Smoothie Tips

I always get asked about the smoothies I drink. I drink one everyday just about everyday. I believe they have helped me lose the weight I have so far and also get me an extra boost of whole, real foods. Smoothies have completely changed my life, if I can be honest. They can replace a meal or a snack. They will fill you up and hydrate you. And best of all, they are super healthy and nutritious for you. I figured I would do a post sharing my smoothie tips and tricks, also share a favorite recipe or two!

 

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What I Put in My Smoothies

  • Fruits – No brainer here. You can put any fruit in a smoothie. I typically use frozen because I like my smoothies to be icy cold and if the fruit is frozen, I don’t have to refrigerate my smoothie and wait or add ice.
  • Vegetables – I typically use dark greens like spinach, chard and kale. But have also used beets, carrots and cucumbers.
  • Juice – I try and use 100% juice, not from concentrate organic juice. If organic is not on sale, I will get 100% juice where there is no added ingredients.
  • Non Dairy Milk – ALL the smoothies I drink are vegan. We do not consume dairy milk in our house due to allergies. Plus, I believe plant based milks are better for us and tastier! My favorite is almond milk. I will also use coconut or hemp on occasion and rarely, soy, just because it isn’t my favorite, taste wise.
  • Ice Cubes – I use regular water ice cubes most the time. But have also tried coffee, coconut water, juice and non dairy milk ice cubes. It’s nice to switch it up with flavors and won’t give a watered down flavor if the smoothie melts a bit.
  • Seeds & Nuts – raw almonds, cashews, walnuts, hazelnuts, pumpkin seeds (pepitas) etc. I use raw because they are least processed and not salted or anything added!
  • Super foods – Chia, Flax, Spirulina, coconut oil, powders etc. For more information on these, check out my previous post here.
  • Nut butters – My favorites are peanut or almond butter! Add a great boost of protein. Once again, I make sure they are organic or just one ingredient!
  • Spices – I use cayenne, cinnamon, turmeric and salt, depending on the smoothie.

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What type of blender can I use?

I do LOVE my Vitamix, which is considered a high speed blender. I have used a regular blender in the past and did have to make some extra care when preparing my smoothies. But it is very possible to make delicious, creamy smoothies with a regular blender.

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Tips & Tricks

  • Freezing Fruits – The only fruits I freeze on my own are melon, bananas and grapes. I buy the rest of my fruits frozen in bags from the grocery store. I buy organic as much as possible. If you do not have a high speed blender, I recommend slicing up fruits in 1 inch thick cubes or slices for easy blending. The nice thing about using frozen fruits as opposed to fresh is that when they are bought frozen, they are frozen at their best and last a long time when properly stored so you don’t have to worry about having bad fruit when you want to make a smoothie.
  • Green Smoothies – When I mention green smoothies to people, ie. smoothies with spinach, kale or spirulina, the first question or reaction I get is, “ew , don’t you taste the spinach!?”  And the answer is, if I could, I probably wouldn’t drink them as much as I do. The trick with green smoothies is having a good ratio of greens to fruits if you want to avoid a strong grassy flavor. Citrus (pineapple, orange) and berries are very good at covering up the flavor of greens without taking away the nutritional benefits!
  • Milkshake Smoothies – if you are looking for a dessert or shake like smoothie, add a frozen banana. Frozen bananas give smoothies a soft serve consistency and will thicken up your smoothie!
  • Too thick – If your smoothie is too thick to sip, you can add some water, although I love using  spoon to enjoy my smoothies from time to time. Another time it may be beneficial to add some more liquid, is if you have a regular blender and need help getting things moving and blending. Add a splash at a time to get things going.
  • Sweeten it up – some smoothie recipes will use lemon, lime or have a bland taste. If you need to off set sour or just need a bit of sweetening up, you can add a teaspoon or two of agave syrup, real maple syrup or a few drops of stevia.
  • Not smooth enough – If you don’t have a high powered blender, your smoothie may not always come out completely blended. You may end up with chunks which is not so pleasant. Smoothies are meant to be, well, smooth. I have found blending ingredients in steps often helps. For example, if you are using leafy greens, blend the greens and liquid until smooth, then add your remaining ingredients. Also, letting your frozen fruits, especially bananas, thaw a bit in the blender before blending.

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Basic Smoothie Formula

If you are wanting to get creative and come up with your own smoothies, here is a basic formula.

1/2 – 1 cup liquid  (will depend on type of blender and whether or not using fresh or frozen ingredients)

1 1/2-2 cup fruits

1 cup greens (omit if you don’t want to make green smoothie)

1 T boosts (seeds, nuts etc)

and/ or

1-2 T nut butter

 

Now onto a couple of my favorite recipes… 🙂

 

Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake

1 1/2-2 frozen bananas

1/2 cup vanilla almond milk (more if using regular blender)

1 T raw cacao powder (can sub cocoa powder)

2 T peanut butter

dash or two of cinnamon

 

1. Blend all ingredients until smooth.

 

 

Green Sunshine Smoothie

Green Sunshine

Green Sunshine

1/2 cup almond milk (or milk of choice)

1/2 cup orange juice

1-2 handfuls of spinach

1/2 cup frozen pineapple

1/2 cup frozen peach slices

1 fresh or frozen banana

Boost: 1 tsp chia seeds (optional)

 

1. Blend all ingredients until smooth!

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Hope you found this post helpful! If you have any other comments or questions, feel free to leave them in the comments section below! Have you made up your own smoothie you want to share?

 

Get creative and enjoy!!

 

 

 

 

All Images ©2014 NaturallyAwesomeMama All Rights Reserved

 

 

 

 

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6 thoughts on “Smoothie Tips

  1. Oh my word, how great a post is THIS?! 😀
    I love the basic smoothy formula you shared and all the other tips – thank you! Bookmarking this for later (I don’t own a blender at this time) 😉

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