Pumpkin and Cacao Smoothie

Pumpkin and Cacao Smoothie

Pumpkin and Cacao Smoothie

Here in D.C., there’s a chill in the air. The laundry I just folded consisted of shorts, tank tops, and little dresses, but this week I’ve gotten out boots and cardigans. Along with fall, comes excitement about everything pumpkin. The pumpkin spice latte hashtag (#PSL) appears over 200,000 times on Instagram. This popular drink smells like fall, but it contains no real pumpkin. What a disappointment! My feelings aren’t hurt because I prefer tea over coffee anyway. But, I felt kind of left out. I wanted to drink something seasonal in the morning too.

I pinned this smoothie recipe, but didn’t have all of the ingredients on hand, so I made some changes and came up with a new recipe to share with you. It contains real pumpkin and cacao nibs that are a healthy alternative to chocolate chips. This recipe is super handy for those times when you make pumpkin bread or some other deliciousness that calls for only a partial can of pumpkin puree and you’re left with the remainder and no desire to spend a lot of time making something else.

Speaking of Instagram (@independentorg) and Pinterest…are you following us yet?

Pumpkin and Cacao Smoothie

serves 1

Note: I like my smoothies a little less chilly this time of year, but if you like yours cold, use a frozen banana or throw in come ice cubes.


  • 1 scoop plain protein powder

  • 1 cup almond milk

  • 1 small banana

  • 1/2 cup pumpkin puree

  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup

  • 1 tablespoon raw cacao nibs


Place everything into a blender in this order. Blend until combined, adding a little more almond milk if it’s too thick to drink easily.

What are your favorite ways to eat pumpkin?