If you've seen some kind of bright green food on your Instagram explore page lately, odds are that it has spirulina in it. What's spirulina? Basically, it's an "algae" that has been dried up and ground into a powder and has become incredibly popular in the food world due to the fact that it contains nutrients like iron and protein, among others. There is a ton of research on spirulina that claims that it has a lot of really great benefits when it's added to your food, but most people aren't quick to jump out and toss algae powder in their food and we don't blame them.
Luckily, there are a ton of recipes that incorporate spirulina into them in a way that makes eating algae seem way less intimidating. Plus, it gives all your food the most gorgeous bright green or bright blue coloring. With food like mermaid toast, acai bowls, and over the top smoothies taking over our social feeds, it's not a surprise that people are so drawn to colorful food. While other colorful food takes their colors from artificial food coloring, spirulina gets its bright green shade from this natural powder.
Ready to step up your food game with these gorgeous green treats? Keep reading to see 20 spirulina recipes that give a whole new meaning to food coloring!
20 Sour Spirulina Gummy Bears
What's the worst part of trying to eat healthier? For a lot of people, it's not being able to eat the sweet treats that you love so much. Ugh, as much as we know that we should lay off the sweets and junk food and eat healthy snacks instead, it's just not easy!
Luckily, it's pretty easy to find recipes that combine both and are healthier alternatives to our favorite sweet treats.
This recipe from Earth To Amy is for sour gummy bears that have spirulina and a healthier sweetener than regular sugar. Plus, the dark green color they've been given by the spirulina makes them look just like the sugar-filled version from the grocery store.
19 Mint and Basil Pesto
This mint and basil pesto from Archana's Kitchen is delicious whether you want to put it on pasta, use it as a dip, or put it on a sandwich. This pesto is a pretty simple recipe, but it puts a super special twist on the regular pesto recipe that people are used to making. The best part is that the prep time is pretty minimal because all you need to do is prepare a few ingredients and then toss them all into your blender or food processor and let it blend until it's all incorporated and smooth! Then, you can enjoy it just about any way you want.
18 Tropical Overnight Oats
Getting up and getting ready in the morning is never fun or easy. Seriously, how do morning people do it? If you're not a morning person and you dread waking up to get dressed, make breakfast, and get going with your day, we have a delicious tip to help make it a little less unbearable - make overnight oats!
This fruity breakfast food is made the night before and then popped into the fridge overnight so it's ready to grab and eat with no prep in the morning.
This recipe from Healthfully Ever After uses spirulina to give these tropical overnight oats a bright green color. It's super easy to change the fruits in this to any you want to eat!
17 Vegan Mini Mint Chocolate Cheesecakes
These mini chocolate cheesecakes are a delicious sweet treat that is still healthy. Plus, that gorgeous green shade in the center layer comes from spirulina which adds all kinds of health benefits to your snack. The treats in this recipe from One Green Planet are vegan and gluten-free, which means that they're a great snack that tons of people can have despite any dietary restrictions they may have.
These healthy cheesecake bites taste so minty and delicious that you'll want to eat the entire batch! Even though they're too tasty to resist, we recommend sharing these minty spirulina treats with friends.
16 Kiwi Green Smoothie
As the weather heats up, there's not much better than enjoying a delicious and sweet smoothie. Raw Energico has a delicious recipe for a summery kiwi smoothie that uses spirulina to add some bright green color and an extra boost of healthy benefits.
If you're looking to beat the heat, relaxing with a sweet and healthy smoothie like this is totally the way to go.
The best part is that this smoothie only has a few ingredients, so it doesn't take very long to chop everything up and toss it in your blender. Then, all you have to do is pour it into two glasses to share with your bestie!
15 Mermaid Pops
What says "summer" more than a delicious Popsicle? We can't think of anything. Unfortunately, mermaids aren't real but these mermaid pops are so delicious and sweet that it makes us feel like we're livin' under the sea all summer long.
