Fruit smoothies sometimes get a bad wrap for being full of sugar and calories but not when you make your own at home. At home smoothies are a great way to fill up fast, stave your sweet tooth and above all can be packed with nutrients and antioxidants.
There are different ways to make smoothies but basically what you need is a liquid, fruit, a thickener, extra flavor and a power punch if you want. Most people when they think of smoothies automatically think of their liquid as being milk but not necessarily. Smoothies can be made with filtered water, coconut water and even green tea. By using filtered water instead of milk or tea you can save calories and make your smoothie even healthier.
When choosing your fruits, try to choose fruits that are in season. This way you know that you’re getting the freshest fruits at its sweetest. Best fruits to use are those that have a creamy texture like bananas and mangoes. Although oranges are a great choice for smoothies make sure that you mix it with creamier fruits to avoid having a drink that’s too wet. Other fruits that will cause you to loose your smoothie texture are grapes, kiwis and watermelons. They still can be used but alone these water based fruits don’t work well.
Yogurt is probably the best way to achieve the smoothest smoothies. Luckily there are so many varieties of yogurt on the market that you’re not stuck with choosing one that has a high calorie count. Greek yogurt is very thick and works well for smoothies but you can also use low fat yogurts. If you can’t have yogurt for health reasons you can always use peanut butter and even tofu.
Now that you know the basics of what goes into a yogurt here are some great smoothie recipes that you can try out at home. Remember to drink your smoothie as soon as you make it. If you let a smoothie sit too long it begins to loose it’s smoothie consistency. If you’re not going to drink it, you may try freezing it in cubes to use later on.
Check out some of these great smoothie recipes that use milk, water and even tofu! Are you big smoothie drinker? What is you favorite smoothie or recipe? Share below!
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Aggie’s Blueberry Breakfast Smoothie
1 cup frozen blueberries (or strawberries)
1/2 frozen or fresh ripe banana (optional, for extra sweetness)
1 cup regular almond milk
1 scoop chocolate protein powder (optional, for more of a meal-type smoothie – I am not a protein powder connoisseur, the only one I’ve tried is Jillian Michael’s whey protein and I have been loving it for months now)
Add your frozen fruit to your blender and let sit for about 5 minutes to let it defrost slightly for easier blending. Add milk and protein powder, if using, and blend for 30-45 seconds until smooth.
Apricot Orange Oatmeal Smoothie
1/4 cup uncooked oats (old fashioned rolled oats recommended; do not use steel cut oats)
1-1/2 teaspoons dried chia seeds
1 cup unsweetened almond milk* (plain or vanilla)
1/4 cup orange juice
1/4 cup low-fat yogurt (Greek yogurt recommended)
1/2 cup dried apricots (or 1 cup fresh, frozen, or canned apricots*)
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1-2 teaspoons honey, optional (or substitute preferred sweetener)
Add oats and chia seeds to blender; blend on high until texture of flour. Add almond milk & juice to blender; use spoon or spatula to stir in oats/chias from bottom. Add yogurt. Add apricots. Blend on high until desired smoothness. Taste and add sweetener, if needed. Blend again. Transfer to pint (2 cup) jar or container; refrigerate overnight, or a minimum of 4 hours, so oats, chias, and dried fruit can soften. Will keep in refrigerator at least 2-3 days. Shake before drinking.
IF TOO THICK after the fridge soak, add more juice or milk and shake jar/container or return to blender to combine.
FOR A SMOOTHER CONSISTENCY, return to blender after the fridge soak and blend again.
TO FREEZE: May be frozen after the 4 hour soak in the fridge. To thaw, move to fridge a day ahead so it is thawed for drinking the next day. For faster thaw, place frozen jar/container in bowl of cold water on the counter for 1-2 hours. Shake before drinking.
*If using fresh, frozen, or canned apricots, reduce almond milk to 3/4 cup.
Serves 2 (no seriously, it’s for two.)
1 large ripe avocado
2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
¼ teaspoon vanilla
¼ cup Greek yogurt (our favorite right now is Voskos)
½ to 1 cup coconut water
2 tablespoons honey
pinch of salt
optional: mint or basil (we tried it with both, and while we’re sure other people will love it, we actually don’t like either herb that much. it reminds us too much of cilantro)
Slice avocado in half, remove pit, and scoop small pieces of the avocado flesh into a blender. Make sure to scrape as much of the dark green flesh from the skin as possible, since this is where the highest concentration of nutrients is (see www.avocados.org).
Add lemon juice, vanilla, yogurt, and ½ cup coconut water (and handful of herbs if you’d like) to blender and blend on medium-high speed until smooth. Add more coconut water a little bit at a time until you get the desired consistency.
Stir in honey and salt to taste. Pour into glasses and drink right away.
Coffee Banana Smoothie
This recipe is super simple and really easy to make.
