BREAKFAST & BRUNCH

apple pie smoothie

Apple Pie Smoothie Tastes Like Good For You Dessert!

I just love Apple Pie Smoothies! It’s like having dessert for breakfast without the guilt trip. This smoothie hits all the right flavor notes, and it’s filled with yummy goodness. You know when you really love to eat something, you take that slight pause to anticipate the first bite? That’s how it is with me and this apple and banana smoothie that tastes like my favorite pie. But in this case, it’s a sip, not a bite.

You can taste the apple and cinnamon you expect, and the banana adds a touch of sweetness without adding sugar. I also love the cold creaminess of the yogurt that reminds me of the melting scoop of ice cream that crowns apple pie a la mode. The almond butter flavor and oats remind you of the apple pie crust. All these flavors come together for a homey, delicious apple pie smoothie treat that’s good for you, too.

Why This Is The Best Apple and Banana Smoothie I’ve Tasted

This apple pie smoothie has a sweet flavor and a great smoothie consistency. That’s not usually the case because apples tend to be grainy and not as smooth as other fruits when blended. To counter that, I’ve tried many apple pie smoothies with the right flavor notes that didn’t have much body. They were a tasty breakfast drink more than a smoothie.

So, I tried a few things to make the smoothie creamier. I blended in some ice, but that just watered down the flavor and made it icy. I replaced half the milk with yogurt, which helped, but it was still watery. Oat flour added a little more bulk but not enough to really feel like a smoothie. I even tried adding flaxseed meal which is a great binder. But that didn’t do it for me either.

Next, I used frozen bananas, instead of adding ice cubes, because frozen fruit makes smoothies frothy without watering down the flavor. But that really wasn’t enough. In the end, what worked was freezing the apple chunks. That gave this smoothie all the flavor and body to make it one of my favorites!

apple pie smoothie

The Right Mix of Ingredients

So, the mix of ingredients that made for the best flavor and texture are frozen apple chunks and banana slices, yogurt, almond milk, almond butter, oats, and cinnamon. I think the banana adds enough sweetness, but you can add a little honey or Stevia if you want it sweeter. 

I like to use Granny Smith apples for this apple and banana smoothie, but you can use whatever apples you like. Granny Smith apples give this smoothie a refreshing, tart taste. Other apples will deliver a sweeter taste. So if you’ve got a sweet tooth, you may want to go for that. 

Add the milk and yogurt first to make it easier to blend the frozen fruit chunks. I used a teaspoon of cinnamon since that’s more likely to be in your pantry. But you can use pumpkin pie spice if you have that. 

Enjoy this healthy apple pie smoothie that tastes like you’re having dessert for breakfast. Which, by the way,  you can totally do if you’re a grown-up unless your kids are watching ;-P

bean train food for thought

I love Apple Pie. It’s one of my favorite desserts that’s not chocolate. The funny thing is that I loved this pie even before I tasted it. Just the phrase “as American as apple pie” made me love it. Because as a child of Cuban exiles, I very much wanted to feel American. It turns out that I love fruit desserts and crust, so I loved apple pie even more once I got to taste it!

But that’s the thing about flavors. They can take you back to a memory or bring you into a new culture. That’s one of the reasons we love to try local foods when we travel. Enjoying local foods is one of the best ways to immerse ourselves in a culture. 

As I share my favorite Cuban recipes for this blog, I want you to also get a sense of my culture and traditions. I want to pass down my experience as a Cuban and give you a taste for Cuba with a bowl black beans or picadillo

This is funny considering that all I wanted growing up was to be American, not Cuban. But now that I am an American, I understand that there’s room for my Cuban side too. And I’m grateful for all the newly minted Americans that have shared the culture of their parents and grandparents with us. It’s no wonder they refer to America as a melting pot. The cuisines of our countries of origin meld together to create a new flavor that is new, different, and yet reminiscent of where we’ve come… a dish entirely all-American.

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apple pie smoothie

Apple Pie Smoothie Tastes Like Good For You Dessert!

  • Author: Sandi Abbott
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 1 1x
  • Category: Breakfast
  • Method: Blender
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This is Apple Pie Smoothie is refreshing, nutritious and tastes just like apple pie a la mode, but without the sugar and guilt trip! 


Ingredients

Scale

1 Granny Smith apple, cut into half-inch chunks and frozen

Half a frozen banana, sliced

½ cup almond milk

½ cup Greek yogurt

1 teaspoon cinnamon (or pumpkin pie spice)

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 tablespoons dry oats

1 tablespoon almond butter


Instructions

Add the ingredients to a blender, starting with the milk and yogurt. Blend until smooth and enjoy!


Notes

I like the tartness of the Granny Smith apple. But if you want this smoothie to be sweeter, you can try a sweeter apple or a little stevia or honey. 

If you want to reduce the calorie count, you can omit the banana and reduce the whole milk yogurt to 1/4 cup or switch to low-fat yogurt instead. That will shave about 122 calories bringing your total calories to 339. And it will still be frothy, tasty and filling. 

Keywords: apple pie smoothie, appple and banana smoothie, green apple smoothie, apple cinnamon smoothie

Brunch Menu

Quick and Easy Brunch Menu for Eight

Let’s do brunch together! I have the perfect brunch menu for you. It’s easy and quick to put together and features brunch favorites like smoked salmon and egg casserole with just a little Cuban twist. 

While I love a great restaurant brunch, it’s so much nicer when you have brunch at home. To begin with, there is no waiting, no noisy, crowded spaces, and you can really take your time. And with my easy brunch menu, you can put together an impressive spread in under an hour. Because almost all the prep work is done the day before. 

Brunch Menu Ideas With A Cuban Twist 

You’re probably wondering if Cubans even do brunch. Of course, we do. We run on Cuban time, especially on the weekends. So by the time we get up and get ready for breakfast, it’s already brunch time!! 

So here’s my quick and easy brunch menu that’s perfect for Easter, Mother’s Day, or any lazy Sunday. 

  • Smoked Salmon Avocado Toast 
  • Spanish Chorizo Egg Omelet 
  • Chery Tomato Salad
  • Guava Bars 
  • Mango Mimosa 
  • Café con Leche 

Smoked Salmon Avocado Toast 

smoked salmon avocado toast

Certainly, avocado toast has become really popular, but it’s always been a Cuban thing. It’s served on Cuban bread with olive oil and garlic. My version includes smoked salmon… a brunch classic, and one of my favorite breakfasts. 

This salmon avocado toast is easy to make and looks so impressive on your brunch table. Crostini is piled high with avocado slices and smoked salmon and dressed in a lemon, caper, and cilantro gremolata. The dish comes together quickly, and it’s so, so tasty. 