Pop Sugar has a recipe for these delicious mermaid pops that have a cool, refreshing taste that'll help you beat this summer heat while still staying healthy instead of eating something loaded with tons of sugar. They're made with ingredients like coconut water, honey, and spirulina so they taste just as tropical as they look.
And did we mention how cool this two-toned green hue is going to look on your Instagram feed?
14 Savory Spirulina Pancakes
We know that savory pancakes sound a little out there, but stick with us! Most pancakes come in a golden brown shade and are eaten at breakfast time with some butter, syrup, and maybe a little fresh fruit on top to keep things sweet and delicious in the morning. But, these pancakes from Black White Vivid put a savory twist on the usual pancake recipe!
Their recipe makes either five small pancakes or two large ones, which means that there's enough to have as a snack in the afternoon with a friend or even eat as part of a meal.
These pancakes are savory instead of sweet and would be so tasty with some cream cheese or hummus on top!
13 Vanilla Bean Chia Pudding
This chia pudding recipe from Clean Eating Kitchen has the most adorable mint green shade and is a healthy dessert that can be made dairy free if you're looking for a vegan option! Plus, you can add slices of your favorite fruit on top, this recipe recommends bananas, in order to add a little extra texture and flavor.
Chia seeds have become a super popular ingredient in various healthy foods in the past few years which means they're available in tons of stores and websites now! When put into a recipe with liquid, chia seeds absorb all that liquid and give the dish a really interesting texture.
12 Mermaid Smoothie Bowl
Most spirulina gives food a bright green color but this particular mermaid smoothie bowl uses a blue spirulina instead. The blue spirulina makes this smoothie bowl look like the person making it is eating a bowl of crystal clear ocean water and we're totally into it.
If you can't get blue spirulina, you can totally still substitute it for green and have a green smoothie bowl instead!
This recipe from Greens of the Stone Age is an incredibly easy recipe and makes a perfect breakfast or sweet treat when you're craving something cold and fruity. Plus, you can change the fruits on top to have your favorites and customize it to your own perfect smoothie bowl!
11 Fruity Summertime Ice Cream
Using spirulina in things like pasta sauce and smoothies is great and all, but what about sprinkling some in some sweeter recipes to add a little boost of health to your favorite desserts?
My Perfect Greens made this recipe for the most deliciously summery ice cream and used spirulina in it to add some green color and a boost of nutrients! After a day out in the sun, coming inside to enjoy this fruity frozen treat is a delicious way to end any day. Plus, this recipe for ice cream can be made with or without an ice cream maker, so you don't need to have a kitchen full of gadgets to treat yourself.
10 Minty Chia Pudding Smoothie
How cute are these layered chia pudding smoothies? As cute as they are, they're totally not complicated and are easy to put together to eat as a breakfast food or a cold snack when your sweet tooth starts begging for something tasty. The bottom layer of this smoothie is made of chia pudding while the top layer is a minty spirulina smoothie.
If you're looking to cut dairy out, this treat can be made with almond or cashew milk!
Alpha Foodie has a recipe for this tasty treat and even explains how they got those adorable heart-shaped kiwi slices to stick to the side of their glass! Although that's not a necessary step, it looks so cute!
9 Spirulina Hummus
If you're looking for a crunchy snack to have while you're binging your new favorite show on Netflix, you might reach for a bag of potato chips or something similar, right? Unfortunately, that's not the best option for your body. Instead, reaching for a bowl of pita chips or veggies like carrots and cucumbers is so much better for you! And if you don't want to eat them plain, dipping them in a bowl of hummus is a delicious option to spice them up a bit.
Nutrex Hawaii has a deliciously easy recipe for spirulina hummus that is tasty on your veggies as it is vibrant.
8 Ocean Blueberry Smoothie
The great thing about smoothies is that you can basically put anything you want in them and they'll almost always be delicious.
Whether you have a specific craving for a certain fruit or you've just got some in the fridge that you need to eat, you can toss them into your blender and it'll almost always turn out cold, sweet, and tasty!
