The weather is supposed to move into the nice part of spring this week, instead of the cold, rainy version we’ve been experiencing, and my thoughts are turning from warm vegetable curry to smoothies. I’m not quite ready to break out the ice, but a bit of frozen fruit does a body good. My husband and I both enjoyed this sweet smoothie yesterday during a break from eating chocolate eggs and jelly beans. This smoothie hit the spot so completely that I went out later on to buy more fruit, ready for the warm weather starting tomorrow.
Sweet Green Smoothie
- 2 cups spinach
- 1 cup Califia Farms Almond Milk, toasted coconut flavor (yum!)
- 1/2 cup frozen pineapple
- 1 frozen banana
- 1/2 cup cold water
Blend first four ingredients for about 30 seconds in a high speed blender and divide between two cups. Then pour in the cold water and reblend to get some of the spinach stuck along the blender walls back into your cup, and divide that between your serving cups as well. Sweet and refreshing!
Did you know that some root vegetables have greens that you can eat? I’ve tried beet and radish greens so far. Here is a recipe that was successful for me. I created this one, but the Blender Girl Smoothies cookbook has other, fancier ones. Happy drinking!
Beet Green Smoothie
- 2 cups unsweetened almond milk
- 2 tbl chia seeds
- 1/2 cup finely torn beet greens
- 1 cup pineapple
- 1 cup blueberries
- 1/2 cup yogurt
- 1 cup ice cubes
Blend this one a little longer than you usually do. The greens are hard to break down. The results are delicious!
I’ve gotten kind of repetitive in my smoothie making. Once I figured out the “perfect” smoothies for watermelon and cantaloupe, I kept on making those with side tests on a cookbook I’m reviewing. Another thing I’m trying to figure out is the balance between sweet and sour. It’s an individual thing. Yesterday I made a mango/pineapple smoothie from a recipe that I didn’t like. It was too sour for me. Of course I had played with the recipe to lower the calories and when you start substituting you can ruin an otherwise good recipe. If you have patience, it’s always a good idea to make a recipe as shown first.
This is my take on a mango/pineapple smoothie. Not too sweet and much less sour!
- 1/2 cup frozen mango
- 1/2 cup pineapple
- 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 3/4 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
- 1/4 tsp almond flavoring
- 4 ice cubes
Blend together! Makes one serving.
As I continue on my smoothie journey, I think of new fruits to play with. For those of you who eat a lot of fruit this is no big deal, but I was never very interested in fruit until now. Cantaloupe is a new favorite, a little reminiscent of mango in smoothies for me, adding a sweet, bland taste that is very easy to drink. I came up with this refreshing mix today, after yesterday’s very healthy smoothie. I added celery to a smoothie for the first time and it worked out better than expected!
Tropical Cantaloupe Smoothie
- 1/2 cup pineapple
- 1/2 cup cantaloupe
- 1/2 cup full fat Greek yogurt
- 1 tbl honey
- 1 cup crushed ice
I wanted crunchy ice, so I crushed it in my NutriNinja blender, and then blended the other four ingredients before re-adding some of the ice. This added some texture to the blend.
If you’re like me, on the quest to get some healthy products into your diet, you probably didn’t just buy whole foods, but also some of those lovely powdered superfoods that promise so much. This is the one I purchased, pictured above. I didn’t have much luck using it at first. It destroyed the drinkability of the first (perfectly good otherwise) smoothie recipe I added it to. I halved the dose of the powder and that did better, but I thought there must be some combination that can hold up to a full dose of my canister of green powder. Today, I hit upon it, and here is the recipe. Enjoy!
Green Superfood Smoothie
- 1 scoop green superfood
- 1 bosc pear, chopped
- 1/2 cup cooked oatmeal (I use Snoqualmie Falls Lodge brand)
- 1 cup cashew milk, semi-frozen
- 3/4 tbl maple syrup
Blend until the pear is broken up.
What makes superfood powder or other green stuff tasty for you? My theory is that it is the maple syrup/oats combination that is cleaning up the powder taste. What do you think?
I find that when something is important to me, I have to do it every day. Whether it is drafting a manuscript (1K a day no matter how excruciating the process or difficult my family makes it), exercise, or a new dietary habit, I can’t cheat. My husband fell off the smoothie wagon quickly. A mix of not being hungry and not liking the looks of a smoothie I presented one night. I take some of the blame by being inconsistent as to what meal of the day I’m having my smoothie, but the weather in the part of the world I live in is wildly varied in May, and I can’t always handle a large, cold drink at lunch vs. dinner. So I change it up depending on the weather.