Here’s my Smoked Salmon Avocado Toast recipe. 

Chorizo Egg Casserole 

chorizo egg casserole

I love this chorizo egg casserole because it tastes just like a Spanish omelet without all the work. You prepare the egg casserole the night before and just pop it in the oven in the morning. Basically, this recipe is a Cuban version of a traditional Sausage egg and hashbrown casserole. Instead of breakfast sausage, I used chorizo and a few Latin ingredients like Manchego cheese, and smoked paprika. Cubans especially love chorizo and use it on many dishes, including omelets, pastries, soups, and stews. 

Here’s my Chorizo Egg Casserole recipe. 

Guava Bars 

guava bars

Guava bars are made with layers of buttery dough and guava paste. This popular Cuban pastry is delicious for breakfast or as a dessert with coffee. Cubans love guava paste and use it pastelitos and often eat it on Cuban crackers paired with cream cheese. Another great thing about this recipe is that it’s quick and easy to make and can be baked the day before, so you have even less to do on brunch day. 

Here’s my Cuban Guava Bars recipe.

Cherry Tomato Salad  

chery tomato bruschetta

This quick little side dish will add more veggies to your spread. You can serve it as a side salad with the egg casserole, or you can spoon it on top of French bread and serve it as bruschetta alongside the avocado toast. I don’t use a recipe for this. I just mix the ingredients to taste. Here’s your starting point: 

  • 2 pints of cherry tomatoes (preferably mixed medley) 
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed 
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil 
  • 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 
  • 2 tablespoon slivered basil leaves 
  • Salt and pepper to taste 

First cut the tomatoes in halves or quarters, then mix in the rest of the ingredients. Adjust seasonings to taste. I like to chiffonade the basil, which is easy to do. To do this, just stack the leaves and then roll them together as you would a cigarette. Then cut crosswise to make ribbons. Here’s a quick video on how to do it.

Mango Mimosa 

Of course, no brunch menu would be complete without bottomless mimosas! Instead of using orange juice, mix in a bit of mango nectar. I like my mimosas weak, so I tend to use half champagne and half nectar. But you can adjust to whatever strength you want. If I make mine too strong, I turn into tipsy mom and then have to take a nap for the rest of the afternoon! 

Cuban Coffee 

cuban coffee

Finish off your meal with a bit of Cafecito! Cuban coffee can be served as an espresso or mixed with milk to make a cortadito (half espresso and half milk) or a café con Leche (Cuban latte). Here’s my recipe on how to make Cuban coffee

There you have it, a quick and easy brunch menu inspired by my favorite Cuban flavors. So now you can sleep in and still get brunch on the table in no time.

Download Brunch Menu Recipe Book

Make brunch even easier with this Brunch Menu e-book that includes an easy-to-make brunch menu, complete with a shopping list and all the recipes you need. Download the book and let’s get cooking!

chorizo egg casserole

Spanish Chorizo Egg Casserole Is So Spicy Good

This Spanish-style chorizo egg casserole is my all-time favorite brunch recipe. It’s my Cuban take on a traditional sausage, egg, and hashbrown casserole, filled with chorizo, Manchego cheese, and paprika. It tastes just like a Spanish Omelet (aka Spanish Tortilla) without all the fuss. 

You mix all the ingredients the night before and refrigerate overnight. In the morning, just pop it in the oven. What comes out is very close to the chorizo omelets from my favorite Spanish bakery in Miami. 

Don’t get me wrong, Spanish Tortilla is a very simple dish, but it takes time and practice to get it right. This brunch casserole recipe delivers a similar taste with much less work. 

My Brunch Hero 

Can I just say how much I love egg casseroles? They make brunch so very easy and breezy! Especially if you’re the one putting it together in the morning. Who wants to get cooking before you’ve had your second cup of coffee? Not me 😛 

So this is where my tortilla egg casserole made with chorizo can save the day for you and those who live with you. You can get the work done the night before and then just pop it in the oven after you’ve poured your coffee. It all so civilized! 

Brunch casserole recipe

Easy And Hearty Brunch Casserole Recipe 

This chorizo egg casserole is easy to make and can feed eight as a main dish and even more if you have other brunch dishes on the menu. I’ve served it as the main dish with an heirloom tomato salad and sourdough bread on the side. Super simple and filling! 

With its bold Spanish flavors and hearty potato base, it stands out from a crowd. And I should know. I went through a season when I made egg casseroles just about every week for my church’s Sunday breakfast. So, I got the chance to try quite a few varieties. The egg and hashbrown breakfast casserole was the most popular.   

Chorizo Is The Star Ingredient

The key ingredient in this recipe is Spanish chorizo which is fully cured and flavored with smoked paprika. Cubans love chorizo and use it often in pastries, omelets, scrambled eggs, soups, stews and paella. It’s also really great sliced on pizza or on a charcuterie board. Spanish chorizo is most commonly sold in links, but there are a few brands that offer ground Spanish chorizo.

If you can’t find it ground, you can buy the links and chop it. Don’t replace Spanish chorizo with the Mexican version, as they are very different. Mexican chorizo is flavored with chili peppers and sold uncooked. To learn more about Spanish chorizo, check out this great article from Epicurious.

Getting It Ready The Night Before  

If you were making a Spanish Omelet, you would need to cut the potatoes, and slow cook them until they’re tender. And then there’s the flipping of the tortilla, which is honestly the most challenging part of making the omelet. 

With this brunch casserole recipe, you don’t need to peel or cut potatoes. Instead, you use frozen hashbrown potatoes. And the chorizo is already cooked, so you just need to saute it for a few minutes to render the fat. 

The hardest part is cutting and sauteing the onions and shredding the cheese (Manchego doesn’t come pre-shredded). If the cheese is a deal-breaker, you can use shredded Monterrey Jack instead. But I must say Manchego cheese is easy to shred compared to cheddar or mozzarella. 

Sausage egg and hashbrown casserole

‘Splaining The Spanish Omelet 

I started this post by saying that my chorizo egg casserole tastes like Spanish Omelet. I just want to make sure you have a clear picture of what I mean. Because calling a Spanish Tortilla an omelet just doesn’t do it justice. Omelets are made with 2-3 eggs, filled with some goodies, and then folded in half. They are usually made to order for one person, maybe two. 

The Spanish omelet is so much more than that. It can feed 6-8 people and is piled high with tender sliced potatoes and silky onions. It’s just such perfect breakfast food! And you can add mixings, like chorizo, or cheese, or spinach. 

