Earlier this year I gave up coffee. Again. It was terrible and traumatic at the time, but I don’t really miss it. Sorta.
Okay, who am I kidding, I do miss it. I love the smell of coffee and its heady aroma first thing in the morning. I also miss the specialty drinks during the holidays. Every year I got a thrill when I saw Pumpkin Spice Latte appear on the menu. Oooooh. Happiness. And then when Christmas rolled around I felt giddy as I entertained Peppermint Mochas and Eggnog Lattes. I miss it, I tell you, I miss it!
But, here’s what I don’t miss:
- the 9,000 calories per drink,
- the acidic fiesta created in my stomach thanks to the caffeine,
- the instant sugar rush followed by an overwhelming desire to take a nap, and
- I really don’t miss my body’s severe addiction to it, the withdrawals suck.
So, while I do miss coffee I have happily given it up and have found other ways to satisfy my holiday specialty drink thrills.
The basis for this milkshake is chai mix (*see my note below), coconut milk (any milk substitute works; I also do this shake with almond milk and love it), pumpkin puree, maple syrup, pumpkin spice and not shown here: frozen bananas and ice cubes.
A secret: Once a weekish I slice up a few bananas, throw them onto a cookie sheet and pop them in the freezer for a couple hours. When they have flash frozen I transfer the chunks to ziplock bags for use whenever I want to make a milkshake. The bananas help provide a creamy milkshake-like texture. This is the basis for a zillion different “raw vegan” milkshakes. I make a rich chocolate shake that Jack likes and it can be whipped up in 60 seconds for an easy snack or dessert.
Throw 1 large frozen banana into your blender.
And then add the rest of your ingredients.
Blend and enjoy!
Pumpkin spice chai vegan milkshake
makes: 1.25L (a blender full)
1 large frozen banana, chopped in chunks
1 cup chai mix*
1.5 cup coconut milk (or the nondairy milk of your choice)
1 cup pumpkin puree
1T maple syrup
1tsp pumpkin spice mix
2 cups ice cubes
Throw everything into a blender and blend until smooth.
*Most pre-made chai mixes have quite a bit of sugar in them, which I’m not thrilled about. There are lots of recipes out there for making your own chai from scratch, which I think is much preferable. I’m currently experimenting with several recipes and when I find something I like, I’ll share it. But for now … and the occasional treat, this pre-made mix is fine.