How to Make Healthy Smoothies: The Complete Beginner’s Guide

This guide has everything you need to know about smoothie making.

So If you want to know how to make a smoothie that’s extremely healthy (yet heavenly delicious), you’re in the right place.

Keep reading…

About This Guide

In my quest to regain my health and to lose weight, I trusted smoothies to help.

But, many of my first attempts went to waste because I didn’t know what I was doing.

I threw out gallons of blended smudges, meant to be smoothies.

Not because I enjoyed wasting resources, but because I couldn’t figure out the right ways to use the ingredients I had in hand.

Now, after blending thousands of smoothies over the years, I figured out how to make the healthiest and most delicious smoothies ever.

The best part?

You don’t have to fail several times like me to figure out how to make the perfect smoothie anymore.

Having gone through all this messiness and the wasteful stage, and then realizing that there is a lot of missing information about smoothies, I put together this ultimate guide.

I made sure to make this the best smoothie making resource available on the internet.

And let me be clear about something:

This isn’t one of those “blend two bananas with some strawberries and call it a smoothie” type of posts.

Instead, it’s a one-stop-shop that’s going to take you step-by-step through the art of making the most amazing smoothies.

It is a lengthy guide, but, don’t let the length of it discourage you – this guide is worth all your time.

While you will need to spend some time reading it, it will save you 100x your time on failed smoothies and on dumping your money and ingredients down the drain.

By the end of this guide, you’re going to have all the knowledge to make the absolute best smoothies ever.

Note: I recommend that you read this guide from start to finish and not skip ahead, then take action right away, as it is designed to be interactive, and parts of the guide build on each other.

Ready? Let’s dive in!

Smoothie Fundamentals: What Every Serious Smoothie Maker Should Know

In this section, I’ll be talking about the fundamentals of smoothies and some more important information about them.

If you came here only looking for the exact steps needed to make the perfect smoothie, then feel free to skip this section.

We still have a lot to cover in the next sections of the guide.

But if you’re serious about this and want to learn as much information about smoothies as possible, then I recommend you read this section.

What Is A Smoothie?

This wasn’t taught in school, was it?

Since I’am giving you the complete beginner’s guide to smoothies, how about a simple but solid definition?

Well, a smoothie, is:

A thick drink made using blended fruits and/ or green vegetables. It can include other ingredients like protein powders, dairy products, ice and/ or added sweeteners.

But, juices and milkshakes aren’t smoothies, contrary to popular beliefs.

Though tasty, most juices and milkshakes are unhealthy thanks to the addition of artificial sweeteners and even ice cream which makes your drinks unhealthy.

What Is A Healthy Smoothie?

Wondering what makes healthy and unhealthy smoothies?

Well, it all lies in the ingredients.

A healthy smoothie will most definitely lack ice cream and added artificial sweeteners.

Instead, it will contain greens, fruits, and superfoods.

I’ll tell you which ingredients you should avoid adding to your smoothies later in this guide.

Keep reading.

Green Smoothies

These are smoothies that contain green vegetables.

The more greens you add in your smoothie, the healthier it will be.

But, you may be thinking like, I have never liked vegetables!

No problem, later I’ll show you how to make a green smoothie and strategically adding other ingredients to mask and enhance the veggie taste.

These taste enhancers include superfoods, protein boosters, and fruits.

Fruit Smoothies

Even though the fruity smoothie is ever so enticing, it can be not-so-healthy.

Fruits, though rich in fiber, water and vitamins, come with excess sugar in the form of fructose.

High-fructose drinks can sabotage your weight loss journey.

But since fruits are an essential component of smoothies, I’ll give you my best tips on how to make a fruit smoothie that’s actually very healthy, later in this guide.

Are Smoothies Really Healthy?

Looking at the sinfully delightful names of smoothies like the “Tropical Paradise Blend”, are smoothies really healthy?

Well, there is no definite yes or no answer to this.

Whether a smoothie is healthy or not depends on different factors with the ingredients in the middle of it all.

You should know that there exists no connection between just how healthy or unhealthy a smoothie is and how tasty or heavenly it is.

This is because the word healthy is subjective, as it depends on your goals; weight loss or disease management and prevention?

But, here’s the bottom line:

Smoothies are healthy or unhealthy depending on what you put in your blender.

This also means that there is a right and a wrong way of making smoothies.

Even with the right ingredients, blending bananas with ice cream is totally not very healthy.

Healthy ingredients like whole vegetables and fruits, nuts, seeds, grains, a healthy liquid base or some high-quality supplements make a healthy smoothie.

On the other hand, smoothies made exclusively using fruits, excess sugars, extra calories, or extra additives are unhealthy.

Considering all these elements, you may be thinking that making a healthy smoothie sounds too difficult.

However, with the best intentions at heart, in the rest of this guide, I’ll show you how to prepare the healthiest and most delicious smoothies ever!

The Amazing Health Benefits of Drinking Smoothies

Before we jump into the art of making smoothies, how about I show you the amazing benefits of consuming healthy smoothies?

You can easily lose focus and fall back to your old unhealthy eating habits when you don’t know what is in store for you.

And by the way, don’t expect to experience these benefits instantly after drinking one or two glasses of smoothies.

For you to fully enjoy these benefits, you have to make smoothie drinking a habit and transform that habit into a lifestyle.

Before you consider making smoothies a part of your lifestyle, you should always have your needs in mind.

Why is this important?

While smoothies helped me lose weight and regain my health even after three kids, you may have health issues to resolve.

Once you know exactly what you need, you can tailor your smoothies in a manner to help you achieve your desired weight loss and/ or health goals.

So, from a mother of three who has lost more than 114lbs and regained control over a myriad of health issues since I began the smoothie lifestyle, here’s what smoothies have to offer for you:

Natural Weight Loss

When you make the smoothie drinking habit a lifestyle, it provides you with one of the most natural, and even effortless weight loss mechanism.

As I mentioned above, I have lost over 114 pounds by being on the smoothie diet.

Drinking smoothies also made it easier for me to lose weight when I got sick, before my babies, and after every child.

This weight loss strategy sounds enticing, doesn’t it?

Well, it is! But, there is a catch:

 You have to make dietary and lifestyle changes.

While drinking smoothies as meal replacements, you have to cut out unhealthy, sugary and the highly processed foods.

While smoothies lower your calorie intake, it increases your vegetable, fiber and fruit intake.

These make you healthier, and you will also lose weight fast.

As a rule of the thumb, you only lose weight when you are burning more calories than you are eating.

The other reason why smoothies lead to weight loss is that they reset your taste buds so that you crave, or tend to eat more of the healthy foods.

Healthy eating is the key to weight loss.

If you want to learn more, check out my comprehensive guide on how to lose weight with smoothies.

Detoxification

Smoothies help detox the body in different ways:

First, smoothies are rich in fiber.

Fiber enhances peristaltic movement in the stomach leading to the elimination of unwanted wastes accumulating in the large intestines.

Secondly, smoothies are rich in antioxidants and vitamins.

The antioxidants neutralize free radicals in the body.

The neutralization of free radicals is essential in reducing oxidative damage, as it causes inflammation and cellular damage.

Detoxifying the free radicals prevents diseases like cancer and heart disease.

Thirdly, by drinking healthy smoothies and eating healthy foods, you get rid of toxins from the body.