This type of tortilla takes time to make. So, my chorizo egg casserole is a great shortcut, but I will have to make a Spanish Tortilla for you some time. Just not this morning because I’m coffee-deprived and I already have my chorizo egg casserole baking in the oven.  

Chorizo egg casserole

Looking for other great brunch recipes? Try my Smoked Salmon Avocado Toast and Cuban Deviled Eggs.

Download Brunch Menu Recipe Book

Make brunch even easier with this Brunch Menu e-book that includes an easy-to-make brunch menu, complete with a shopping list and all the recipes you need. Download the book and let’s get cooking!

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chorizo egg casserole

Chorizo Egg Casserole Is So Spicy Good

  • Author: Sandi Abbott
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 90
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 8
  • Category: Brunch
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Cuban

Description

This Spanish-style chorizo egg casserole will make you a brunch hero! I’m not kidding, this is absolutely the best egg casserole I’ve ever made. My take on a traditional sausage, egg, and hashbrown casserole uses chorizo, Manchego cheese and paprika. It tastes just like a Spanish Omelet (aka Spanish Tortilla) without all the fuss. 


Ingredients

12 eggs 

1 30 oz bag frozen shredded potatoes 

1 medium white onion, chopped 

1 cup half and half 

1 cup whole milk  

6oz Manchego cheese, shredded 

8 oz ground Spanish chorizo (see note)

1 teaspoon smoked paprika 

½ teaspoon salt 

½ teaspoon black pepper 

chopped parsley for garnish


Instructions

Prepping: Grease a 9×13 casserole dish and thaw the hashbrowns in a bowl while you get the other ingredients together. Chop the onions. Shred the cheese and set aside two cups.  

Cooking: Heat a sauté pan on medium heat and sauté the chorizo crumbles for 5 minutes over medium heat. Remove from the pan and drain on paper towels. Drain the leftover chorizo drippings from the pan, except for tablespoonLower the heat to low and add the onions to the pan and sauté until softened, about 5 minutes. Remove the onions from the pan and drain on paper towels.  

Eggs: Whisk the 12 eggs in a large bowl. Add the whole milk, half and half, salt, pepper and paprika and mix well. 

Potatoes: Break up any large clumps of potatoes. Add the chorizo, onions and two cups of the shredded Manchego cheese to the potatoes and mix until combinedTransfer the mixture to the greased 9×13 baking pan and pat down until you have an even surface. Ladle the egg mixture evenly over the potatoes. Top with the remaining Manchego cheese. Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.  

Bake: Bake in a preheated 350 oven for 1 ½ hours. Remove the foil for the last 10 minutes of baking time. Let the casserole rest for 10 minutesGarnish with parsley and serve.  


Notes

Serve with heirloom tomato salad and sourdough bread.  

This recipe calls for Spanish ground chorizo. If you can’t find it ground, buy the links and chop it. Don’t replace with Mexican chorizo as that has a different flavoring. 

You can serve this casserole hot or at room temperature (I even like it cold). You can store in the refrigerator up to a week. I do not recommend freezing leftovers as the texture of the potato can change once frozen. 

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 8

Keywords: Chorizo egg casserole, Sausage and egg casserole without bread, Tortilla egg casserole, Sausage egg cheese casserole, Sausage egg hashbrown casserole, Sausage egg and hashbrown casserole, Brunch casserole recipe

guava bars

Cuban Guava Bars (Masa Real) Are Easy and Crazy Good

If you walk into any Cuban bakery in Miami, you’ll find these guava bar cookies called Masa Real prominently displayed. They are so tempting with their rich stripe of guava jam sandwiched between sweet buttery pastry. Masa Real (mah-sa-ree-al) means royal dough and can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. But to be honest, the sweet version is the most popular. 

Guava, known as guayaba (gwah – yah – bah), is synonymous with guava paste to me because that’s the only way I’ve ever eaten guava. But the fruit is grown locally in Miami, and it’s about the size and shape of a very fat pear. You can buy it at most local fruit stands and supermarkets. I actually went out and bought some before I started writing this blog. The fruit is pretty green right now, but as soon as it’s ripe, I’m giving it a try. (You guys are such a good influence on me!)

Best Way To Eat Guava Paste

Guava paste is sold in cans or bars and can be cut and enjoyed with a slice of gouda cheese or on top of Cuban crackers smeared with cream cheese. It’s basically Cuban jam. In fact, cream cheese and guava paste is our version of PBJ. But by far, one of the best ways to eat it is in Masa Real. (Another famous guava pastry is Cuban pastelitos, but we’ll save that for another post!)

masa real

How I Came Across This Guava Bar Recipe

This recipe is not like any of the masa real recipes I’ve found online. It’s really super easy. You don’t need a mixer or a rolling pin to make these guava bars. 

I got this recipe at least 30 years ago from Felix, my grandmother’s long-time boyfriend. He found it in a Latin newspaper, in a section titled El Hombre en la Cocina (The Man in the Kitchen). Back then, it was unusual for a Latin man to cook, so maybe that’s why they made this recipe so easy? 

Whatever the reason, I’m glad I found it. My recipe is dog-eared, torn, and butter stained. I love recipes when they get that way! It shows it’s a favorite and so worth sharing it with you. 

This recipe is also special because it’s one of the Cuban dishes I make that Mami doesn’t. So, she likes it when I bring her some fresh baked masa real (the Bean Train working in reverse!).  

How To Make Masa Real de Guayaba

These guava bars are easy to make, and you don’t even need a mixer. In fact, you mix it as little as possible so you don’t overwork the dough. You melt the butter and then add a crumbly mixture of flour, sugar, eggs, and baking powder. Then mix lightly with a fork. 

I’m going to warn you that this recipe uses a ridiculous amount of butter. So much so that some of the butter will just sit on top of the dough. Don’t worry. The butter will incorporate into the dough as it bakes. It will taste perfect, not oily at all. 

Once the dough is ready, you divide it in half and smooth half onto a 9×13 pan and then layer the sliced guava paste on top and then add the rest of the dough and smooth it down. That’s it!

I know I probably scared you by saying that it has a ridiculous amount of butter (3 sticks, in fact). But the taste is really rich, so a little goes a long way. I cut the masa real into 20 pieces to give you the traditional Cuban bakery size. But I usually cut that size in half when I’m serving, so you can get 40 squares of masa real from one recipe. 

guava desserts

Some Tasty Changes To The Original Recipe  

While I love the original guava bar recipe, my kids wanted to make some changes. So lately, I’ve been melting the guava paste, so it’s a spreadable jam. It’s a little more work but not too crazy. And my kids like it better that way. The guava layer is not as thick, and the buttery pastry is moister because it mixes in with the guava jam. 

