One of the most refreshing uses for summer berries are delicious smoothies that both comfort and inspire. Simple is always best, and these blackberry strawberry banana smoothies are a delicious choice to make summertime even more delightful.
Whether you’re in the process of harvesting your summer berries from your backyard (exciting!), or carefully selecting organic fresh berries from the grocery store, chances are you’ve already started daydreaming about all the delicious smoothies, shortcakes, oatmeal toppings, and snacks for the next few months. Berry season is a special time of year, especially here in the American South, so we’re celebrating with a new smoothie recipe that harnesses fresh flavors, ease, and healthy add-ins for the best blackberry strawberry banana smoothie!
Have a few extra bananas on hand? Save them to make this delicious air fryer bananas recipe a little later!
What you’ll love about this blackberry strawberry banana smoothie
Friendly for a variety of diets. This smoothie is friendly for a variety of diets because it is vegan, dairy free, gluten free, and acceptable for those on a whole foods plant-based diet.
Simple ingredients. With just a handful of simple ingredients, this smoothie doesn’t need any fancy extras to make it delicious. All the additions are just to sneak in a few extra healthy layers.
Customizable. You can add, subtract, or make adjustments to almost all aspects of this recipe. Craving a little more blackberry? Toss in a few more. Need the smoothie to be a little thicker? Add more frozen banana or ice cubes. The possibilities are practically endless, so enjoy making this smoothie your own.
Added nutrients. Enjoy a boost of antioxidants from the berries and chia seeds, protein from the protein powder and hemp seeds, Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids from the chia seeds and hemp seeds (respectively), plus fiber and more nutrients than we can list here. This really is a guilt-free treat!
Blackberries. The blackberries are what make this smoothie extra special, in my opinion. These give the smoothie a beautiful purple hue and the sweet-tart flavor that only blackberries can offer. Of course, the tart flavor becomes more subtle with the addition of strawberries and bananas.
Strawberries. Although strawberries are on the Environmental Working Group’s Dirty Dozen list, many grocers offer organic varieties. Or, you can try growing your own on your patio or in your backyard!
Frozen banana. Freezing the banana is not absolutely necessary, but is recommended to help give the smoothie a thicker texture. Select a banana that is ripe, or just beyond ripe. The difference in sweetness between a “green” banana and a ripe one is significant…even when combined with other fruit (discovered this tidbit from experience).
Plant-based milk. Choose an unsweetened variety that suits your preferences. We use soy or oat milk, primarily.
Plant-based vanilla protein. Although this is optional, added protein is great in a smoothie. The vanilla flavor is a wonderful complement to the fruit, but you are welcome to test with chocolate.
Ground chia seeds. Non-ground chia seeds are fine, too, but grinding them does provide a little more of an even consistency.
Hemp seeds. Hemp seeds are a subtle ingredient that hides in the background when mixed with other flavors. We love the nutritional boost from hemp seeds and making a healthy smoothie even healthier!
Ice. If you happen to use frozen blackberries or strawberries (not required), the smoothie might be thick enough for you without adding any ice. Otherwise, I would suggest incorporating ice cubes to get add volume and a nice, smooth texture.
Good quality blender. If using a strong blender (like a Ninja or Vitamix), you can add all ingredients to the bowl before blending – though I would still suggest adding the majority of the frozen items at the end. Otherwise, you will find it easier on the blender to add the ingredients in stages.
Measuring spoons. You are welcome to estimate the additions (like protein powder, chia seeds, and hemp seeds), or follow the measurements in this recipe.
Measuring cup. This is necessary for the milk and ice measurement.
How to make a blackberry strawberry banana smoothie (or two)
First, understand the blender you plan to use. If you struggle at all with its power, consider adding ingredients in batches. You might not need to do this if using a high-powered blender. Either way, we love getting a delightful, smooth consistency.
Hull fresh strawberries.
If using fresh vs. frozen strawberries, make sure the tops are removed and the strawberries are hulled. This is not a requirement, but should help with any picky eaters. Don't forget to save the tops for a green smoothie, where you add greens to the fruit!
Add the fresh berries and plant-based milk to blender.
Go ahead and add your liquid (plant-based milk) as well as the fresh strawberries and fresh blackberries to the blender. Blend until the consistency is smooth.
Add the powders and seeds.
I suggest adding the vegan vanilla protein powder, chia seeds, and hemp seeds about halfway through the process so they are blended evenly into the smoothie. This prevents sticking to pieces of frozen banana or ice in the next step.
Add frozen banana and ice.
Add the frozen banana and ice cubes to the smoothie. I typically cut the banana in half and add the ice gradually throughout this final blend. Stop to test the consistency and be prepared to thin or thicken, as desired.