I need to make it possible for my husband to do a quick smoothie for breakfast, since he isn’t home for lunch. So far, I’ve resisted the breakfast smoothie for myself. Any recipes that are so good a breakfast smoothie is a must have? Let me know!
I have refused to give up. There was one day where my smoothie was dessert, rather than a meal, but I’ve done well. Overall, no weight loss, but I’m staying healthy. Next up, I’d like to investigate allergy support smoothies, because it is high allergy season for us, and bad allergies are as uncomfortable as a head cold.
You might wonder what our favorite smoothies are so far. My husband says his is the Strawberry Fields from Crazy Sexy Kitchen. I have two I have utterly adored. The For the Love of Nog! from the same cookbook. http://www.amazon.com/Crazy-Sexy-Kitchen-Plant-Empowered-Mouthwatering-ebook/dp/B008FQGPFK Also, the Strawberry Pina Colada Smoothie from Natural Chow. http://naturalchow.com/2015/01/strawberry-pina-colada-smoothie/
What is your favorite smoothie?
Yesterday I technically had a smoothie as a snack, but I’m guessing McDonald’s smoothies don’t count in my health journey, so I decided not to count. At least I had that instead of a high calorie coffee drink like I normally would have. So, when I came home from my shopping trip I put on my new white shorts (oops) and started concocting. The results were delicious, but dribbly, so be warned! Don’t wear white while playing with frozen blueberries!
Pineapple Blueberry Delight
- Half cup pineapple
- One cup frozen or fresh blueberries
- One cup mixed spinach and arugula
- One cup almond milk ice cubes (I freeze my own in advance)
- Half cup milk (I used cow for extra protein but could be non-dairy)
- One tablespoon coconut oil
- Half lime squeezed
Blend until the ice cubes are dissolved. I found I could really taste the coconut and arugula in this one. Delish!
What are you using for protein in meal replacement smoothies? I had been thinking almond milk did the trick but then I looked at the box. It’s only one gram of protein per cup, compared to nine in cow’s milk.
So far, I haven’t picked up the kindergarten crud, and I’m trying to keep my smoothies extra healthy. This turned out surprisingly delicious. It was my first carrot smoothie experiment, and I was attempting to add a little staying power to the smoothie with fat and protein.
Carrot Smoothie #1
- 10 small, chopped baby carrots
- 1/2 chopped green apple
- 1 clementine orange
- 1 cup spinach
- 1 tbl almond butter
- 1 tbl coconut oil
- 1 squeeze ginger pulp
- 4 oz coconut water
- 1/2 cup ice cubes
Blend together for 45 seconds or so. I’m finding with my new Nutri Ninja, that the individual blending cup does a fantastic job, but apples take up a lot of room, so I have to blend with 1/2 the apples first, then add the rest.
What is your favorite ingredient?
I’m starting to lose track, but I’ve been at this once-a-day smoothie meal replacement game for about a month now, and we’re on household illness number three since I began. This time it appears to be a kindergarten-sized intestinal virus, and boy, I don’t want to catch it! As it is, I was up all night tending to my poor little sufferer.
Here’s what I concocted in my new Nutri Ninja blender to fight the germs. What do you think?
The Crud Fighter Smoothie
1 handful mixed kale and spinach
1 Cup frozen mixed berries
1/2 green apple
1/2 cup pineapple
1 cup coconut water (optional pineapple flavored)
1 squeeze ginger pulp
Blend it all together and enjoy! It is a bit tart, so honey would be a good addition and also another germ fighter. On a hot day, you could also add ice. This firmly packed my Nutri Ninja single serving cup.
So, you’re living with someone else, a partner, children, friends, etc. and you’ve started down this new diet journey, cluttering your countertops and refrigerators with new food items and appliances. How do you make them okay with it?
As you know, my smoothie quest is wrapped around a search for better immune support. I have yet to talk my child into so much as trying a smoothie, but my husband has just come on board. It took about 2 1/2 weeks to achieve this, mostly by accident!
What I did was offer him a taste of every smoothie I made. Since most of them aren’t disgusting, he lost his fear of them. I also kept preparing meals, instead of just forgetting him, though the leftovers have really been piling up. Then, I started preparing light meals with light smoothies, and we’re having them both for dinner. Now, he’s ready to start the smoothie-as-a-full-meal revolution with me!
Meanwhile, I’m reviewing The Apple Cookbook by Olwen Woodier (3rd edition) so I’ve been using it to find the complementary light meals to go with the light smoothie. Tonight is going to be an eggnog smoothie to compliment a Welsh Rarebit. Last night we had an apple sausage omelet with a mango veggie smoothie.
What combinations sound like a good idea? Any hints on keeping your home front enthusiastic?