I heart, you heart, we all heart hemp hearts! This tiny superfood packs a protein and nutrient punch that leaves us energized for the day while also impacting our health long term.
Hemp hearts are raw, hulled hemp seeds. They are found in the produce section of most grocery stores, right next to the chia seeds. While they are commonly used as a salad or smoothie topper, we let them take center stage in a sauce for our Rawkstar Veggie Bowl located in our Fresh Start Spring cleanse guide.
Health Benefits of Hemp Hearts
We love adding hemp hearts to meal replacement smoothies as an easy protein source; 2-3 tablespoons is 11 grams of protein! The mild nutty flavors helps them blend in when tossed in salads and smoothies. These seeds also offer so many health benefits:
- Rich in essential fatty acid omegas 3 and 6 which can lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease.
- Gamma-linolenic acid found in these seeds can help with symptoms of menopause and premenstrual syndrome.
- A great source of vitamin E
- 25% protein calories, compared to chia seeds and flaxseeds which have 16-18% protein.
According to the US National Library of Medicine, the fatty acids in hemp hearts can help prevent blood clots when incorporated in a balanced diet.
Hemp hearts can also help with healthy weight loss. The amount of protein in just a few tablespoons can curb hunger and provide sustained energy throughout the day.
Cooking, Baking, Blending and Sprinkling Hemp Hearts
At Simple Green Smoothies, we love adding superfoods in all kinds of recipes to maximize the nutrients. Yet, we also love this particular superfood because it is a delicious addition to lots of different recipes! Here are some of our fav recipes with hemp hearts:
- Adventure Bars, page 111 Simple Green Meals
- Chocolate Weight-loss Smoothie
- Apple Cinnamon Donuts
- Goji Berry Orange Smoothie
- DIY plant Milk, page 248 Simple Green Smoothies
- Sprinkled on top of your green smoothie or bowl!
The hemp sauce makes this dish and brings the roasted veggies to a whole other level! Feel free to swap in other veggies to match your preferences, but this combo of onions, bell peppers, sweet potatoes, and kale is a real winner.
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon coconut oil, melted, plus more for pan
½ red onion, cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) diced
2 sweet potatoes, cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) diced
2 bell peppers, cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) diced
2 cups kale, stemmed and cut into large ribbons
Sea salt and ground black pepper, for seasoning
For hemp sauce:
¼ cup (60 mL) hemp hearts
2 tablespoons raw cashews, soaked overnight
¼ cup (60 mL) water, plus more if needed
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 garlic clove, minced
Pinch sea salt and ground black pepper
1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment (baking) paper. Lightly oil the paper.
2. In a medium bowl, toss diced red onion, sweet potato, and bell pepper with 1 tablespoon melted coconut oil. Season well with salt and pepper.
3. Place in an even layer on the prepared baking sheet. Roast in oven for 25-30 minutes, or until veggies are just tender and have started to turn golden on the edges.
4. While veggies are roasting, prepare the hemp sauce. Place all ingredients into a blender or food processor. Puree until smooth. Stop and scrape down as needed. The sauce should not be too thick or too thin. Add a little water, a few teaspoons at a time, if the blender is having trouble blending. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until ready to serve.
5. Meanwhile, toss the kale ribbons with remaining 1 teaspoon melted coconut oil and season with sea salt and pepper.
6. When other veggies have roasted for 25-30 minutes, remove from oven and add the kale to the baking pan. Place back in oven and roast for another 5-6 minutes, or until kale has wilted.
7. To serve, place half of the veggies into a bowl, saving the remainder for tomorrow’s lunch. Drizzle with half of the hemp sauce. Eat while warm.