What’s Really in the Jamba Juice Acai Bowl

How does the Jamba Juice Acai Bowl compare to other frozen acai products?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past five years, frozen acai packets have taken over  your local health food stores, farmer’s markets, and just about everywhere. And an acai bowl adorned with fresh fruit, honey, and other toppings has become a health food trend, but is an acai bowl really healthy? While we don’t have the time or patience to make an acai bowl at home, we do have the time and energy to try the acai bowl at Jamba Juice

To be fair, Jamba Juice does have some hits on their menu like their low sugar fresh juice options, but they also have some misses (we’re talking to you Electric Berry Lemonade). So when we saw an acai bowl on the Jamba menu, we wondered where this frozen treat would land on our list of Jamba drinks: among their other healthy offerings or in the trash.

What is Acai?

What is Acai

Before we dive right into the Jamba Juice Acai Bowl, let’s unearth what exactly acai is. Acai is a fruit that comes from South America and is grown on acai palm trees. These palm trees grow small, dark purple fruits that look similar to blueberries when you’re up close, but have a tart, raspberry-like flavor to them when you take a bite. Like other fruits and vegetables, the acai fruit also boasts health benefits for your body like supporting blood sugar and immune system health. 

While you won’t find acai fruit in your local produce section at Publix or Kroger, you will find that this exotic fruit has taken over the freezer aisle in the form of acai powder and acai packets thanks to brands like Acai Sambazon, making it the perfect addition to a chilly smoothie, artistic smoothie bowl, or acai bowl. 

Are Acai Bowls Healthy?

Are Acai Bowls Healthy

The acai fruit itself is naturally healthy and packed with antioxidants. However, once plucked from the palm trees is when things start to go downhill. The acai that is found in the freezer aisle and at Jamba Juice is in frozen or puree form. This means when it is being packaged and processed, it is mixed with other juice blends, added sugars, and preservatives. Plus, once you start building an acai bowl with honey, granola, and other sugary toppings it starts to become more of a candy-like concoction vs. a healthy treat.

The Jamba Juice Acai Bowl Ingredients

The Jamba Juice Acai Bowl Ingredients

Jamba’s “Whirl’d famous!” acai bowl or Acai Primo as they call it, is made with frozen acai and falls victim to preservatives, additives, and sugars just like the rest of the frozen acai family. So there really is no fault, except for how frozen acai is processed across the board. However, with Jamba’s addition of straight-up sugar in their list of ingredients, honey, coconut, and the addition of overly processed granola they add on top – the Jamba Juice acai bowl really packs on the calories and sugar content.

If you are looking to control the sugar content of this acai bowl, simply ask for a topless Jamba Juice Acai Bowl without granola, honey, or coconut. Instead, see if you could add more fresh fruit like strawberries, blueberries, and bananas. You may have to pay extra, but your body will thank you in the long run.

Jamba Juice Acai Bowl Ingredients

  • Frozen Strawberries 
  • Açaí Blend (Açaí Pulp, White Grape Juice Concentrate, Ascorbic Acid, Citric Acid, Vitamin E [A-Tocopherol]) 
  • Frozen Blueberries 
  • Bananas
  • Soymilk (Water, Rice Sweetener [Water, Rice, Rice Bran] 
  • Sugar
  • Organic Soy Base [Water, Whole Organic Soybeans] 
  • Soy Protein Isolate [Soy Protein Isolate, Soy Lecithin]
  • Natural Vanilla Flavor with Other Natural Flavors, Carrageenan)
  • Strawberries
  • Frozen Bananas 
  • Ascorbic Acid and/or Citric Acid 
  • Organic Granola (Rolled Oats, Evaporated Cane Juice, Sunflower and/or Canola Oil, Rice Flour, Pumpkin Seeds, Flax, Oat Syrup Solids, Molasses, Sea Salt, Cinnamon) 
  • Blueberries 
  • Honey 
  • Shredded Coconut

Jamba Juice Acai Bowl Nutrition

While the Jamba Juice Acai Bowl provides a generous helping of vitamin C (690%), vitamin E (230%), and Potassium (850mg), this acai bowl is still 510 calories with 101g of carbohydrates and 65g of sugar (equivalent to three Snickers bars). However, We were surprised (and shook-eth) to see the fat content at 10g, sodium at 45 mg, and the cholesterol at 0g. 

All in all, compared to Jamba’s latest Frankenstein creations like The Go Getter and Electric Berry Lemonade, this acai bowl is certainly not the best Jamba Juice item to order, but definitely not the worst smoothie or smoothie bowl on the Jamba menu. Compared to the already prepared acai packets at your local grocer and the acai bowls made at just about any health food store, this acai bowl from Jamba is comparable to all the frozen acai offerings already out there.

What are your thoughts on the Jamba Juice Acai Bowl?

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