You can also think about it this way – since you are no longer feeding your body with unhealthy ingredients from snacks, you are ridding your body of toxins.

Also, ingredients like papaya and ginger are natural detoxifiers.

These natural ingredients help in cleansing the blood. They also enhance the liver’s natural detoxification systems.

If you want to learn more, check out my comprehensive guide on how to detox your body with smoothies.

Increase Your Fruit & Vegetable Intake

We can all agree that kids aren’t the only ones who dislike vegetables and fruits, right?

But, we can also agree that veggies and the fruits we don’t like have immense benefits.

Now with these in mind, there is no better way of ensuring that we eat out vegetables and fruits than in smoothies…

Noteworthy is the fact that the whole fruits and proteins/ boosters enhance and mask the vegetables’ taste.

So, you can eat more kale, spinach and even celery with ease.

You Crave Less Junk

To lose weight and lead a healthy lifestyle, you have to stop eating junk.

Since junk is the go-to food for most busy people, having a meal that keeps you full for a long time is essential as it curbs cravings.

How about the cravings that come about because of boredom?

Well, the meal replacement, healthy smoothies can keep you full such that you cannot crave unhealthy snacks when you’re bored.

And these healthy smoothies leave you craving more healthy foods.

Also, by eating less, you will be much more likely to lose weight.

Increase Your Energy

By improving your digestive function through elimination, your smoothie leaves you with a powerful boost of highly absorbable minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants, among other nutrients.

These nutrients do not bog down your digestive system.

At the same time, consuming whole and natural foods rich in nutrients leave you bursting with energy.

Also, the B vitamins in the green smoothies, plus magnesium support the energy production.

Improve Your Digestion

First, fruits and vegetables consumed in liquid form are highly absorbable and the ingredients in smoothies help in managing digestive issues like the irritable gut syndrome.

Also, the fiber richness of the green smoothies enhances bowel movement preventing constipation.

But, here’s the best part:

The greens (collards, spinach, and kale) are alkaline.

Their alkalinity counteracts the discomfort of acid reflux as well as heartburns.

The improved digestive health through balanced pH, and enhanced bowel movements mean that you nurture the good bacterial, destroy the bad bacteria.

These leave you with great gut and mental health.

You know that you have a second brain in your gut, don’t you?

Improve Your Mental Clarity

By eating healthy meals and having a healthy smoothie daily, you attain higher mental clarity and focus.

Incorporation of coconut oil and other healthy oils rich in omega-3 fatty acids improve mental function, leading to better focus and clarity.

According to science, the intake of fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as other whole foods result in improved brain function.

Improve Your Colon & Gut Health

As mentioned above, smoothies improve digestive health.

Fiber and nutrients from smoothies make the gut inhabitable to the bad bacteria making the gut a healthy environment for the good gut parasites.

Stay Hydrated

Since drinking 6 to 8 glasses of water daily is challenging, why not drink smoothies for you to inch close to your daily recommended water intake.

Fruits and vegetables are rich in water and so, drinking smoothies inch you closer to your daily water intake goals.

Improve Your Skin, Hair & Nails

Studies show that the carotenoids found in healthy smoothies you enhance the health of your skin, nails and the hair by drinking smoothies.

Besides the studies, I can use myself as an example…

My hair, skin, and nails didn’t look this good before starting my smoothie journey which culminated in a smoothie lifestyle.

I had adult acne too, but all that cleared after I started drinking smoothies.

The transformation comes from vitamin C, antioxidants, and proteins in the smoothies which is essential for collagen synthesis.

Collagen is necessary for a firm and supple skin.

On the other hand, the strong and healthy nails and hair resulted from the proteins, minerals, antioxidants, and vitamins.

Improve Your Immunity

Fruits and vegetables have, for years, been effective in enhancing immune function.

This is thanks to the minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants which protect the body against diseases.

If you catch the sniffles all the time, you should consider adding ginger, cranberries, or citrus fruits into your smoothies.

These improve immune function.

Reduce Inflammation

Most of the fruits and vegetables you will add to your smoothies have compounds which reduce inflammation.

They are rich in antioxidants which protect cells against inflammation and possible disease.

Besides shedding the extra pounds, fruits and vegetables, especially the brightly colored ones reduce inflammation.

This is because of their richness in carotenoids which lower the risk of inflammation.

Ginger, pineapples, turmeric, and carrots, as well as vitamin C-rich fruits and vegetables, prevent inflammation.

Improve Athletic Performance

Let me burst your bubble – you need to be physically active to lose weight and to tone those muscles once you lose weight.

For that, you have to be athletic.

Smoothies increase your athletic performance by making you more energetic and fueling the muscles – this is why you need to incorporate protein in your smoothies.

Also, smoothies improve your athletic performance by strengthening the bones…

Build Stronger Healthy Bones

Consuming healthy smoothies helps you build stronger and healthier bones thanks to the richness of calcium in fruits and vegetables.

Smoothies are also rich in phosphorus, magnesium.

These minerals are important components of strong bones.

Also, vitamin K from the green leafy vegetables is effective in preventing the formation of brittle bones.

Enjoy Better Sleep

With a detoxified body and a digestive system working well, you sleep better.

Insomnia and general inability to fall asleep arises from stress.

Now, besides mental stress, a stressed digestive system affects your sleeping patterns.

Bananas and kiwi enhance your ability to sleep.

Also, magnesium and calcium, both found in smoothies, are effective in treating insomnia.

From the studies, calcium is an important component of tryptophan the amino acid required for synthesis of the sleep-inducing hormone, melatonin.

Also, a magnesium deficiency has a close association with chronic insomnia.

Improve Your Eye Health

The beta-carotene in green smoothies, as well as lutein, zeaxanthin, plus resveratrol, are antioxidants which protect the lens and the retina.

Vitamin A, also found in the smoothies, enhances eye health.

Making Smoothies vs. Juicing: Which One Is Better?

Back then when I was researching the best weight loss and health management strategies, I came across both juicing and blending.

Since both methods offer liquid nutrition, which, as we mentioned above, is more digestible, it seemed hard to pick one over the other.

However, one has more benefits than the other.

In this case, and only after months of research, blending wins.

Both juicing and blending are simple ways of ensuring that you get desired nutrition right from a glass.

However, understanding which of the two methods of processing fruits and vegetables is better than the other is essential in ensuring that you meet your personal health goals.

Here Are the Differences Between Both Methods

Blending

  • Blending refers to the process of fully blending whole fruits and vegetables to make a smoothie.
  • You make a smoothie with a blender.
  • After blending, there is no fiber left to waste because, when making a smoothie, the blender pulverizes everything and it doesn’t separate ingredients.
  • The smoothie is thick because the pulp stays in the smoothie.
  • Blending leaves you with soluble and insoluble fiber.
  • The only downside is that you have to spend some time preparing the ingredients, besides cleaning them. You have to chop your ingredients and you have to peel ingredients like pineapples and ginger.

Juicing

  • Juicing refers to the mechanical process of extracting liquefied contents from whole fruits/ vegetables. Once you finish juicing, you have to discard the fiber.
  • You make juices with juicers. But, here is the interesting part – while you can easily make pulpy juice using a high-speed blender, a juicer cannot make a smoothie.
  • During the juicing process, the juicer separates the pulp from the juice as it spins the juice out of the fruits and vegetables.
  • Juicing leaves you with juice containing insoluble fiber only.
  • Juices concentrate the toxins, while smoothies offer protection from toxins in the fruits and vegetables.
  • The advantage of juicing is that, save from cleaning, ingredients need minimal preparation time. You can juice whole fruits and vegetables.

