Her 5-year-old butt sat firmly planted on the chair, not by will. By force.
Giant, wracking sobs shook her body, as she swallowed for air through the hands over her tortured mouth.
“Just ten,” the apron-wearing fascist in the kitchen yelled. “Swallow! Ten! And you can get up!”
She was alone. The expanse of the empty dining room table loomed in front of her. Its glowering size only magnified the plate that sat between her elbows.
On which was … an entire serving of peas. From which … she had to eat ten. Ten would release her from this 5 o’clock prison.
(“Just ten,” she thought, sobbing even in her brain.)
Delicately, as if it were toxic waste, she pinched a pea between her tiny thumb and forefinger. She moved her glass of water precariously close to the edge of the table. She held the pea out in front of her, as far as her arm would go. With the other hand, she pinched her nose and squinched her reddened, tear-soaked face.
“One.” She took a deep breath in.
“Two.” She brought the pea closer to her mouth and closed her eyes tightly.
“Three.” The pea shot between her teeth as she chased it furiously with a drink of water. “It’s a vomit-filled pill. It’s just a pill,” she told herself and swallowed, hard, the pea sticking to the side of her throat. She gagged then. Loudly. Wretchedly. Gloriously.
Enough to save her, she hoped.
“Don’t be so melodramatic! EAT TEN PEAS. NOW!”
The fascist in the kitchen would never relent. So she repeated the process nine more times.
Three days a week. For five straight years.
Until one day, she won.
Green Smoothies : Yum?
Yes. I hated vegetables. I still mostly do. Please don’t tell anyone.
So for the longest time, I was really hesitant to try this green smoothie (or green monster, depending on which part of the internet you’re on) thing, because … sometimes I’m still that little girl, pinching her nose and gagging.
This has not happened with a single green smoothie I’ve ever made. Ever.
And, over the past two months, I’ve made approximately 30 of them.
Why? Why would I do this? What’s the big deal with green smoothies? Why was I such a brat when I was a kid?
The Story of Green Smoothies
Green smoothies (also, as mentioned, green monsters – this name will be explained shortly) aren’t really all that mysterious, weird, or otherwise distasteful. Really, you’re just tossing something green and leafy into a smoothie, which turns it green.
It’s a fantastic way to get your much-needed veggie servings in one quick, jam-packed, glass-sized helping. You can drink it in minutes, or savor it, but either way, you’re getting tons of goodies at once.
I was first turned on to the idea while writing my book on Crunchy Recipes for Acne. This was 6 months ago. It took me 4 months to try the green smoothie, so I’ll give it another 2 before the book’s actually done.
It appears that there are hoards of people all over the world reporting that green smoothies helped:
- smooth and clear skin exponentially
- decrease acne
- increase energy levels
- speed up hair and nail growth
- encourage shinier, healthier hair
- improve overall feelings of health
After drinking them for a couple of weeks, I half expected to be handed a magic lasso and the keys to an invisible airplane.
I did not become Wonder Woman, but I did notice: Softer, more supple, less breakout-prone skin. In fact, after about a week or two of drinking these every day, I touched my skin and said to Skip, “What have I been DOING to my skin? It feels better than it has since I was YOUR age.” He’s 4 years younger than me. It’s a joke.
Anyway, then I remembered that I’d been drinking the green monster smoothies, and everything became crystal clear. I also, very subjectively, experience increased energy levels when I drink these earlier in the day.
How to Make a Green Smoothie
I have a few things that are imperative in my smoothie making. They’re ingredients I put in, no matter what, all the time.
Things I Always Use in a Green Smoothie:
- Full-Fat, Plain Yogurt (3 Tbsp): For the creaminess, the lactobacillus, and the protein
- Coconut Oil (1-1/2 Tbsp): For the heart-healthy, metabolism-boosting, skin-softening fats
- Spirulina (1 Tbsp): For the detoxing vitamins and minerals, protein, and also because it helps with hay fever (I have annoying seasonal allergies)
- Spinach or Kale (1-2 handfuls): It just wouldn’t be a raw, fresh, green smoothie without one of these two ingredients – I find spinach has a much lighter taste than kale
- Banana (1 whole, peeled, frozen banana): To add body, potassium, and creaminess to the smoothie
Other Things You Can Use in a Green Smoothie:
- Fruits of any shape, taste or size (I’m partial to berries)
- Peanut butter
- Honey, agave, stevia, or other sweeteners
- Wheatgrass, Kale, or any other type of healthy green powdered veggie/grass
- Ground flax seeds, hemp hearts, maca powder, chia seeds
- Milk (cow, almond, coconut, rice, almond, etc.)
