Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Smooth Moves

We are a smoothie lovin' family.  Ben (the 2 year-old) is obsessed with them, which is great because he doesn't eat a lot of food during the day.  He's more of a grazer (we all are, actually).  Almost every morning, Paul or I prepare a big batch of smoothies for breakfast.  Amelia (the 6 year-old) used to love smoothies, but now she prefers them frozen.  So, we always make sure we make enough to freeze into popsicles.  It's a healthy treat, and the kids love being able to eat popsicles for breakfast.  Our smoothie ingredients vary depending on what we have on hand, but typically include fresh/frozen fruit.  Most of our smoothies are also made with spinach or kale (green monsters) and either kefir or yogurt.  Even though we're pretty flexible with our add-ins, we have three smoothies that tend to be our favorites.

The Very Berry Smoothie

This is Paul's favorite smoothie and the one we tend to drink the most.  We make sure we always have frozen blueberries, strawberries and cherries on hand so that we can make this on a regular basis.  We make a huge batch of smoothies in the morning, which three of us drink right away.  The rest is frozen into popsicles.  If you want to make this for one or two people, just reduce the amount you put into the blender. 

2 cups strawberry kefir (you can also use plain kefir or yogurt)
1 large banana
2 - 3 cups of baby spinach or kale
1 - 1.5 cups of frozen strawberries
1 cup frozen blueberries
1 cup frozen cherries
ice (as needed to bring smoothie to desired icy, thick texture)

You may need to blend the non-frozen items first, then add the frozen fruit/ice and blend. We have a high power blender, so ours can handle all of the ingredients at once, but other blenders might have a hard time.

The Tropical Breeze Smoothie

This smoothie is my favorite, and Ben's as well, but I can't make it very often.  Paul is allergic to pineapple, so I have to make this smoothie when it is just for me and Ben (and the popsicle molds).

1.5 cups water
1 banana
1 small orange
2 cups spinach or kale
1 cup frozen pineapple
1 cup frozen mango
ice as needed

This smoothie is mostly fruit and spinach, so I often add hemp seeds or hemp protein powder to bulk it up a little.  This makes a great snack smoothie.  The best part is that it is a beautiful, vibrant green!

Funky Monkey Smoothie
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Ben and I are the only two who like this smoothie so I only make it for us.  I really enjoy this one as a post-run smoothie.

1 cup almond milk
1 banana
1/4 cup PB2 (peanut flour) - you can use regular peanut butter in place of the peanut flour
1 - 2 scoops of Amazing Grass Chocolate powder (this stuff is amazing!)
1/8 cup cocoa powder
drizzle of agave for sweetness (not necessary)

Blend all of the ingredients together until thick and icy.  I'm telling you...this smoothie is delicious!

So, those are some of the "regulars" in our house.  We're always trying new combinations, and sometimes we have great success and other times we have major flops.  But, it's always fun to throw things together and see what we end up with. 

We really look forward to our smoothies, but it took a while for them to become part of our routine.  We never seemed to have the right ingredients on hand or the time to put everything together before we had to rush to work, but with a little planning and prep work, we were able to make them part of our day.  Here are some tips to help make sure you can have a smoothie whenever the mood strikes:
  • Stock your freezer with plenty of frozen fruit.  Keep a variety on hand so that you can try different combos.  Our favorites are strawberries, blueberries, cherries, raspberries, mangoes, peaches, and pineapple
  • Buy yogurt or kefir to have on hand as mix-ins
  • Keep a container of baby spinach or a bunch of kale in the fridge so that it is ready to throw into your smoothies
  • Keep your blender out on a counter (if you have the space) so that it is ready to use first thing in the morning
  • Give yourself five extra minutes of time in the morning so that you can quickly blend up a smoothie to take with you on the way to work
  • Buy some fun popsicle molds so that you can freeze the extra smoothie.  If you have kids, these will be a fun, healthy treat.  They can even eat them for breakfast in the car on the way to school or daycare if you are rushed in the morning.  If you don't have kids...enjoy them yourself
Do you have a favorite smoothie recipe or any tips to share?

1 comment:

  1. hey willow... YUM. these look so good!

    Can you email me your address for the pint glass prize? emiliemanhart (at) gmail (dot) com