Instead of layering the slices of guava paste, you pour the guava jam over the first half of the dough. With this method, you need to cool the dough in the fridge for 15 minutes before adding the guava jam. Otherwise, you’ll get a hot mess. Which I’ve done before, and it’s not bad at all, but not as pretty.

Another change I’ve made recently is adding a little strawberry jam and salt to the melted guava. It’s soo good that way! I got this idea from my son, who’s been making guava strawberry jam which he uses for French toast and for cocktails (I’ll share those another time!).

Not sure which version of the recipe to make? Take the easy way out and make the original recipe with the sliced guava paste. Either way, you’re gonna love these guava bars!

bean train food for thought

Masa Real reminds me of Felix, my mother’s common-law husband of more than 30 years. He really liked to bake and was nice enough to share this recipe with me. While I don’t have many memories of Felix, he tended to keep to himself, I feel it’s important that I tell you a little bit about him today. 

To be honest, I didn’t have much of a connection with him. He was not very social, and we didn’t have much in common. He started seeing my grandmother when I was ten years old, and his attitude towards kids was that they should be seen and not heard. That attitude didn’t seem to change much when I grew up. It’s not that he was unfriendly. He just didn’t really interact that much with people. 

And lately, it’s really made me wonder if he felt seen or heard himself. He’d studied agricultural engineering in Cuba because that’s what his father wanted him to do, but he really didn’t like it. When he emigrated to the US, he never tried to pursue his degree. Instead, he took on odd jobs he didn’t seem to like much. 

But late in life, he finally got a job he really liked, working at the Publix Bakery. He fried the donuts and croquettes and baked the cakes and cookies.

Thinking back on his life now, he can teach us two things. 

Connect with your passion – Find your purpose, work diligently to discover it. Your purpose is that thing you do that makes you feel alive and connected with the world. It may not be the job you do, but the ways you get to be creative and joyful. I have to wonder what Felix’s life would have been like if he had discovered what he liked to do earlier in life. It seemed like life happened to him. I can relate because too often I’ve let life happen to me too. That’s why Bean Train is so important to me. It gives me a chance to do some of the things I love to do. 

Connect with your people – Felix was pretty solitary. He didn’t really connect with my mom or me. When he moved to Miami from New York, he didn’t stay in touch with his older siblings or his nieces and nephews. Not having had any children of his own, I wonder if there’s anyone who will remember Felix.

But this recipe reminds me of him. That’s one of the things I like about family recipes. They keep memories alive. Felix can live on in this recipe. I think he would have liked that, to be seen and heard through his favorite cookie.  

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Cuban Guava Bars

Cuban Guava Bars (Masa Real) Are Easy and Crazy Good

  • Author: Sandi Abbott
  • Prep Time: 45
  • Cook Time: 30
  • Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
  • Yield: 40 squares 1x
  • Category: Desserts
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Cuban

Description

These guava bar cookies, known as Masa Real, are so rich and delicious! And super easy to make. Buttery pastry and rich guava jam are layered together to make this super popular Cuban dessert. These rich bar cookies are a hit for bake sales, potlucks, and teacher gifts. 


Ingredients

Scale

3 sticks butter

14oz package of guava paste affiliate link (I like to use Conchita brand)

2 tablespoons strawberry jam (optional – see note)

Dash salt

4 cups all-purpose flour

1 ½ cups white sugar

2 tablespoons baking powder

4 eggs


Instructions

Guava Bar Recipe Version 1: (see note below)

guava paste

Guava Jam:

  1. Cut the guava paste affiliate link into ½ inch cubes.
  2. Bring ½ cup water to boil over high heat and add the guava cubes.
  3. Lower the heat to medium and let the guava melt, stirring occasionally.
  4. While it melts, add 2 tablespoons of strawberry jam and a dash of salt.
  5. Once all the cubes have melted, remove from the heat and pour into a glass bowl.
  6. Let it cool to room temperature before using. 

Guava Jam

Dough:

  1. Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, and a dash of salt until combined. 
  2. Beat four eggs in a separate bowl until combined and then add to the dry ingredients. 
  3. Mix together to form a crumbly meal. 
  4. Melt the butter and shortening in a pot over medium heat. 
  5. Once melted, add the dry ingredients to the pot and gently mix with a fork until all the dough is wet. It will look like you’ve added too much butter, but it’s OK. 

masa real dough

Shaping and cooling the dough:

  1. Spray a 9×13 pan with butter spray.
  2. Add half the dough to the pan and use a piece of parchment paper or wax paper to flatten and smooth the dough to cover the full pan.
  3. Cut a piece of parchment paper or wax paper a little bigger than the pan.
  4. Add the other half of the dough to the paper and spread out in a rectangular shape similar to the pan.
  5. Place both pieces of dough in the refrigerator for 15 minutes. This will make it easier to layer.

I do not suggest placing the second dough on top of the first one as it will stick to the paper when you separate them. While the dough cools, preheat the oven to 350. 

masa real dough

Layering: Take the two layers of dough out of the refrigerator. Spread the guava jam over the cooled dough in the pan. Place the second layer on top. The top layer may not fit perfectly, that’s OK. Once it bakes, it will look just fine. 

Bake: Once the oven is preheated, bake for 30 minutes until golden and a knife inserted in the top layer comes out clean. 

Guava Bar Recipe Version 2: (see note below)

If you don’t want to melt the guava and cool the layers, you can follow the original recipe’s instructions. In that case, you won’t need the strawberry jam. 

Guava Paste: Cut the guava paste into thin slices no more than 1/4 of an inch.

Dough (this step is the same):

  1. Mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, and a dash of salt until combined.
  2. Beat four eggs in a separate bowl until combined and then add to the dry ingredients.
  3. Mix together to form a crumbly meal.
  4. Melt the butter and shortening in a pot over medium heat.
  5. Once melted, add the dry ingredients to the pot and gently mix with a fork until all the dough is wet. It will look like you’ve added too much butter, but it’s OK. 

Making Masa Real

Layering: 

  1. Spray a 9×13 pan with butter spray. 
  2. Add half the dough to the pan and use a piece of parchment paper or wax paper to flatten and smooth the dough to cover the entire pan. 
  3. Place the guava paste slices on top of the dough, covering all the surfaces. 
  4. Add the rest of the dough and use a piece of parchment paper or wax paper to flatten and smooth. 
  5. Bake for 30 minutes until golden and a knife inserted in the top layer comes out clean. 

masa real



Notes

Strawberry Jam: You don’t need this if you’re making the easier version.

I’ve given you two versions of the recipe.