- Veggies of any shape, taste, or size
- Flavorings like vanilla extract, orange extract, molasses (VERY healthy), and more
- Cocoa powder
- Coffee or tea
- The kitchen sink
There are no fast and hard rules to making green monster smoothies. It’s whatever you want, whenever you want, for healthier skin, hair and nails, and overall radiant improvement in health.
Here are just a few of the ingredients I’ll throw into a smoothie at any given time:
I like open-ended things like this, and I love having no rules. Especially ones that require me to sit at the dinner table until my plate is clean.
Here’s the smoothie I’ve been making for the past couple of weeks. When berries are more in season, there will be many more berries in my smoothies. But until then, I’m stuck on peanut butter.
The Protein-Packed PB&Green
- 3 Tbsp full fat, plain yogurt
- 1-1/2 Tbsp coconut oil
- 1 handful organic spinach (plus 2 kale leaves if you have ’em)
- 2-3 Tbsp peanut butter
- 1-1/2 Tbsp honey
- 1 banana
- 1 Tbsp spirulina
- 1/4 c. coconut milk (or almond, rice, cow, etc.) (more depending on desired consistency)
- 1/2 Tbsp kelp (optional)
- 1/2 Tbsp wheatgrass (optional)
- 1 Tbsp hemp hearts (optional)
- 1 Tbsp ground flaxseed (optional)
Put everything into a food processor, blender, or large cup with an immersion blender. Blend on high until completely combined. Add more milk if you’d like it more liquid. This makes a good-sized smoothie, so you could freeze half of it to thaw and enjoy the next day.
Here’s My Favorite Part: I gave this to my 14-year-old, who’s pretty amiable, but difficult to convince to like new (and green) things. He drank it up without even flinching and continuously, through the entire smoothie, said how delicious it is. I did, however, leave out the flax and hemp hearts in his, because I didn’t want to push his teenage eye-rolling limits. I’m still afraid they’ll stick that way.
What I’m saying is: I think this is an awesomely tricky and conveniently successful way to get your kids to drink their greens. Yay!
More Green Smoothie Recipes
I know, mine’s a little tricky, and calls for some ingredients you might not have (or want). Don’t forget, though, that you can buy things like spirulina, wheatgrass, and kelp powder from Mountain Rose Herbs, although it appears that – at the moment – they’re out of kelp. My guess is it has something to do with Japan (which begs me to mention, again, that there are alternatives and additions to iodine and kelp … and spirulina is one of them).
Great Links to More Green Smoothies
The Green Monster Movement: This is by far my FAVORITE place to get green smoothie ideas, as well it should be. This lovely lady pioneered the green monster movement that swept the internet not too long ago. There’s a link to recipes on the side of the page, but there are also scads of reader submitted favorites at this page.
Green Smoothies from Raw Family
A Few Green Smoothie Recipes from AllRecipes
Even More Recipes from SmoothieWeb
Do You Have a Favorite Smoothie?
Have you tried making green smoothies at all? Give them to your kids?
How did you feel about it – is it something you still do?
Or, if you haven’t ever tried them, think it’s worth a shot?
Seriously – if you can keep your children from the serious melodrama of sitting alone at the table, choking down little pea pills – that may be just as good as any other reason to give ’em a try.
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Great idea. Going to try this out. I’m really picky about green smoothies though.
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Could these be made into a green smoothie “fruit” roll-up?
I am 27 and have had acne for the past 7 years. During my period I get horrible cysts, and the rest of the time I generally have the tiny bump kind and blackheads. I also have hyperpigmentation and some scars. I hate it. And nothing I ever tried worked, including expensive acne creams from the dermatologist that dried my skin out horribly. One month ago I started drinking green smoothies after reading a book about them. I wanted to improve my health and transition to a more raw diet. But within 2 weeks I noticed that my skin was clearing up. Of course I had an initial small breakout on my forehead, but after that everything was clear. I didnt even get any pimples during my period. I still have some trouble areas, but it has only been a month. Oh, and I wash my face with rosewater and put on Evan Healy oil at night for my hyperpigmentation. Thats all. On rare occasions that I wear makeup I remove it with a gentle cleanser.
I haven’t tried it but I have heard that people use powdered peanut butter to cut down on the calories but maintain it’s masking taste. I know I use a lot of peanut butter when making my smoothies because it’s hard to get off the spoon. I was planning on trying it out.