Insoluble Fiber

This fiber stays in the smoothie and is responsible for the thickness of the smoothie.

Even though it doesn’t absorb water in the intestines, it makes you fuller for longer and it also adds bulk to the stool.

Soluble Fiber

This is the fiber left after the removal of pulp.

The soluble fiber absorbs water in the intestines and the forms a gel-like substance which slows down the passage of food down the digestive tract.

Soluble fiber is pre-biotic, meaning it supports healthy microbes in the gut.

Further Reading: What’s the Difference Between Soluble and Insoluble Fiber?

9 Reasons Why Making Smoothies Is Far Better Than Juicing

From the distinction above, blending is better than juicing especially if you are looking to lose weight.

Smoothies, being thicker and full of soluble and insoluble fiber, will leave you fuller for longer.

Here are nine reasons why I am pro-smoothies:

  • Smoothies Work as Meal Replacements

A smoothie is a meal on its own and you can consume it as a meal replacement.

Why is this?

Well, a meal consists of macronutrients like proteins, fats, and carbohydrates, as well as vegetable and some fruit.

Smoothies easily fall under the meal criteria because they have all these macronutrients, as well as micronutrients.

On the other end, juices are majorly carbohydrates, almost exclusively.

By lacking fats, and proteins, juices cannot replace meals.

Also, the juices are low in calories.

Anyone looking to lose weight needs to know that calorie restriction is counteractive as it slows metabolism leading to weight gain.

Therefore, the fact that you can add nuts, greek yogurt, coconut milk, or nut butter to smoothies means the smoothies are ideal meal replacements.

  • Smoothies Keeps You Full For Longer

Besides the soluble and the insoluble fiber in smoothies, smoothies contain whole foods packed with proteins.

Proteins take long to digest, and so you stay full for long, while the fibers slow down the speed at which food moves through the stomach.

Note that juices are mostly carbohydrates and they do not have the potential for a high protein content.

Consider flax seeds, Greek yogurt, peanut butter, chia seeds and hemp seeds as your main source of proteins.

  • Smoothies Provide Whole Food Nutrition

A smoothie is a whole food with all the essential food groups.

Drinking a healthy smoothie leaves you full of protein, fiber, water, carbohydrates, fats, minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants among other nutrients.

With insoluble fiber, as well as other nutrients removed from juices, you cannot get whole food nutrition drinking juices.

  • Smoothies Are A Sustainable Dietary Habit

Since you are reading this, there is a high likelihood you have come across juice cleanses, and you could be looking for details for the same.

Well, you are in the right place.

While the juicing enthusiasts claim that drinking fresh vegetable and fruit juices gives the tummy a break, it doesn’t.

Lack of fiber for a few days only leaves you constipated.

You also feel exhausted and lethargic a few days into a juice diet.

Juices also cause long-term metabolic downregulation – you can gain weight easily on a juice diet.

On the other hand, even a short-term smoothie cleanse boosts metabolism and increases your energy levels.

This is because of the smoothie’s nutritional richness.

When done in the right way, drinking two meal replacement smoothies a day leads to weight loss without hampering your metabolism.

  • Smoothies Oxidize Slower Than Juices

The greatest danger to fresh juices and smoothies is oxidization.

But, unlike juices, smoothies oxidize at a slower rate.

Studies show that phytochemicals are higher after blending than after juicing.

This is because of the juicing process which makes juices much more susceptible to oxidation than smoothies.

Blame the fast-spinning blades for this.

Therefore, you can keep smoothies frozen longer than juices.

Just make sure that you keep your smoothie in a tight-fitting container, preferably a ready-to-use mason jar.

  • Fiber Slows Sugar Absorption

Even when you are not concerned with the sugar in fruits, you need to be aware of the fact that the high-sugar vegetables like carrots and beets become concentrated sweeteners which are not healthy.

On the other end, smoothies are rich in fiber and even when highly concentrated in sugars, they pass through the stomach and the absorption process is slow.

  • Blending Is Easier On Blood Sugar

All foods affect blood sugar, however, carbs and sugars cause spikes in blood sugar levels and the results aren’t as desirable.

Proteins and fats also affect blood sugar levels, but, in a good way.

Studies indicate that proteins and fats reduce blood sugar spikes because of their low glycemic index.

Glycemic Index (GI) is the measure of the fluctuations in the blood sugar levels of a healthy person after he or she eats foods rich in carbohydrates.

Out of the three main macronutrients, carbohydrates, proteins, and fats, carbohydrates are the only macronutrients which cause an immediate rise in blood glucose levels and they have a high ranking on the GI scale.

Proteins and fats have no immediate impact on the blood glucose levels.

Why are we cautious about GI?

Well, by monitoring the GI of different foods, you make it easy to maintain a healthy weight and also prevent diabetes.

This is beneficial to individuals suffering from diabetes because of the need to keep the blood glucose levels low.

The addition of proteins and fats to smoothies prevents sugar spikes associated with the need to nap after a meal.

  • Smoothies Reduce Food Waste

One of the reasons why I encourage blending is that there is minimal waste.

Juicing leaves almost half of the pulp to trash.

In a world where a majority of the population lives in poverty, it only makes sense to use food preparation methods which prevent as much waste as possible.

So, Are Juices Unhealthy?

Despite my reasons in favor of blending above, juices aren’t unhealthy.

With the right ingredients, you can actually combine both smoothies and juices to enhance your general health.

Even though juicing isn’t a major part of my lifestyle, I mix things up once in a while and take juices.

Why?

  • Smoothies and juices increase your intake of fruits and vegetables.
  • Also, they are both liquids and you can assimilate both easily.
  • Sometimes you need a healthy alternative to the chunky pieces in the smoothie and that is where the juices step in. To strike a balance and to stay healthy, I keep juicing to a minimal and actually consider it an occasional healthy treat.

As mentioned above, juicing, especially as cleanses affect metabolism by letting you starve.

You may lose weight on a 4/5-day juice cleanse but eventually, you will starve.

Therefore, long-term dependence on juicing for weight loss will not work too well.

The other side effects of juicing include:

  • Deprivation of the essential dietary fiber
  • By delivering a massive dose of the rapidly absorbed sugars into the body, juices increase your susceptibility to type 2 diabetes.

Bottom line:

If you are trying to choose between the two, I highly recommend smoothies for the advantages mentioned above.

ReferancesJuicing vs. Blending: Which Is Better for Me?

How to Make a Smoothie that’s Amazingly Healthy & Delicious

Let’s jump to the main subject of our guide:

How can you make the healthiest and most delicious smoothies?

As mentioned above, knowing how to make a healthy smoothie is essential in ensuring that you meet your weight loss and health goals.

In this section, we’ll delve deeper into how to prepare a smoothie bursting with minerals, protein, vitamins, antioxidants, fiber and healthy fats, among others.

Going by the number of ‘smoothie’ servings I have thrown out, I know that the perfect smoothie combination doesn’t come along as easily.

Here is my simple and comprehensive step-by-step guide on how to make the best smoothies:

Step #1: Choose a Smoothie to Make

I don’t know anyone who gets their blender ready and then starts preparing a smoothie without knowing what they intend to make.

