! Just be creative! The perfect way to cool off after a hot summer day. Enjoy!