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Where did you get that spirulina powder? It look so much darker than the ones I’ve seen
Evan the smoothie be refrigeratored, if you make too much?
Oh my gosh! I thought I was the only one in the world who swallowed her peas like pills as a kid! People laugh at me when I tell them that, but when you hate something soooo much and have to eat “just a spoonful” you come up with creative ways!
Anyways, just started reading your blog and I love it…so many great recipes I can’t wait to try, thanks bunches!
I have been ingesting coconut oil for several months thanks to the new Internet/Pinterest hype. My boyfriend is a science major and came home after a day of studying the negative effects of coconut oil. I was stunned and disappointed so I did my own research. Coconut oil is extremely high in saturated fats — which your body can’t even digest. So you’re just clogging your arteries. There are many many ways to use coconut oil, but I no longer recommend cooking with it, putting it in your coffee or putting it in smoothies. I use it religiously on my skin though and have seen a phenomenal clearing of my skin. Apparently your face will produce less oil if your skin is moisturizers externally. It takes about a week for your skin to clear, but I’ve kept it up and my akin is amazing now!
Seems like you need to do research again, TRANS fat are bad, the natural fats of Virgin Coconut oil are not, those are the kind of fats you do want.
I’ve also tried one that I know I will come to love- it needs perfecting. I used kale, chia seeds, 1 c. coconut milk, 1 red pair, 1 apple ( I don’t remember the type) it was red and green by color- not because it wasn’t rip yet, kind of tart, and frozen cherries. GREAT COMBO. I had added cinnamon, but felt it took away from the flavor instead of give. Anyone have any great ideas on this one- I’d love to read it
Okay, so this one will sound crazy. I got a little experimental in the kitchen. But honestly, this is one of my favorites:
1 c. watermelon (you can cut a whole one up and freeze it)
1/3 of a pineapple
a handful of kale
3/4 c coconut water
2 Tbsp honey (using local honey is benefitial for alergies)
2 Tbsp grated ginger root (this ingredient is key to the flavor)
(I used an actual root I keep in my freezer, but I’m sure you can use dried-may have
to adjust the amount)
1 Tbsp ground (used coffee grinder) chia seeds
Coffee grinder for chia seeds! Awesome! Thanks!
I have been doing green smoothies a couple weeks now. Lately its been this (hope I remember everything I put in it) and all measurements are estimates., I just pour it all in.
About 1 cup of the frozen fruit mix with mango, peach, pineapple, strawberries
Handful of fresh spinach
2 stems of fresh kale
1 tablespoon hemp powder
Drop of vanilla extract
A little bit of raw honey
Half an avocado (makes it very creamy and I don’t notice a taste change)
Half a banana
Half a lemon (peeled and seeds removed)
Half an apple (cored but skin still on)
What if someone is allergic to Coconut oil? What other oil would be good to use?
phenomenal, extremely simple smoothie drink: One cantaloupe (peeled, seeded, etc), half a container of organic spinach. Man oh man. So good, it’s like a good for you milk shake.
Hi Crunchy Betty! Thanks for all this awesome info. I bought your book on my kindle which led me to your website! Quick question: can i substitute the spinach/kale for Swiss Chard? I have a garden full of swiss chard (it grows better than spinach up here in Canada) and I would love to be able to find another use for it 🙂 Thanks so much!
Hi, I was so excited to try this recipe as I have been looking for an easy way to have a highly nutritious, grab-and-go breakfast. However, I was so overwhelmed by the smell of the spirulina in the smoothie that I couldn’t drink it without gagging… Do you find that your smoothies smell that strongly or are you able to mask it somehow? Otherwise I guess I will just leave it out – good thing I only bought a small amount!
You can use plantains instead of bananas to avoid Chiquita.
Yum, yum! That looks amazing! And great for skin too? Perfect! 😀
Love this post, and love green smoothies! Below is what I’m hooked now (note that I do have a Vitamix, with a lower power blender, this might be odd…)
.25 avocado (soooo good for skin, nails, and hair!)
2 handful spinach
1 handful frozen strawberries
Delicious, nutritious, and energizing! 🙂
Awesome post! I love trying new green smoothies I’m going to have to give yours a try.
