This healthy green smoothie recipe is filled with whole nutritious ingredients to boost your immune system, energy, and focus every morning!
Energizing Green Smoothie
I guess the question is: how is this green smoothie recipe going to boost your energy levels?
First of all: it only contains whole nutritious ingredients. No processed crap.
Just, simple, real, food.
Everything in this smoothie comes from wholesome fruits, veggies, and grains you can find in nature.
Second: it tastes incredibly delicious. Even my brother, who looked at me like I was crazy for drinking a glass full green stuff, admitted that this creamy, satisfying smoothie was delicious and didn’t taste like greens at all.
I began drinking green shakes only a few months ago when I started to work out in the mornings. I needed a quick fill-me up, protein-packed snack, but I hated the idea of using protein powder or any type of processed ingredient.
After a bit of experimenting, I came up with a green smoothie recipe that I love.
And I now make this smoothie not only as a mid-morning snack but also for breakfast when I am in a hurry or want something different from my usual favorite overnight oats.
How to make a green smoothie
The secret to making the best healthy green smoothie comes from combining the perfect ratio of ingredients:
- leafy greens
I have my favorites, which I will share in my recipe below, but you can experiment with different combinations.
But overall what works best for 1 serving is:
- 1 cup leafy greens
- 1 cup liquid
- 1 1/2 cup of fruits
- 1 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon of superfoods adds-in
- Pick you greens. Well, it’s a green smoothie after all. And it ain’t going to get green if you don’t add some leafy goodness to it. I use spinach in my smoothie recipe, to get a boost of iron, but any other greens will work just as well. I personally find that kale has a taste a bit too strong for my liking.
Greens to use in a smoothie:
- swiss chard
- beet greens
- collard greens
- Pick your fruit. So many delicious fruits to try! Honestly, you can pretty much pick and choose anything from the list below without going wrong. My favorite choice is using a combination of green apple, orange, and banana. If you are one of those people that don’t like bananas, I found that substituting it with pineapple is a great choice. Or if you love an extra creamy texture, avocado is perfect. Also remember that if you add a lot of berries (like blueberry, strawberries or raspberries) you might not get a green smoothie. The color of your shake will be kind of brown (and not extremely inviting – yes, I tried that!) but it will taste delicious anyway (although you might have to drink it with your eyes closed, without looking at it!).
Fruit to use in a green smoothie
- pitted dates
- Pick your liquid. I have a bit of a love story with oat milk, which is why I put it everywhere, including this green smoothie. But any other plant-based milk will work as well, like almond milk. You can also use water if you want a lighter version, but the texture won’t be as creamy.
Best liquids to use in a green smoothie
- oat milk
- almond milk
- coconut milk
- coconut water
- rice milk
- cashew milk
- soya milk
- dairy milk (for a non-vegan version)
- Pick your superfood adds-in. Here is where you can just use your imagination. I use chia seeds for a natural protein boost. But depending on what health benefits you are after, you can pick and choose from one (or more) of the adds-in in the list below. I would use between one teaspoon to one tablespoon, depending on your taste.
Best green smoothie natural adds-in for a health boost
- chia seeds – a natural protein boost
- ground flax seeds – more proteins and a dose of omega-3s
- bee pollen – antioxidant, to strengthen your immune system
- nuts or nut butter – for extra nutrition and a dose of healthy fats
- acai berry powder – full of antioxidants
- coconut oil – for more healthy fats and to increase your metabolism
- hemp seeds – for omega-3s, omega-6s, and proteins
- cinnamon – for added flavor and relieve inflammation
- maca powder – to increase your energy levels
- turmeric powder – for an extra dose of antioxidants and to boost your metabolism
- spirulina – for an energy boost, but be aware of the strong taste. Not my favorite, at all!
- Blend. Simply put all the ingredients in a blender and blend! Don’t blend it for too long or the blades can make the greens go too dark in color (a sort of brownish look). But also make sure, all the chunks of greens and fruits are gone. Around 1 to 2 minutes should be enough for most blenders. You can also add more milk if you find the green smoothie too dense. There is absolutely no harm in that. If anything, you will get more liquids into your diet.
I find that drinking my smoothie straight away after blending is best. But if you made too much of it, you can also keep it in a small sealed bottle in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. The liquid might separate from the fruit. You might also notice a thin brown layer on top of the smoothie, but don’t worry about removing that. Simply shake the smoothie before drinking it and it will still taste delicious.
How to meal prep a green smoothie
One of the things I love about smoothies is how easy they are to meal prep in advance. You can just chop the fruit, wash the greens, portion them and place them in the freezer ready to blend whenever you fancy having a smoothie. I love to place the fruit in glass jars (as I am trying to reduce my use of plastic) but I have to admit that getting the frozen chunks of fruit out can be a bit of a challenge if you are in a hurry.
To make your life easier, you can use reusable freezer bags, or just make sure your glass jar has a big opening. Plus leave it out of the freezer for 10-15 minutes before blending.
Once you are ready, just place the portioned ingredients in the blender, add your liquid and superfood adds-in.
If you use frozen greens and fruit, your smoothie will be much thicker to start with. I like it that way, especially in the summer. If you prefer a more liquid version, you can either add more liquid or let it rest for a few extra minutes before drinking it.
