Superfood Pina Colada

We’re keeping it healthy(ish) and green this St. Patrick’s Day!

Superfood Pina Colada | CaliGirlCooking.com

That’s right, this Superfood Pina Colada gets its vivid teal green color from our favorite superfood – spirulina! I’m just so over the top excited about not only the refreshing, tropical taste of this beautiful libation, but the gorgeous hue. And it’s all natural! How about that.


We’re pretty lucky that St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Friday this year, not only because we have two whole days to recover afterwards, but also because that means I get to bring you a fun cocktail to celebrate! And fun this is.

I’m really expanding the horizons here with this Superfood Pina Colada. After all, it’s only the second frozen drink I’ve featured on this here blog (after this Frozen Cantaloupe White Wine Sangria) as well as just the second superfood cocktail (after this Turmeric Gin and Ginger Cocktail, which was a HUGE hit.) I figured it was high time for me to start padding the portfolio in these areas, and our Superfood Pina Colada did not disappoint.

Superfood Pina Colada | CaliGirlCooking.com

Here’s the trick with anything you’re adding spirulina too: be sure to add tons of other delicious flavors! In fact, you might be a bit put off by the smell of spirulina when you first open the jar, but have no fear, when mixed with plenty of fruity pineapple and creamy coconut flavor, any off-taste is gone and all you’re left with is this beautiful color!!

The other great thing about this Superfood Pina Colada is that the recipe makes multiple servings. Perfect for a party! After whirring all of the ingredients together in the blender, you’ll end up with four small or two very large drinks – and if you go with the small servings, this is actually quite a low potency cocktail, which means you can drink more than one without worrying about a headache the next day!

As always, I tried to minimize any artificial sweeteners and stick with as many fresh ingredients as I could. This means that, in addition to the spirulina and requisite rum, all you’re going to need is some coconut milk, frozen pineapple, and pineapple juice. No crazy liqueurs or overly-sugary syrups needed. Oh, and a blender. You’re definitely going to need a blender.

Superfood Pina Colada | CaliGirlCooking.com

And if you’re wondering where you can find spirulina, simply head to your nearest Whole Foods or health food store, or hop on to the every-trusty Amazon! It’s pretty easy to find these days, so don’t even worry about that.

No matter what your plans are this St. Patrick’s Day, I hope they involve these Superfood Pina Coladas in some way. The hubs and I aren’t up to anything too exciting, most likely going downtown for a bit to support some of his accounts and possibly stopping by a show our friends’ band is putting on at a local restaurant.

The good news is, if you don’t have time today to make these Superfood Pina Coladas, they’re perfectly acceptable any time of the year, especially with all this warm weather we’ve been having! And if you’re on the East Coast hunkering down for winter storm Stella, why not mix some of these up to transport yourself to a tropical vacation somewhere?

Superfood Pina Colada | CaliGirlCooking.com

I hope you all have a safe, superfood cocktail-filled day and weekend! Xo

Superfood Pina Colada | CaliGirlCooking.com
Print
Superfood Pina Colada
Prep Time
10 mins
 

The classic pina colada gets a healthy twist (and it's beautiful color!) from the addition of the trendy superfood, spirulina. 

Course: Drinks
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 4 ounces white rum
  • 1 13.5 ounce can coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon spirulina
  • 2 cups ice
  • 3 1/2 cups frozen pineapple
  • 6 ounces pineapple juice
  • Pineapple wedges for garnish (optional)
Instructions
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and puree on high until everything is combined. Pour into glasses and garnish with a pineapple wedge, if desired.

Superfood Pina Colada | CaliGirlCooking.com

Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub

Have you heard the news? Shrubs are so hot right now!

Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub | CaliGirlCooking.com

At least in Santa Barbara, but looking at our hip, vibrant cocktail scene (thank you, shmancy college town) I’d venture to guess that shrubs are taking the mixology nation by storm. This Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub has quickly become my go-to cocktail/mocktail (yes, there are both alcoholic and non-alcoholic versions) and I’m pretty sure you’re going to love it just as much as I do.