I just made the most delicious (organic and vegan) green smoothie yesterday. I peeled and quartered a small gala apple. Then, I pre-measured two cups of fresh baby spinach and one cup (will do at least 1 1/2 cups next time) of mixed strawberries/blueberries (frozen). After that, I melted three spoonfuls of coconut oil in my one cup measuring cup. I filled the rest of the cup with coconut water. I promptly dumped the cup of oil/water in the Vitamix. Then I added one cup of coconut milk, the quartered apple, the spinach, and the berries (in that order). I turned on the machine, immediately increased the speed to variable 10 and then switched it to high. I only blended mine for about 30 seconds to keep it thickish.
One small Gala Apple
Two Cups Spinach
One-Two Cups Mixed Berries
One Cup Coconut Milk
Three Heaping Spoonfuls Coconut Oil
Coconut Water (at least 3/4 Cup-see recipe)
I would love to try adding grains and herbs to my smoothies, but haven’t tried it yet. I also use the basics for my green smoothies to make my daughter’s homemade baby food. I just use less liquid so that it’s more of a puree. She also drinks green smoothies. Green smoothies are actually the only things she will willingly (and excitedly) drink, other than her formula.
Thanks for the vegan recipe! I love smoothies, but am dairy allergic. I am so intregued by the skin improving benefits of the green monster, but cannot hack the yogurt. I enjoyed the recipe!
Here’s my question: Can you taste the vegetables? I’ve seen other green smoothy recipes before and the idea of drinking it and tasting spinach makes me want to gag. BUT if I were to make one and not taste it I’m so on that bandwagon!
No, you can’t taste the spinach. I make them all the time with honey greek yogurt, spinach, banana, pineapple, and flax. It just tastes like a pineapple banana smoothie. Very yummy!
I tried my very first green smoothie today after hearing all the hype:
2 Kale leaves
2 TB Plain greek yogurt
Splash of raw milk
1TBS powdered kelp
10 drops stevia (although, i don’t think i needed it with the banana!)
I feel fantastic as i type this, three hours after consuming it, and I am excited to try more recipes!
Word of caution if you are allergic to Iodine spirulina is not for you (bummer I know)
Green smoothies are amazing. Discovered them 2-3 yrs ago and they’ll now forever be part of my diet. I gave it to my kids and called it monster juice… they went for it . If it’s been a while since I’ve made one, they ask for one.
Basic standby recipe:2 c OJ (fresh squeezed is the best of course)spinach and kale – pack the blender, blend until liquefied… then add:2 cups frozen strawberries or any frozen fruit1/2 -1 whole avocadoYUM.And I often add probiotics, spirulina, slippery elm (if my tummy is having issues), psyllium husk (only a tiny bit), vitamin drops and/or coconut oil.
I have become a regular ‘lurker’ to your blog and am very intrigued by the smoothies… What sort of blender do you use?
Found your posting after I tried my first green smoothie. I’ve been drinking smoothies every morning for a week now but decided to throw spinach in this morning.
My smothie mixture is:
Ground Flax Seeds
Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
2 TB Plain Greek Yogurt
A splash of orange juice
Frozen Mango Chunks
Frozen Peaches (Sometimes its frozen berries)
Two handfuls of spinach
I didn’t add any sweetner, just made sure I added enough fruit.
If you’re new to green smoothies you may wonder what all the fuss is about, but this recipe is really good…also, it is a great pick me up or a good to have for breakfast. If you have had green smoothies before, you must try this one, it’s really yummy! I started using this recipe in place of my other one and have been very happy with it! It makes me feel good that I am consuming something so healthy!
The first few times I made green smoothies I didn’t like them. But that was because I didn’t add sweetener. Now that Ive learn t how to do it properly I LOVE them. My husband and I have one every morning and I usually bring one to work with me to have with my snacks.
I put about the same as you, spinach, almond milk(semi lactose intolerant), bananas, frozen fruits, 1 tsp cinnamon, 1 tbsp spirulina, 1 tbsp agave nectar(molasses for extra iron if its that time of the month), hemp hearts, flax seed, maca powder, 1 tsp lemon juice, 1 tsp apple cider vinegar, 3 tbsp of yogurt and sometimes chia seeds. I will be adding coconut oil too at some point. Mine are used as a meal to help with weight loss. and it really helps me get good calories and fat into my diet.
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By taking this kind of healthy food, we can live better and not prone to any kind of health disorders.
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Looks yummy.. 😛 but I will do anything to get clear skin… 🙂 Thanks for the tip.
I always add nutritional yeast and ACV to my smoothies, it gives it a real kick!
I found this post a couple days ago but didn’t get to try my first smoothie until this morning……..okay……….I LOVE IT! I can tell there will be a slight learning curve on perfecting my smoothie……..I didn’t pay close attention to the frozen banana comment…and threw an unpeeled banana in the freezer last night…..needless to say, it’s impossible to peel a frozen banana!