Version 1: The main difference is that in the first one you make a guava jam and spread. The jam mixes more with the dough and it makes the bar cookie more moist. My kids love it this way.

Version 2: This version is easier. All you need to do is cut the guava paste and layer it with the dough. This gives you a thick stripe of guava and a more intense guava flavor. However if you don’t cut the guava paste evenly you will have some ares with less guava. 

Not sure which version of the recipe to make? Take the easy way out and make the original recipe with the sliced guava paste affiliate link. Either way, you’re gonna love these guava bars!

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 square

Keywords: guava bars, Cuban guava bars, masa real, masa real de guayana, guava desserts, guava paste, guava jam

chocolate chip walnut banana bread

The Best Banana Walnut Bread

You know that phrase people use; it’s the little things in life? Well, this banana walnut bread with a cuppa coffee in the morning is one of those little things in life! Oh my, how I love this bread! It will turn you into a morning person, believe me. 

My husband calls it BNB (his play on banana nut bread and TNT… he’s so cute!). But cute or not, I have to watch him because he will eat me out of banana bread. I can’t blame him, though. Because this banana bread is filled with walnuts, mini chocolate chips, and a crunchy cinnamon and brown sugar topping that is just perfect. So maybe I should call it chocolate chip walnut banana bread with cinnamon. Chocolate should definitely get top billing!

Before I found this recipe, I could not make a loaf of decent banana bread to save my life. I tried so many banana bread recipes, and none of them ended well. They always came out hard, not moist and crumbly like a good banana bread should be.  

banana bread with crumb topping

The Secret To Moist Banana Bread

It wasn’t until I had little kids that I found out what the secret to perfect banana bread was in the April 2006 issue of Family Fun magazine. I know I’m a late bloomer. What can I tell you? The recipe was called Unbeatable Banana Bread… and that’s the secret to moist banana bread. You don’t beat the dough! That’s it! 

You use a mixer to beat the sugar, butter, and eggs until creamy, but then fold in the dry ingredients and the mashed banana with a wooden spoon or spatula. You also add sour cream to the mashed bananas. It makes the bread so moist! I’ve substituted whole milk Greek yogurt for the sour cream, and it works, too. 

I’ve been making this recipe for 15 years (geez! I’m getting old!!), and it comes out perfect every time. I’ve altered the recipe a bit, and sometimes I add a little more banana, sometimes less, depending on what I have on hand. It’s a very forgiving recipe. I even made it with the wrong flour once (bread flour instead of all-purpose), and it still was great. 

ripe bananas for banana bread

Bananas To Use

The bananas need to be ripe for this recipe. So, I usually use bananas that have become too soft and brown to eat. Those are the best! You need at least two bananas, and three would be even better. 

If you want banana bread NOW and don’t have ripe bananas, you can try this little trick from Serious Eats that takes only 30 minutes. Full disclosure, I have not tried it, but they provide a thorough and scientific explanation for why it works. So, the next time I’m craving banana bread with unripe bananas on the counter, I’m going to try this. 

Banana Bread Makes The Perfect Gift

I often make this banana bread for Christmas to give away to my neighbors. It also makes a lovely hostess or thank you gift! This recipe makes a nice big loaf or two small loaves. If I’m making just one bread, I’ll use a large loaf pan. But if I’m making as gifts, I’ll use a small loaf pan so I can get two banana breads per recipe. For Christmas, I usually buy the foil loaf pans (8 x 4) and can make two per recipe. I have to give them out right away, or my family may be tempted to eat them!

cinnamon banana bread

The Little Extras That Make This BNB the Best

I always add mini chocolate chips and walnuts to this recipe. I can’t even imagine banana bread without the walnuts and chocolate! I’ve played with the idea of adding raisins instead of chocolate. I’m too much of a chocoholic to go that route. But one day, I’m going to try this recipe with rum-soaked raisins and walnuts. I’ll let you know how that turns out. 

It’s essential to use the mini chips. The regular chocolate chips are a little too much chocolate… and they stay hard in the dough, which is not the right vibe. Some may not want to put chocolate chips in theirs at all. It’s OK, I won’t judge. 

One of the changes I made to the original Family Fun recipe was adding a cinnamon topping. I used to make this bread with my kids when they were little, and their favorite part was adding the cinnamon sugar topping. It’s super simple, and it gives it a sweet, crunchy finish that pairs well with the chocolate.

bean train food for thought

I loved reading Family Fun when my kids were little. I had a subscription to the magazine for years. We made recipes together and arts and crafts projects and even got birthday party inspiration from this magazine.

But times change. My kids grew up, and we entered a stage that didn’t involve all this cuteness. They became teenagers, and I no longer had a use for Family Fun magazine. I gotta tell you it was a sad day when I canceled my subscription.

Life is a process, and we may want to stay in the stage we feel comfortable in a little longer. But the next phase may be better than we can imagine. I won’t say I loved the teenage years. We had a hard transition with it. But discomfort is a part of life, and it’s a necessary part of growth. 

My kids are adults now, and I love the relationship I share with them. We still cook together, but now we’ve added cocktail recipes to the mix. Talk about changes! 

I would encourage you to embrace change in your life and see it as a healthy part of growth. And if you don’t love the stage you’re in right now, have a little patience and think about what this time of discomfort is producing. It’s worth going through a difficult transition to continue to grow and become of fullest of expression of you. 

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The Best Banana Walnut Bread

  • Author: Sandi Abbott
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 70
  • Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • Yield: 10 1x
  • Category: Baking
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This banana walnut bread recipe is super moist and flavorful. Filled with chocolate chips and walnuts and topped with a layer of cinnamon and brown sugar for the perfect crunchy sweetness in every bite! It’s heavenly in the morning with a cup of coffee!


Ingredients

Scale

½ cup unsalted butter (1 stick, softened)

½ cup white sugar

½ cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 eggs at room temperature

2 cups all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon cinnamon

½ teaspoon salt

2-3 ripened bananas (at least 1 cup mashed)

½ cup sour cream

2 tablespoons brown sugar

½ teaspoon cinnamon

½ cup mini chocolate chips

½ cup chopped walnuts


Instructions

Prep: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Butter and flour a loaf pan. Alternatively, butter the loaf pan and line it with parchment paper. 

Butter, Sugar, and Eggs: Cream the butter and sugars until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add one egg and beat for about one minute. Scrape down the sides and add the second egg, beating for one minute. Scrape down the sides with a spatula. Add the vanilla and mix until combined. 

Mashed Bananas and Sour Cream: Mash the bananas with a fork and fold in the sour cream until it’s combined. 

