Can I interest you in a bright pink dragon fruit smoothie? This healthy beverage is not only beautiful, but each refreshing sip takes your taste buds on a tropical vacation.
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Add a vibrant colored twist to your day with this easy dragon fruit smoothie recipe. Also known as pitaya, this exotic edible cactus is commonly on the menu at fancy drink shops. It has a beautiful eye-catching magenta color and makes for a delicious blended drink or to use in smoothie bowls.
Not only pretty, but this superfruit also delivers fiber, prebiotics, magnesium, iron, calcium, and potassium to each sip. I’ll show you how to create a thick and chilly consistency using a blend of frozen and fresh ingredients.
Dragon fruit selection
You can purchase whole dragon fruit plants fresh or frozen at Asian, Latin, or specialty markets. However, there are different varieties available. You may be surprised to find that most stores carry white-fleshed fruit with black seeds, as the red pulp is more expensive.
This white variety still tastes delicious, but of course, the drink will not have a vibrant pink color. For convenience, check the freezer section for pre-cut frozen cubes of red dragon fruit. Brands like Sambazon and Pitaya Plus offer these products, which is what I used in this recipe.
Use frozen ingredients
I use a mix of frozen dragon fruit and ice cubes to achieve a thick smoothie texture. The fruit particles break down in the blender, creating flavorful pieces that suspend in the juice, adding viscosity. The ice cubes help to keep the beverage cold.
I also recommend using frozen bananas as it provides creamy, rich consistency. For extra tropical notes, try adding a ½ cup of frozen mangos or pineapples to replace half the ice cubes.
For a creamy consistency
The natural starches in bananas provide a creamy mouthfeel when added to the smoothie. To complement the tropical flavor, I use coconut yogurt. It gives a hint of sweetness, elevates the richness, and provides healthy probiotics for digestive health benefits.
You can use other types of yogurt, such as the Greek variety, which is higher in protein—others like oat, almond, or cashew, keep it dairy-free. Select unsweetened if you’re looking to reduce added sugars.
Liquids like juice or milk are required to blend the frozen ingredients properly. These ingredients allow you to play around with the taste. To complement the sweet and tropical flavor of the pitaya smoothie, I add pineapple juice. However, orange, guava, mango, or coconut water are excellent alternatives. To increase the creaminess, replace half of the pineapple juice with coconut milk or almond milk.
The small sharp blades of a high-speed blender help to effectively break down the frozen ingredients into a super smooth consistency. Add the ice cubes first, followed by the frozen dragon fruit. The direct contact with the blades processes it quicker into fine particles.
Add the soft ingredients like bananas and yogurt, then the juice. Blend on medium speed to get the elements moving in the blender cup, increasing to high until thick and sippable.
For the best taste and texture
Use frozen dragon fruit to prevent diluting the smoothie flavor. Cut the fresh dragon fruit into ½ to ¾-inch cubes, then place them in a single layer inside a large resealable bag and freeze for at least one day before using.
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Dragon Fruit Smoothie
- 1 cup ice cubes
- 1 cup red dragon fruit, or pitaya, frozen
- ½ cup sliced banana, fresh or frozen
- ¼ cup coconut yogurt, greek, cashew, almond, or oat yogurt
- ½ cup pineapple juice
- Add ice cubes, frozen dragon fruit, yogurt, and pineapple juice to the blender.
- Cover and process on medium speed for about 30 seconds, using the tamper as needed.
- Increase speed to high for 15 to 30 seconds until thick and smooth. Add juice as necessary to achieve the desired consistency. Serve immediately.
- Recipe Yield: About 2 cups (16 ounces)
- Serving Size: About 1 cup (8 ounces)
- To make smoothie bowls: Start with ¼ cup of pineapple juice. Add more liquid as needed, a small amount at a time. The mixture should be very thick and spoonable.
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