Vegan Peaches ‘n’ Cream Milkshake with Real Vanilla Bean is a healthy, creamy, delicious shake that’s naturally sweetened and dairy-free. No fancy ingredients are required, and all you need is a blender to make it!
Goodness gracious, I can’t believe it’s already peach season here in SC!
Southerners wait for a bounty of peaches to arrive mid-summer when they pop up everywhere in markets and at roadside stands. This year, however, we were afraid that our peaches would be ruined by the strange winter weather we had. It was unseasonably warm which affected the peach farmers’ crops, and many residents feared that the peaches wouldn’t make it as they usually do. Peaches are a huge part of the agriculture business where I live, so they’re always a valuable crop that is of concern during summertime.
Lucky for us, most of the peaches ended up being just fine even though many crops were lost. So when my mom and I spotted some local peaches at the supermarket last week, I was instantly inspired to create a thick and creamy milkshake with them just like I grew up loving.
Because when you spot fresh, local peaches grown by local farmers who worked hard to bring you the golden summertime fruits of the south, I think that’s worth celebrating with a fabulous, homemade peach milkshake, don’t you? 🙂
Peaches, Shakes, and Summer: So Many Memories!
I have made this shake at least three times this week, and every time I make it, I’m reminded of my childhood. We used to all enjoy homemade peach ice cream, peach milkshakes, and peach yogurt every single year at the home I grew up in. That old driveway filled with people hovering around the ice cream churn is still vivid in my mind, and so is the gorgeous color of the bright orange ripples from the peaches blended with the real speckles of vanilla bean pods my grandpa used to put in our shakes and ice cream.
As much as I enjoyed peaches as a child, however, I can’t say I ever had a real, whole peach by itself until I was an adult at age 20, around 12 years ago. Isn’t that crazy? But dairy is heavily used here in the south, so if you can put milk, cream, butter, or cheese on it, chances are a southerner will.
That was the case with peaches for me; if they weren’t mixed into ice cream or a traditional milkshake, I didn’t eat much of them except for the canned varieties soaked in corn syrup (!). So you can imagine my delight when I bit into my first, real, juicy peach as an adult.
Luckily, it’s not hard at ALL to replace dairy in shakes and ice cream, no matter how heavily dairy products are relied on where I come from or where you might live. There are a number of amazing ingredients you can use instead to get that tell-tale creamy flavor all without the negative effects of dairy.
And you know what? I gotta say, I think I love this shake just as much as the ice cream I grew up eating as a kid because it’s light, naturally sweet, satisfying, and also super energizing too!
The Making of Vegan Peaches ‘n’ Cream Milkshake: Ingredients and Tips!
Fresh sweet peaches mixed with real vanilla bean powder (this one is my favorite that’s also affordable) is truly the best thing ever mid-summer when it’s blasted hot outside and you want something delicious to cool off with. Real vanilla bean transforms just about anything you add it to and will last forever in the pantry—all you need is a pinch!
I also used a frozen banana in this shake, because it truly is the BEST replacement for dairy in shakes and ice cream. Frozen banana is naturally sweet and also incredibly creamy making it the perfect dairy replacement. While you can use higher-fat dairy substitutes (like coconut milk or soaked cashews which both work well), I find that fruit digests much easier for me than high-fat alternatives, and I don’t need to add as much sweetener to the recipe when using fruit, (if any at all).
Speaking of the sweetener in this lovely Peaches ‘n’ Cream Milkshake, I’ve provided the options of no additional sweetener thanks to the natural sweetness of the banana, or you can add just a touch more of natural sweetness from a pitted Medjool date or a teaspoon of pure organic maple syrup. I personally think these are the best whole food natural sweeteners because they’re not refined like other natural sweeteners out there. I tolerate both of these very well, however, you can use whatever sweetening option you prefer.
Although, I might warn you that you don’t use much sweetener at all in this recipe if you make sure your fruit is ripe. And as far as stevia goes, even though I use it in many of my recipes, I think it overwhelms the natural flavors of the fruit in this recipe and is just too much, so I chose to opt out of using it here.
And the last thing you need is nothing more than your favorite non-dairy milk. You can use store-bought like I did (Silk is my favorite brand), but use unsweetened as the best option since the other ingredients are naturally sweet. You can also make your own non-dairy milk; my cashew milk, my raw sunflower seed milk, or raw oat milk recipes would also be great here! I chose to use unsweetened vanilla almond milk, but you could use store-bought cashew, coconut, and hemp milk too.
Last, but not least, feel free to add some fun toppings if you wish. I always think that unsweetened coconut flakes make such a pretty presentation and add a nice, light crunch, but slivered almonds, sliced almonds, or even a few pieces of pecans would be magical here too. 🙂
Now, let’s make a milkshake, shall we? 🙂
- 2 fresh ripe peaches, peeled--Use organic when possible since peaches are high in pesticides
- 1 very ripe banana, peeled and frozen (make sure it's super ripe and heavily spotted and that it's frozen)
- 1½ cups of your favorite unsweetened non-dairy milk (I used Silk unsweetened vanilla almond milk)
- ¼ tsp. real vanilla bean powder (or 1 tsp. alcohol-free vanilla extract)
- Optional sweeteners: 1 pitted Medjool date or 1 tsp. pure organic maple syrup (or your favorite alternative)
- Optional toppings: unsweetened shredded coconut flakes (I love Bob's Red Mill brand), almond slices or slivers, or pecans would all work great but are totally optional.
- Add all the ingredients to your blender in the order listed.
- Blend on low, then progress to high until fully blended.
- Serve in 2 tall glasses, add any toppings if you like or a sprinkle or real vanilla bean as a fun garnish, and enjoy!
*If you don't have fresh peaches, use about 1½ cups frozen peaches instead; it will just turn out a little thicker and you may need to eat it with a spoon.
*If you don't want to you use banana for whatever reason, I suggest using frozen peaches instead of fresh peaches and using a small (individual) container of nondairy plain or vanilla yogurt (such as coconut or soy) instead of the banana. It won't be quite the same as the original recipe but will be similar in texture and still taste great. Just be sure to use the sweetener options if you go that route.
Nutrition Benefits of This Recipe:
Peaches are a fantastic source of Vitamin C, antioxidants, fiber, and prebiotics that feed good bacteria in the gut. They’re also great for your skin and help lower blood pressure levels since they’re high in potassium.
Bananas are one of Mother Nature’s best sources of magnesium, potassium, and Vitamin B6 and are high in enzymes that relieve gastric distress, bloating, and inflammation when they are eaten ripe (heavily spotted, almost completely black). They’re also a good source of fiber with 3 grams per fruit and can help relieve everything from muscle cramps to stomach ulcers and even help with migraines and muscle spasms.
Vanilla bean is packed with antioxidants, potassium, magnesium, and has aphrodisiac properties (this doesn’t apply to vanilla extract but the actual vanilla bean powder from real vanilla beans).
Medjool dates and real, pure maple syrup are good sources of anti-inflammatory antioxidants, iron, and calcium; dates are also high in fiber, potassium, amino acids, Vitamin B6, and magnesium. Both can be very useful for relieving digestive issues and inflammation of the gut (when used in moderation).
Milkshakes can be made with healthy ingredients and still give you that same, pleasurable experience of having a thick and creamy shake. I hope this recipe (and others I share) help you to enjoy them in a healthier way, and feel free to make your own variations to see what you come up with!
If you do try this shake out, be sure to tag me on Instagram @heather_mcclees so I can see your photos! 🙂
Happy dairy-free milkshake making! 🙂