Top your smoothie with fresh fruit.
Though not a requirement, it can be fun to add a little extra fresh fruit to the top of the smoothie. If you plan to serve this while entertaining, this is a nice method to show guests what ingredients are in the smoothie they're about to enjoy!
Blackberry Strawberry Banana Smoothie
- 1 Blender
- 1 ½ cups ice
- 1 cup fresh or frozen strawberries about 8 ounces
- 1 cup unsweetened plant-based milk
- ¾ cup fresh or frozen blackberries
- 1 medium or large frozen banana
- 1 tablespoon vegan vanilla protein powder
- ½ tablespoon ground chia seeds
- ½ tablespoon hemp seeds
- If using fresh strawberries, remove the tops.1 cup fresh or frozen strawberries
- Add milk and fresh fruit, then blend until smooth.1 cup fresh or frozen strawberries, ¾ cup fresh or frozen blackberries, 1 cup unsweetened plant-based milk
- Add the protein powder, hemp seeds, and chia seeds. Blend until smooth.1 tablespoon vegan vanilla protein powder, ½ tablespoon ground chia seeds, ½ tablespoon hemp seeds
- Add frozen ingredients and blend until smooth.1 medium or large frozen banana, 1 ½ cups ice
- Adjust the consistency to your liking by thinning with milk or adding more frozen ice to thicken.1 ½ cups ice, 1 medium or large frozen banana
Enjoying fresh is preferred, but you can store for up to 24 hours in an airtight container. Limit the amount of surface area exposed to air – in other words, fill it to the top of your container. Keep in mind that the pieces of ice will melt and make the consistency thinner the next day. You can rectify this by re-blending with a little extra frozen fruit the next day, or enjoy as-is.
Avoid placing your frozen items in the blender with softer ingredients you want distributed evenly throughout the smoothie. If you add items like protein powder directly to the frozen bananas or ice, it will stick and create uneven clumps.
All of these fruits are sustainable – and problematic – in their own unique ways. As with pretty much everything, it is important to pick organic, non-GMO, pesticide-free varieties whenever possible. Here are a few highlights to consider:
- For many of us in temperate climates, we can grow berries in our backyard or patio spaces. If that isn’t a possibility, select locally-grown, organic, non-GMO berries.
- Banana companies can be an issue (too much to unpack here!), especially when planting monoculture varieties that threaten availability when compromised by disease. What bananas bring to the table (besides being delicious) is the fact they come in their own “wrapper” and don’t require plastic packaging and actually have a low carbon footprint.
- When opting for a plant-based milk over cow’s milk, feel great about your decision for the environment (this article breaks down the benefits of plant-based milk). There is no clear winner in terms of sustainability. Soy milk might edge out the competition, but just barely.
With the right choices, a blackberry strawberry banana smoothie can be a good choice for those interested in enjoying a more eco-friendly breakfast!
If you use fresh mixed berries on a regular basis – such as fresh fruit in the morning – and like to separate the better berries from those a little “past their prime,” go ahead and add the discarded berries to a freezer bag and store for future use. These berries still make a great addition to smoothies, baked goods, or as a healthy frozen snack.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are strawberries and banana a good combination?
Strawberries and bananas are a delicious pairing for both taste and texture; in fact, many would argue this is one of the most classic fruit combinations to date. Whether combining these fruit superpowers in a smoothie, or enjoying fresh (like a fruit cup for breakfast), you can’t go wrong with sweet tartness of a strawberry and the caramelized sweet notes from banana. These two fruits share a few common aromatic notes that contribute to their partnership, sharing notes of green and clove flavors. Strawberries also impart characteristic flavor compounds found in pineapple, which is another classic partnership for bananas.
Can I blend blackberries?
Yes, blackberries do well when placed in a blender or food processor. They do have seeds that will survive the blades, though, so if you are sensitive to these you might decide to pass the blended blackberries through a fine mesh strainer. However, as a general rule, all you need to do is add these berries to the blender and let the machine take care of the rest.
What fruits are best for smoothies?
The possibilities are endless, but some fruits are considered more popular for smoothies than others. The fruits considered ideal for smoothie making (especially vegan smoothies) include, but are not limited to:
- Cherries (pitted)
Remember, fresh fruit or frozen fruit with no added fruit concentrates or sugar are the most healthful choices for your next smoothie.
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Interested in more vegan breakfast options? One of my favorites embraces fruit…this time, citrus. Give these vegan lemon poppy seed pancakes a try and let me know what you think! If you'd like something more blackberry-forward, try this delicious blackberry lemon bread that is both flavorful with a delightful texture.