You must have an idea and that is why you chose those specific ingredients.

To do that, you have two options.

Option #1: Simply Follow a Recipe

The easiest way to choose what smoothie to make is by simply following a recipe.

But, how do you pick which recipes to make?

The best way for you to decide is to answer this question:

Why do I want to make smoothies?

Whether you intend to lose weight, detox, snack, replace a meal, post-workout or to manage/ prevent a disease, you will find a recipe, or tens of recipe to help you achieve your goals.

Once you pick out a recipe, there are two ways you can use the recipe.

The first, which is the easy way out, involves following every detail of the recipe including all the measurements and the ingredients.

This is a good way to go especially when you’re just getting started, or you’re just not in a creative mood.

The alternative is the adventurous way of preparing your smoothies:

This is where you play around with the said ingredients, and using them as your source of inspiration.

In this case, you modify the recipe depending on what you have in the kitchen, what’s in season, your nutritional requirements, budget, and your personal preferences.

This is the more practical option which is also the path to the perfect smoothie you’ll love.

You can check out my current lists of smoothie smoothie recipes (I will be adding much more smoothie recipes for every need in the future).

1. 30 meal replacement smoothie recipes for weight loss

2. 10 smoothie recipes for detoxification

Option #2: Get Creative & Keep the Fun Going

Taking the recipe in option one above as your stepping stone, option two presents you with an opportunity to let your wings grow.

This is where you use your creativity to prepare your own smoothie recipes.

Smoothies afford you endless possibilities to be creative.

And you also have the opportunity to try out new vegetables and fruits.

By keeping your thinking caps wide and the taps to your creativity open, you make smoothie preparation fun and interesting, just like cooking, don’t you think?

Why is it important to let your creative juices flowing?

Well, the goal isn’t finding that one perfect smoothie which you will make every morning.

It is more about having a variety of smoothies made using different ingredients and creating new and exciting recipes you can brag about.

But, even most importantly, the recipes present an opportunity for you to never lose your enthusiasm or to get bored with smoothies.

Don’t forget that mixing things up and exploring different recipes ensures that your body has access to a wide variety and many nutrients.

You need to ensure that your body gets all the essential nutrients all the time.

It is beneficial to be able to improvise without having to look up recipes.

But, here’s the catch:

You should know how to combine the right ingredients for a smoothie to be perfect.

Otherwise, you risk preparing undrinkable smoothies.

But, keep in mind that the more smoothies you make, the more experienced you get, and soon, you will be preparing the most delectable, filling and healthy smoothies.

Personal Pro Tip: The best way to have smoothie recipes you enjoy all the time is by building a smoothie recipe box that refers to your list of recipes created every time you drink a smoothie. Making the recipe box is simple, you need to write them down on an index card and then give each one a score from 1 to 10. This way, you’ll have a recipe store with the smoothies you liked, the ones that work for you and the ones that don’t.

Wondering how to combine your ingredients into smoothies?

Worry not!

In the next section, we are going to dive into the details of preparing the most healthy, and delicious smoothies every time.

Steal My Secret Formula to Prepare the Most Perfect Smoothies

Here is the biggest tip I can give you when you make smoothies:

Never throw in random ingredients in the blender, even if it is your first time and you have no recipes to guide you.

That smudge (we cannot call it a smoothie) will have a nasty taste and you will throw away money.

Be considerate of every smoothie ingredient you put in the blender.

What should you do instead?

Get out your measuring cups and stick to my secret formula:

It’s called the 60/40 formula.

  • 2 Cups of Liquid Base
  • 2 Cups of Greens
  • 3 Cups of Fruits
  • Smoothie Boosters (Optional Addons)

Why 60/40?

This formula follows a ratio of fruits to greens at 60 percent fruits to 40 percent greens, by volume.

The 60/40 formula yields about 4-5 cups (32 – 40oz) of smoothies which makes two servings.

However, it is worth mentioning that the quantity produced will vary depending on the recipe as well as the consistency of the ingredients you use.

You can use one or multiple ingredients from each ingredient type, as long as you keep the quantity ratio the same.

Why you should follow this formula?

Simply, because it’s the foolproof way to make sure that you make the healthiest green smoothies, that actually taste delicious.

If you’re just getting started making smoothies, this formula will be a great guide.

However, as you blend more and more, feel free to customize the formula for it to works best for you.

So as you get used to the greens, you can reduce the volume of the fruits and add the veggies, as you see fit.

Now let’s dive into the details of our smoothie formula components.

Liquid Base

Liquids are an essential component of smoothies.

They help prevent the formation of the leafy chunks and prevent damage to the blender’s motor.

You need to consider the liquid base keenly as it is essential in ensuring that you gave the right nutrients delivered to the cells.

How much liquid should you really add?

It depends on your preferred smoothie consistency.

If you prefer runny smoothies, then you will need to add a bit more of the liquid than if you need a thick smoothie.

You’ll also have to keep in mind the consistency of the fruits you’re using. For example, pineapples and watermelons have a lot of juice and you may want to throw in ice only.

Which are the best liquids to use?

Filtered water, unsweetened coconut water, unsweetened coconut milk, unsweetened almond milk, unsweetened cashew milk, unsweetened oat milk, unsweetened rice milk, unsweetened hemp milk, freshly squeezed juice, green tea, Kombucha, Rejuvelac, aloe water, and bone broth.

Fruits

I am going to be honest about something:

Never, in my attempt to make tasty smoothies, have I been able to withstand the taste of plain veggies blended with water or any other base.

It always feels something is missing – a fruit.

You cannot have a smoothie without a fruit in it…

Fruits are responsible for the creaminess of smoothies, they give smoothies their unique and heavenly taste, and they also mask the vegetable taste.

Will the fruit satisfy your sweet tooth?

Yes, it will.

For your smoothies, you need to incorporate fruits because they act as natural sweeteners.

They are also essential as they make your smoothies creamy with a silky texture that holds the ingredients together.

Also, fruit is the most important and perfect companion for green smoothies since it breaks down fast while digesting perfectly with the green leafy vegetables.

And it increases the amount of fiber, minerals, and vitamins you get from the smoothie.

Which are the best fruits to use?

Bananas, Apples, Avocados, Dates, Apricots, Berries, Cherries, Durian, Figs, Grapes, Grapefruits, Kiwis, Lemons, Limes, Tangerines, Oranges, Nectarines, Mangos, Melons, Papayas, Peaches, Pears, Persimmons, Pineapples, Pomegranates, and Pumpkins.

Pro Tips For Adding Your Fruits:

  • Always use fresh fruits, not canned or the juiced fruit you get from bottles.
  • As much as you can, opt for organic fruits.
  • If you like your smoothies creamy, you should incorporate ingredients like bananas, avocados, peach, pear, mango, fig, or coconut.
  • Also, bananas are more filling.
Greens

While greens make the most avoided foods, these plants constitute the most potent superfoods that grow on land.

Why greens are so good?

Greens don’t just add color to your smoothies.

The green leafy vegetables have more nutrients per calorie than other foods.

They are shock full of antioxidants, minerals, phytochemicals, and vitamins.

They deliver to your glass the highest concentration of nutrients you could have in a cup.

What more, the leafy vegetables are a great source of vitamins A, C, E, B vitamins, and vitamin K.

