Smoothies are a great go-to snack or meal. They are so easy to prepare, and the options are endless. I like to prepare a smoothie every morning and to make it even easier I prepare all my fruit ahead of time and freeze the combinations in Ziploc bags. This way I just empty the baggie in the blender, add liquid and blend.
Smoothies are easy and fast to prepare, refreshing and hydrating which makes them a great ally during the summer months. In addition, you can create combinations that can add many vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, proteins and healthy fats to your diet.
You can make your own smoothies in just 5 easy steps:
Step 1: pick your fruits
Pick 2-3 different fruits (fresh or frozen): kiwi, strawberry, grapes, banana, pear, apple, watermelon, pineapple, mango, avocado, raspberry…. Make sure you wash, cut and peel (wherever needed) the fruit. If you want some added nutrients to your smoothie, add some leafy greens (spinach and kale are my two favorites).
Step 2: pick a base
Add 1-2 cups of liquid: milk (almond, rice, soy…), tea, water, juice, coconut water etc… The amount of liquid you add depends on how much fruit you have used or the thickness you like for your smoothie.
Step 3: add thickening ingredients
Pick some ingredients to make your smoothie creamier or thicker. You can pick ingredients that add nutritional value to your smoothie such as kefir, peanut butter, oats or chia seeds.
Step 4: add aroma and sweetener
Add some refreshing aromas or natural sweeteners to your smoothie by using mint leaves, agave or honey. You can also add some vanilla, dates, dried apricots or cinnamon. Be original and try new things! Start with a little bit at a time and add more if you need to. If you use dried fruits (apricots, peaches, figs) you may want to soak them in water first to get a creamier texture.
Step 5: added nutrition
To finish off the smoothie, add some superfoods like spirulina, goji berries, coconut oil, hemp protein, acai, cacao powder etc.
If you have kids, smoothies are a great way to get them to eat more fruits and vegetables. I know my kids will not eat a plate of spinach, but I´ve added spinach to a fruit smoothie and it goes down easily! They even ask for more.
To make it even easier on yourself you can do all your fruit prep one day and separate the quantities in Ziploc bags and freeze. This is a great option when a fruit is going out of season, this way you can have it during other months. You an also leave all your fruit and/or veggies prepped in containers in the refrigerator. This will cut out step 1, which is the most cumbersome step in this whole process.
With summer just around the corner, here are a few of my favorite and very refreshing smoothie combinations. Don´t be afraid to try things and mix ingredients.
Each of these recipes makes approximately 2 servings, depending on the size of your glass. Of course, use fresh (or frozen fresh) fruits and vegetables when possible. If you are not using frozen fruits you may want to add some ice to these smoothies, but you will need to adjust the liquid. Cheers!
- 3 cups watermelon in cubes
- 3-5 mint leaves (1-2 leaves for decoration)
- juice from ½ lemon
- 1 cup strawberries
- ½ banana
- 2 cups orange juice (I prefer freshly squeezed)
- 2 kiwis
- 2 dates or dried figs
- 1 cup mild green (kale or spinach)
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- 1 cup coconut water
- 1 cup diced mango
- 1 cup pineapple chunks
- 2 cups coconut water
If you fancy adding a protein smoothie to your mix for some post-workout goodness try our popular Pineapple Raspberry Protein Smoothie. If you need more protein smoothie ideas look no further than 12 Delicious Post-Workout Protein Shakes which should give you plenty of options to try.