I don’t know when it was that I started drinking smoothies. Maybe when I started running? When I started reading blogs? I don’t have them every day because sometimes I’d rather have something savory. They are also ideal the day after you’ve had one too many cocktails because they are chock full of nutrients! And they can kind of taste like ice cream. 😉
For me, the key to a great smoothie is the ease of putting it together. Five ingredients or less is ideal.
Here are my top three favorites:
1) Magic Green Smoothie – I got his one from Kim at Living Laughing and Losing. It’s the one I make the most because it is made of just five ingredients and they are ones I almost always have on hand. I think the consistency is perfect and the cinnamon is what really kicks it up a notch!
- 1/2 frozen banana
- 1 Tbsp Almond Butter (or favorite nut butter of choice)
- 1/2 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or milk of choice)
- 1 cup spinach
- 1 tsp cinnamon (or Chinese Five Spice)
- Optional: 1 tsp honey (or sweetener of choice)
2) Strawberry Cheesecake Smoothie – I found this at a time when I had some cream cheese to use up and found some graham crackers leftover in the back of my pantry. I also happened to have strawberries on hand. But I think blueberries and raspberries would make an excellent cheesecake smoothie, too. 😉
3) PB & J Smoothie – This one was a recent discovery for me. It tastes just like PB & J! Another reason it’s great is that it’s one of the few smoothies that doesn’t require a banana. So it’s perfect when I’m all out of those. I do add about a teaspoon of honey as a sweetener, though.
~ Use frozen bananas. Then you don’t have to worry about ice. When my bananas get too ripe, I peel and cut up each one up into 10 pieces and lay all of the pieces flat in a zip lock bag and date it before putting it the freezer. This way, I know that a half of a banana is about five pieces. When I’m ready to make my smoothie, I just take out five pieces and plop them into my food processor.
~ When you have spinach that is on the brink of going bad, make a smoothie! One day, when I had nearly a whole bag of spinach about to go bad, I had the genius idea of dumping it into a ziploc bag for freezing. It stopped the spoiling process and the frozen spinach works just as well. This way, I have it on hand at all times, too!
~ Clean out your blender immediately. I use a food processor to make my smoothies. But it is really hard to clean later after it’s been sitting all day. So after I empty my smoothie into a glass, I immediately rinse every piece of my food processor. It takes about two to three minutes but saves me the headache of having to scrub it later.
~ Up the fiber/nutrient content. I love smoothies because they are vitamin-packed. They are generally made with fruit, sometimes a vegetable and often a nut butter protein. You can increase the nutrient level by adding things like chia seeds or flax seeds.
~ Check out this tutorial on How to Make the Perfect Green Smoothie. It offers up ratios of fruit to greens to liquid, etc. so that you can make a smoothie with whatever you prefer or have on hand.
Now it’s time for…
- Monday – Am I crazy? I have some sauerkraut on hand that my cousin Stacie canned that I’m anxious to use. When I came across this recipe for Pierogies made from scratch, I had the urge to attempt to make them… and pair them with steak. I’ll ask again – Am I crazy? My husband loves the Steak and Pierogies at The Lowry. There is no way my first attempt will ever live up!
- Tuesday & Wednesday – Rob requested Croque Madames this week. Only, I’ll use some English muffins. Do you have a favorite style or recipe of croque monsiers/madames? At first I thought I’d serve them with some simple mixed greens tossed with a lovely vinaigrette just like in France. But then I found this recipe for Roasted Tomato Dressing. There’s a pint of grape tomatoes in my fridge begging to be used for this purpose.
- Thursday – Leftovers
- Friday – TBD
- Saturday – TBD
- Sunday – TBD
- Salsa Caprese
- Quick & Easy Bowls – with spinach, rice, black beans, onion, tomatoes, Wholly Guacamole and Salsa-Ranch Dressing.
- Snacks – fruit cocktail, nuts and dark chocolate
- Granola with milk
- Magic Smoothies
- Monday – RUN: Couch to 5k – Week 2, Day 1
- Tuesday – Recumbent Bike/Yoga
- Wednesday – RUN: Couch to 5k – Week 2, Day 2
- Thursday – REST
- Friday – REST
- Saturday – RUN: Couch to 5k – Week 2, Day 3
- Sunday – Recumbent Bike/Yoga
What is your favorite smoothie?