Paleo Cacao Shake

Paleo Cacao Shake

I thought to call this a chocolate protein shake, but I really hate when recipes add protein in the title because it usually means it has a large amount of artificial protein powder. Here all the protein is from natural sources like spinach, egg, avocado, and raw cacao, so it digests easily and is plenty to get you going before a vigorous workout.

Then I thought to call this a breakfast shake because I love to enjoy it in the morning, but this recipe could easily act as a dessert. So I’ll just call it a chocolate shake and let you decide when and how to drink it!

Paleo Cacao Shake
2 handfuls of spinach
1/2 avocado
1 tbsp flax seeds
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 tbsp cacao nibs
2 tbsp cacao powder
pinch of sea salt
1 raw egg
2 packets of stevia
1 tbsp maple syrup
5-6 large ice cubes
1 c water

Chia, Flax and Cacao Nibs

Before blending everything together fresh grind the flax seeds, chia seeds, and cacao nibs together in a spice/coffee grinder. It is always best to fresh grind your seeds as it releases the oils which can then go bad quickly. Never buy pre-ground flax or chia!

baby spinach

Rinse your baby spinach, also seed and peel your avocado. I used a pretty small avocado so if yours is larger you might only want to use 1/4th.

avocado and eggs

Then blend everything together. I have heard of people using the egg shell in the smoothie for added calcium, but I leave it out. The amount of ice cubes you’ll need will depend on how cold you like it. I just use a few cubes so the blender doesn’t make the shake warm, but I don’t like to drink anything too cold in temperature as it becomes more difficult to digest.

yields 2 servings


A note about my ingredients:

Spinach – I usually use spinach for blending into smoothies because it is a true lettuce which is easily digested raw. The new craze of blending raw dark leafy greens, like kale, into smoothies is a choice that is trendy but not as nutritionally informed. Dark leafy greens are much more fibrous and difficult to digest raw, but more importantly when consumed raw they are high in oxalic acid which is very damaging to the body. I mostly avoid raw dark leafy greens because they inhibit thyroid function, but eat plenty of them once they are steamed, roasted or sauteed. That being said, it’s up to you what kind of greens you want in your smoothie, and ultimately in your body.

Raw eggs – many people fear eating raw eggs because of salmonella, but even in conventionally-farmed eggs the amount of infected eggs are incredibly low. Among pasture-raised eggs salmonella is virtually non-existent because the chickens are much healthier. Especially if you keep your eggs at proper temperatures you’ve really got nothing to fear. Just look at me, I have probably eaten hundreds of raw eggs over the years, yet never have gotten sick from one. They are actually incredibly easy to digest when raw, plus it blends right into the shake so you can’t taste it at all.

Sweeteners – I sometimes try to cut down on the sugar in a recipe with stevia, but often find I can’t sweeten exclusively with it because it can be a little bitter. That’s way I also used some maple syrup but you can use whatever you’d like. I know that some people don’t consider stevia paleo so sweeten however you’d like.


5 Responses to “Paleo Cacao Shake”
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