They are also rich in magnesium, calcium, potassium, and, iron.

And they are richly flavored, high in fiber, rich in protein, and low in carbohydrates and fats.

These factors make those green leafy veggies perfect additions to your smoothie.

Now, you may not like chewing vegetables, but are you willing to skip all their nutritional benefits?

It is only fair that you blend the veggies, isn’t it?

Here is the cherry on top:

You don’t have to taste the spinach and the kale and you don’t have to fear the bitter greens.

How?

Stick to the 60/40 formula and let the fruits do the taste-masking for you.

Getting used to greens

At first, you may struggle a bit, especially if you are super sensitive.

However, the more green smoothies you drink, you will realize that the taste of the smoothie changes over time and the bitterness gets less noticeable.

Also, adding fruits as mentioned above saves you the trouble of holding your nose, and clenching your fists as you chug down a bitter smoothie.

Here is my secret:

I started with the easier greens like baby spinach working my way up to the harder greens like romaine lettuce, kale, and dandelion greens.

You may want to try that too.

Green leafy vegetables are essential for gut health, thyroid help, immune function, and general good health.

Graduating to the harder, and often bitter vegetables is important because the hardy vegetables provide about double the protein and calcium serving as the easier greens like spinach.

I recommend using the sweetest, most flavorful fruit when working with the bitter greens.

Alternatives to the sweet fruits include stevia, cacao powder, vanilla bean extract, or the flavored protein powders.

You should skip the artificial sweeteners at any cost (not even honey or agave), even if the smoothie is bland.

As you acclimatize your taste buds, do not be afraid of working your way up to 50, 60 or even 70 percent of greens.

You will gain much more health benefits that way.

And one more thing, you should be rotating the greens you use for your smoothies.

Why you should rotate your greens?

Having the same greens every day may get boring.

But, there is something else that’s more important:

The alkaloid buildup.

Alkaloid buildup is a fancy name for a few toxins protecting plants extinction.

It is a defense mechanism employed by plants.

Oxalic acid in spinach and goitrogens in kale are examples of the toxins.

Unfortunately, we consume the toxins.

In rare cases, you may exhibit symptoms of alkaloid toxicity.

The symptoms include tingling fingertips, fatigue, and nausea.

Different plants have different toxin concentrations hence the need for rotations.

Wait a minute – does this mean that the green leafy vegetables can cause harm?

No.

While toxicity hardly ever happens, a variety of greens is essential for nutritional diversity.

Mixing things up ensures that you have a variety of minerals and vitamins.

Some greens hold more nutritional value than others.

For example, kale has twice as much calcium and iron as spinach and the dandelion greens have more of the minerals than kale and spinach.

Bottom line:

Just don’t stick to the same type of greens for a long period of time, and make sure you’re rotating them every once in a while.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9UV4vtz46Cg

Which are the best greens to use?

Kale, spinach, collard greens, chard, romaine lettuce, Arugula, mustard, beet greens, cabbage, carrot tops, cilantro, radish greens, dandelion greens, microgreens, parsley, turnip greens, aloe vera, watercress, celery, broccoli, cucumber, dandelion, microgreens and sprouts.

Smoothie Boosters (Optional Add-ons)

In smoothies, you can think of boosters as the superfoods.

They offer a quick and an efficient way of getting essential nutrients into the body.

The boosters are superfoods because they are all-natural and also filled with essential nutrients our bodies miss out on (yet crave), easily.

Must you add boosters?

No. boosters are entirely optional and you can skip them at any time.

However, when the need arises, start small, and incorporate one boosting ingredient at a time.

As your taste buds and the body adapt, you can mix and match the boosters you’ve tried.

Which are the best smoothie boosters to use? 

  • Protein Boosters

Protein is important as it makes your smoothies a lot more satisfying and filling.

Though optional, when you’re taking a smoothie as a meal replacement, using an additional protein source is important in ensuring that your smoothie is an actual meal.

Also, as a weight loss measure, the body burns proteins slower than carbs.

Therefore, you won’t feel hungry fast and you can curb cravings.

And lastly, having enough dietary protein means that your body doesn’t have to turn to burning muscle for energy needs, leaving your muscles toned and strong.

Which are the best protein boosters to use?

Chia seeds, flaxseeds, hemp seeds, sesame seeds, all natural peanut butter, all-natural almond butter, oats, nuts, quinoa, tofu, and plant-based protein boosters.

  • Healthy Fat Boosters

Did you just think “Why would I ever want to add fat boosters to a green smoothie”?

Happened to me too!

I mean, aren’t fats supposed to be unhealthy and even undesirable?

Well, it turns out that not all fats are bad.

And, your body needs fats more than you think – there is a certain amount of dietary fat you need per day.

Even though you are drinking smoothies and eating healthy, you still need fats.

But here is the catch:

They must be the good, healthy fats.

Fat is an essential macronutrient that provides you with immediate energy.

The good fats are also necessary for enhanced brain function.

The other benefits of fats include:

  • Fats curb overeating.
  • They promote healthy bones, hair, and nails.
  • They protect the heart.
  • Keep the skin soft.
  • They deliver the fat-soluble vitamins.
  • Fats are a great source of energizing fuel.
  • And, fats provide you with essential fatty acids.

Therefore, adding fat boosters to your smoothie enhances the nutrition you get from it.

And it’s also necessary for transportation and absorption of vitamins A, D, and K from the fruits and vegetables.

Which are the best healthy fat boosters to use?

Avocados, macadamia nuts, cashews, almonds, pecans, walnuts, flax oil and coconut oil.

  • Superfoods Boosters

Ever feel like your body is craving for something but you cannot put your finger on that food or ingredient you are craving?

Perhaps you should consider that your body’s call for superfoods?

Superfoods are nutritionally dense foods with specific health benefits.

While there are many foods with the superfoods stamp on them, including dairy and legumes, I prefer to think of superfoods as the rare fruits and greens available in deeply concentrated form.

The superfoods have a nutritional edge over all the other foods.

Superfoods are non-GMO and they are organic, therefore, they are safe and highly nutritional.

There are many types of superfoods and you may never try them all.

If you’d like to add some superfood-goodness to your smoothies, shop for them at the health store rather than the grocery store.

Superfoods make a great addition to meal replacement smoothies in that they are more than a tasty indulgence.

You can add them to just about any ingredient, they are versatile, they prevent deficiencies, and they protect you from diseases.

Which are the best superfoods to use? 

Cacao powder, Goji berries, Acai powder, Matcha green powder, Maca root powder, Moringa leaf powder, wheatgrass powder, Spirulina, and sea vegetables (Dulse Flakes).

  • Spice Boosters

Spices hold immense power for kick-starting your health while helping you serve the perfect smoothies.

We have been using spices in the kitchen for centuries but it turns out that the uses of spices extend far from the cooking pots to the blenders.

Why use spices?

  • Spices have immune-boosting powers, and they also work great as detoxifying agents and pain relievers.
  • Other spices have anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and anti-viral properties all of which make the spices even more important.
  • Also, some spices have fat-burning properties

Which are the best spices to use?

Ginger, ground red pepper, cinnamon, turmeric, bee pollen, vanilla, and mint.

You Should NOT Add These Ingredients to Your “Healthy” Smoothie

As mentioned above, ingredients determine if you have healthy or unhealthy smoothies.

