Dragon fruit, also know as Pitaya is as intimidating as a unicorn in steel armor – so cute and unusual, but why the spiky protrusions? And as with most things in nature, something that’s so vibrant on the outside will usually be pungent or piquant on the inside. Except for dragon fruit. At first glance, it seemed a perfect fruit for a quirky smoothie, with traditional fruits to round out what had to be crazy, loopy flavor. And a dragon fruit smoothie with guava and strawberries sounded pretty divine.
With my first slice of red dragon fruit (we’ll talk about the white version in a bit), I prepared to pucker at its sourness or pass out from the sweetness. But a few bites in, no surprises, no quirks, just a surprisingly mild, dense fruit with crunchy seeds like a Kiwi.
All that show and flare on the outside leads to a lovely fruit you could add a top any cereal or yogurt. So we brought in the guava to give the dragon fruit a contrast, along with very ripe strawberries for a tangy sweetness.
Dragon Fruit Health Benefits
The result is a not-too-sweet, very creamy smoothie that packs on a heck of an antioxidant punch. And that’s where dragon fruit reveals its secrets. It’s the flavor she comes armed with, but rather a host of health benefits that range from a healthy dose of vitamin C, vitamin B, and calcium.
However, the seeds hold the real health benefits, no surprise there. They contain lycopene, the same compound found in tomatoes that are good for the heart. Add in the omega-3 fatty acids, and a dragon fruit smoothie sounds like a good idea for fuel in the morning or post-workout.
Katherine even found a study showing the fruit has anti-aging properties and she thinks it would make a great base for a face mask. Between you and me, she doesn’t need it. But I’ll ask her to post the beauty recipe if she likes the results. Here's a full list of health benefits.
As part of our culinary tour of Baja, I was surprised to find out that dragon fruit is indigenous to Mexico’s deserts as a member of the cactus family and is easy to find in fruit stands.
Now the question is, will you be able to find the red dragon fruit locally?
You’ll probably have a bit of challenge. Katherine and I live in Atlanta and have our pick of international markets to get hard-to-find produce. However, it took nine phone calls to track down the red version finally.
The good news is that white dragon fruit was readily available everywhere we looked. The flesh is white with same tiny black, edible seeds.
A smoothie made with dragon fruit won’t have the same fuchsia vibrancy, but we have some suggestions and alternatives below to help you achieve the same lovely smoothie.
There’s also a pink and yellow version, but those also have a white or light flesh with black seeds, too.
Suggestions and Alternatives
- Red dragon fruit is harder to find than white, so you can use white dragon fruit instead.
- If you prefer a thicker smoothie or want to make a smoothie bowl, add one ripe banana.
Other Baja Mexico Recipes
- Black Bean and Corn Salad [with Avocado]
- Baja Shrimp Tacos with Sweet Corn Salsa
- Mexican Fruit Salad [with Lime Chili Dressing]
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- 1 large red dragon fruit, peeled and diced quality
- 1/2 cup guava juice quality
- 1/2 cup strawberries quality
- 1 tablespoon agave quality
- 1/4 cup cold water
- 5 ice cubes
- Peel and dice 1 large red dragon fruit and add to blender.
- Add 1/2 cup guava juice and 1/2 cup sliced strawberries.
- Add 2 tablespoons agave, 1/4 cup cold water, and 5 ice cubes.
- Blend on medium high until smooth for about 3 minutes.
Robin rue says
I don't think I've ever had Dragon fruit. I would love to try it someday. I bet it is awesome in this smoothie.
This smoothie sounds amazing and I love the combo of dragon fruit and guava, it totally makes me remember my childhood.
Sarah @ Champagne Tastes says
I've always wanted to try dragin fruit, and have NEVER found one!! I'll keep this in mind in case I do!
Mary // Chattavore says
I love finding new smoothie recipes! I will have to give this a try.
I have never tried dragonfruit but I've been super curious too! This smoothie looks delicious so I'll keep my eye out for one now!
