A Guide to Green Smoothie Goodness

I often have people asking me how I make my daily green smoothies. I’ve had many friends and clients say they’d like to try them, but fear they’ll taste horrible. Or they think they don’t have time to make it. If you can find just 5 minutes in the morning, you’ll be set! Because that is really as long as it takes. Well, unless you have munchkin helpers…then it might be more like 10. 😉

So I wanted to share my “Green Smoothie Guidelines” to hopefully inspire, because they really are easy and delicous, and so much more nutritious than most meals you can throw together in such a short time.  And just remember, YOU have control over the amount of greens you add. Yes the goal is to increase that amount, but start wherever will have this work for you. Makes sense, right?!

Any blender will work, but if this becomes a regular habit for you (yay!), then you might want to invest in a Vitamix. Seriously, my first encounter with a Vitamix was nothing short of a relgious experience! And we have met every day since. Sometimes twice. Seriously amazing piece of equipment!

IMG_2445Since I make enough to share with my husband and my boys (2 and 5), my Vitamix is filled to the brim each morning. As you can see from the picture, I pour myself the most because it’s a full meal for me, and then my husband gets a good glass to tide him over until late morning, and the boys drink kid size glasses with their breakfast.

And I must say, I pretty much feel like I’m sending everyone off to school/ work with superpowers! Cape optional. 😉

Try adding a green smoothie a couple times a week, and soon you’ll be craving one every day when you realize how amazing you feel! Not only will you find your energy holding smooth and steady, but you will experience your body coming into balance in powerful ways. Green smoothie’s help to alkalize the body and tame inflammation, which is prevention at it’s best. Everyone who knows me knows that my kids almost never get sick, and green smoothies are definitely are a huge part of my arsenal.

And as you’ll see, there are so many variations to keep it fresh and exciting. So let’s get blending!

Step 1: Add Liquid

You can play around with the amount, depending on if you like your smoothies thicker or thinner. I like to change it up, using between 1-1/2 cups per person.

Coconut Water
Coconut Milk
Almond or Rice Milk
Filtered Water

I occasionally add almond/ coconut yogurt

Step 2: Add Fruit

You could use any fruit, these are just the ones I use most often.

Bananas
Apple
Pear
Mango
Peach
Papaya
Orange
Pineapple
Grapes
Cherry
Berries of all varieties

Step 3: Add Greens & Optional Veggies

Start off with a large handful, and then as your taste adapts to the greens, load ’em up!

Spinach
Swiss Chard
Kale (mix up varieties)
Dandelion Greens (these are fairly bitter. I used just a small amount when I first tried it. It’s good to mix it with one of the more mellow greens like spinach or chard.)
Beet Greens
Collard Greens

Those are my staples, but I also use: Broccoli Sprouts, Parsley, Cilantro, Cucumber, Celery, Carrots, Beets
Step 4: Add Healthy Fat

Add 1-2 T. of any combination of healthy fats.

Chia Seeds or Flax Seeds

Hemp Hearts
Avocado
Nut Butters

Step 5: Optional Superfoods

These are optional, super nutrient-dense foods that will take your smoothie to a whole new level in terms of support for your body and mind.

Kelp
Spirulina
Chlorella

Wheat Grass
Maca
Raw Cacao

Bee Pollen
Goji Berries

Step 6: Other Optional Add-ins

I often add a High Quality Protein Powder (I love Sun Warrior), especially if I am replacing a meal or drinking my smoothie post-workout.

Like things sweeter? Dates, Honey or Maple Syrup or Stevia are all good options. Try not to do these too frequently, as there is already plenty of sugar in the fruits you’re adding!

Spice things up with: Cinnamon, Vanilla, Ginger, Turmeric

Lemon and Lime if you’re looking for more of a zing.

Blend, and soak up the love!

TIPS:

  1. If you are making a smoothie for 1, everything will fit in the blender just fine. When making for the whole family like I do, I blend everything but the greens FIRST, which creates more space for the amount of greens I like to push down in to the mix. Then I blend again.
  2. I often use frozen berries because I like my smoothies cold, but ice can be added if all the fruit is all fresh.
  3. I have a tendency to ocassionally go “too-green” for my kiddos, but it’s nothing that a splash of 100% juice can’t fix! 😉 Depending on what I blended, if I get the yuck face, I’ll add OJ or Goji Berry Juice. I add as little as possible to put a smile on their face!

