Earlier this summer, I began working on a project with the Vitamin Shoppe to find easy ways to incorporate some of their healthy pantry products into everyday recipes. It was my first time working with some of these items, including the specialty ingredient in this mango lassi recipe: aloe juice.
I have vague memories of seeing bottles of aloe water in my mom’s fridge growing up, so I was not surprised to find out that it primarily benefits your digestive health. Alone in the glass, it’s pungent and intense. But diluted with some water, you get that great aloe fragrance on the tongue and your every day agua becomes all the more refreshing. It’s probably a good thing that the taste is so concentrated, because a little goes a long way with this stuff and you don’t want to overdue it, especially if your day includes activities that take you far away from the porcelain princess.
When I was thinking of ways to incorporate aloe juice, this traditional Indian smoothie made with yogurt came to mind. I made a peach version last year on the site, but the most popular fruit combination is straight up mango. I added a few of the other pantry ingredients to the mix—coconut oil and raw honey—along with lactose-free kefir to make the smoothie more enjoyable for those who have dairy sensitivities.
The aloe gives the mango lassi a very subtle, slightly medicinal background flavor. If I didn’t know better, I might have mistaken the cooling quality for cucumber.
If you’re looking for a healthy smoothie option that incorporates a lot of ingredients that are naturally cheering for your digestive tract, then give this mango lassi recipe a try. I’ve gotten so off track with my rituals this summer, and smoothie making in the morning is one that I’m definitely going to kick back into gear as soon as back-to-school/reality season rolls around next week.
Enjoy the final days of summer!
Mango Lassi with Kefir and Aloe Juice
Cut the top and bottom off the mango. Stand it up on the fatter cut side. Peel the mango with a chef’s knife, running it along the edges and turning the fruit clockwise until all the skin is removed. Remove the flesh on either side of the oblong pit and trim away any remaining pieces. Roughly chop the mango and add it to a food processor or blender along with the remaining ingredients.
Puree until smooth. Divide between four 10-ounce glasses and chill until ready to serve.