Total time: 25 mins (+ cooling time for the granola)
Serving size: 2 Acai bowls (plus leftover granola to save as a treat!)
The first time I ever had an Acai Bowl was a few months ago when I took a road trip down the Gold Coast of Australia. On the final day of the trip, we had ventured to Byron Bay – a sunny, laid-back, surf town that’s known for its expansive beaches and stress-free atmosphere. To this day, Byron remains one of my favourite places in the world because of the kind and relaxed people I met there, the constantly sunny weather, and the great food I was lucky enough to enjoy during my stay.
Looking back, the Acai Bowl stands out as my favourite meal from that entire road trip. My friend Erin and I had been feeling a little under the weather (a mixture of the long days of travelling, some mild sunstroke, and a bit too much sangria the night before), but we set out to grab some brunch nonetheless. Our appetites were lacking from the sickness, but we stopped at a charming café on the corner of the main street of the town. We both ordered Acai Bowls and not only were they deliciously refreshing AND healthy, but they also made us feel 100 times better and energized us for another full day of surfing and exploring.
Acai Bowls are essentially an extra-thick smoothie made with Acai berries, a fruit known for its rich antioxidants, immune-stimulation, and energy-boosting properties. For more info on the health benefits of Acai berries, click here. Acai Bowls are easy to make and the topping combinations are endless, making them one of my current breakfast obsessions. I especially love topping them with my Homemade Healthy Honey Granola for an extra crunch! The prep time is minimal and the recipe makes enough granola that you can store it in a Tupperware and enjoy it throughout the week.
This recipe makes a great Acai Bowl base, and you can mix up the toppings to experiment with different flavour combinations. Use organic ingredients wherever possible, and don’t stress too much about exact measurements – the recipe is extremely forgiving and always turns out delicious.
For the Homemade Honey Granola:
|2 cups whole rolled oats
¼ teaspoon salt
½ cup raw almonds, chopped
¼ cup raw pumpkin seeds
|1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
⅙ cup coconut oil
⅓ cup honey
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Pre-heat oven to 300°
- Combine all dry ingredients (oats, salt, almonds, pumpkin seeds, and cinnamon) in a large bowl. Set aside – we’ll return to it later.
- Combine all wet ingredients (coconut oil, honey, and vanilla) in a small bowl. Mix together until evenly combined.
- Slowly add wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, mixing thoroughly as you combine the mixtures (don’t be afraid to use your hands!)
- Spread the mixture in a thin layer on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Bake 15 minutes or until lightly golden, stirring mixture halfway through. While the granola is baking, this is the perfect time to make the base of your Acai Bowl.
- Remove from oven and let cool for 10-15 minutes. This is the most difficult step, as the sweet aroma of warm granola that will fill your kitchen makes it nearly impossible not to sneak a bite or two.
- Serve immediately as a topping on an Acai Bowl or store in a container in a cool, dry place (lasts up to 2 weeks).
For the Acai Bowl:
|2 packets frozen, unsweetened acai berries (available at Costco or health food stores ie. Whole Foods)
2 frozen bananas
1 cup orange juice
|1 cup coconut water
¼ cup baby spinach leaves
2 teaspoons honey
|Healthy Honey Granola (see above)
Natural peanut butter
- Run the frozen acai packets under water for 5-10 seconds.
- Open Acai Berry packages and squeeze contents into blender.
- Add bananas, orange juice, coconut water, spinach, and honey to blender.
- Puree until completely smooth (adding more water if necessary).
- Pour into 2 bowls for serving.
- Top with your Healthy Honey Granola and other favourite toppings.