- Let the blender run for a longer amount of time after your smoothie is already well-blended. It will make it frothier and increase the volume! There’s something very satisfying about a really big smoothie that’s all nice and frothy.
- Start with sweetness. Begin drinking green smoothies with a higher ratio of fruit to greens. Use ripe fruit (browning bananas are the best), and even consider adding some honey or maple syrup if you find that your smoothie is too bitter. Over time you can decrease the sweet fruits and increase the greens, but you should let your taste buds adjust before making that move.
- Get creative. Anything that can be blended can be turned into a smoothie! I even added champagne to my smoothie one day (admittedly, that wasn’t the greatest idea. Green champagne is not exactly the most appealing thing in the world). I like using tofu, fruits, leafy greens, nut butters, ground flax, chia, protein powders, honey, cocoa powder… have fun with it!
- Go for variety. This is very important if you want to make green smoothies a mainstay of your diet. Not only does variety offer more nutrients, but it also is more exciting in terms of taste. I’ve been really enjoying chocolate, vanilla, strawberry, and mango flavours in my smoothies lately, and it keeps the whole nutrition challenge interesting and enjoyable.
- Make your smoothies in bigger batches. Use two to four cups of water (and adjust your other ingredients accordingly) rather than one cup of water. The reason for this is that when the blender gets going, it likes to kick up the ingredients all over the place. This means that if you only have one cup of smoothie in there, little bits of spinach and lettuce are going to get kicked up by the blade and will fleck the sides of your blender with green. That’s no fun, because then you’re missing out on valuable greens and you might wind up getting little chunks of green in your smoothie. There’s nothing much more gross than drinking a tasty smoothie and then suddenly finding a chunk of kale unexpectedly in your mouth. Make a bigger batch so that the ingredients don’t get kicked up as much. And hey, you might just find that you’ll be drinking more green smoothies, too!
- Take macro and micronutrients into consideration. Macronutrients are water, protein, carbs and fat. Micronutrients are all minerals and vitamins. If you’re drinking lots of green smoothies every day, it’s best to use various ingredients to ensure you’re getting adequate macro and micronutrients. Play around with avocadoes, seeds, nut butters, tofu and protein powders in addition to your fruits and veggies. Add some lemon or lime for zest. You can even sprinkle in various spices – I like adding a nice dose of cinnamon to my chocolate smoothies.
- Be careful with the ingredients you choose. Spinach is a fantastic green because it breaks down super easily into a blender. Unless you have a high-tech fancy blender, you might not want to use something like kale in your smoothies because it doesn’t break down smoothly and you’ll likely be left with little bits of green. Bananas are a great choice for thickening a smoothie and for adding sweetness; choose browning bananas at the store, and then peel them when you get home. Break each banana into about six pieces and put it into a container before sticking it in the freezer. This way you’ll have them ready to add to smoothies at any time, without the frustration of trying to peel the frozen banana (I’ve been there. Peeling frozen bananas is maddening).
What are some of your secrets to making really great (green!) smoothies?