Smoothies are one of the simplest and healthiest breakfasts you can eat. But if you want to take it one step further, learning how to make a green smoothie is even better. Green smoothies help you sneak a serving or two of greens into your breakfast for some extra health benefits.
Health Benefits of Green Smoothies
- Detox – Packed with fruits and vegetables, a green smoothie is a great source of fiber to support detox. Fiber also helps to balance your blood sugar and reduce cravings to keep you feeling energized throughout the day.
- Energy – A green smoothie provides lots of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that are easy for your body to break down and absorb so you can feel more focused and alert.
- Weight loss – Trading out your typical breakfast cereal for a green smoothie may help you reach your optimal weight. With nutrients and fiber, a green smoothie is typically lower in calories than many other breakfast options, but can still keep you feeling full.
How to Make a Green Smoothie in 4 Steps
The trick to learning how to make a green smoothie is finding the perfect balance between your vegetables and your fruit. You generally want more servings of vegetables than fruit, but the right ratio will help you find a taste that suits your pallet as well. Here are four quick steps to guide you through your smoothie creation.
1. Choose your leafy greens
Pick the leafy greens you want to add to your smoothie. Spinach, kale, parsley and cilantro are all great options. For one large smoothie serving, you typically want to use 1-2 cups of greens, or a couple of handfuls.
2. Choose your vegetables
Outside of the leafy greens that you’re using, it’s great to add some other vegetables that will balance the bitterness of the greens. Cucumber and celery are both rich in water that help to make the greens taste more mellow, or heartier vegetables like carrot or pumpkin can add a touch of sweetness and lend to a creamier texture.
3. Choose your fruit
Once you have all your vegetables added to your blender, it’s time to balance the flavor with some natural sweetness from fruit. How much fruit you will need to use depends on your pallet, but try starting with less and adding more if you need to. If you start drinking green smoothies regularly you may slowly be able to decrease the amount of fruit you use as your tastebuds adjust. Half of a banana, 1 cup of frozen berries, or half an apple is a good place to start. You can also add some lemon or lime juice for extra flavor.
4. Add superfoods
Superfoods are optional, but they can help give you little extra boost of nutrition. In my recipe below, I like to use maca powder, which is a root from Peru. It’s rich in antioxidants and nutrients for energy and mood balance. I also added hemp powder for extra protein, you can add hemp seeds as well. Chia seeds are also a great addition to stir in after you blend your smoothie for some anti-inflammatory omega 3 fats.
5. Pour in your liquid
The amount of liquid you use for your smoothie depends on how large it is, and how smooth or thick you like it. A smoothie for one typically takes about 1 1/2 to 2 cups of liquid. You can use water, coconut water, or my personal favourite, homemade nut milk.
- A handful of fresh parsley
- A handful of fresh cilantro
- 2-3 leaves of kale (stems removed)
- 1/2 a cucumber
- 1 carrot
- 1/2 banana
- 1/2 apple with the peel
- 1 tbsp of hemp seeds (or hemp powder)
- 1 tsp maca powder
- 2 cups of non-dairy milk (I like almond milk)
- Add all of your ingredients to a blender, and blend on high until smooth.
Chew on this
Save time when you’re learning how to make a green smoothie by pre-prepping your greens and vegetables. I always make time to wash and prep my produce when I bring it home from the grocery store so it’s quick and ready to grab for a smoothie or snack. This helps me spend less time on food prep throughout the busy week and keeps me eating healthy on the go.
What is your favourite smoothie combination? Share it with us in the comments below.