I’m wondering…..my smoothie is DARK green..is that okay? Your picture shows a lighter green and I’m wondering if I’m using too much spinach…….my THICK smoothie is DARK.
I think next time I’ll add more milk to thin the smoothie a little.
Also….how much smoothie should I consume in one day? 1 glass? More?
Am I not blending the smoothie enough if I have to keep checking the mirror to make sure I don’t have spinach in my teeth? Little specks here and there……. Is this normal?
Thanks for your help…….love your blog and I’m excited about the healthy changes I’m making to my diet…looking forward to more energy and better complexion with the smoothies!
Just came upon your website today and am super excited to read up on some of these great topics. I recently discovered the benefits of using honey on your hair. Today I bought a blender and made a delicious green smoothie with kale, peaches, strawberries, banana, coconut milk and a smidge of honey. I’m not great about eating breakfast but I think this will be my new morning staple.
Hahahahaa,,you are hilarious!! Quite descriptive! Sooo happy to find this blog and all the wonderful natural remedies and recipes! Thanks!
I had no idea you could fit so much goodness into a smoothie! I have been trying different ones for about a week now, and am waiting with baited breath to see if it will help my skin (fingers crossed).
I find they come out quite thick, so not sure if I’m doing something different, but find adding a glug of fruit juice thins it out and sweetens it up. Vanilla essence is pretty good too. Even my anti-veg/fruit/anything healthy boyfriend drinks them – and enjoys them!! Thank yoooou!
I’ve been drinking smoothies for years, and started Green smoothies about 2 1/2 years ago. Every morning, for the most part. Mine are vegan, so no yogurt – I use almonds and flaxseed to make a milk base. For greens – parsley, kale, and spinach are the ones I use year-round. I summer, I add dandelion greens, chard, and anything else that’s growing in my back yard.
My recipe is on my website, complete with a nutritional breakdown:
Love, love, love the way you write! I also love green smoothies and luckily so do my kiddos. I usually put in spinach, frozen fruit, juice, cinnamon,protein powder and anything else I have on hand, I haven’t tried the kitchen sink yet 🙂 I definitely will have to get my hands on some spirulina, kelp, and wheatgrass. I didn’t even realize you get powders like that. It is so fantastic to give your family something so nutritious and yet so yummy! Thanks for opening my eyes to the new ingredients.
Happy Spring, Greenies! To learn all about the fab facts about green drinks, I recommend you check out “Green For Life”, by Victoria Boutenko. She’s also got a website where she answers many FAQ’s from all sorts of folks with all kinds of health issues. I think she’s one genius Russian! It’s really worth learning the fine tuning of the green drink system, as it were, since you can receive higher benefits, and have less problems (yes, the paradox of healthy eating! All those concentrated nutrients can have all SORTS of effects…not all of them good…).
Gotta go blend some lettuce and fruit…love!
Okay, so I absolutely hate vegetables and am very new to this… but you buy a powdered ‘green’? Where do you find those? And do you add ice?
Coconut Oil is an extremely SATURATED fat, and is bad for your heart. The “heart healthy” fats are Olive Oil, Canola Oil… even Sunflower and Soy are healthier than Coconut. The only one that unhealthy is Palm Oil- the other liquid saturated fat.
Besides that, I absolutely adore this drink! My skin feels soft and it makes me want to run! (You get what I mean..) Keep it up!
Aha. I only agree with that in that partially hydrogenated coconut oil is bad for your heart, because it contains trans-fats. However, unhydrogenated, virgin coconut oil is a whole different story. Saturated fats have gotten a hugely bad rap, IMHO. I’m not much concerned about saturated fats after doing tons of reading and research; however, I avoid trans-fats like the plagues. Here’s a really good article from the Weston A. Price Foundation about coconut oil and its proven benefits. Canola oil scares me a little bit, because of its odd, murky history in the food industry, as well as the way it’s widely genetically modified at this point (rape seed) – same with soybean oil, really. Gotta say, though, olive oil is my go-to for just about everything.
Here’s another good article re: health benefits of (and the unnecessary scare away from) coconut oil: http://www.naturalnews.com/022313.html . Oh – and one more good reference: The book Real Food by Nina Planck. Totally changed the way I looked at the health recommendations by the government/corporations over the past 50 years.
