5 Tips for Perfect Smoothies & Berry Lemonade
Whenever I share a smoothie I’m drinking on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram someone asks for the recipe. When I first started drinking smoothies I used a recipe. I’ve gotten to the place where I just throw some stuff in the blender and go for it. When I hit a flavor combination I really enjoy, I take note and make it again and jot down the recipe so I can share it with you.
Smoothies Are Easy
For those of you who are new to smoothies, there are some things you can do to make sure you don’t end up with a funky texture or less than desirable flavor.
- Think Simply. Instead of combining a bunch of different foods you’ve never tried together, start with flavor combinations you know and love. I think about my favorite dessert flavors – cherry and chocolate, berry cobbler, apple pie – and then use those fruits in my smoothies.
- Make It Creamy. Use just enough liquid to get the smoothie going in the blender. This yields the creamiest result. It’s easier to start with less liquid and add more. It’s impossible to take liquid away. I like unsweetened almond milk or just good old filtered water in my smoothies, but any liquid that sounds good to you will work.
- Veg Out. Smoothies are a great way to get your veggies, especially greens. My favorite green is spinach. It has a milder flavor and is perfect to those of you new to green smoothies. Kale, collards, and swiss chard are more aggressive but delicious. Other veggies I’ve been known to throw in smoothies are carrots, cucumbers, celery, and beets.
- Get Your Omegas. Throw in a tablespoon of nutrient-dense flax seeds or chia seeds. They’ll keep your smoothies from separating and will also give you a good dose of omega fatty acids.
- Spice It Up. Add a complimentary spice to your smoothie. Cinnamon is great with apples. Ginger and nutmeg pairs well with peaches.
This is a recipe for one of my favorite summer smoothies – it’s refreshing and nutritious. Perfect for those hot afternoons by the pool.
Berry Lemonade Green Smoothie
Serves 1 -2
- 1/2 cup organic blueberries
- 4 medium to large organic strawberries, stemmed
- 1 1/2 inch of cucumber, peeled and cut in half
- 1 stalk of organic celery, cut into several pieces
- 1 big handful of organic spinach
- a small slice of lemon
- 1 teaspoon chia or flax seeds
- powdered stevia to taste (optional)
- 1 cup of cold water
- 1/2 cup ice cubes
- Put all ingredients in your VitaMix or blender in the order listed. Secure lid lightly, start on low and increase slowly to medium-high. Once the ingredients on the bottom are liquified, flip your VitaMix or blender to the highest speed and blend for 30 seconds to 1 minute, until desired consistency is reached. Use VitaMix tamper as needed or stop your blender and manually stir if necessary.
- Taste and add more stevia if desired.
If you’re still not ready to blend away without a recipe, try one of these:
- Strawberry Coconut “Milkshake”
- Pumpkin Pie Smoothie
- Beginner’s Green Smoothie
- Vitamin C Green Smoothie
How do you blend up your smoothie?
Amy Green is a co-founder of The Balanced Platter and the founder of Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free and the best selling book, Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free: 180 Easy & Delicious Recipes You Can Make in 20 Minutes or Less. She is also a co-founder of Nourished, the only specialty food blogger conference.