Sunday, January 15, 2012

Let's shake things up a bit.

Holy Cow! I have discovered the most DELICIOUS protein shake ever. Let's just get this out there... I love chocolate and I'm a bit of a snob about it. For me the darker the chocolate, the better it tastes. And I really kind of hate things that are supposed to taste like chocolate but don't. One day while browsing the interwebs I stumbled upon a recommendation for Silk PureAlmond Dark Chocolate Almond Milk. I've been enthusiastically riding the almond milk train for a couple of years now but I've never tried anything other than the unsweetened vanilla. So on my next trip to the supermarket, I picked some up and wow! It is a lot thicker than my usual almond milk (Almond Breeze) and between the thicker consistency and the rich dark chocolate flavor, I was in heaven. It's a little high in the calorie department (120 cals/cup) so I tend to use it as a special treat and I really look forward to it.

This brings me to tonight: After my workouts, I've been making whey protein smoothies to help accelerate muscle recovery (read more about whey protein here). For the record, my whey protein of choice is Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Gold Standard. I did a lot of research and read a million reviews before deciding on Optimum and I have been extremely pleased with both their products and their customer service. They have a huge variety of flavors and a high quality whey protein blend. I like to use the Vanilla Ice Cream flavor with my fruit smoothies. On its own it tastes more like cake batter than ice cream but it's good.

The standout flavor for me though is the Mocha Cappuccino. I have tried it mixed with water, which is good but definitely resembles watered-down coffee. Tonight, in a stroke of post-workout genius, I decided to merge the dark chocolate milk with the mocha cappuccino protein powder. HE-LLO! Why have I not tried this before? The end result was a cross between a Starbucks mocha frappuccino and a Wendy's chocolate frosty (two of my favorite things)! Rich, chocolatey, lightly coffee-flavored bliss in a cup. Please do yourself a favor and try it!

  • 1 cup Silk PureAlmond Dark Chocolate Almond Milk
  • 1 heaping scoop Optimum Nutrition 100% Whey Gold Standard Mocha Cappuccino
  • ice, lots of it

Pour the milk and powder in to the blender and give them a spin for about a minute (this helps dissolve the powder). Add in your ice, crush it up and then blend until your desired consistency is reached. Voila! This smoothie packs a whopping 25 grams of protein and weighs in at around 250 calories - so for me it is something best enjoyed post-workout. It does turn out quite generous in size so if you'd like to enjoy it as a dessert either cut out the protein powder or reduce the milk to one-half cup and the protein powder to one-half scoop. Suddenly I'm a lot more motivated to work out...

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