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Chocolate Peanut Butter Espresso Smoothie Parfait

We’ve gone on a few hikes on the weekends, and I’m loving that I don’t have to put on so many layers of clothes in the morning when I go running. The non-frigid temperatures have also brought back my craving for smoothies after a run or hike and lately this Chocolate Peanut Butter Espresso Smoothie Parfait has really been hitting the spot!

While I love having smoothies for breakfast, I’ve found that a drink alone doesn’t really satisfy me. There something about the act of chewing food that makes me feel like I’ve had a complete meal, which is why I turned this smoothie into a smoothie parfait.

Topping the creamy, chocolatey smoothie with a layer of granola gave me that crunch/chew factor I was missing. There are two ways to consume this smoothie parfait. Drink it with a straw until you hit the granola layer then break out the spoon and finish it off, or swirl the granola into the smoothie and eat the entire thing with a spoon. I went with the latter.

To make this smoothie, I used lowfat chocolate milk. It added lots of chocolate flavor and it’s a great recovery drink to have after exercising. Chocolate milk can help runners rebuild and replenish their muscles after exercise. It naturally provides high-quality protein to build lean muscle and contains the recommended 3:1 carb: protein ratio for recovery.

Lowfat chocolate milk has nine essential nutrients that runners/athletes need. Since I’m not a fan of fruity-flavored, dye-filled sports drinks, this is a great option for me. More than 20 scientific studies support drinking chocolate milk as an exercise recovery beverage for adults after strenuous exercise of 45 minutes or more.

Chocolate milk also provides fluids for rehydration and has many of the same electrolytes that are added to commercial sports drinks, including potassium and sodium. It helps replenish those electrolytes lost in sweat, which is something I do a lot of, especially when running in the summer. The difference is, chocolate milk is a natural choice when it comes to replacing those electrolytes and to rehydrating. It’s something I’d much rather be putting in my body.

To go along with the chocolate milk in the smoothie parfait, I added a frozen banana for natural sweetness, potassium and to give the smoothie a creamy, thick consistency. For extra protein to keep me full all morning, peanut butter and unsweetened whey protein powder get added in. Research shows that whey protein helps promote muscle repair and recovery after exercise. Then there’s the espresso powder (or finely-ground coffee), because let’s face it, we all need a little caffeine jolt after a hard workout.

The flavor of granola you use is up to you. I went with a peanut butter granola that happened to be low in sugar and not bad on calories, plus, who doesn’t want a little extra peanut butter added into the mix?! If you’re like me and need a little chewing action to make your breakfast complete, then you’ll love this Chocolate Peanut Butter Espresso Smoothie Parfait!

Note: This recipe can easily be made lactose-free by substituting lactose-free chocolate milk (like Lactaid chocolate milk) for regular chocolate milk. Simply use the same amount of lactose-free chocolate milk as you would regular chocolate milk!

Looking for more creative coffee recipes for that extra boost? Try Whipped Coffee or Homemade Tea Lattes if you’re more of a tea person!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Espresso Smoothie Parfait

Photo of Chocolate Peanut Butter Espresso Smoothie Parfait
  • 5 minutes
  • 1 serving


  • 1 cup chocolate milk (regular or lactose-free), 1/2 of it frozen into cubes
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened whey protein powder
  • 1 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder (or finely ground coffee)
  • Granola for topping the smoothie


  1. Add all of the ingredients, minus the granola, to a blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Pour into a glass and top with desired amount of granola.

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