Today I’m sharing one of my all-time favorite beverages that also works as a breakfast or snack. It’s the very cherry smoothie.
It can be made with or without dark leafy greens for an extra boost of nutrients. Vegan & gluten-free.
As a ravenous cherry fan, this Very Cherry Smoothie is my obsession.
It packs a wallop of cherry flavor from ½ cup of dark cherries and a dash of almond extract.
Almond extract is one of my favorite secret ingredients for increasing the yum factor in a smoothie. That extra roundness of cherry flavor makes it that much more delicious.
This dairy-free cherry smoothie includes frozen chunks of banana, which whip into an ice cream-like texture, and chia seeds.
Chia is known for its omega 3 properties, along with being a source of fiber, protein, and calcium. It also gives the smoothie a thicker viscosity.
This delicious smoothie is teeming with flavor and is sure to quench your thirst on a hot day.
It’s also thick enough, it would be great for a smoothie bowl with all of your favorite toppings!
Here are the ingredients you will need to make this recipe.
Chia seeds: They add omega 3’s to the drink. Plus, they give the smoothie a whippy viscosity.
If you don’t have a high speed blender, you may want to grind the chia seeds in a clean coffee grinder before putting them into the blender, so that you don’t have any whole seeds in the smoothie.
Chia seeds can be replaced with ground or whole flaxseed.
Non-dairy milk: I recommend vanilla soy milk for its dessert-y flavor. But it can be replaced with any non-dairy milk you enjoy, like cashew milk or almond milk.
Kale: For a green smoothie & an extra boost of nutrients, add 1 or 2 kale leaves. (Just remove the ribs first for easier blending.)
Cherries: I like to use frozen dark sweet cherries. They’re very convenient, and they add extra coolness & creaminess to the smoothie.
Banana: Frozen banana is ideal here. It adds a creamy texture that’s almost shake-like.
Just peel a ripe banana, break it into chunks, and freeze it in a freezer-safe container. Then throw it into the blender when you’re ready to use it.
Almond extract: A splash of almond extract really turns up the cherry flavor.
Ice cubes: A few ice cubes makes the smoothie extra cold & airy.
Step by step instructions
Here’s how to make this recipe at a glance. For complete ingredient amounts & instructions, keep scrolling to the recipe card below.
Peel a ripe banana.
Break it into chunks. And pop it into a freezer-proof container.
Cover & freeze it until you’re ready to use it.
Once it’s smoothie time, put the following into a high speed blender:
- Chia seeds
- Vanilla soy milk or almond milk
- Frozen cherries
- Frozen banana
- Almond extract
Blend until smooth.
For an icier, thicker smoothie, add ice cubes to the blender. Then blend until thoroughly combined.
Pour into a glass and serve.
Add kale for a green smoothie
To add even more nutrients to your smoothie, add one or two kale or collard leaves.
Just remember to remove the leaves from the hard center rib first.
If you don’t have a high speed blender, I recommend blending the non-dairy milk and kale or collard leaves alone in the blender first before adding the remaining ingredients.
Dark leafy greens are thick and fibrous.
They break down better if you blend them completely before adding more ingredients to the blender jar.
If you have a high speed blender, it’s not an issue, though. You can blend everything at once.
If kale & collards are too bitter for you, spinach is a good choice as well.
Or if you prefer your smoothie on the sweet side, simply leave out the optional greens.
Very cherry smoothie
- Add the chia seeds, vanilla soy milk, kale or collard leaves (if using), cherries, banana, and almond extract to a high-speed blender. Blend until smooth.
- For an icier, thicker smoothie, add ice cubes to blender and blend until thoroughly combined. Pour into glass and serve.
Content updated March 27, 2023. Originally posted August 2015.