We’ve been making green smoothies on a weekly, often daily, basis for a few years now. After many failed experiments and burned-up blenders, we’ve finally nailed down our go-to recipe for delicious green goodness. Co-workers and friends often inquire what is the strange green goo we are sipping in the mornings, so here is is the scoop on perfected green smoothies:
–> The key to a perfect green smoothie is citrus. Citrus cuts the bitterness of the greens and gives the smoothie a refreshing zing. Keep a supply of lemons, limes, and oranges on hand.
–> Use fresh greens! We’ve tried spinach, collard greens, swiss chard, dino kale, curly kale, and watercress. (We’ve do NOT recommend using mustard greens.) My advice is, don’t buy the bag of pre-chopped kale. I mean, you can if you are in a bind, I’ve done it before… but it is definitely the inferior option. Buy fresh bunches of greens from a local farmer, Whole Foods, or better yet – grow some in your flower bed or garden!
–> Be nice to your blender. We literally went through 5 blenders in one year before we figured out how to keep our little machines running smoothly. The biggest key is to NOT fill the blender full of ingredients and then hit blend. This makes the job very hard on such a little motor. Also, there is a very good chance your concoction will turn out to be a Green Chunky. And believe me, Green Chunkies are NOT delicious.
–> Use frozen fruit. Frozen fruit gives the smoothie a thick, milk-shake like texture that makes you feel like you are drinking a treat! Plus, organic frozen berries are often cheaper than fresh ones – and they have just as much nutritional value. Sometimes mangoes and pineapple are cheaper frozen too. We freeze our own bananas as well as whatever fresh fruit we can get on sale at the market. (Myles recently bought a box of 130 apricots for $10. We cut those little guys up and froze them!)
How to Make a Green Smoothie:
1. Squeeze a lemon or lime into the blender. You can also put in a peeled and divided orange, or a tad bit of orange juice.
2. Wash the greens. Starting from the bottom of the stem, run your fingers along the stem, to quickly and easily remove the leafy part. You can toss the stems (unless you are like my husband, who eats chard stems like celery.)
3. Fill the blender up with the torn green leaves. (If you’ve never had a green smoothie, you might want to start out with half a blender full of greens and work your way up to a full blender.)
4. Add 1-2 cups of filtered water and hit the highest speed button on the blender. Let it run for a good minute or two, until the greens have completely broken down. The mixture should literally look like green liquid.
5. Turn off the blender and add 1 handful or so of the frozen fruit. Continue blending, then add another handful of the fruit. Again, let it blend until it is completely smooth. When you look at the pitcher, you should see no bits of anything swirling about. Don’t be afraid to let it blend for several minutes if needed.
*1 lemon squeezed // blender full of spinach // 1-2 bananas // 1-2 handfuls of frozen strawberries… Tastes like strawberry lemonade!
* 1 lime squeezed // 1/2 bunch torn and de-stemmed kale // 2 frozen bananas // 1-2 cups frozen raspberries
* 1 peeled orange // 1/2 bunch collard greens or chard // 1-2 Tbsp coconut oil // frozen banana, mango, and/or pineapple… Tropical flavor!