Since there is a perceived gray area when it comes to the healthy and the unhealthy ingredients, most of us are guilty of adding the wrong ingredients just because we need a healthy smoothie.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gG9BXBb-tew

Below is a list of the ingredients you should avoid at all costs:

Added Sweeteners

While these make the smoothie a lot tastier, especially when you are struggling to kick off the smoothie diet, sweeteners, even when derived from natural sugars, add to your overall sugar content.

Some of the added sweeteners to avoid include the well-known offender, and the refined sugars like agave, maple syrup, and honey.

Since you wouldn’t add sugar to your smoothies, why add honey?

Did you know that a tablespoon of that all-natural honey has 17 grams of sugar and agave 5 grams?

Coconut nectar is also harmful.

Store-Purchased Fruit Juice

Sorry to burst your bubble but, the pasteurized juices have no nutritional goodness.

Also, the manufacturers often add synthetic vitamin C to the fruit juices: makes you wonder what else is fake in the drinks.

Another thing, the juices lack fiber and nutrients meaning that they could have far worse effects, especially on your blood sugar levels, making things worse for you.

So, if you have to include juice in your smoothie, at least prepare it at home and use it while fresh.

Citrus fruits are the best!

Dairy

How many times have you added dairy to your smoothie?

Even though dairy enhances the taste, it is an unhealthy choice.

Dairy, especially the pasteurized kind is harmful to your health and I advise against it.

Even so, the topic of dairy in green smoothies remains controversial.

But as the discussion rages on, here are my reasons against dairy:

  • I feel a lot better and lighter when on a dairy-free diet.
  • Mixing dairy with the acid has a weird outcome – the two just don’t work.
  • Calories: losing and managing weight is all about calories. Adding milk or yogurt means introducing more calories to your smoothie.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0O-ehIkwGME

Ice Cream & Sherbet

Unless you are making an unhealthy smoothie intentionally, you shouldn’t add ice cream, sherbet, or frozen yogurt to your smoothies.

These are desserts, and they pack loads of sugar.

Greek yogurt is a great alternative.

Chocolate Syrups, Powders & Pudding Mixes

If you think that the sinfully delicious powders by Nestle are perfect for your smoothies, think again!

First of all, you fall into the weird category to add chocolate syrup to your smoothie.

Secondly, you are adding a lot of unhealthy sugars to your smoothie and if you are considering weight loss, you may achieve the opposite with all that syrup!

Cool Whip, Whip Cream & Cream Soda

These also make it to the list of offenders because cause a spike in the sugar levels.

Anything that causes a spike in sugars will make you foggy.

And, if you have diabetes, you will have a harder time controlling the sugar levels.

As a side note, whatever you do with your smoothies, please, just don’t follow this guy’s recipe:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4wCQ7kPFtIo

Step #2: Get the Right Tools & Make Your Life Easier!

Even with the right formula, you can’t prepare the perfect smoothie without the right tools.

You can’t pick any blending tools you come across.

Getting the right tools facilitates the preparation of a tasty smoothie whose texture you can stand.

So what do you need to make a smoothie?

A Blender: The Essential Tool

A blender is the essential tool you need to make a smoothie.

But not any blender.

For you to make blending easier, save time, and make that perfect smoothie every time, you have to consider buying a high-quality blender.

As mentioned above, the benefits of blending range from fast weight loss, balanced nutrition and reduce waste to great savings and a high efficiency.

For all these, you need a blender that can easily turn solid foods into liquids.

However, you cannot achieve these results using any blender.

Without a great blender, you will find yourself with a smoothie full of undrinkable chunks of fruit and vegetables.

As a vital smoothie preparation equipment, get one you can afford but, don’t compromise on the quality.

Great blenders leave you with a silky smooth beverage that is clean and easy to handle.

If you want to learn more, here are some of my blender buying guides:

1. The Best Blenders For Smoothies Under 200$

2. The Best Personal Blenders For Smoothies

3. The Best Portable Blenders For Traveling with Your Smoothies

4. The Quietest Blenders Available on the Market

Your Favorite Container (Optional)

Don’t you think that it is unfair to use the old Styrofoam or plastic cups when drinking a beverage that holds the power to change your life, in every possible way?

Well then, how about you head out and shop for a great smoothie holding container.

To enjoy your smoothie experience fully, consider getting a speacial container for your smoothies.

If you want to get one, check out my comprehensive list of the best smoothie containers.

Straws (Optional)

I enjoy drinking my smoothies using a straw, mainly because I love the slightly runny smoothies.

But, you may not like straws or runny smoothies, and that is perfectly okay.

If you want to learn more, check out my comprehensive list of the smoothie tools I can’t live without.

Personal Pro Tip: For the best smoothie preparation experience, how about this – create a designated smoothie station in the kitchen, and put all your smoothie making tools in one place. This station should be able to effortlessly hold a cutting board, knife, blender, container, and anything else you need to prepare smoothies. You can also add non-refrigerated foods like the superfoods, dried fruit, nut butter, powders, and nuts for you to access them quickly.

Step #3: Buy Your Ingredients & Prepare Them Like A Pro!

This is where you test your grocery shopping skills and patience.

How good are you in grocery shopping?

Also, are you ready to cover the extra cost of food?

I may have kept this under the covers for all this time but, here is the bitter truth:

Healthy eating is expensive.

You will spend a bit more on groceries but the benefits are immense, so, stop sulking already.

But buying isn’t everything, I will be also showing how to store, freeze and wash your ingredients.

If you feel like you don’t need this information, please feel free to skip any section you want.

How to Shop for Your Produce in the Most Effective Ways!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TRBe_7Ni4tY

Speaking as someone who got a huge shock the first time I got my healthy eating groceries bill, I’m going to take you with me on the next shopping trip.

Over the years, I have come across several grocery shopping ideas and money-saving tips and I am going to share them all with you:

  • Make a list and stick to it

Planning keeps you organized by ensuring that you buy what you need.

A plan prevents waste.

You should also consider shopping for groceries during the designated market days.

  • Meal planning

Aren’t you tired of opening the fridge only to find that there is no food?

Did you turn to expensive junk food since you were starving?

Now, imagine how much money (and time) you would save if you had a meal plan alongside your grocery shopping list?

  • Buy organic

Whenever the budget allows, opt for the organic produce.

Organic produce is free of GMOs and often locally sourced from farmers who farm using all-natural techniques.

When shopping for organic produce, look for the certified organic produce.

Just make sure the organic produce is local.

However, when you cannot afford the organic produce, go for the clean fifteen and avoid buying the dirty dozen as much as possible.

  • Buy what’s in season or what is on sale

To save money on fruits and vegetables, you can use coupon clippings.

To save even more, be opportunistic.

Do you follow your favorite grocery store on social media?

Did you sign up for sale announcements when they asked you to?

These are the simplest ways of saving big on groceries.

Besides discounts, buying the products in the season is an effective money-saving strategy.

Since fruits and vegetables in season are cheaper, you should buy them.

  • Buy locally

Do you know how long those oranges have been on the shelves?

How many times did they spray the produce for that ‘fresh’ look?

How long did it take for those veggies to land on the shelves from the farm?

Also, did the produce ripen on the farm or the shelf?

Natural ripening, and not ripening with gas ensures that the fruits develop their full flavors, minerals, vitamins, and phytochemicals.