Dry Ingredients: Add the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon to a bowl and mix with a fork until combined. To measure the flour, scoop spoonfuls of flour into a measuring cup and then level off with a knife. 

Combining: Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the creamed butter mixture and fold gently. Add ½ the mashed banana and fold gently. Alternate adding the flour and banana mixtures until everything is combined. Do this with a wooden spoon or spatula, and don’t overmix. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

Banana Bread Topping: Combine the 2 tablespoons of brown sugar and ½ teaspoon of cinnamon. Sprinkle the mixture on top of the dough.

Bake: Place in the oven and bake for about 60 – 70 minutes, rotating the loaf pan halfway through. To check for doneness, insert a knife or toothpick in the center of the bread. It should come out slightly moist with the chocolate chips a just a hint of batter (you don’t want to overbake). I usually cook for an hour, and that’s enough. 



Notes

Make sure to use mini chocolate chips if you’re adding. The regular-sized chips make the bread too chocolaty, and the pieces stay hard, which detracts from the moist feel you want in banana bread. 

If you don’t have sour cream, you can use whole milk Greek yogurt instead. 

I usually use a large loaf pan affiliate link (9.25 x 5.25) and the nutrition information is based on this size. However, I like to use the small loaf pan affiliate link if I want to make two loaves to give as gifts. 

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: slice

Keywords: banana bread, banana nut bread, banana walnut bread, cinnamon banana bread, banana bread walnut recipe, banana bred with sour cream, how to make banana bread

cuban deviled eggs on an Easter table settings

Cuban Deviled Eggs Are Great For Easter Brunch

Do you love deviled eggs? Then you’ll love my Cuban Deviled Eggs. It’s based on the classic deviled eggs recipe with one important addition… saffron. My son says that I would add saffron to just about anything. But this is not true! Saffron is an expensive spice so I use it very judiciously, but it’s so worth it on deviled eggs. Especially for Easter Brunch!

Deviled Eggs In Spanish

The Spanish name for deviled eggs is huevos endiablados. I really couldn’t find a recipe for huevos endiablados in my Cuban cookbooks. So I’ll admit that deviled eggs are not much of a Cuban thing. But it’s about time that changed! It’s time we crashed the deviled egg party platter with our own version! 

And I’m not the only one that thinks so. I did find a few recipes online for Cuban deviled eggs that included garlic, tomato sauce, cilantro, or Spanish olives. But I’m very fond of the classics so I wanted to keep this Cuban deviled egg recipe simple and try it with my favorite Spanish spice, saffron.  

Spanish deviled eggs

An Egg By Any Other Name

While deviled eggs may not be a Cuban thing, they are a universally loved appetizer. The deviled eggs’ origin dates back to ancient Rome and you’ll find it in cookbooks all over the world. They are called by other names such as stuffed eggs, mimosa eggs, Russian eggs, and dressed eggs. 

In fact, I did find a recipe for Florecitas De Huevos Rellenos (stuffed egg flowers) in the classic Cocina Criolla cookbook. So, there is a Cuban deviled egg recipe! I was tempted to try this recipe, but it called for deviled ham and that’s just a deal breaker for me. So, I had to come up with my own version. 

It turns out eggs are not the only things that are deviled. The term deviled refers to spicy or highly seasoned foods and originates in 18th century England, where it’s spelled “devilled”. 

How Long To Boil Eggs

This saffron deviled egg recipe is easy to make. The hardest part for most is how to cook the egg. You want the yolk to be fully cooked without the green ring around it. And the egg shell needs to come away cleanly so your egg has a smooth surface without any gouges or pockmarks. 

The trick for easy peeling is to shock the eggs by placing them in ice cold water immediately and letting them cool for about 15 minutes. Kenji Lopez-Alt gives a great explanation of why this works in this Serious Eats article. I love how many experiments he went through to help us boil an egg! Much appreciated here!

As for how to cook the egg… you want to bring a pot of water to boil. Gently place the cold eggs into the water using a spoon (if you drop them in you’ll crack them). Lower the heat to simmer and cook 18 minutes. Kenji suggests 11 minutes, but he covers his eggs and I like to check on the simmer to make sure they are simmering and not boiling. I found that 18 minutes uncovered worked best for me. 

deviled eggs with bacon

Classic Ingredients

Earlier I referred to classic deviled eggs and that usually means a mix of mayo, mustard and vinegar. My version sticks pretty closely to this except for delicious, magical saffron. I love that stuff!!

Now, I went with a lot less mayo than I would prefer. I’m trying to strike a happy balance between my tastebuds and my health. I like to eat these a lot, so by cutting down on the mayo, I get to enjoy them more! So, I went with ¼ cup of mayo, but you can easily go to ½ cup and get a creamier filling. If you do that, then I would increase the mustard from 2 to 3 tablespoons. Another way to lower the calorie count is to use reduced calorie mayonnaise.

Deviled Egg Toppings

My favorite topping is smoked paprika, it works so well with saffron! In fact, saffron and smoked paprika are the key ingredients in my favorite Paella Mixta recipe. I also like to add some chives for color and texture. But here are a few more toppings you can try: bacon, cooked chorizo crumbles, Spanish olives cut in half, red onions and caper gremolata, and cilantro. I tried all these variations and my favorites were the smoked paprika and chives, and bacon crumbles. But you go out there and have some fun with it!

Download Brunch Menu Recipe Book

Make brunch even easier with this Brunch Menu e-book that includes an easy-to-make brunch menu, complete with a shopping list and all the recipes you need. Download the book and let’s get cooking!

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Spanish Deviled Eggs with smoked paprika and chives on an easter plate

Cuban Deviled Eggs For Easter

  • Author: Sandi Abbott
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 18
  • Total Time: 33 minutes
  • Yield: 24
  • Category: Brunch
  • Method: Boiling
  • Cuisine: Cuban

Description

The saffron affiliate link adds a subtle but distinctive flavor to this classic deviled egg recipe with a Cuban twist! You can easily half this recipe for a smaller gathering. Party animals can easily double it too 😉


Ingredients

12 eggs

¼ cup mayonnaise

2 Tablespoons Dijon mustard

Salt and White pepper to taste

Generous pinch saffron threads

Chives and Smoked Paprika for garnish


Instructions

Boiling: Bring a pot of water to boil. Once boiling, use a spoon to gently place the eggs into the pan. If you drop them in, you can break them. Also, you can use cold eggs, straight from the fridge. Boil for 30 seconds, then lower to a simmer and cook for 18 minutes (check to make sure it’s simmering, the eggs will make a little rattling sound but you should not see bubbles). Once cooked add to a bowl of ice cubes and water, enough to cover the eggs. Let stand for at least 15 minutes before peeling. 

