May 15, 2013

Officially a Green Smoothie Addict

So here's my story, I am only 28 years old, not currently pregnant or nursing, have a healthy BMI, and get enough sleep 8-10 hours (usually interrupted.)  I was feeling crappy- just didn't have much energy and a little sick to my stomach in the mornings.  And, we currently are going through a job change and aren't covered insurance-wise for the next month, so going to the doctor to see what I could do differently was out of the question.  Luckily, there is a little thing called facebook that I like to go to often to pick all my friend's brains for advice, so I did.  I am SO glad that I did- at least 3 people mentioned green smoothies or the "Green Smoothie Girl" and I did some researching on her.  I wanted to completely change the way our family was eating and this was a great place to start.

So, after 2 weeks of eating WAY more fruits and veggies whole or made into smoothies I feel WAY better already!  I have the energy I used to get for a couple hours after drinking a Diet Dr. Pepper ALL the time now- without caffeine!  I will probably go into this way we are eating more later, but for today I just had to share the tips I have learned to make green smoothies and make making them an easy daily process:

1. Buy in bulk and freeze spinach, kale, ripe bananas, other fruits like peaches, plums, berries, etc. (Or buy frozen)
For the spinach and kale I just use sandwich ziplock bags and get a REALLY big handful into it then smash down and squeeze out the air.  For bananas I put a banana into a bag then smash it around- makes it easier for the blender later on to break off smaller chunks.  You will want to just compare prices per lb. and shop sales- you can even freeze canned fruits to give your smoothie some really good texture and keep it cold longer!

2. Start with water, any type of milk, or juice for the base.
I have been doing water lately to keep the calories lower, but my favorite thing to use is milk.

3. Add fruit
My favorite combo so far is peaches and oranges- it tastes a little like an orange julius.  Sometimes I even add some of the orange zest.  I also like to make a "chocolate shake" and use a frozen banana and cocoa.

4. Add the greens
Again, I have a favorite and that would be spinach.  I try to use kale because it is so good for you, but I hate the consistency it becomes- it thickens too much for me if I don't drink it fast enough.  I have been doing about 1 1/2 cups spinach and 1/2 cup kale.

5. Add the ice
I usually add a big handful...sometimes more sometimes less depending on how much of my fruit is frozen and how much liquid I have.

6. Blend and taste- add vanilla, sweetener, or anything else it needs 
I usually add vanilla to start, but I try not to add sweetener unless it needs it.  I have been using light agave nectar to sweeten and sometimes I'll add syrup from canned fruit, fruit juice, or sugar.

You can create so many different drinks using greens!  I will share my very favorite concoctions once I have them mastered, and I will also share my recipe for a healthier chocolate ice cream.

7. Freeze whatever you don't drink into popsicles- the kids love them!

I got these molds from Wholeport, and I just add toothpicks and set the mold on a tray in the freezer.  Then, once they are frozen I put them in ziplock bags in the freezer- if they last that long! :)


Rhonda said...

I love green smoothies but I would certainly never add sugar or canned fruit - kinda defeats the purpose for ME.

If I just can't get the taste right, I'll add a dash of pure organic honey.

I love playing around with smoothie combos!

Jess said...

Haha true Rhonda! But, surprisingly a lot of canned fruit comes just in the juice- you just have to read the label and see...Honey is definitely one of the best sweeteners to use though! Thanks for stopping by!

Kelly J. R. said...

I'm a big fan of green smoothies. I love how you can't even taste the greens. I'd like to also suggest adding a Tbsp. of ground flax. My gastroenterologist just suggested I eat 1 Tbsp. of flax a day and adding it to a smoothie is a great way to get it down. So many health benefits in flax!

Maria said...

This looks awesome!!!! I keep reading about the health benefits of all these green smoothies and I need to start making them too!!! I'm your newest follower - beautiful blog!!!!

Coco said...

I must try it!! Aloha Jess! New follower here (gfc,bloglovin, fb with my private id valeria a., pinterest) from Jean's hop, nice to meet you! Hope you'll visit my blog some time and return the love! let's stay in touch :-)
Coco et La vie en rose
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Anonymous said...

Sometimes canned fruit is the best option and since it is usually canned at prime, it really is a decent option.
I really like pear and blueberry combination is I'm doing fruit. I generally do raw beets, kale, cilantro, a fresh ginger chunk, lemon with peel, some cayenne and maybe a piece of apple if I have it. SO cleansing! I just LOVE it, LOL!

Cathy said...

I love smoothies!

Thanks so much for sharing at A Peek Into Paradise TGIF Link Party.

I hope you will come party with us next week and see if you were featured!

Have a great week!

Hugs! Cathy

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