You should, therefore, buy local produce, rather than the imported produce.

Further Reading7 Benefits of Eating Local Foods

  • Buy online

This is tricky but, once you identify a grocery store that prides itself on selling high-quality produce, go for it.

  • Get a warehouse/ grocery store club membership for savings

There you have it, all the grocery shopping nitty-gritty!

How to Really Wash Your Fruits & Vegetables

You definitely know how to wash your fruits and vegetables well, don’t you?

But, do you know that this is the most important step in preparing smoothies?

It is a critical step, and if you love eating your apples and carrots raw, then you should consider reading this section.

Why?

Washing is your first line of defense against the food-borne diseases.

It also prevents pesticide exposure which could cause cancer.

  • Pesticides: Whether you are buying organic produce or not, you are buying produce full of pesticides. Organic produce has natural pesticides. From statistics, 80 percent of the pesticide consumed by Americans come from agricultural produce.
  • Residual soil: Also, washing produce is essential for the removal of residual soil. The residual soil is the biggest source of food-borne diseases like Escherichia coli.
  • Kids: you also need to wash the produce for the sake of children. If you have kids, washing the produce will protect children’s immune system because it is weak.

Is tap water enough to wash the produce?

Yes.

A study reveals that tap water is better than vegetable washes and it gets rid of as much as 98 percent of the bacteria present.

Just make sure you clean the produce thoroughly.

Here’s a great video that shows you to do it best:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FYVgGwYeEiU

General washing steps and tips:

  • Wash your hand and the blending utensils thoroughly to avoid transferring bacteria.
  • Fill the sink with cool water.
  • Add ¼ cup vinegar to remove pesticide residues and kill the germs.
  • Squeeze in some lemon to kill the bacteria.
  • Do not use dishwashing liquid because fruits and vegetables have absorbent surfaces.
  • Get rid of the outer layers of the green leafy vegetables.
  • Rinse celery and kale thoroughly to remove soil residues.
  • Use a food-grade brush to agitate pears and apples, and to remove wax.
  • Don’t peel or cut before washing, to avoid transferring bacteria to the inner parts.
  • Dry the produce thoroughly after washing. Use a paper towel or a clean cloth to prevent rotting and to keep your fridge clean.

These steps will ensure that you get rid of debris while preventing illnesses from Salmonella, Listeria, and E. coli.

Some more washing tips:

Wash the firm fruits and the root vegetables like celery, grapes, apples, and stone fruits as soon as you get home.

By doing this, you can set the foods out as snacks.

However, you should wash the delicate foods like mushrooms and berries just before use.

This prevents mold formation and destruction.

You should also wash the pre-packed fruits and vegetables, even if the packaging says that they have been washed.

How to Make Your Produce Last Longer

You don’t want your produce going bad two days after shopping. Do you?

For that reason, you should hold your produce like gold.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W2xK3zECFcQ

Immediately after shopping, keep your produce on insulated bags in the car.

You can also put them in a cooler. The goal is to prevent wilting and the loss of nutrients.

Also, you need to make sure that the produce stays fresh until they are ready for use.

Here is a tip: schedule grocery shopping for mornings or evenings when it is cooler.

While fruits like avocados and bananas are perfectly okay on the counter-top, most other fruits and vegetables are safe refrigerated.

You can store bananas, apples, cucumbers, and eggplant on the countertop, but out of direct sunlight for up to seven days.

But apples and garlic can stay fresh for three to six months if stored in a cool, dark, and a dry place.

Avocadoes are safe on the counter or in the fridge for up to seven days when they are ripe.

Other fruits and veggies, including fresh apricots, asparagus, beets, unwashed berries, cabbages, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, celery, carrots, cherries, figs, and grapes and melons, among others, can stay for up to seven days refrigerated in the crisper drawer.

Kale and collard greens last for as long as a week as long as you store them using the tub method.

Your dandelion greens, as well as lettuces, will last for three to five days while chard lasts for four or five days.

Baby spinach and mixed greens bought in bulk will last for 3 or 4 days.

Freezer burn alert! While kale and spinach freeze well, other greens shouldn’t be frozen because they are too delicate and they will get freezer burn!

Freezing Fruits

This is the most economical, and the easiest way of storing fresh fruits. But, how hard can it be?

Well, freezing fresh fruit is a tad bit more than just putting fruits in a fruit bag and throwing them in the freezer.

Freezing is essential for those thick and icy cold smoothies – I prefer the use of frozen fruit and vegetables to adding ice cubes.

But, that isn’t all – freezing is ideal when a fruit is almost out of season and you still wish to enjoy its goodness.

And also, it is one of the best ways to save money.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0KhmvZTXs08

I am guessing that you already have a general idea on how to freeze produce, but, given the number of times your freezing attempts turned out less than expected, here is my simple guide for freezing produce:

  • Do not mix fruits, ever! Instead, put every fruit in its dedicated zip-top bag. Put bananas in different bags and the different types of berries in different bags.
  • Organize them well. Organization ensures that you can use the same zip-top later.
  • No plastic containers: I can see you’re raising your eyebrows and hands! You shouldn’t use plastic containers to store fruits because they will stick to the sides. At the same time, containers take up too much room.
  • Use a sharpie to label the bags. On the bag, write the fruit’s name and the date you froze the fruits. This helps in sorting things out, ensuring that you use the older fruits first.

How to Save A Lot of Time Making Smoothies

Though this isn’t a necessity, the easiest way of ensuring that you spend less than ten minutes preparing smoothies in the morning is by preparing the ingredients ahead of time.

Pre-packaging chopped ingredients saves you time.

You can chop up your fruits and vegetables the night before and then refrigerate them in sealed containers for blending in the morning.

Alternatively, you can pick a day, prepare your ingredients for the week, divide then in serving sized and then keep them in freezer-safe containers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lwomIpbEQ1A

Step #4: Blend Your Smoothie… the Right Way!

So actually there is a wrong way to do it?

Yes!

Blending the perfect smoothie is more than throwing in ingredients randomly into the blender.

Several things come into play when it comes to blending smoothies.

The ingredients, blending speeds, time and the order of ingredients determine how perfect or imperfect your final product is.

Here are the steps and tips you should follow when blending your smoothies:

  • Put your liquid base.
  • Add the chopped greens and fruits.

The liquid base should be just enough to cover the fruits.

For the best green smoothies, you have to blend the fruit first because adding veggies first will bottleneck the process and the fruits won’t reach the blades.

Also, blending the fruit first ensures that you have a fruit puree pulling the greens towards the blades faster.

  • Make use of the pulse button.

Of all the buttons on the blender, the pulse function is the most important.

So, if your blender comes with the pulse function, use it to break up and chop your smoothie’s ingredients further.

The pulse function is also essential in dislodging every piece of fruit that gets stuck in the blades.

  • Blend at different speeds.

By blending fruits and vegetables at different speeds, you simplify the blending process.

While most of us blend at the high-speed setting first, it isn’t always the best place to start.

Often, you will find yourself stopping halfway through to spoon the ingredients, then having to blend the mix again, at high speeds.

Annoying, isn’t it?

Having been in your shoes before, I understand your frustrations and I have come forth with a solution:

After pulsing, begin the blending process on the low setting and then increase the speed 20 or 30 seconds into blending.

In case you still need to find a need to push the ingredients around, stop the blender and then restart blending from the low to the high setting.