I hope that provides some good inspiration, and has you feeling ready to give it a try. You’re body will thank you!

Here are the smoothie’s that I made yesterday and today in our house. Remember, when you’re starting out, don’t feel like you need to rush out and buy superfoods. Start with what you have, explore different combinations, and have fun! I really use whatever fruit that needs to be eaten, and always keep frozen fruit on hand. And of course the greens are a necessity. 😉 When you’re ready, try adding one new thing, like chia seeds for example, and building from there.

Green Mango Berry Bliss

Serves 2 adults, 2 children

2 C. coconut water

2 C. filtered water

1 ½ cups fresh mango

1 ½ cups frozen strawberries

½ cucumber

5 large Swiss Chard leaves, including stalks

2T. Chia Seeds

1-2 scoops Vanilla Sun Warrior Protein Powder

2 tsp. Spirulina

2 tsp. Maca

Blend & Enjoy!

Creamy Chocolatey Fruit n’ Greens

Serves 2 adults, 2 children

1 C. Coconut Milk

3 C. Filtered Water

1 banana

1 apple

1 Avocado

1 cup frozen bluberries

1 small bunch of kale (8 small-ish leaves), including stalks

2 T. cacao

1 T. hemp hearts

1tsp. Kelp

Blend & Enjoy!

Do you drink green smoothies? Any other favorite ingredients that I didn’t mention? Share in the comments below!

Cheers!

Disclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, your cost will remain the same, but I will receive a small commission. I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” I appreciate your support of my blog and business!

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7 Responses to “A Guide to Green Smoothie Goodness”

  1. Thank you for these two new recipes! I laughed when I read about your encounter with Vitamix as it was the same for me. We use ours daily and I love it. My favorite so far is avocado, fresh O.J., banana, Greek yogurt, and honey. So I can’t wait to try these new recipes 🙂 but here’s a silly question, where do I find cacao in the store? In the bulk aisle?
    Kimberly´s last blog post ..Could I Have Fed My Children in 10,000BC?

    [Reply]

    bethallen Reply:

    Hey Kim, You’re welcome! I’m glad to hear you understand my love affair with the Vitamix! 😉 I hope you enjoy trying some new smoothie recipes. I must say, seeing the smoothie you’ve been drinking, it will be a big shift to start adding greens. I’d start with spinach or swiss chard…those seem to the be the most mild and kid friendly. As for the cacao, I can get the same brand I linked to above at any natural foods store, but Amazon is often cheaper. It’s not in the bulk aisle at our store, but in a section with other “superfoods”. I would ask someone who works there, they could direct you. Enjoy!

    [Reply]

  2. HI Beth and Happy 2014! What do you think of an organic fermented super food blend with pro-biotics and enzymes like this:
    http://akealife.com/essentials/ingredients/facts-panel/

    Thanks Byron
    I add 4 tblspns hemp hearts for protein and EFAs

    [Reply]

    bethallen Reply:

    Hi Byron~ Looks like a nice enough product. I’m curious why they don’t have the oat bran listed as GF? I am defnitely a huge fan of fermented food, and love that you can get really affordable traditaionanally fermented sauerkraut or pickles! I also love kombucha, but it’s an occassional splurge until I start making my own! 😉 Thanks for stopping by!

    [Reply]

  3. mmmmm, nice recipes thank you bethallen

    [Reply]

    bethallen Reply:

    You’re welcome, Walid. Enjoy!

    [Reply]

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. 5 Ways to Kick Your Coffee Habit with Ease - 08. Apr, 2014

    […] This is a great time to get extra fiber from fruits and vegetables. If you often rush out the door with your coffee in hand, skipping breakfast until mid-day when cravings turn your brain to mush and have you reaching for more caffeine or the nearest sugar hit, then I highly recommend you give green smoothies a try. They are quick and easy to make (you could even make it the night before and store it in a tightly sealed container like a mason jar to preserve the nutrients). Variations are endless. If you’re looking for a good starting point, you can read my post, A Guide to Green Smoothies. […]

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css.phpDisclosure of Material Connection: Some of the links in the post above are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”