Aleisha @ Whole Family Project
Hey Amelia…just another note on coconut oil. The notion that all saturated fats are bad for you is a myth. While it is a saturated fat, it is structured from medium chain fatty-acids, which are extremely good for you, boost metabolism, speed healing, energy absorption, reduce the risk of heart disease, speed up weight loss, and beside all that…they are digested rapidly in the liver, instead of circulating in the body, and stored in fatty tissue. If you want more info on the chemical structure, and why it is different than all other saturated fats, I have all that info. Also, it remains stable at much higher temperatures than even EVOO…and CERTAINLY more stable than canola at most any temperature. There is no reason to hydrogenate coconut oil, as the purpose of that process is to make an oil solid at room temperature, which coconut oil is, naturally. So…it is a wonderful and amazing tool for healing, eating, skin care…what a blessing we have in coconut oil!:)
Thanks for posting this! I’ve been drinking Naked’s Green Machine for a while now and while I love the taste, buying a bottle everyday can really add up.
I stumbledupon your blog this morning and LOVE the sound of this smoothie! I’ve just recently forced my taste buds to enjoy vegetables other than carrots and lettuce and I can’t wait to try this. Thanks for posting the add-in ideas too 🙂
First of all, I love love love your site and it’s the best thing I’ve come across in well, forever. 🙂 I laughed throughout your post about green monsters because my husband has begged, pleaded, stomped, thrown a hissy fit, etc to get me to try a green monster he has made! I’ve turned up my nose and refused every.single.time. I will admit since I read this (as well as other comments) I WILL try it now. I’m sure my husband will pass out, recover and then get mad at me because he’s asked me for years to try one and I go and read this and now I’ve decided to try it! Ah, well. Thanks again!!
Thanks for posting this! I have a blender that I think I’ve only used 3 times. Smoothies are definitely on my “must make” list but I want something other than your typical fruit, ice, yogurt, etc. I’ll definitely have to give this a try – it’ll be a nice breakfast change!
YUM! I haven’t made a green smoothie in ages…but now I am feeling inspired. Thanks for sharing your green wisdom 🙂
Yum! I read this and made one for me and my MIL — we both loved it! I remember sitting at the dinner table for hours, refusing to eat all those frozen, yucky, *vegetables* — now I snack on them all day long at work, with some homemade hummus.
Thanks for another great post — and good luck with the book, sounds like a terrific topic 🙂
Our family of four eats a green smoothie a day, each of us, even the 1 year old and 3 year olds!
My skin has been acne prone my whole life, and it is positiviely glowing after 2 months of green smoothies (though I still am having occasional breakouts) the skin tone is awesome!
The best part though is that I never have to feel guilty or wonder if the kids are getting enough vegetables. I put all types of greens in here, with spinach always as the base green. Parsley, cilantro, radish leaves are super cheap and good for you. Then oranges, apples, etc. After 1 month, I knew we’d be drinking them for life, so we invested in the blendtech blender.
Yay for green drinks! Great energy, soft skin, blood sugar regulating, weight-loss enhancement–truly a miracle food. I learned to make them with the basic recipe of 40% greens and 60% fruit. Cilantro is a good additive for pulling metals out of your body. I also learned one should be sparing with spinach, as the oxalic acid can build up, creating kidney stones. Kale and chard are also to be used only occasionally, as the phytoestrogens can cause thyroid problems. My go-to is lettuce, with mint, basil, or cilantro. Dandelion greens and miner’s lettuce are wonderful spring greens to add now. And thank you for the chia seed idea!
Just discovered your blog from A Little Bit of it All – yay! 🙂
So you’ve convinced me…I am so trying a green smoothie in the near future. (My bane as a child was 2 bites of spaghetti…and I could sit at the table for HOURS!).
I always remember seeing someone make a smoothie from avocados once (before I understood the beauty and bliss that are avocados)…and I was SO disgusted! Now it sounds like the best thing ever – another green smoothie ingredient! 🙂
Thanks for the inspiration to a fellow not-until-quite-recent-fan-of-veggies-who-still-has-difficulty-with-them-frequently 🙂
omigosh LUV THIS!!!!!!!
my grandma taught me to make something similar, cant remeber it right now… (i have the memory of a goldfish. MAJOR MAJOR short term memory loss)
but it REALLY does help w/ my acne. (it decided to hitch a ride into my adult life)
is there any green veggie that tastes bad in this smoothie?
I have yet to find one.