1 cup 1% low fat milk
1/2 cup cold black coffee
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 cup ice
Place 1 sliced peeled banana, 1 cup 1% low-fat milk, 1/2 cup cold black coffee, 2 teaspoons sugar, and 1/2 cup ice in a blender. Blend until smooth—and enjoy.
Cucumber Mint Apple Smoothie
Each serving of this smoothie offers a half-cup of vegetables, plus a little fruit.
1 cup chopped seeded peeled cucumber (about 1/2 pound)
1/3 cup unsweetened frozen 100% apple juice concentrate, undiluted
1/4 cup cold water
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
10 ice cubes (about 4 ounces)
Place all ingredients in a blender; process 2 minutes or until smooth. Serve immediately.
Gingery Berry Oat Smoothie
1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup frozen blueberries
1/2 cup plain low-fat yogurt
1/2 cup ice
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
Place the oats and ½ cup water in a blender.
Let soak until the oats have softened, about 15 minutes.
Add the blueberries, yogurt, ice, sugar, and ginger.
Blend until smooth and frothy.
Green Goddess Smoothie
1 C baby spinach ADD TO SHOPPING LIST
1 C cucumber chunks
1/2 avocado, halved, pitted, and peeled
1 lg kiwifruit, peeled and chopped
1/2 C frozen kefir (we used Lifeway) or low-fat vanilla frozen yogurt
1/2 C fresh orange or tangerine juice
1/4 C mint leaves
Blend all ingredients and enjoy!
Green Tea Smoothie
1 frozen banana
1/2 large honeydew melon, cut into chunks
3/4 cup strong brewed green tea (use two tea bags and seep for ten minutes)
1 tsp honey
1/4 cup almond milk
Blend all ingredients until smooth.
It’s the Green Pumpkin Smoothie, Charlie Brown
Perfect for fall!
3 leaves curly kale, stems removed (about 3 cups)
1 cup non-dairy milk (Vanilla soy is especially good, but any will do)
2 Tbsp flax seed, ground
3 bananas, frozen in chunks
¼ tsp ground cinnamon
½ cup canned organic pumpkin (not pie filling)
6 ice cubes
Blend kale and non-dairy milk in a blender until it is completely smooth. Add ground flax seed, frozen banana chunks, cinnamon, and pumpkin. Blend until fully blended. Add ice cubes to blender and blend until the ice cubes are fully broken down.
Lemon Orange Citrus Smoothie
1 cup skim or soy milk
6oz (80-calorie) lemon yogurt
1 medium orange peeled, cleaned, and sliced into sections
1 Tbsp flaxseed oil (MUFA)
Handful of ice
Combine milk, yogurt, orange, and ice in a blender. Blend for 1 minute, transfer to a glass, and stir in flaxseed oil.
Mango Peach Smoothie
1 peach, sliced
1 mango, peeled and diced
1/2 cup milk or 1/2 cup filtered water
1/2 cup orange juice
Place the peach, mango, milk, and OJ into the blender. Cover, and blend until smooth. Then serve.
Papaya Orange Cherry Smoothie
1/2 papaya (remove seeds and cut into bite size chunks – see picture above)
1 cup frozen cherries (make sure the only ingredient is cherries. Don’t buy them if they have added sweeteners like sugar or “fruit juice”)
2 cups fresh squeezed orange juice* (equivalent to the juice of 5 oranges)
DO NOT ADD WATER!!!
Place the papaya and the fresh squeezed orange juice into your high-speed blender. DO NOT ADD WATER! Blend until smooth.
2) Add the frozen cherries and blend until very smooth. There should be no chunks!
Ready to drink.
Pineapple Banana and Coconut Smoothie
2 cups fresh pineapple, cut into chunks
1 large banana, cut into chunks
1/2 cup light coconut milk
1/2 cup ice
Combine all ingredients in a blender and mix until smooth. Serve immediately.
Makes 2 smoothies
Thin Mint Protein Smoothie
Sounds decadent but it’s actually healthy!
1 cup frozen spinach (or 2 cups fresh)
1 cup almond milk
2 scoops chocolate protein powder
1/4 cup rolled oats
1/8 tsp peppermint extract
1 Tbsp walnuts
1 Tbsp 70% dark chocolate chips
Combine the almond milk, spinach, protein powder, rolled oats, and peppermint extract in a high powered blender and blend until smooth. Transfer to a glass and top with walnuts and chocolate chips and enjoy with a spoon!
Note: If your blender has a hard time blending certain things, start by blending the milk and frozen spinach first and then add in the oats, followed by protein powder and peppermint extract.
Tofu Fruit Smoothie
1 cup frozen mixed berries
1/2 cup white grape juice
1 tablespoon honey
1 firm ripe banana, peeled and sliced
1 (12.3-ounce) package light silken tofu (such as Mori-Nu)
Place all ingredients in a blender; process until smooth.