Another alternative is adding a little extra base liquid, especially if the above attempts fail.

Something else – if you own a low-wattage blender, say around 300 watts, you should consider blending the liquid base with the fruit (pulse-low-high, in that order), then, add your greens in batches.

Don’t forget that the type of greens you are using matter – kale is tougher than spinach.

However, you should consider getting a high powered blender if you have a low wattage one.

I recommend anything between 1100 and 1600 watts.

  • Add powders.

Do this only after you have a smooth liquid base, fruit and veggie mixture.

Powders include your superfoods.

As mentioned above, use one powder at a time, when starting out.

Blend for a few seconds and until all the powder is sucked into the liquid.

  • Add the dry ingredients.

If you have chia seeds, almonds or walnuts, now is the time to add them.

  • Add Butters.

This is an optional step that depends on your needs.

  • Add ice.

Your blender should be on the highest setting for this. If you have an ice-crushing blender, the better.

  • Blend until you attain a smooth consistency.

As you can tell from above, the first steps are crucial.

And, for the consistency plus fast blending, you need a high-powered blender.

The low-power blenders are preferable if you’re on a tight budget.

High-powered blenders take a little less time than the low-powered blenders which can take at least 10 minutes.

Therefore, the top-of-the-range, high-powered blenders are better than the low-powered blenders.

Step #5: Serve, Drink, Enjoy & Welcome those Benefits!

Congratulations!

Now it’s your time to enjoy your smoothie that is bursting with nourishing nutrients.

For the best experience, I recommend serving up your smoothie in your favorite container.

While mason jars with colorful straws and lids are my kind of smoothies, you can also drink your smoothie from a glass or a disposable cup.

Heck! A cup and a spoon works perfectly well if you have a thick smoothie, and in no rush! All you need to do is to enjoy your smoothie!

Further Reading17 Best Smoothie Containers (To-Go Cups/ Bottles/ Glasses/ Jars)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=anlti4p5L8E

To swallow or to chew your smoothie?

Why would anyone want to chew a drink?

While I have mainly mentioned that you drink smoothies, it may not be the case always.

As described in the definition, smoothies “are thick beverages” but it fails to mention that a smoothie is a meal too.

Through experience, you harness all the nutritional power of smoothies when you chew (eat) it:

  • Chewing kicks off the digestion process since saliva has enzymes (salivary amylase) which breaks down carbohydrates in the mouth.
  • Also, when chewing, you prepare your stomach for digestion of food.
  • Chewing your smoothies will minimize gas, bloating, or stomach aches too.
  • When your smoothie comes out chunky, say when using a low-powered blender, chewing is essential.
  • Finally, chewing and not swishing the smoothie around the mouth protects your teeth. This is because smoothies have natural sugars and without proper care, you will damage your teeth.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yqGzD65ZemA

How else can you savor the greatness of your smoothie?

Even when in a rush, you should try not to gulp your smoothie.

Drinking and then chewing your smoothies slowly will prevent stomach cramps.

By sipping your smoothie slowly, you feel nice and satisfied without filling up too fast.

Despite the disclaimers in this guide, please, have fun with the smoothie making process.

Though lengthy, I hope that this guide gives you all the insights of smoothie making.

However tough it may get, though it shouldn’t, remember that you are going through all this trouble for the benefits of your body.

Step #6: Clean Your Blender Quickly With This Hack!

How often do you clean your blender?

By clean, I mean thoroughly cleaning with soap and water, not just rinsing.

For most of us, rinsing does the trick.

However, if you want your blender to last a few more years, give it a little extra TLC.

You may get annoyed but, cleaning it will add years to the blender, and enhance the quality, and the hygiene levels of it.

The best part is that your fingers don’t have to touch the blades!

You need a dirty blender, water, dish soap, and cleaning tools (sponges or some old toothbrushes)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8qbn7qxV4rU

Cleaning steps

  • Fill the pitcher with hot water (half-full). Place the jar securely and the return it to the base.
  • Run it on the rinse cycle, on high speed, to get the residue out. The water will catch the residue and the excess food particles from the blender. Dump the dirty water down the sink’s drain after running it for 15 seconds.
  • Put more hot water in the pitcher and add a squirt of dishwashing soap. Too much soap will cause frothing and unwanted overflows – a bigger mess! Place the lid back and with the pitcher secured to the base, run it for 30 seconds. The soap removes residue from the cracks and crevices, unreachable by human hands.
  • Dump the soapy water. You can use a sponge to remove stubborn residue. Rinse off all the excess suds and then place your blender upside-down on an air rack and let it air dry. That’s it!

Deep cleaning

You can also deep clean the blender if the base is detachable.

After detaching the components, scrub them thoroughly and dry all the parts well before use.

If you blend often, or if you have small children, senior citizens or a pregnant woman, deep clean the blender twice weekly.

What happens if the blender gets cloudy?

You can make a cloudy blender shine using the good old vinegar and baking soda. Clean as above (with soap).

How to get rid of that funky and annoying odor?

Again, vinegar and baking soda are your best friends.

Pro Tip:  Always clean the blender after use. Not just to keep your kitchen clean, but to prevent diseases caused by accumulated residue.

Step #7: Store Your Smoothies to Save You Time! (Optional)

Can you pre-make smoothies?

Yes! You can.

Now, I wasn’t aware of this possibility in the beginning. In my struggle against time and three kids, I had to find every possible time-saving opportunity.

Won’t freezing smoothies alter the taste?

No, it won’t.

Even though the banana-based smoothies will be a bit darker because of oxidation, the taste doesn’t change.

Also, freezing preserves the nutrients.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kfVacS6wN4M

Steps

  • Prepare your ingredients. Wash and chop them into small pieces.
  • Blend the ingredients together including the dry and the liquid ingredients.
  • Mark and freeze your smoothie.

You may or may not thaw your smoothie when you are ready to drink it.

I prefer blending the frozen smoothie.

But, you need a blender that is able to crush ice.

Since every food loses its nutrients if it stays for long, consider using your frozen smoothie in 24 or 48 hours after preparing. The texture, flavor, and the nutrition of smoothies degrades after 48 hours.

Also, a blueberry smoothie becomes gelatinous if it sits for too long!

Personal Pro Tip: whether you have a leftover smoothie or you made enough smoothie for more than a day, ALWAYS store your smoothies in airtight glass containers. You can also add some lemon juice to it before storing it and shake your drink after you take it out. (The lemon juice prevents oxidation.)

Over to You

I made it my mission to make this guide the best resource on how to make healthy smoothies at home ever created.

I went through all this trouble because I needed to ensure that you get everything right.

You deserve the best, most detailed and accurate information, for free, right?

Having put in the time to write this guide, I believe that it is going to help you prepare delightful smoothies.

Few people take time to read through such lengthy guides.

You are among the few special people and I deeply appreciate you for that.

But Before You Leave!

Have you learned something new from this smoothie making guide?

Or, do you feel that the details in this guide will help your friend, sibling, or acquaintance?

Don’t be mean.

Share this with them!

They will most certainly enjoy it. 🙂

Happy Blending!

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Kate Rhodes
 

I’m the green smoothie enthusiast founder of Drinkess – the best smoothie resource on the internet. Smoothies have changed my life, that’s why I made it my mission to help you achieve your body goals and lead a healthier lifestyle through green smoothies. Read more about me here.

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