Start your day with a Saskatoon Berry Basil Smoothie packed full of flavour and antioxidants! A berry of many names, Saskatoon berries are also known as prairie berry, serviceberry, shadbush, juneberry and even pigeon berry!
Saskatoon Berry Basil Smoothie
Saskatoon berries are quite simple tasting so they need something to help boost the flavour. Fresh basil pairs perfectly in these smoothies combined with frozen or fresh bananas, coconut milk and avocado.
When you have an abundance of fresh basil or mint, use some in your next smoothie!
Saskatoon berries are native to Canada, mostly Western Canada and the prairie provinces. They can also be found in North Central USA, even Alaska and bears absolutely love them!
I had never heard of them before until we started visiting family in Saskatchewan where they are everywhere. I fondly recall as a young child being quite enamored with these berries and some how breaking off a branch, wrapping it carefully and bringing it all the way back to Northern British Columbia. It survived the trip and we planted it. This bush grew into a large bountiful bush offering up delicious berries every year. It may have quite possible the only Saskatoon berry bush in our little town.
Today we live in Alberta and they are abundant here as well. We can go to a park, walk down back lanes right in the city or go camping and find wild bushes everywhere.
Move over blueberries, Saskatoon berries are also high in antioxidants and the perfect berry.
These berries are purple and resemble a blueberry, until you taste them – it’s very different! The flavour is simple, unique and it might take you a few bites before you decide what to do with them. They are high in antioxidants and a very healthy option just like blueberries.
The word Saskatoon is derived from the Cree name for the bush Mis-sask-qua-too-mina and it is believed they were once used for medicinal purposes.
Ways to enjoy Saskatoon Berries
Use them exactly as you would blueberries.
- Baking like muffins or cakes
- Syrups, berry sauce, relish, chutney
- Tarts, galettes, hand pies and regular pies
- Crisps and bars
- Homemade wine (yes it’s true, my mom used to make it)
- Jellies and jams
- Preserve them, our pantry was always full of canned berries
- Ice Tea
Saskatoon Berries in Alberta
Since everyone who lives here is on to the secret of berry picking you can be hard pressed to actually find some still on a bush. That’s where Pearon’s Perry Farm or the Saskatoon Farm come in handy. We pick, we make and bake and then we freeze them.
Smoothies have been my jam for over 30 years and the combinations are endless! Here’s a few pro tips I’ve learned along the way.
- Frozen berries work best for getting thick smoothies.
- When making one smoothie I use my immersion blender, when making larger amounts, my blender.
- Bananas don’t have to be frozen, use them fresh.
- Leftover coconut milk can be saved in a sealed container and kept in the refrigerator for a couple days.
- Add more basil if you love basil.
- Any kind of milk will work in this smoothie.
- I like thicker smoothies but some days I thin them a bit with water or leftover cold green tea.
- Can’t find Saskatoon berries? Use blueberries instead.
Here’s a few recipes you could use Saskatoon berries in:
- Blueberry Compote
- Blueberry Simple Syrup
- Blueberry, Cinnamon, Strawberry Muffins
- Plum Elderberry Syrup Hand Pies
- Blueberry Guacamole
If you made this recipe tag Wanda Baker on Instagram and hashtag it #bakersbeans
- 1 cup Saskatoon berries
- 1/2 half banana
- 1/4 quarter avocado
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- 5-6 leaves fresh basil, medium size
- water, as needed
- Add all ingredients into a blender or immersion blender cup and blend.
- Add water as needed to thin out to your desired consistency.