Believe it or not, shrubs have actually been around since the colonial era in the late 16th century. The original definition of a shrub (according to good ol’ Wikipedia) is a vinegared syrup mixed with water, spirits or carbonated water. Back in the day, shrubs were useful for many reasons: they were easy to smuggle across country borders, they had “medicinal” qualities, and they were a way to preserve spring and summers’ bounties of fresh fruits to enjoy deep in the heart of winter.

I have to admit, I had heard a lot about shrubs, but hadn’t really delved into exploring them until recently. I ordered a Pineapple Ginger Shrub when we were trying out a new bar in town a couple of weeks ago, and I couldn’t get enough! I ordered mine straight up with carbonated water, which was delicious enough, but the bartender assured me it tasted even better with alcohol added to it. Now that I’ve tried a bunch of different concoctions out myself, I don’t doubt him!

After enjoying my Pineapple Ginger Shrub so much, I knew I wanted to try my hand at making something similar at home. My first task was getting my hands on some drinking vinegar, which proved easy enough with a quick search on Amazon. As soon as my eyes came across McClary Bros.’ Pineapple Fennel Seed flavor, I knew I had to order it. Two days later, the drinking vinegar was on my doorstep and I was ready to shrub it up.

Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub | CaliGirlCooking.com

Now, like most drinking vinegars do, I knew this tart elixir was going to need some sweetening up. When I found myself in the Asian section at my local grocery store looking for a completely unrelated ingredient, my eyes fell on good ol’ canned lychee. (My fave! I’ve even made my own signature cocktail out of it, the Lychee Lightning.) I had a sneaking suspicion that it would be the perfect sweetener for my Pineapple and Fennel Seed drinking vinegar, and boy was I right! The Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub was born.

But enough of me gushing about my newfound love for this (apparently) OG ingredient, let’s get to the recipe! This one’s a little different than my usual cocktail posts, because the base recipe is actually the non-alcoholic version. Don’t fret, though, because I tasted through a few different options for alcoholic additions (oh, the things I do for you) and have included my notes/recommendations on those as well.

Once you have all of the ingredients, this Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub comes together in no time at all. There’s no pureeing or shaking or cutting or peeling, just a simple stir of the base ingredients and a top-off of club soda.

Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub | CaliGirlCooking.com

If you don’t have a grocery store with a good Asian section near you, have no fear, the canned lychees can also be found on Amazon along with the McClary Bros. Pineapple and Fennel Seed Drinking Vinegar.

Finally, there’s a reason I chose to share this with you today, as we head into this food and booze-filled Super Bowl weekend. This Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub is THE perfect drink for sipping on while you’re watching the big game, because the amount of alcohol you add (if you choose to add any at all) is completely up to you. I recommend 1.5 ounces for a regular cocktail strength, but you could easily use less if you want to pace yourself, or forego it altogether if you’re the DD (while still enjoying a tasty drink to boot!)

And if you want to make this before you have time to get a hold of this particular shrub, I highly recommend you use whatever flavor you can find and try your hand at a winning flavor combination. The possibilities are endless!

Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub | CaliGirlCooking.com

Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub | CaliGirlCooking.com
Print
Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub

A delicious, refreshing drinking vinegar concoction that can be made with or without alcohol with the distinguishing flavors of pineapple, fennel seed and lychee.

Course: Drinks
Servings: 1 cocktail
Author: CaliGirl Cooking
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 ounces McClary Bros. Pineapple and Fennel Seed Drinking Vinegar
  • 2 ounces lychee juice (from canned lychee)
  • 1 1/2 ounces alcohol of your choice (optional, see notes for recommendations)
  • 4 dashes Angostura bitters
  • Club soda
Instructions
  1. In a tall glass, combine drinking vinegar, lychee juice, alcohol (if using) and bitters. 

  2. Fill glass ¾ of the way full with crushed ice.

  3. Top with club soda.

Recipe Notes

If you’d like to add alcohol to your shrub, follow these recommendations based on your personal preferences: Add white rum for a tropical feel, add gin for a more floral taste, add vodka to keep the current flavor profile but give the drink some kick, and add whiskey to bring out the spicier notes. My personal favorites were the rum and the gin!

