Would you put THIS in your smoothie? Some unexpected ingredients to try…

I’ve been experimenting with all kinds of new ingredients in my smoothies, and two came to my attention in particular: cauliflower and zucchini. Why these two?

They are healthy, cheap and plentiful this time of year; they are easy to store and freeze (don’t spoil easily), and—last and not least—both are SUPER LOW IN CALORIES. 

All of which make them perfect to try in a raw soup or smoothie when trying to lose weight (as I am right now)!

Seriously, these two aren’t used nearly often enough, in my opinion.

You may think I’m nuts (and I am—kind of; I’m certainly nuts—or bananas—about smoothies!), but bear with me.

A couple of weeks ago I bought a huge cauliflower I was trying to come up with what to make for dinner. Cauliflower soup sounded like a logical choice, the problem was—it was so hot I didn’t feel like cooking or eating a warm soup.

I started munching on and it was sooo delicious and crunchy raw; so I thought, what if I made it into a raw soup? At first I was skeptical, as I’m sure ANYONE would be. I don’t think I’ve EVER made a raw soup that featured cauliflower as the main ingredient. (Especially since my experiments with other cruciferous veggies weren’t a raving success, LOL.)

When people think about a cauliflower, they don’t usually crave eating it raw or having it in a smoothie, ice-cream or other dessert.  Let’s face it, most people’s mouths don’t water at the sight of this cruciferous veggie, the way they do when you see a piece of chocolate or a cup of strawberries. 😉

So I created this raw cauliflower soup recipe in a spur of a moment—taking inspiration from several blogs and using the ingredients that I had in my kitchen (I hate having to run to the store when the inspiration hits me!).

This raw cauliflower soup is SENSATIONAL for a hot summer day, when you don’t feel like cooking. Cashews add HEAVENLY creaminess to this soup, and provide more “staying power,” making you feel satisfied for longer, while grapefruit juice adds freshness and tartness. Serve it CHILLED with plenty of crunchy toppings, and sprinkle with dill and citrus juice.

Side Note: I enjoyed this recipe so much that I included it in the new edition of Easy Raw Soups: 40+ Recipes for Raw Soups. (You can get all my recipe books, including this one, by joining the Green Reset program or you can find all my books, including fiction and children’ books on Amazon.)

Encouraged by the positive outcome, I wondered—why not make a cauliflower smoothie?


Would you put this in your smoothie? Cauliflower Smoothie Recipe

Two Low-Carb Smoothie Recipes

These two recipes for cauliflower smoothie are OUT OF THIS WORLD.

Before you judge, I want you to know that I was skeptical at first too.

Cauliflower in a smoothie that actually tastes good?  No way!

I did try putting cruciferous veggies in smoothies many times, and one thing I learned is that you have to be very careful not to put too much of those, because the smell and taste becomes questionable very quickly.  

But I was feeling adventurous and up to the challenge (plus, I didn’t really have any greens on hand, and a fruit smoothie sounded too sweet). I usually add spinach, lettuce or other leafy greens, but I was out and when I swapped in cauliflower it was—WOW, mind blown.

And even though I put A LOT CAULIFLOWER IN THIS smoothie—it turned out delicious, and I literally wouldn’t even know it was there if I didn’t make it myself. 

I really enjoyed it very cold, or even freezing, almost like an ice cream. If you like it super cold, all you need to do is cut up and freeze the cauliflower and other fruit the night before you want to make it! Or, if you don’t have any frozen ingredients, add replace some of the liquid with ice.

So, why cauliflower in a smoothie?

Because it’s healthy. It’s filling. And it has practically no calories.

To be exact, there’s 25 calories per cup, or a mere 113 calories in 1 pound of cauliflower.

Let me say that again, because maybe you didn’t get that.


Which makes it an amazing choice of food for everyone who’s trying to eat healthily and consume fewer calories (as I am right now). Cauliflower is one of the most versatile low-carb vegetables, but very unappreciated. It has a very mild taste and can be used as a substitute for potatoes, rice and other higher-carb foods. And after my first smoothie with frozen cauliflower, I was hooked.