Saffron: While the eggs are cooling, crumble the saffron threads between your fingers and place in a small bowl or cup. Add a tablespoon of boiling water and let it sit while the eggs boil. 

Peeling: Once the eggs have cooled 15 minutes, gently crack the egg all over (don’t do it too hard or you can break the egg white). Peel under running water. Rinse the egg to make sure there’s no shell bits clinging to it. 

Scooping the Yolks: Cut the eggs in half lengthwise and gently remove the yolk, it should come out cleanly. If it doesn’t, use a spoon to gently scoop out whatever yolk is clinging to the egg whites. I cannot stress gentleness enough. You don’t want to damage your little egg cups!

Mixing: Add the egg yolks to a bowl and mash with a potato masher or fork until small crumbles. Add the mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, saffron threads with water. Mix with the back of a wooden spoon to make the mixture as smooth and creamy as possible. Add white pepper and salt to taste. 

Stuffing: Use a mini scooper or a spoon to fill each egg cup. Or, you can pipe the mixture into the cups for a fancy look. 

Piping: Take the yolk mixture and place it in pastry bag with a 1M star decorator tip. Pipe each egg cup until filled. 

Garnishing: Garnish with smoked paprika and chopped chives. 


Notes

Other great toppings you can use for these eggs are: crumbled bacon, crispy cooked Spanish chorizo, cilantro, Spanish olives.

I mentioned this in my post but it bears repeating… I used less mayo to lower the calories and guilt factor on these, but you can easily go to ½ cup of mayo and get a creamier filling. If you do that, then increase the mustard to 3 tablespoons. Alternatively, you can use reduced calorie mayonnaise. 

If you want to add more complex toppings, I would suggest spooning in the mixture so you have more of a horizontal surface to work with. Also, the creamier the eggs (aka higher mayo content), the better the toppings adhere. 

Keywords: Cuban Deviled Eggs, Spanish deviled eggs, saffron deviled eggs, Spanish deviled eggs recipe, easter deviled eggs, smoked paprika deviled eggs

smoked salmon avocado toast

Easy Smoked Salmon Avocado Toast For Brunch

Brunch is absolutely the best weekend meal! I love hanging out with friends and family sipping on a mimosa and munching on these super tasty smoked salmon avocado toasts. On their own, smoked salmon and avocado toast are brunch stars but paired together they are Oscar material!

Crostini plays a supporting role to thinly sliced avocado topped with smoked salmon and a red onion and capers gremolata. I first tried making these little salmon toasts with cream cheese, but it was overpowering. The avocado has a more subtle flavor that lets the salmon shine through. And the gremolata was the perfect complement for both.

This brunch recipe doesn’t require any cooking and can be prepared in advance and assembled just before serving. If you can’t find ripe avocados, substitute avocado mash for the sliced avocado. However, don’t use guacamole for the base because it’s a bit too much with the gremolata. 

Let’s review this cast of characters.

salmon avocado toast

How This Easy Brunch Appetizer Stacks Up

Crostini – I used half inch slices of French bread cut diagonally. This gives you more room for smoked salmon and makes it more than just a bite. If you’re pressed for time, you can use store-bought crostini, but it’s better if you can make them. Store-bought crostini tends to be thinner and crispier. And having a thicker slice with a bit of a chew gives you a more satisfying bite and mouthfeel.

Avocado – I used thinly sliced avocado fanned out on the crostini. It looks super fancy and it’s so easy to make. You slice the avocado in half, peel it and thinly slice it from top to bottom. Then you run your fingers over it slightly to flatten and fan the slices like a deck of cards.

Smoked Salmon – I love the way the smokey flavor stands up to the other ingredients in this salmon toast. I had tried making a marinade for the smoked salmon, but it overpowered the salmon. The gremolata gives you a great punch without drowning out the delicate salmon flavor. 

Gremolata – I love this part! Gremolata is a traditional Italian herb condiment made with lemon zest, parsley and garlic. My take on it includes red onion, capers and cilantro, instead of parsley. The cilantro tastes so good with avocado!

smoked salmon canape

These Smoked Salmon Toasts Are Super Versatile

These tasty little toasts are perfect for Easter brunch, but they are so friendly and versatile you can serve them at just about any occasion.

Change the crostini for two thick slices of sourdough bread to make smoked salmon avo toast breakfast for two. 

Or cut the French bread into half-inch rounds to make smoked salmon canapes for your next party. This recipe makes eight little salmon toasts, but you can double the amount by cutting the bread crosswise into 16 small half-inch rounds.

Hanging out with friends having wine? These are perfect little montaditos, a Spanish tapas dish made with bread piled high with toppings. 

This little avocado toast has range, baby!

Don’t know about montaditos? It’s a special type of Spanish tapas (appetizer) made with baguette-style bread topped with all kinds of good stuff.  Check out my Ropa Vieja Montaditos recipe to get a better idea. 

Ready to brunch? Dale!

Download Brunch Menu Recipe Book

Make brunch even easier with this Brunch Menu e-book that includes an easy-to-make brunch menu, complete with a shopping list and all the recipes you need. Download the book and let’s get cooking!

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smoked salmon toast

Easy Smoked Salmon Avocado Toast For Brunch

  • Author: Sandi Abbott
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 8
  • Category: Brunch
  • Method: No Cook
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These smoked salmon toasts are an easy brunch recipe that requires no cooking. Smoked salmon and avocado piled high on a crostini with a lemon and caper gremolata is the perfect dish for breakfast, brunch or a party. 


Ingredients

8 slices of French bread cut on the diagonal, half-inch thick and 5 inches long

2 small Hass avocados

4 ounces smoked salmon

1/4 cup red onion finely diced

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

1 tablespoon chopped capers

3 tables olive oil, divided

zest of 1 lemon

salt and pepper to taste

chives for garnish


Instructions

These smoked salmon avocado toasts require no cooking, just a little toasting for the bread. 

Crostini: Cut 8 slices of French bread on the diagonal. The slices should be half-inch thick and 5 inches long. Brush with one tablespoon of olive oil and lightly toast. 

avocado toast

Avocado: Cut the avocado in half and remove the pit. Peel and thinly slice each half. Gently push on the avocado slices to fan them out like a deck of cards. Take about 1/4 for each piece of toast. Place the slices on the toast and gently mold to fit. 

Salmon: Portion the salmon into 8 equal portions of half an ounce each.

Gremolata: Take the remaining two tablespoons of olive oil, the lemon zest, onions, capers and cilantro and mix in a bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste. 

