Iron Woman Gingerbread Smoothie

There are two forms of iron out there: heme iron from animal products and non-heme iron found in vegetables. The heme form is absorbed more easily – but that doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t get enough iron from vegetable sources.

Iron deficiency is definitely a risk for vegans and vegetarians if they don’t eat properly. However, if they’re conscious of nutrient intake, there are several studies that show a plant-based diet can deliver an adequate supply of iron.

I’ve been anemic or borderline anemic for more than 10 years. After popping countless iron supplements, I recently came to realize the futility of taking them. Until I get my digestion on track, I’m not going to absorb anything.

Now that I’m focused on healing my gut, I feel more equipped to bolster my iron stores. Being a foodie, I’d love to get as much as I can through things like pumpkin seeds, kidney beans, spinach and tofu.

I always knew that blackstrap molasses was high in iron, but never wanted to take it by the spoonful and didn’t really know how to use it. Which is why I was excited when this smoothie came along.

This recipe was really tasty, and reminded me of the banana bread smoothie I made a few months back. I went easy on the molasses, so it didn’t have an overwhelming gingerbread flavour, but next time I’d definitely add more.

Are you concerned about your iron levels?

Iron Woman Gingerbread Smoothie
Prep time
Total time
gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan, soy-free, egg-free
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 1
  • 1 cup non-dairy milk (I used homemade almond milk)
  • 1-2 tbsp blackstrap molasses
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ground ginger
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds
  1. Place all ingredients except for the molasses into the blender and blend until smooth.
  2. Add the molasses, a bit at a time, to taste.


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8 Responses to Iron Woman Gingerbread Smoothie

  1. Megan October 5, 2011 at 8:47 am #

    I wasn’t sure what to have for breakfast, now I do! I even have all the ingredients which is rare…hopefully the little one will like it as well. Thanks!

    • Sondi Bruner October 5, 2011 at 3:08 pm #

      It’s fairly sweet, so hopefully your little one will take to it. Let me know if this recipe is child-friendly!

  2. Sonya October 5, 2011 at 8:57 am #

    Sounds yummy! Love your blog :)

  3. Sara October 5, 2011 at 3:22 pm #

    Had this for breakfast. Super yummy! And my 2 year old loved it too….but she really likes smoothies :p

  4. amy February 23, 2012 at 7:08 am #

    This is amazing. I was skeptically but my first impression was “oh my gosh, oh my gosh so good.” It really is my new favorite smoothie…thanks

  5. Mieke Lippstreu March 13, 2016 at 1:43 am #

    I’ve been feeling very low on energy over the past few days. I’m menstruating and have recently started introducing more vegan meals into my diet. I’d been vegetarian for a year and been fine. A quick look at the inside of my bottom eyelids revealed that they had gone from their usual red to a paler, light pink version of their former selves. From what I have been told, this can be an indication of low iron levels.

    So I scoured the net for high iron vegan foods. Blackstrap molasses came up as a winner but I really don’t enjoy the bitter taste. I look forward to trying this recipe so that I can start to get that Blackstrap into my diet. If you have any other recipe recommendations that are packed full of iron, please share.

    Thanks very much.

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