Karen Morse says
I like dragon fruit because it's really refreshing! And I think it's a lovely addition to any smoothie especially during the summer! This one's a must try! The combination with guava makes me curious about the taste. I'm sure it's amazing though and it's packed with a lot of health benefits too!
This looks like a perfect smoothie. I love mine not too sweet, and I'm interested in trying dragonfruit. Beautiful color, too.
There are some smoothies that are just way too sweet and just totally negate the health benefits. I like this one because of the ripe strawberries and a bit of guava, it's just enough.
Brandi Crawford says
This sounds amazing! It's so colorful and pretty. I haven't had dragon fruit in a smoothie.
Terri Steffes says
That truly is a gorgeous color and to find it in nature is an awesome thing. I will check my local Whole Foods and Trader Joes to see if I can locate it!
It's seasonal. But you can for sure find it at Whole Foods.
Lisa Bryan says
I love dragon fruit/pitaya and definitely had my fair share of pitaya smoothies when I lived in Bali for two months. I'll have to make this for a little memory jolt. 😉
Bali is on my list for exploration with the kids in a few years. We're thinking Ubud for a few months. And I'll be sure to get my fill of someone else making the smoothies =)
AnnMarie John says
Dragonfruit is awesome, it does taste like a kiwi, not too sweet and not sour at all. I just love it! I love that you paired it with guava for this smoothie recipe. I can't believe I never thought of that before!
Cindy Ingalls says
I had no idea dragonfruit was so good for you. The smoothie looks amazing!
Ana De- Jesus says
I have actually never tried dragon fruit before but I adore guava. Guava reminds me of my Maderian/Portuguese heritage as they are a big fan of Guava out there x
Jessica Joachim says
This looks so good! I have had dragonfruit a few times and really enjoyed it. I really love guava though. My dad used to bring home guava juice and it just reminds me of childhood
My mother is from the Dominican Republic and I used to live on guava juice as a child. I think I drank it more than OJ.
Krystle Cook says
I love dragonfruit. This looks like it would taste absolutely amazing!
Angela @marathonsandmotivation.com says
I recently tried Dragon Fruit for the first time and it was quite unique! It's a beautiful fruit & sounds like the perfect ingredient for a smoothie.
Kimberly Croisant says
Gosh, I'm not sure I've ever seen a dragon fruit, let alone know where to buy it....but, hey that smoothie looks really good.
If you have an Asian market close by, you'll probably find it. Otherwise, you can get the pulp on Amazon overnight for fairly cheap.
Erica M says
I had a pitaya smoothie earlier this week. It is sold almost everywhere here in Los Angeles. I love how pink the smoothie gets. Didn't know about all the health benefits! I'm excited to have another one now.
Cecilia C. Cannon says
wow! I actually have never made anything with real guava before! this looks just delicious and colorful. I love it.
Oh wow this looks so good! I haven't ever tried dragon fruit so this sounds like an exotic treat. I can't wait to try it with my kids and see what we all think.
Brandi Puga says
I don't think I have ever seen dragon fruitin Colorado but i really want to get some because i think my kids would have a blast with it, this smoothie looks delicious!
Wow that looks so delicious and so refreshing. I've never tried Dragon Fruit or Guava! I will have to give this a try!
Kaity | With Kids and Coffee says
Dragon Fruit is always so intimidating when I come across it. For some reason it has never crossed my mind that I can throw it in a smoothie. Great idea!! I may have to try out this recipe because that guava sounds amaaaazing. 🙂
Amber Nelson says
i love trying new smoothies. this looks like a good one to try for sure!
Yasmin Ali says
I actually want to try this! I never really had dragonfruit before my local grocery store has it all the time!
My daughter loves dragon fruit - more for the name and look than anything! But this smoothie looks delish! We will need to try it.
Great recipe! The idea of dragonfruit is always so much better than what I actually try to do with it at home. My eight year old daughter is always picking up interesting produce while we shop and would love to try this!
Rachel Catherine says
This looks really good and fresh. I tried dragon fruit recently and noticed that it tastes a lot like whatever you happen to pair it with.