This post contains affiliate links. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own. Thank you for continuing to support the brands that make CaliGirl Cooking possible!

Pineapple, Fennel and Lychee Shrub | CaliGirlCooking.com

Tropical Matcha Chia Pudding

Full-on long weekend recovery mode right here.Tropical Matcha Chia Pudding | CaliGirl Cooking

And this Tropical Matcha Chia Pudding is helping us keep on keepin’ on.

How was everyone’s long weekend? Do anything fun? Eat (or drink) anything delicious? Tell me, tell me! I want to hear all about it. This Labor Day weekend was a tad bittersweet for us. When it comes to long weekends, we’re usually the ones to jump at the chance to go on a short trip somewhere or go visit our family. Unfortunately, due to recent injuries, we had to stick at home this year, but we still managed to squeeze in some fun!


The best part was all of the delicious food and drink that were consumed. We attended a Convention of Cocktails on Sunday (yep, my friends are the coolest and have cocktail competitions for their birthday parties) and my good friend Dez hosted a CaliGirl Cooking Night for me last night!

Guys, this was soooo fun and I highly recommend that all of my food blogger friends jump on this train. Basically, Dez invited over a bunch of our friends, and asked each person to contribute a dish using a recipe from my blog. Everyone was told to come armed with empty stomachs and feedback for how easy the recipe was to follow, whether I missed anything in my instructions, if there was a part they didn’t understand, etc. Let me tell you, it was just EPIC and my heart felt so full seeing everyone enjoying all of the recipes I work so hard to create for you all.

It was also the perfect way for me to do a “soft” kick-off for my newest venture, Celebrations by CaliGirl Cooking! Yes, that’s right, this gal is stepping into the menu planning/food and beverage consultation world and I couldn’t be more excited. In a nutshell, I’m here to help anyone (including you!) that needs just a little (or a lot of) guidance in planning a menu for any special occasion you may be celebrating. I’ll have more details coming to the site soon, but in the meantime, if you’re curious, drop me a line. I always love to hear from you!

Tropical Matcha Chia Pudding | CaliGirl Cooking

But as per usual, I’m digressing again. What I REALLY want to tell you guys about today is this Tropical Matcha Chia Pudding, because I’m pretty darn excited about it. As I mentioned when I made these Coconut-Vanilla Chia Pudding Parfaits, it took me a while to jump on the chia pudding train. I always add chia seeds to my smoothie in the morning, but for that very reason it took me a while to feel the urge to make some other sort of breakfast involving the gelatinous superfood.

You may have seen a little teaser for these during my @bloglovin_food Instagram takeover this past weekend, and I’ve been getting so many requests for the recipe! Well wait no longer, my friends, it’s coming right at ya today.

To be honest, I was so surprised at how easy it was to make a matcha version of chia pudding. Like, why haven’t I been seeing more of this all over the inter-webs? Seriously, so simple. Much like our beloved matcha lattes, we just whisk matcha powder into almond milk, and then we add the chia seeds and just a touch of honey. Pop it in the refrigerator overnight and you’ll be ready to enjoy Tropical Matcha Chia Pudding first thing in the AM!

Tropical Matcha Chia Pudding | CaliGirl Cooking

Seriously, aside from chopping up the macadamia nuts and pineapple, there will be no other prep time required once you pull this pudding out of the refrigerator. If that’s not considered a grab-and-go breakfast, I don’t know what is!

Before I leave you with the recipe, let me just say that this Tropical Matcha Chia Pudding has got alllll the right flavors. The soft and silky matcha chia pudding is balanced out by the crunch of the macadamia nuts and the sweet hit from the fresh pineapple. And the coconut! We can’t forget the coconut. Because could we really call this a TROPICAL Matcha Chia Pudding without it?

Tropical Matcha Chia Pudding | CaliGirl Cooking

Tropical Matcha Chia Pudding

10 minutes

Cook Time: 8 hours

Total Time: 8 hours, 10 minutes

Yield: Makes 2 large or 4 small servings

A tropical twist on the favorite overnight chia pudding recipe, featuring matcha powder, fresh pineapple, macadamia nuts and toasty coconut.