TIP OF THE DAY: When I am in a hurry, and it’s wintertime here, as much as I love meal prep, I really don’t want to be drinking a frozen smoothie. So I place my blended green smoothie in the microwave for 30 seconds and voila’! I have a perfect room-temperature delicious smoothie.
Energizing green smoothie health benefits
First of all, no matter which ingredients you decide to use, green smoothies are a great way to add vegetables in your diet without even thinking about it. As long as you include dark leafy greens like spinach, kale or Swiss chard, you will get an extra dose of fiber, calcium, and vitamins A, C, and K.
Plus eating just one portion of leafy greens per day is linked to a lower risk of developing old-age related illnesses like dementia.
Green smoothies also help to boost your immune system thanks to the high vitamin content.
And if we look specifically at my energizing green smoothie, there are some extra health benefits you can get from it:
Spinach: Loaded with nutrients (iron, calcium, fiber, and vitamins) and antioxidants, eating spinach will help you to reduce blood pressure level and get rid of free radicals.
Oat milk: Filled with fiber, plant-based protein, B vitamins, and minerals, including iron, calcium, and magnesium, it helps to improve your gut health. But please, make sure you use oat milk that doesn’t have any additives. Always check the ingredients!
Chia seeds: With 17% of protein, chia seeds are my way to get an extra boost in my plant-based diet without using artificial protein powder.
Banana: Rich in potassium, it increases energy without adding cholesterol to your diet.
Green apples: Did you know they are much healthier than red apples? They are packed with nutrients, fiber, minerals, and vitamins and can help to increase metabolism and improve your skin (like helping you to get rid of those dark circles under your eyes!)
Oranges: Anyone after glowing skin? Rich in vitamin C, oranges help to keep your immune system healthy and prevent skin damage.
Tips for the best green smoothie recipe
Don’t use any sweetener: I remember when I was a kid my mum used to add sugar to everything. And fruit smoothies were no exception. But these days, I really try to avoid refined sugar as much as possible. Plus, if you really want to rip the benefits of all the healthy ingredients in this smoothie, you need to avoid adding anything processed. I promise: this smoothie tastes incredibly sweet and delicious as it is but if you have an incredibly sweet tooth, add a bit more bananas, or pitted dates for extra sweetness.
Use ripe fruit: Another tip to get the best taste, is to use ripe fruit. The riper the fruit, the sweeter your green smoothie will be.
If you want a perfectly green smoothie: Use only yellow and green fruit. The best fruits are apples, bananas, mangos, avocados, pears, kiwi, pineapple and any other light-colored fruit you can think of. Using darker fruit like blueberries will make a delicious smoothie, but the color won’t be as vibrant and green.
Switch it up for added health benefits: Using different superfoods in your smoothie every day can help you to get different nutrients. I try to mix flax seeds with chia seeds, and sometimes, if I need an extra boost of energy, I might add a spoon of almond butter.
Blend it: No one wants to find a whole spinach leaf in their smoothie. Make sure you blend it for at least 60 seconds! Unless you have an incredibly powerful blender like Vitamix (and not a cheap and cheerful version like my old one!).
superfood for extra health benefits. You can simply pick and choose your own favorite ingredients above if you want to try something different.
We hear so many things online: one day, drinking juices is good, the next day we discover there is too much sugar in them and we should avoid them.
But what about smoothies?
Green smoothies are made using whole leafy greens and fruit, which means you are not only getting the sugar contained in them (like with juices), but you are also getting the fiber and all the nutritious parts of greens and fruits. Just make sure you balance the fruit content with the greens (at least one cup of green per serving is ideal).
Yes, as long as you balance the ingredients and don’t add too much fruit heavy in sugar content. Drinking a green smoothie a day can help you to get clearer skin, increases your vegetable intake, improve digestion, and metabolic functions. Plus it keeps you hydrated.
Honestly, you cannot. This is why I think green smoothies are an amazing way to eat your greens without even trying. If you use other leafy greens like kale, you will find they have a less subtle taste, harder to blend with the fruit flavor. But spinach work perfectly well.
Energizing Green Smoothie
- Peel the banana and cut it into chunks.
- Peel the orange by hand or by using a knife and cut it into pieces.
- Wash the apple and remove the core (but keep the skin on).
- Place all the ingredients in a blender.
- Blend the ingredients in a high-speed blender for 1-2 minutes until you get a smooth and creamy texture.
- Taste the smoothie, adding more oat milk (or almond milk) if it is too thick for your liking.Pour into a cup, bottle or mason jar.
- Enjoy straight away, or store in the fridge for up to 24 hours.
- Instead of oat milk, you can use any other plant-based milk or coconut water to keep this vegan, or use regular milk.
- Instead of spinach, try some other leafy greens like kale, swiss chard, lettuce, beet greens or collard greens.
- Try different fruit combinations. You can use 1 1/2 cup of any chopped fruit. The best to use to keep the green color are mango, avocado, pineapple, peaches, kiwi, pears, grapefruit.
- Use any superfood instead of chia seeds. My favorites are ground flax seeds, bee pollen, cinnamon, nuts or nut butter, acai berry powder, coconut oil, hemp seeds, maca powder or turmeric powder.
Did you make this recipe? Tag @gatheringdreams on Instagram. I want to see it!