Berry Cauliflower Smoothie

2 cups frozen cauliflower florets
½ cup frozen mixed berries
1 cup sliced frozen banana
2 cups of water or unsweetened plant milk
1 tablespoon of peanut butter or other nut or butter (such as tahini)
A few dates and nuts, such as walnuts or other for extra sweetness and crunch (optional)

Blend everything until smooth.

Cinnamon-Cocoa Cauliflower Smoothie

This delicious milkshake-like treat is 100% plant-based, healthy and uses frozen cauliflower to make it extra creamy. And you can’t even taste the cauliflower!

1 banana (fresh or frozen)
1 cup frozen raw cauliflower
1 tsp peanut butter (or more, up to 1 tbsp)
1-2 tbsp cacao powder or 1 scoop vegan chocolate protein powder
2 dates
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup water

Blend all ingredients until smooth! Enjoy!

Optional Ingredients
Add some roasted cocoa beans or nuts—I love to add some crunch
Try adding instant coffee instead of coca powder.
Add plant milk instead of water.
Use almond butter or other nut or seed butter (e.g., tahini) instead of peanut butter.
Freeze it and eat as an ice-cream later or make it into a popsicle for a fun treat.


Can you taste the cauliflower? Nope! It’s totally undetectable when using the recipes as described.

Does it have to be frozen? No. It just adds a creaminess that is necessary. And I do like my smoothies

I want to make the smoothie very low in calories; can I skip nut butters? Honestly, I wouldn’t skip it when making smoothies with cruciferous veggies, such as cauliflower or cabbage. They really help mask the “cruciferous” smell and taste plus make the texture super creamy. Plus, adding those ingredients make those smoothies really filling and satisfying,

I like smoothies, but I feel hungry very quickly after I have them. What can I do? The key to a filling smoothie is making sure you have a balance of complex carbohydrates, healthy fats and plant-based protein. Raw nuts or seeds are great, but you can also add nut or seed butter.

Is this recipe suitable for kids? My kid is very cautious of any unusual ingredients in smoothies. It sure is! It’s great for picky eaters or kids or just if you want to make sure you’re eating enough veggies. For those of you out there who are constantly trying to find ways to get your kids to eat vegetables, frozen cauliflower smoothie is a great way to get them to drink their veggies, especially if they’re not into smoothies made with spinach or kale because of the bright green color.

I don’t like to use protein powders. What should I do? If you don’t have or want to use vegan protein powder in this, you can just use some cacao powder instead to give it that chocolatey flavor. It literally makes this taste like a dessert.

If you don’t want to make this particular smoothie and want more of a tropical smoothie that’s totally fine! The frozen cauliflower trick will work in any smoothie.

If you’re still skeptical about the cauliflower—then how about broccoli?

While they are both very nutritious vegetables, broccoli has higher vitamin content, specifically in vitamin K and C, than cauliflower and is specifically known to be great for eye health. Broccoli florets also provide more minerals and fiber as well as contains vitamin A that isn’t in cauliflower. There are 154 calories in 1 pound of broccoli.

Or zucchini?

Zucchini is even lower in calories and super mild in taste.

1 pound of zucchini is just 77 calories!

Zucchini has a very mild taste, so it adds almost no flavor, but it does add creaminess and a nice, slushy texture. Think of frozen zucchini more like creamy ice cubes. They add extra nutrients, without affecting the flavor!

Try these recipes as they are it’s also an easy one to alter based on your personal preferences and cravings. I will often swap out the strawberries for blueberries and add a handful of fresh spinach to the smoothie as well.

And stay tuned for more recipes with healthy and super-low calorie ingredients.

PS. If you weren’t a fan of the recipe or substituted an ingredient/s, let me know in the comments! Share the Love on Social Media: Pin IT on Pinterest, share the link on Facebook, or post a picture of your creation on Instagram.