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Pour matcha powder into almond milk and whisk vigorously to combine (try to get as many chunks of the matcha out as possible.) Whisk in honey, then add chia seeds.
  2. Let sit for 10 minutes, and then stir again, breaking up any large chunks of chia seeds. Place in refrigerator at least 8 hours or overnight.
  3. In the morning, remove chia pudding from the refrigerator. Scoop into individual serving vessels and top with macadamia nuts, pineapple and coconut flakes.
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*This post contains affiliate links. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

 

Tropical Matcha Chia Pudding | CaliGirlCooking.com

Little cup o’paradise!

Belizean Rum Punch

Hello from Placencia, Belize!

Belizean Rum Punch | CaliGirl Cooking

Boy, has it been an amazing week so far. We arrived at our resort on Monday afternoon, and have been truly soaking it all in. We’ve had the perfect balance of adventure and relaxation, even despite a few thunderstorms here and there. That’s just what we get for going to Belize during its rainy season!


Nevertheless, we’ve hiked, traveled to private islands, snorkeled, gotten pampered at the spa…It’s not going to be easy hopping on a plane to leave bright and early tomorrow morning!

We’ve also most definitely been enjoying all of the local food and drink over this past week. We sprang for the all-inclusive package at our resort, and let me just say they have been feeding us well! Lots of seafood, lots of fresh fruit and veggies and definitely lots of delicious cocktails.

Belizean Rum Punch | CaliGirl Cooking

Since we’re in Belize right now, I thought that for this week’s cocktail I’d share a local classic – Belizean Rum Punch! This drink is all things tropical – coconut, rum and pineapple come together to transport you to your own private island. It’s somewhat similar to a Mai Tai, but gets its own unique twist with a couple of special ingredients.

I have to admit that I’m no alcohol-layering expert, so don’t get put off by this drink looking like Pepto Bismol. I promise it doesn’t taste anything like it! It’s simply the grenadine and the coconut milk coming together that gives it that bright pink hue. And it’s so delicious!

Belizean Rum Punch | CaliGirl Cooking

I’m going to keep this post short (because I want to enjoy every last minute we have here in this beautiful place!) but trust me when I say you want to give this Belizean Rum Punch a shot ASAP. You all may not be in Belize with us, but in this summer heat I know you’ll enjoy it just as much as we have been! XO

Belizean Rum Punch

5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Yield: Makes one cocktail

A delicious cocktail hailing from Belize, featuring pineapple, coconut and rum that will transport you to a tropical hideaway.

Ingredients

  • 1 ounce white rum
  • ½ ounce Grenadine
  • ½ ounce sweet ‘n’ sour mix
  • ½ ounce orange liqueur
  • ¼ cup coconut milk
  • ¾ cup pineapple juice
  • 1 ounce dark rum

Instructions

  1. Combine all ingredients except dark rum in a cocktail shaker with ice.
  2. Pour into a highball glass.
  3. Float dark rum on top.
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https://www.caligirlcooking.com/belizean-rum-punch/

 

Belizean Rum Punch | CaliGirlCooking.com

Now please excuse me while I go enjoy my tiki drink.

Li Hing Pineapple Margarita

We’re well into summer so it’s about time that I shared a Hawaiian-inspired cocktail with you!

Li Hing Pineapple Margarita | CaliGirl Cooking

These Li Hing Pineapple Margaritas are the perfect, refreshing adult beverages to (a) make for your next cocktail party (b) serve ice cold at your next pool party  or (c) whip up when you get home from work this evening because, let’s face it, you will most DEFINITELY be needing a margarita after a long day at work. I must say that these would also pair perfectly with this Ahi Poke Salad with Macadamia Nuts, let’s just make it a Hawaiian-themed evening!


