Have you been wondering about this trendy berry that’s all over social media? Well, look no further because we have everything you need to know about acai.
Where Does Acai Come From?
Acai berries grow on palm trees, which are found in South and Central America. The palms thrive in wet environments, like the rainforests of Belize, Brazil and Peru. Farmers harvest the fruit in long bunches made up of what looks like strands of blueberries, with about 600 berries per bundle. The fresh berries have a very short lifespan, so when you find acai in the United States, it will generally be frozen or powdered, and can be used in a variety of ways.
What Is Acai?
An acai berry itself looks very similar to another high-antioxidant fruit, the blueberry, but it is larger and rounder and has an even more deeply saturated purplish-black hue. This super food has three times as many antioxidants as a blueberry, and is one of the world’s most antioxidant-rich produce items. This berry has earned its title of superfood by packing a nutrient-rich punch, loaded with fiber, antioxidants, and heart-healthy fats. It also helps neutralize the damaging effects of free radicals in the body.
What Does Acai Taste Like?
Imagine the tastes of your favorite berries: blackberries, raspberries and blueberries. Now add a rich smack of pomegranate juice and then a hint of dark chocolate. The fruit tends to be bitter, so people often amplify its muted sweetness by combining it with fresh fruits like bananas, mangos, dragon fruit, pomegranate arils and fresh berries.
What Do You Do With Acai?
Acai can be used in many different ways, but the most popular—and instagrammable—way to enjoy it is in smoothies and smoothie bowls. Start with a base of frozen puree, or blend it with coconut water, fruit juice or a non-dairy milk. Scoop the puree into a bowl and then add whatever you’d like on top. That’s the best part: it’s great with lots of different ingredients. Some tasty options include the fruits above, as well as chia seeds, shredded coconut, cocoa nibs, Clean Snax, oats and nut butters. You can even get creative and make patterns out of all your toppings.