If you're looking to spice up your smoothie game, this recipe for an ocean blueberry smoothie from Butter Version of Me is a perfect one that uses spirulina, blueberries, and coconut milk. Yum! Who could resist that bright green glass of deliciousness?
7 Green Pasta
Seeing green pasta isn't exactly unusual. There are a ton of recipes for pasta that give it a green or even red food coloring from natural ingredients like beets and spinach! While this pasta may look like it's just got some spinach in it to turn it this vibrant green hue, that's not the secret to it!
This deliciously easy recipe from Kale and Caramel uses spirulina to turn it green. The recipe can be used with or without a pasta maker and makes fresh, homemade pasta in no time! It even has a recipe for a gremolata if you don't already have a favorite pasta sauce to use with it.
6 Vegan Mint Pie
One Green Planet has a recipe for this delicious pie that's super healthy even though it looks like a complete treat!
The crust is completely raw and vegan, made up of dates and nuts instead of being made of a regular pastry crust like some other pies.
The filling is made with healthy sweetener, cashews, and a little spirulina to add a mint green color and really bring out the minty flavor.
This minty pie is perfect for any occasion and tastes just as good as it looks. We know you'll be tempted to eat the whole thing, but remember that sharing is caring!
5 Sour Cream And Smoked Salmon Toast
With foods like mermaid toast, rainbow donuts, over the top milkshakes, and smoothie bowls taking over our Instagram feeds, it's no shock that people are using spirulina to make their foods a little prettier. This recipe uses blue spirulina to make this toast look almost too good to eat! The recipe, which can be found on Bon Apetit, can also be made using the more traditional green spirulina and can be used for different toppings if you're not into this combination.
The spirulina gives this toast a color that's almost too good to eat! It takes this toast from bland to a beautiful lunch.
4 Superfood Popcorn
Want to add something a little more interesting to your next movie night? How about this superfood popcorn?
It may sound strange and the bright green coloring that the popcorn has is totally unconventional, but it's a healthy treat for when you want to settle in to watch some Netflix.
Say Yes has a recipe for this popcorn but it's super simple. The recipe gives instructions to make enough of the spirulina-based topping so you can sprinkle some on every time you pop up some hot, fresh popcorn. Yum! You may never want to go back to bags of buttery popcorn again.
3 Kiwi And Banana Green Ice Cream
If you're used to incredibly sweet treats, this ice cream might not be quite up to your taste, but it is a healthy alternative to a pint of Ben & Jerry's if you're craving something cold this summer!
The recipe for this ice cream comes from Eat Drink Shrink has some frozen bananas and some peeled kiwis in it to keep it tasting sweet, but it adds an extra pop of nutrients when you toss in the spinach and spirulina into your blender to mix it all up. Sound like a strange combination? Maybe, but this ice cream tastes like a sweet, frozen green juice and it's as good for you as it tastes!
2 Avocado Pudding
For most of these recipes, spirulina turns an otherwise regular colored food into a bright green delight on a plate. For this one, the spirulina just enhances the green color that's already given to it by the avocado in it. Just like spirulina, avocado is a food that has been all over the place lately.
From avocado toast to guacamole to avocado pudding like this, it's hard to escape it! But, we don't really mind.
This recipe for spirulina and avocado pudding can be found at The Full Helping with some ideas on how to serve it. Dip, dessert, or a spread for some toast? It's up to you!
1 Matcha Protein Bars
The summertime means everyone wants to get fit and be healthy. If you're starting to work out more and eat a little healthier in order to be kind to your body this summer, you've probably looked at the protein bar aisle of the grocery store. A lot of them are expensive and they're loaded with sugar and other chemicals and dyes. Instead of buying those, why not make your own?
These protein bars from One Green Planet have simple ingredients and are so easy to make with matcha powder, spirulina, and cacao nibs.
Best of all, there's no baking necessary so you won't have to heat up your whole house!