Aleisha @ Whole Family Project
We have been drinking them every day since the middle of January. We feel like complete crap when we don’t…which has only been a handful of days. However, we use Chia seeds in ours. They are little miracle workers! I just put them in, because I had heard about them on some other blogs…and then a week after we started drinking them, we realized that we had both lost 6 pounds, had teenage energy, and we weren’t even trying. Soooo, I looked up the chia seeds, and found that they absorb 10x their weight in water, slow the conversion of carbohydrates to simple sugars in your system (thereby keeping the carbs as fuel for a longer period of time, before they turn to fat producing waste.), and besides all that, they regulate blood sugar, have been known to get people off statin drugs in 30 days, and act like a Liquid Plumber foaming pipe snake for your colon!! Um, hello! I am floored. By the way…after about the first week, the no-effort weight loss stopped (water weight?)…but, I’ll take a free 6 pounds wherever I can get them! I HIGHLY recommend the CHIA!!!
Haha! It’s funny that you mention chia seeds. I bought some about a year ago and put them in my cereal – and I thought they turned into little gooey eyeball thingies. (Sound much like vomit-filled pills?)
Time to revisit them, in smoothie form, where maybe they won’t remind me of tiny eyeballs so much. I’ll take 6 pounds, too, thank you!
I just had a quick question…. How much of the Chia seeds do you put in your smoothies??
Aleisha @ Whole Family Project
I usually put in about 3-4 tablespoons per batch…which for us, is almost 2 quarts in our Vitamix.
hey, love the site, and especially this post! i know it’s a few months old, but i am currently revisiting after making and totally loving green smoothies. i was wondering, however, about the chia seeds, aleisha. wouldn’t absorbing water dehydrate you? if not, i’d love to try these in my smoothies! thanks to you both!
Aleisha @ Whole Family Project
Hey, J. Actually, no…it doesn’t. It absorbs the water content from the smoothie, not your body. It carries into your body, actually helping with hydration and a host of other things. The gel that it produces is so healthful and health promoting, that for me…it’s one of the true superfoods in my diet!
Thanks, Aleisha, and thanks, CrunchyBetty!
Kristin @ Peace, Love and Muesli
My friend Jason had a similar issue with carrots. One day he gagged, choked and when his parents came rushing, he vomited. Everywhere. They stopped forcing veggies on him.
I am using a lot of spinach in smoothies, not daily. Apple cider hides the hemp protein flavour and the spinach, my kids slurp them right up.
Coconut milk is my most favorite. yummy.
I love my parents, but I’ve always wondered if my weird distaste for most veggies is still because I associate the trauma with eating them. Now, I know the trauma was self-inflicted and I was a wildly melodramatic imp, but still.
Apple cider, yeah? I’ll have to pick some up next time I’m at the store (although I have the feeling my ACV is more like hard apple cider at the moment …) and try it out. Sounds like a tasty addition, hiding or no hiding!
I was so intrigued by this that I found what I had in the fridge/freezer and made a green smoothie as soon as I was done reading your post! 🙂 And now I’m commenting while sipping on my very own green smoothie! Mine is not as fancy, though, and only consisted of a huge handful of spinach, a banana, about 12 frozen strawberries, some milk and a little honey to sweeten. It is incredibly delicious! Next time I get up to the health food store I’ll be sure to get spirulina and coconut oil and some Greek yogurt. I will definitely be trying your peanut butter recipe too! Thanks for posting this!
That sounds yummy! And goodness knows, most of the time the simplest things are the best. Isn’t it just incredible how little you even notice the spinach? Definitely on the coconut oil, too, especially. Even on days when I don’t make a green smoothie (about three days a week), I still take a tablespoon and a half of coconut oil in a cup of hot tea.
I’m still not 100% sure what its direct “feeling” health effects are yet, but it just FEELS so good and healthy in my brain, y’know?
I bet those apples you cooked for your applesauce would be nice in one of these. I love apples in spinach salad!
I’ve been meaning to try this for a while now. I do lots of smoothies, but haven’t gotten around to adding green.
We do berries, peaches, bananas, whatever fruit is around really, green yogurt, agave nectar, and hemp protein powder. Sometimes a little applesauce or milk. I’ve got to get groceries soon, I’m going to make these part of my day! I could use a little perking up!
OMG, dude. I still have applesauce left over (the kind without the butter and spices … that stuff disappeared into boys’ tummies within a day). Tomorrow’s smoothie will have applesauce in it! Thank you for the reminder. Duh!
Mmm. Peaches. I saw a recipe for a pear/mint/spinach one, too, that made my eyes roll back just thinking about it.