But what, you say, is this bright red ingredient called li hing? Li hing is actually officially known as “li hing mui,” which is a salty dried plum found at Hawaii’s numerous “crack seed stores.” I’m not a huge fan of the plums in their whole dried form, but li hing mui powder is one of my absolute favorite Hawaiian ingredients. It’s sweet, with just a little bit of saltiness. Some of my favorite uses for li hing mui powder are to sprinkle it over fresh mango and pineapple, mix it into the Japanese arare rice crackers or, of course, mix it into a margarita!

Li Hing Pineapple Margarita | CaliGirl Cooking

The slight saltiness of the li hing mui powder is the perfect contrast to the typically highly acidic margarita. Plus, I must add that it imparts such an amazing color to the drink! Go ahead, skip the lipstick for the evening, you definitely won’t be needing it if you’re enjoying one of these Li Hing Pineapple Margaritas.

Speaking of lipstick, I’m so excited to get dolled up again this weekend for one of my closest Napa friend’s wedding. Anyone else attending weddings this weekend? We’re certainly in the middle of the season! I’ve been in Santa Cruz the past couple of nights spending some time with Mom and Dad, but Chris and I are heading up to Napa tonight for the wedding tomorrow evening. It will be so great to be back in Wine Country, we miss it dearly every time we leave! Good thing we’ll be back in two weeks for our own wedding 😉

So, since I’ll be traveling this weekend and will most likely be consuming more wine than anything else, can you do me a favor and enjoy some of these Li Hing Pineapple Margaritas for me? The li hing mui powder can be found on Amazon (as can most of these zany ingredients I like to use) so hurry up and order some fast if you don’t already happen to have some in your pantry (or hit me up, I have quite the stockpile that you can borrow from!)

Once you have the li hing mui powder in hand, these drinks are a snap to make. We even get fancy and rim our glasses with a little extra of the good stuff because, when in Rome (or Hawaii?)

Li Hing Pineapple Margarita | CaliGirl Cooking

I used Trader Joe’s pineapple juice for this recipe (we love their juices because they don’t have a bunch of unnecessary added ingredients) BUT if you wanted to use fresh pineapple juice, you could easily make what juice you need and then cover any leftover pineapple in li hing mui powder. Just saying. Maybe even add it as a garnish for the drink? Now I’m kicking myself for not thinking of that before I took these photos!

Anywho, these Li Hing Pineapple Margaritas come together like any other margarita, so you know the drill. We simply add a ½ a teaspoon of li hing mui powder to all of the other ingredients when we shake them up in the cocktail shaker. Easy as that!

Do you have any fun recipes involving li hing mui powder? If so, please share! I have sooo much that needs to be put to good use.

Have a great weekend, friends, and be sure to follow along with me on Snapchat (@caligirlcooking) and Instagram for all of our travel adventures! XO

Li Hing Pineapple Margarita | CaliGirl Cooking

Li Hing Pineapple Margarita

5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Yield: Makes one cocktail

A tasty margarita featuring fresh pineapple juice and Hawaiian li hing mui powder. The perfect balance of sweet and salty!

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ ounces white tequila
  • ½ ounce Triple Sec or Cointreau
  • Juice of 1 a lime, divided (you will need ½ for the actual drink and ½ for rimming the glass)
  • 1 ounce sweet-and-sour (I prefer Sonoma Syrup’s Five Citrus Sweet & Sour)
  • 1 ounce pineapple juice
  • ½ teaspoon li hing mui powder plus ½ - 1 teaspoon more for rimming the glass

Instructions

  1. Combine tequila, orange liqueur, juice of ½ of a lime, sweet-and-sour, pineapple juice and ½ teaspoon li hing mui powder in a cocktail shaker with ice.
  2. Using two small bread plates, squeeze juice from the other ½ of the lime on one and ½ - 1 teaspoon of li hing mui powder on the other. Take margarita glass and dip in lime juice first, then dip in li hing mui powder. Set aside.
  3. Shake ingredients in the cocktail shaker vigorously for about 30 seconds, then pour into rimmed margarita glass. Garnish with a lime wedge or li hing mui-covered pineapple chunk, if desired.
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Li Hing Pineapple Margarita | CaliGirlCooking.com

I believe it’s high time for a margarita.

This post contains affiliate links. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.