Healthy lifestyle guru Helen Hall crafts superfood bites for simpler smoothies
PHOTO: Helen Hall serves up nutritious smoothies featuring her trademark Blender Bombs (pictured below) at Hustle, a pop-up cafe located in Mount Pleasant Towne Centre.
A fresh, protein-packed smoothie is a great way to start the day, but who has time to make it? “When I was in college, I had wide-open mornings to exercise and refuel with smoothies,” says Helen Hall, who graduated from the University of South Carolina in 2015 and moved to Charleston shortly afterward, earning a personal training certificate in the process. “But when I began coaching clients, I realized that they didn’t often have that kind of time to spare, so I wanted to do something to help.”
While a quick blend of ice and fruit wasn’t too demanding, measuring out additional ingredients—such as nuts, seeds, and spices—usually fell by the wayside in folks’ morning rush. Hall’s solution? Take measuring out of the equation. Working with some friends in her apartment kitchen, she created her first batch of Blender Bombs, energy bites chock-full of nutrients—including hemp, flax, and chia seeds; cinnamon; bee pollen; and crushed pecans and walnuts—all held together with dates and honey. The Bombs, dense yet soft in texture, were ready to blend into a smoothie, packing a healthy punch that kept bellies full until lunchtime.
PHOTO: (Above left) Peanut butter-cacao-coffee flavored Blender Bombs; the latest Blender Bomb product is a grain-free granola made with nuts and coconut oil.
The bites were a huge hit with Hall’s clients, who encouraged her to put them on the market. She sold her first bag of Bombs in April 2017, and they’ve been, well, blowing up ever since. “I had so many requests that I couldn’t keep making them at home,” says the fitness coach, whose popular wellness Instagram and blog, Hushup + Hustle, introduced the products to an even larger audience. As demand grew, Hall moved her production to a commercial kitchen on John’s Island last June, and this past February, she enlisted a second kitchen in Charlotte.
Unlike individually packaged energy bites, Blender Bombs arrive by the bag, each containing 10 balls and costing around $25. “Ours are a little more expensive, because we fill them with dates and nuts, rather than oats,” Hall explains. “They’re also more calorie-dense than others, so they hold you over between meals.” The 130-calorie bites come in an original flavor, plus aloe-collagen; cacao, coffee, and nut butter; gogi, coconut, and acai; peppermint-cacao; and nut-free.
Now a little more than a year into business, Hall is focused on her newest venture, Hustle, a pop-up cafe in Mount Pleasant’s Towne Centre selling bags of Blender Bombs (you can also order them online at www.hushupandhustle.com), grain-free granola, and smoothies starting at 8 a.m. every morning. Hall says, “By beginning your day with a smoothie, you’re doing something good for yourself, which makes it easier to make healthy choices throughout the day.”