Guest post by Alexandra Maul of Made to Glow
For both smoothie fiends and blending beginners, smoothies are an easy way to get your fruits and veggies in each day. I’m a huge smoothie-lover, and find them to be the perfect snacks or on-the-go meals!
Here are some short cuts and tips to make blending smoothies easier and quicker, plus a summer smoothie recipe using some delicious seasonal produce.
- For extra creaminess and better texture, add frozen fruit and vegetables instead of ice cubes! Frozen banana, avocado, pineapple, and mango are my favorites. Nut butter, avocado, cooked sweet potato, pumpkin, or butternut squash, and yogurt also add creaminess. To make it easy, freeze spotted bananas peeled and halved in a large bag or glass container for use at anytime. Also, to reduce waste, freeze any fruits or veggies that are on their way out so you can use them in smoothies.
- Throw some GREEN in there! Greens, like spinach (perfect for blending newbies), kale, collards, romaine, and lettuce, work well. Or try cucumber, herbs, or celery. Even if you’re not a veggie-lover, delicious smoothies are a super easy way to increase your veggie intake. My husband, who always gave me strange looks when I’d blend up green drinks, went from zero greens to adding small amounts of spinach to now being a huge green-smoothie fan. If he can do it, so can you!
- Have fun with fresh herbs and spices – mint, parsley, basil, cilantro, cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, nutmeg, and vanilla bean/extract add more flavor and more nutrition.
- Get creative with your base… water is the perfect all-purpose base. Non-dairy milk, like coconut milk or almond milk, will add a touch of sweetness and creaminess. Coconut water is a refreshing, subtlety sweet add-in.
- For more staying power, add seeds like chia, flax, and hemp, or throw in nuts and nut butters. Chocolate fan? Try raw cacao or cocoa powder for some chocolate flavor.
- Taste as you go along. Have no fear if you ‘mess up’. Too sweet? Add more greens, a spritz of lemon or lime, or more liquid. Too green? Add a medjool date or drop of stevia or honey to get back on track.
- Make a big batch at once and keep in glass jars (re-purpose old nutbutter and jam jars). Keep them in the fridge for up to 48 hours, or pour into popsicle molds, for a fun, healthy treat.
- Plan ahead for easy access. Make a big batch for the week and freeze in glass jars, then thaw in the fridge overnight. The next morning, simply shake up and drink! Or try freezing individual smoothie prep bags full of chopped produce that are ready to throw in the blender.
Summer Smoothie Recipe:
This Minty Mango Nectarine Delight is super refreshing. Make extras to have the next day! Makes 24 oz or 3 cups of smoothie – good for 2 medium servings, or 1 large serving.
1 pitted nectarine or peach (skin-on)
2 large handfuls of dark leafy greens, I used a ‘power greens’ mix of baby spinach, kale, and chard; just spinach would also work
1/2 small cucumber (skin-on)
2-3 large mint leaves
1 1/4 heaping cup cubed frozen mango
1 frozen banana, in cubes or halves
1/2 cup of water
3/4 cup of unsweetened coconut milk from a carton
Combine all ingredients and blend on high until smooth. Taste. Adjust if necessary. Enjoy!
Want more summer smoothie recipes? Try this Fresh Fig Green Smoothie, C-Punch Smoothie, or Tropical Papaya Smoothie. Or follow me on Instagram where I share smoothie recipes each week!
Top image: Photo credit to Ryon:Lockhart Photography
- Alexandra Maul, MPH is a health educator and public health professional. After experiencing debilitating chronic health issues and learning how to heal, she created Made to Glow, an interactive community and healthy living guide that educates and inspires others around healthy eating, self-care practices, and non-toxic living. Alex is passionate about empowering others to feel their best, and loves to share kitchen tips, naturally gluten-free and dairy-free recipes, relaxation and fitness suggestions, and ways to live lean, clean, and green. Connect with Alex on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.
- When we feel whole, balanced, and healthy, we radiate from the inside out. We are all made to glow!
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