Chocolate and pumpkin together has to be one of the best kept secrets known to man. In the age of PSL's (Pumpkin Spice Lattés, for you uninitiated), people seem to have forgotten that chocolate and pumpkin do actually work together rather well. At least they do in this high protein shake recipe — if I do say so myself! This decadence is so delicious that you will forget it's a meal replacement and think it's a dessert! No, seriously!
And when you consider that not only is it high protein (over 20 grams), it is also LOW sugar and gluten- and dairy-free — you will want to try this high protein shake recipe TODAY. Or at least tomorrow, after you run out and buy some canned pumpkin.
Even my 13-yr-old thinks it is delish. That's high praise, there.
Notes about This Yummy Protein Shake Recipe
One thing to be aware of: the choice of the protein powder is KEY for fulfilling the claims that this high protein shake recipe is gluten free, dairy free, and low sugar. MANY protein powders are made with whey protein, which means they are not dairy free. OR they add a bunch of sugar, which then sends you into orbit after you drink. I use ORGAIN chocolate protein powder. It is made with vegetable proteins, and it only has just a little bit of organic stevia added for sweetener — which is at the end of the list of ingredients, so hopefully that means there isn't very much.
If you don't care about the gluten and the dairy and the sugar, then feel free to substitute with your own favorite brand of protein powder. As long as it's chocolate. Vanilla is NOT what this high protein shake recipe is all about. :-)
Another thing I want to make a special note about is the inclusion of banana in this recipe. Because anybody who has known me for very long knows that I CANNOT STAND bananas. Total bleckiness, y'all!! Uuuugggghhhh!! BUT it turns out that just a half of a FROZEN banana will give this shake a wonderful thickness, and yet it's not enough for you to actually taste the banana too much. I mean, there is a teeny tiny (said in the highest voice you can squeak) hint of banana flavor, but the pumpkin pie spice tones it down, so it's more like you're eating banana bread than actual banana. If you know what I mean. And if I can handle that level of banana taste, then anyone can.
How to freeze a banana, you ask? I just throw the ones that have turned brown while sitting on the counter into the freezer, skin and all. The skin is all you need — no ziploc bag, no tinfoil or plastic wrap. Then when I want one for a shake, I just pull it out and cut it in half before peeling only the part I will use.
You'd think a frozen banana would be rock solid and hard to cut, but that is not the case — it's not even as hard as a raw carrot. And the fact that it is brown is not a detriment to this or any other recipe that uses bananas. Strange but true!
The unused half goes right back into the freezer (this time in a bag, cuz the end has been cut off, hello) and the peeled half goes into the blender. SO SIMPLE.
As always on my blog, this recipe is quick and easy to throw together. You can be slurping down this deliciousness in less than 5 minutes. Or use a spoon, which is my preferred method. So don't wait! :-)
Decadent Chocolate Pumpkin High Protein Shake
- 8 oz . almond milk (I use unsweetened vanilla. Unsweetened is a key to having a low sugar result.) (You can also sub regular milk if you don't mind dairy.)
- 2 scoops Orgain Chocolate Protein Powder (anything else may not be gluten- or dairy-free or low sugar.)
- 1/2 cup canned pumpkin (NOT pie filling, just pumpkin)
- 1 Tablespoon flaxseed meal (for texture and added protein — but it could probably be omitted in a pinch)
- 2 Tablespoons coconut oil (because good fat is good for you, and it makes the shake nice and smooooooth)
- 1/2 FROZEN banana
- generous shake of pumpkin pie spice
I just put it all in a blender and hit the button for the highest setting. Keep it going for a little while until the graininess from the protein powder goes away.
All measurements in this recipe are approximate. You can play with them up or down as you prefer.
You might also like my other high protein shake recipe, which has lotsa greens and is sans pumpkin: High Protein Breakfast Smoothie — Gluten- and Dairy-free, Low Sugar.
And what do you do with the remaining pumpkin? Try a PSL (Pumpkin Spice Latte
- 2 cups milk
- 1 cup very strong coffee (4 tablespoons coffee grounds to 1 cup of hot water)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
- 2-4 teaspoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon (plus extra for dusting)
- 2 heaping spoonfuls of pumpkin
Pour all of the ingredients into a pot and heat over medium-high heat until the coffee is steaming hot. Pour into mugs and top with whipped cream & cinnamon. Enjoy!
Prep Time: 5 minutes. Serves 2
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