Smoothie of champions: the Black Forest

For the whole of Home Made Month and October Unprocessed I’ve been having smoothies for breakfast.  The first week was a bit of an adventure for my taste buds.  I couldn’t quite get the balance right.  Sometimes it was too sour, other times too viscous, or had no taste, even once or twice with a weird taste… well you get the idea. Until one day, at around day 12, inspiration hit, and BAM.

Black Forest cake in a glass.

I wouldn’t mind at all if all my days started like this.

If you have never had Black Forest cake, or in its original German name, Schwarzwälder Kirschtorte, you have to check it out.  Imagine, layers of luscious fresh whipped cream hiding sweet dark cherries in between layers of moist chocolate cake (that are probably doused in rum), covered in more whipped cream and cherries. Don’t just go out and buy any old Black Forest cake from your neighbourhood grocery store though, because it will taste like plastic.  Get it from a real bakery or a place that specializes on cakes and pastry.  If you are lucky enough to live in a place with a German or European bakery, even better.

So how did the cake become the smoothie?

When Toronto’s premiere juice bar and now fully fledged restaurant chain Fresh first opened, they had a drink called the Black Forest.  It was essentially liquid Black Forest cake.  I was addicted, and every time I visited Toronto I would crave it.  Unfortunately, they took it off their menu a few years ago, and it’s not in any of their books (that I know of).  I had largely forgotten about it until frozen black cherries went on sale the other day.

Here is my version, which makes me really happy every time I drink it.  No grumpy days guaranteed.

The only time I am actually excited to get out of bed in the morning is knowing that I get to do this.

This recipe makes enough for 2 people (or 2 servings for 1 person… muahaha).

Throw the following ingredients into a blender and blend for about a minute or two:

  • 2 ripe bananas
  • 3/4 to 2/3 cups of frozen black cherries
  • 1/4 cup of strawberries (to kick up the cherry taste)
  • 1/2 cup coconut water
  • 1/2 cup rice milk (or other milk substitute)
  • At least 3 tbsp of cocoa powder


  • 2 tablespoons of hemp hearts (which I always do to increase health benefits)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup (especially if not using strawberries or if the bananas aren’t that ripe)


I always put mine in a bottle to enjoy while I check my emails at work.  This keeps me full until at least half an hour past my regular lunch hour (I get hungry a full hour later than usual).



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