Over the last few months, what started as a casual flirtation has grown into a full blown romance. It started with a few spinach leaves here and there, moved on to experimenting with kale and then eventually climaxed with a full size head of romaine lettuce…
…yes, I am officially head over heels in love with green smoothies! Here’s why:
- They taste awesome
- They are incredibly filling
- They are extremely nutritious
- Their ingredients can be changed to offer almost endless variety
Green smoothies are now my ultimate comfort food – I love to make them thick and eat them from a bowl – I find them much more satisfying that way. I also have a habit of chugging smoothies down in 5 seconds when they come in a glass!
See the fantastic Green Monster Movement for more info on green smoothies and for hundreds of variations!
If your a newbie try the basic green monster – spinach, banana and milk – you can’t taste the spinach!
Here’s the formula I use for constructing a fab green smoothie:
- Take one decent blender (if your using anything other than spinach and any ice or frozen chunkier fruit like banana then you probably need a reasonably powerful blender) and add:
- Greens – kale (leaves striped from the stem), spring greens (thick stem removed), romaine lettuce (or any lettuce really), cabbage (thick stem removed) rocket / watercress (gives peppery taste), sweet pea shoots, spinach, swiss chard, pak choy. You can also add other veggies such as cooked beetroot and avocado. Start with a smaller greens to fruit ratio until you get used to them, then increase.
- Fruit – any fruits that take your fancy! Frozen banana (take a ripe banana, chop, place in bag and freeze) adds wonderful creaminess, as do lots of other frozen fruits. I like to combine a frozen fruit and a fresh fruit plus ice if needed.
- Liquid – water, non dairy milks such as soy, rice, oat, coconut, coconut water, cooled brewed tea (I love chai, jasmine green tea and fruit teas), fruit juice
- Add ins – here’s where you can get really creative and up the nutrition and taste factor: Protein powder – add a scoop of your favourite protein powder, Cocoa powder / raw cacao powder, Nut butter – obviously peanut butter is my favourite! Could also add a handful of nuts, ‘Super’ foods – maca, mesquite, ground flax, carob, chia seeds, hemp seeds, matcha green tea, spirulina etc, Spices – cinnamon, ginger etc, Gums – xanthan gum adds thickness, guar gum adds creaminess, add 1/4 tsp at a time, Ice cubes – extra chill and thickness factor
- Toppings – again, go nuts! (er, literally): Whole or chopped nuts, seeds, coconut, dried fruit (goji berries are my fave), granola, muesli, cereal, more fresh fruit, maple or agave syrup, nut butter (or nut butter sauce swirl), cacao nibs
I now find that I just crave green smoothies – if I don’t have one for a few days I really feel it! They make me feel satisfied, healthy and nourished. In fact I think for the next few days I’m going to be setting myself a little challenge: 7 days and 7 smoothies – yes, a green smoothie each day! This isn’t so much of a challenge really, I’m looking forward to doing it! I have some creative ideas for combinations of difference ingredients that I can’t wait to try. As I’ve been attracted to eating more raw foods having a green smoothie a day is going to be a great way of doing this.
Have you tried a green smoothie? Are you a green smoothie fan? What’s your favourite smoothie ingredients?