A month or so ago I posted a cry for help on Facebook.
I got so much feedback that my friend, April, commented,
“I am very impressed with the blenderknowledgy of your friends. You are surrounded by greatness.”
I disregarded all feedback about Vitamixs and Ninjas, because heck if I’m spending that kind of money on a kitchen appliance, but decided to take few of the other pointers and give it a whirl. (Get it? Blender? Whirl? These are the jokes, folks.)
Fast-forward: I’ve been making green smoothies for a couple of weeks now, the kids love them, and this mornings was particularly fantastic. Here’s my recipe for cheap-blender-green-smoothie success!
Things I love about this recipe:
- There is spinach in it. My kids eat the spinach. Spinach assuages my guilt for eating a box of Kraft Macaroni and Cheese for lunch. Weekly.
- It makes me feel accomplished.
That second reason is really the only reason that matters.
Step One: Do not be intimidated by the age, quality, or infrequent use of your blender. If my $30 blender (which has been used perhaps 7 times since we received it as a wedding present) can do it, so can yours.
Step Two: Assemble the troops. Today’s (particularly delicious) troops included:
- Spinach. 5 whole cups of it (according to the line on the side of my blender; I just fill it up.)
- Apple juice. About a cup, I think.
- A banana. (I was out of frozen ones, but I threw a regular one in anyway.)
- 1 small tub of Greek yogurt (I froze mine so I wouldn’t have to add ice). I like the tropical variety for these smoothies – with pineapple and mango and such.
- 6-7 chunks of frozen pineapple. (Mine was a fresh pineapple that I froze myself for smoothies. I’m sure the store-packaged variety would be fine, too.)
- A generous handful of frozen blueberries.
- 4-ish frozen strawberries.
Step 3: Blend the spinach and juice together first. This was a tip I got from my blenderknowledgy friends. I fill the blender with spinach, add apple juice, and blend on the highest setting until it’s smooth and frothy and bright green. Like so. It doesn’t take long – less than a minute.
Step 3: Add yogurt, banana, and pineapple. Another friend-tip: I start blending on low until everything is “flowing” (you see the little cyclone in the middle, and everything is moving from top to bottom and back again). If it’s not cyclone-ing in the middle, everything isn’t blended up yet. If it’s really stubborn, add splashes of apple juice until it gets there. When it does, I bump the blender up to high and let it go ’til it cyclones again.
Step 4: Technically, you could probably stop there and you would have a beautiful, bright green smoothie. I choose to add blueberries (because they are an amazing little superfood) and strawberries (because, yum). Here is what you should know: the berries will turn your smoothie from the bright green beauty in the picture into something that looks more like swamp water.
It is DELICIOUS, but it looks like swamp water. You’ve been warned.
Blend it up! Same low-to-high cyclone method as before, et voila! A protein, iron, anti-oxidant, fiber, vitamin-filled smoothie that tastes like a tropical vacation! (And looks like swamp water.)
Also, if you’re not drinking your smoothies from stemware and with a straw, you’re doing it wrong. Glugging from a regular cup is a total waste of beachy ambiance.
- 1 Blender
- 1 glass
- 1 sippy cup
- And if your fruit isn’t all frozen, I suppose you’d need a cutting board and a knife to clean up the strawberries and pineapple.
You could really use any combination of fruit/veggies/liquid for variety (I’ve heard chocolate almond milk with cherries is a fantastic combo), but this is my groove as of late. These proportions make a large glass for me, a small one for Sam, and another slightly smaller glass for my freezer – to have for breakfast alongside a slice of peanut butter whole wheat toast, drizzled with honey. Perfection.
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