I wanna make green smoothies part of my routine only for lovely hair 🙂 I love spinach so shouldn’t be a prob…occasionally adding wheat grass would also be great for detox and high level of anti-oxidants…one thing I would want to clear is that I had read somewhere that veggies and fruits should be kept separate while making smoothies meaning don’t mix veggies n fruits with each other….do you have any idea of that????
I personally haven’t seen much of a change in my hair, but you know my hair. It just is. Straight and shiny. And that’s about what it’s always like, no matter what crazy stuff I do to it.
I haven’t ever heard that you should separate veggies and fruits. That seems so, so, so weird to me. I’ll have to dig around and see what pops up.
That’s really weird. Let me know if you see it again somewhere, too.
yeah sure I’ll let you know but may be the info was false….the reason stated was enzymes of both react and nullify each other’s nutritive effects…..
I have heard the same thing, they talk about it a little on the greensmoothieblog.com . According to the Raw Family, there should be a distinct difference between greens and veggies. I know lots of people do indeed use carrots, beets, etc in their green smoothie, but at that site anyway they say that the best bang for your buck and to avoid the fruit and veggie mixing to only use greens (lettuces, chards, spinach, kale, etc.). I guess they are okay to mix with fruits.
oh thanks Natalie…I shall check out the link!!!
What great information on green smoothies! I love smoothies in general but have mostly stuck to fruit and yogurt. However, my skin could certainly use some revitalizing so I’ll be starting to drink some!
It really did surprise me when I put spinach in for the first time (this was before I liberally doused my smoothies with spirulina and kelp and stuff) that I couldn’t even TELL it was in there. Like, not even remotely. And that was even one I made with blueberries and a squidge of lemon juice.
Long live the smoothie! (Even if it’s green.)
I’ve been drinking green smoothies a couple of times a week, too! Thanks for sharing your recipe, I always wonder what other people do. When experimenting, I learned that arugula is a really nasty green to put in your smoothie (WAAAY too peppery). My 2-yr-old loves to drink smoothies with me – I make a big batch in the blender, and split it with her. 🙂 I’ll have to make an effort to try to make them more often (or in advance, and freeze them) in case they might help more with my acne issues, too!
Oooh! I bet arugula’s pretty tough to do. Although I wonder if you did it with some carrot and ginger … hmmm. When it’s farmer’s market season and arugula’s all over the place (and doesn’t cost eight SUVs like at the grocery store right now), this will go on my list to try. Curious.
I loved this!… I felt like I was there at the table with little you. I was, actually, in my way, though at a different time and place. Little me hated some vegetables and loved (or tolerated) others. Still do. Mom and I would have the very same stalemate (“just ONE MORE bite!”). I always wondered why, if a kid is actually happy to eat broccoli and spinach… why try to force cauliflower, or worse yet… the dreaded “vegetable medley”?
Since I still love spinach, I am completely o.k. with trying a “green monster” (once the weather warms up). The husband may balk a bit, but he’s unusually good about trying new things. Thanks for the recipe, it’ll save me from experimental weirdness. And you KNOW how much I love the tip from Rebekah (previous comment) about freezing the spinach in cubes!! 🙂
One thing, in all the perusing I’ve done about the green smoothies, I’ve noticed is that it’s really hard to go wrong with them. Especially if your focus is more on the smoothie itself, and then you just throw in the greens to give yourself an extra nutritional kick.
Confession: I’ve actually always loved spinach. It’s one of the only vegetables I’d ever eat without a huge Oscar-worthy performance when I was a kid. In fact, when I was 3 or 4, I was Popeye for Halloween, and my parents’ friends all gave me cans of spinach in my trick-or-treat bag, and I was happy as a clam.
Oh, these are so yum! My favorite is to use Greek yogurt with honey, (so I don’t have to add any other sweetener), bananas, pineapple, and strawberries, plus a couple farm egg yolks. Because I have thyroid issues (and cruciferous veggies contain thyroid-blocking goitrogens), I always steam my greens first. Then I run them through the blender with a splash of water and freeze them into ice cubes for ease of use.
Every morning, without fail, husband looks at the glass I’ve handed him and asks, “So, what the heck did you put in here?” And then he gladly drinks the entire thing. Without choking. 🙂
Genius! with the greens. I like the rawness of ’em, but I LOVE the way you can make a bunch at once, keep ’em in the freezer, and not worry about wilting and stuff if you don’t use them within a week or so.
This will be what I do tomorrow. Thank you!
Your husband is awesome. Send him over here to teach my boys, will you?