Assemble: Top each avocado toast with one portion of smoked salmon and a spoonful of the gremolata across the top. 

Garnish: Cut 8 chives about 5 inches long and top each toast with one chive.


Notes

You can use mashed avocado in place of the sliced avocado. 

You can make the gremolata and toast the bread ahead of time and then assemble when you’re ready to serve. 

smokes salmon canape

You can turn this avocado toast into smoked salmon canapes. Just double the servings from 8 to 16 by cutting the French bread into half-inch rounds (crosswise not diagonal) and top with 1/8 of an avocado and a quarter ounce of salmon. 

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 toast

Keywords: smoked salmon avocado toast, salmon toast, salmon avocado toast, smoked salmon canape, brunch recipe

mango orange smoothie

Mango Orange Smoothie Is The Creamiest

Good mornings are always on the menu with this super creamy and tropical mango orange smoothie. It’s everything I love about Miami… it’s sunny and bright, tangy and tropical. The flavors blend so well that every sip feels like a conga line in your mouth! 

This is the absolutely most luscious frozen fruit smoothie you’ll ever make. 

  • Frozen mango gives it such a silky and frothy feel
  • Coconut milk adds the perfect creamy finish
  • Orange juice has such a tangy little kick at the end

Together, these three ingredients give this smoothie a very tropical vibe, like you should be sitting on a beach chair, with a little paper umbrella in your smoothie! Bananas, almond milk, and protein powder balance out the smoothie and give it the satiety you need to make it more like breakfast. 

There have been times that I’ve been craving this smoothie with no orange juice on hand. I just replace the orange juice with a bit of extra almond milk. It’s still delicious, but I do miss the citrus tang, though. In that case, it’s more of a mango banana smoothie recipe. Either way, it will brighten your morning!

What Mango Should You Use?

I like to use frozen mangos for this smoothie. Frozen fruit helps make your smoothies thick and frosty without diluting the flavor with ice cubes.  You can freeze your own or buy frozen mango chunks. 

Back before Hurricane Irma destroyed her tree, my mom (aka Bean Train) used to bring me the mangoes from her backyard which were absolutely the best I’d ever tasted. I would freeze them and have mango smoothies all the time! 

Now I use frozen mango chunks from the freezer section unless it’s summertime. Then, I use fresh mangos that my friends and neighbors give away. The mangos are falling off the neighbors’ trees, so they are always happy to share their extras. In fact, you can find little roadside stands even in residential areas where folks are either selling or giving away their extra mangos. Talk about pop-up stores!

When I’ve had to buy them at the store, I usually buy the Kent mangos, but you can try other mango varieties. They should work fine. 

how to cut a mango

How To Cut and Freeze Mangos

If you’re using fresh mangos, one mango yields about one cup of mango chunks… maybe a little more. Mangos have a huge pit, so the yield is not as much as you’d expect from such a big fruit. 

The pit also makes them a little tricky to cut. Instead of peeling the mango, cut the fleshy sides of the mango, avoiding the pit in the center. Then, to each fleshy side, you’ll make shallow cuts lengthwise and crosswise to form a hashtag, but don’t cut through the skin. Then bend the skin back to reveal little cubes you can easily eat. 

But wait! We’re cutting these to make a smoothie! So, don’t eat them, instead, cut them and lay them out in a single layer on a plate or small tray. Now cut the flesh around the pit as much as you can and lay those pieces on the tray as well. Now you can nibble on the pit! 

Go ahead and freeze for about 2 hours and then you can store it in a ziplock bag. To make things easier, you can freeze in cup portion bags. I like to wait until the next day so the mangos are totally frozen and will give my smoothie that frothy feel without adding ice cubes. 

mango banana smoothie

Healthy and Delicious

This is a healthy mango smoothie with coconut milk, banana, orange juice, almond milk and protein powder. I used just ¼ cup of canned, unsweetened coconut milk because it gives it such a rich taste. But you could opt for ¾ cup of Silk coconut milk with fewer calories (replace the ½ cup almond milk in that case). It won’t be quite as rich, but still a treat! You can use any protein powder you like. I used whey protein, but you can use a plant-based protein powder to make this a vegan mango smoothie.

What Makes This Mango Smoothie So Creamy

This smoothie totally lives up to its name, it’s absolutely the creamiest I’ve ever had! Everything about this smoothie contributes to it’s super creamy texture.

  • Sometimes mangos can be stringy, but I’ve found the Kent mangos to be buttery and blend really smooth.
  • The coconut milk gives it a really silky feel and super tropical taste.
  • The protein powder also contributes to its rich, creaminess. I’ve made it without the powder and it’s not quite as velvety.
  • I also have to give my mixer a lot of the credit. My son accidentally broke the glass pitcher on my old blender and we splurged and got a Vitamix blender. OMG! That machine is so awesome! It’s one of the reasons I’m making so many smoothies now. It’s also great for cashew cream, creamed soups and all kinds of sauces. I held off getting it because it was a bit pricey, but I use it every day.

Good Morning Sunshine Smoothie

Mornings seem a little perkier with orange juice. But orange juice by itself wouldn’t make much of a breakfast, would it? So this little orange and mango smoothie is the perfect alternative! I promise you’ll love mornings again with this delish smoothie that reminds you of sunshine and paper umbrella drinks!

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mango banana smoothie

Frozen Mango Orange Smoothie

  • Author: Sandi Abbott
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 2
  • Total Time: 7 minutes
  • Yield: 1 1x
  • Category: breakfast
  • Method: blender

Description

This healthy and delicious mango orange smoothie is the perfect way to start your mornings! The mango and coconut milk give it a very tropical taste vibe and the protein powder gives this frozen fruit smoothie some staying power!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup frozen mango chunks
  • 1/2 a banana
  • 1/4 cup canned, unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 scoop protein powder (I used whey protein, but you can use whichever one you like)

Instructions

Blend all ingredients until smooth and creamy. 



Notes

Frozen Mango Chunks: I used storebought frozen mango chunks, but you can cut your own fresh mango. Either way, you’ll need to freeze the mango to get the best creamy texture without having to use ice. One mango yields about a 1 cup or more of mango chunks. 

Protein Powder: I used whey protein powder but you can use whichever one you like. You can make this into vegan smoothie by using a plant-based protein powder. 

Prep Time: It should take less than 5 minutes to throw this mango orange smoothie together if you’re using frozen fruit. Calculate 10 minutes more if you’re cutting and freezing your own mangos. In that case, you’ll also need to wait a few hours or overnight to make the mango smoothie. 

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1

Keywords: mango orange smoothie, mango smoothie with coconut milk, orange mango smoothie, frozen mango smoothie

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