Looking for a way to squeeze some extra raw vegetables into your diet? Green smoothies are the perfect solution!
If you’ve never had one before, it can take a little while to get acclimated to the green smoothie. Here are some tips to get you going.
To get started, you’ll need something for the base of your smoothie. Bananas or avocados work really well for this. On top of that, you’ll toss your choice of fresh or frozen fruit, a few ice cubes, and your greens. Fill out the smoothie with your favorite milk (dairy or non-dairy), and you’re ready to whirl! Blend everything up really well, and enjoy!
When you’re just getting started, don’t push it with the greens. I’ll explain why in the next section.
The key is to increase the amount of greens over time. If you try to make your very first smoothie half greens and half fruit, you’re probably not going to enjoy it. Take things slowly, and you’re more likely to stick with it!
To start, you’ll probably just want to use one leaf of kale or Swiss chard with the rib removed or a small handful of baby spinach. As your palette gets used to the greens, though, you’ll be able to reduce the fruit and up the amount of healthy greens in each serving. Before you know it, you’ll be grabbing handfuls of greens and using only a few small pieces of fruit to flesh things out.
Part of the fun of a green smoothie is experimenting. Try adding different types of fruit or different leafy greens. Here are some smoothie combinations I’ve really dug:
- banana + kale + frozen mango + almond milk
- banana + spinach + pineapple + coconut milk
- avocado + romaine lettuce + frozen blackberries + almond milk
- banana + Swiss chard + frozen strawberries + coconut milk
- banana + parsley + pineapple + almond milk
I don’t know about you, but a smoothie on its own leaves me hungry way before lunch time. For a heartier beverage, try adding a tablespoon or two of flax meal. Nut butters like peanut, almond, or cashew also help add some calories and fat to keep you full longer.
Some of you are probably green smoothie fans already! Do you have a favorite combination? I’d love to hear your smoothie recipes in the comments!
Image Credit: Creative Commons photo by Natural Mom