It’s been hot, hot, hot here in DC lately! [Ironically, as I write this its a cool 70° and rainy outside, but this is a total anomaly.] Ranging anywhere from the high 80s to almost 100° by midday, the temps have me reaching for smoothies over and over again on the daily.
We’ve also been flooded with cherries this season, so I’ve been snacking on them endlessly. I wanted to jazz them up a bit, though, and this Cherry Lavender Smoothie hits the spot as the perfect morning meal to cool me down before I conquer the day. Not only are these little antioxidant bombs tasty, but they also help relieve muscle pain after a workout, reduce inflammation throughout the body, and also support the release of melatonin, assisting in a good night’s sleep. I mean, really – what else could you want in a tiny fruit?
Even if it may seem like the pits to you [pun intended!], I actually find it to be so therapeutic to slow down and take the time to remove the core from fresh cherries. I absolutely love to dig in to a clamshell of these beautiful summer gems and come out on the other side with ruby red stained fingers! However, if you’re on the go, pre-pitted frozen cherries will do just fine.
If you haven’t worked with lavender before in the kitchen, don’t be intimidated!! It shouldn’t just be reserved for bath soaps and candles – lavender is surprisingly versatile! I love adding it into almond milk lattes or sprinkling it into baked goods to give ’em a twist. I even recently came across this Lavender and Garlic Roasted Chicken recipe from Oh My Dish that I’m definitely going to try soon! For the moment, though, I’m stickin’ to this refreshing smoothie – and P.S. If you have any leftovers, it makes a dang good popsicle, too!
Cherry Lavender Smoothie
- 1 1/2 cups cherries, pitted
- 1/4 tbsp dried lavender
- 2 Medjool dates, pitted [depending on how sweet you’d like it]
- 1 cup oat milk*
- 2 tbsp hemp hearts, optional [great source of protein for post-workout!]
Blend all the ingredients in a high-speed blender, pour into your favorite glass, mason jar, tumbler, etc., and enjoy!
*If you’ve never had oat milk, I encourage you to try it!! Its amazingly tasty, super easy to make yourself, and is a nice change from the typical almond milk I usually recommend. If you want to try making it yourself, Oh She Glows offers great instructions here.