Almonds: Food of the Week

Presented by Spartan Training®

Almonds may just be one of the healthiest foods there are.

• Vitamin and mineral content of Potassium, Calcium, and Magnesium helps to reduce muscle cramping

• Macronutrient profile offers an equal balance of carbohydrates and protein while doubling up on healthy fat grams that will deliver steady energy

• Antioxidant and Flavonoids mean faster recovery

Also, almonds are the answer to the question I get asked all the time: What’s a good snack? The answer is almost always Almonds. Why? They are shelf stable, so no cooler is needed. You can make individual serving sizes and keep a few on hand anywhere (at the office, in the car, in the gym bag).  Last, they pair well with fruits such as apples or in a trail mix with dried apricots and cranberries. And they also pair well with veggies such as carrot sticks. Versatile and nutritious.

Nutritious doesn’t have to mean boring. Have fun with almonds. Some brands offer flavors such as Wasabi, Habanero BBQ, and cocoa dusted almonds that help keep variety without losing nutrition.

Get Leaner with Almonds

Secrets to staying lean may not be secrets at all. There are two factors that are an important part of reaching your weight or body composition goals. Avoiding excess snacking, and incorporating foods into your diet which are whole, fiber rich, and a source of protein. The nutrient composition of Almonds help meet these goals in two ways:

1. Fiber: Fiber takes extra work for the body to break down. As a result, foods that contain fiber stick with us longer, helping maintain feelings of satiety and fullness. The longer we are able to maintain this feeling, the less likely we are to snack on unnecessary calories throughout the day. A serving of almonds contains 3g of fiber, being considered a good source towards the recommended 25-35g/day

2. Protein: Plant proteins are among the best sources an athlete can eat. Rich in phytonutrients, low in saturated fat, and with just the right amount of protein, Almonds should be a staple in any diet. A serving of almonds contains 6g of protein. The Manganese, Copper, and Riboflavin in almonds helps convert that protein into energy for stronger training week after week

Vanilla Almond Milk

By: Andrew Thomas


  • 3.5 cups water
  • 1 cup almonds (soaked for 8 hours)
  • 3 dates, pitted
  • 1.5 TSP pure vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt


  1. Place almonds in bowl and fill with enough water to cover, soaking for 8 hours, or overnight.
  2. Discard the soak water from almonds and pour almonds into blender.
  3. Soak pitted dates for 5 minutes in warm water to soften for blending.
  4. Discard the soak water from dates and place dates in blender with almonds.
  5. Add water, vanilla extract, and salt into blender and blend on high for 1 minute.
  6. Pour blended contents through fine sieve or cheesecloth to remove pulp.
  7. Pour yourself a delicious glass of homemade vanilla almond milk!

*Vanilla Almond Milk will keep for about a week if sealed and refrigerated.

DIY Almond Butter


  • Soak almonds for 4 hours. Drain and dry well. (This step is optional.)
  • Put in food processor or blender. (Food processor is much better).
  • Process for 20-30 minutes, using wooden spoon to stir often.


  1. Scrape sides of food processor often. (It's best to stop processor to stir, to avoid processing your spoon).
  2. Be persistent, there is a magic moment where it everything comes together and smooths out.
  3. You definitely can use raw almonds - this process tends to cook them a bit, as all that blending causes a great deal of heat.
  4. Store in sealed container - refrigerate or freeze.
  5. Feel free to add some syrup, honey, agave, cinnamon, cardamon, vanilla....the possibilities are endless! Just know this will reduce shelf life. Without additives, it will keep for up to two weeks. Smell is your best means to check to see if it's starting to spoil.

Banana Almond Smoothie


  • 1 banana (frozen)
  • 2 tablespoons almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon of cocoa powder
  • 1.5 cups of almond milk
  • Pinch of sea salt
  • Sprinkle of cinnamon


  1. Drop frozen banana, almond butter, cocoa powder, sea salt, cinnamon, and almond milk into blender. (Hint: Peel banana before freezing.)
  2. Blend for 15-20 seconds.
  3. If consistency is too thick for your liking, add water and re-blend.
  4. Pour into a glass and enjoy!

Almond Ginger Smoothie


  • 1/2 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 cup vanilla almond milk
  • 2 TBS Greek yogurt
  • 1 TSP fresh grated ginger
  • 2 TBS raw honey
  • Ice cubes


  1. Put ingredients in blender and liquify.
  2. Enjoy!

Almond Date Smoothie


  • 5 dates, soaked
  • 2 tablespoons almond butter
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • Ice
  • Pinch of sea salt


  1. Soak pitted dates for 4-5 hours (or overnight) in small bowl of water.
  2. Add dates and soak water to blender, along with almond butter, coconut milk, protein powder, ice, and sea salt.
  3. Blend for 15-20 seconds
  4. If consistency is too thick for your liking, add water and re-blend.

Almond Date Balls

By: Fred Bisci


  • 1 cup almonds
  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 cup Medjool dates, pitted


  1. Place nuts and salt in a food processor and roughly ground. Add the Medjool dates and continue to blend until ingredients look like uniform meal. When the mixture sticks together easily in your hand, it’s ready to roll!
  2. Roll mixture into one inch balls and refrigerate for 30 minutes before serving.
  3. Store in the refrigerator up to two weeks in an airtight container.