Eat Healthy the Easy Way with Great Green Smoothies

greenSmoothieBenefits-KidGreen smoothies are all the rage right now and when served up in a big tall glass with lots of crushed ice, they can be a great way to get all the fruits and veggies you are supposed to eat in a day in just one or two glasses a day. Smoothies are also a great way to get veggie averse kids to eat their greens too! Since very few of them contain dairy, they are also an excellent choice for packing in your cooler to take on a picnic or even add to a personalized water bottle to take to the gym for a protein packed after workout boost.

If you have heard that the best green smoothies have to taste pretty dreadful, then you have been speaking to someone who has never mixed up one of these amazingly delicious, vitamin and antioxidant laden sweet treats. Here are just a few recipes to get you started.

Chocolate Cherry Green Smoothie

Ingredients

1 cup cherries, pits removed

1 medium banana, peeled

2 cups fresh baby spinach

1 tablespoon cacao (not cocoa) powder

6 ounces of water

Add fruit to blender first, layer in spinach and cacao, add water and blend for 45 to 60 seconds.

Pineapple and Parsley Smoothie

Parsley does have a rather strong taste if you are not used to it. However, it is also very rich in poly-phenolic flavonoid antioxidants, some of the most powerful in the natural world. The pineapple does temper the taste a little though, and you could also add a drop of liquid stevia is you tend to have something of a sweet tooth.

Ingredients

1 cup soy milk

3 cups pineapple, chopped

2 medium bananas

1 cup parsley, chopped

1 cup oats

Add the ingredients into your blender as listed, leaving the oats until last. Blend for a minute, or until smooth, and then serve over crushed ice.

Grape Green Goddess

This fruity concoction is a fresh and fruity treat that is packed full of vitamins and minerals. The green grapes also provide plenty of antioxidants (it is not just red grapes that have them).

2 cups of green seedless grapes

1/4 of a large pineapple

One large banana

1/2 of an apple (any variety)

1/4 of a Lemon

3 cups spinach

2-3 cups of ice

Adding ice first, combine all ingredients in blend and blend until completely smooth, 90 seconds at most.

Red Devil Green Smoothie

Not all green smoothies have to be green in color to be considered a real one. This delicious combination, when well blended, produces a smoothie that is somewhere between pink and red, but it is still extremely healthy.

Ingredients

1 cup raspberries,

5 leaves red leaf lettuce

1 red apple (cored but not peeled)

1 green apple (cored but not peeled)

½ pineapple,

2 cups water

Combine all ingredients in the blender, blend for 45 to 60 seconds, or a little longer if ‘peel chunks’ from the apples do not appeal to you.

Vitamin C Blast Green Smoothie

Feel a cold coming on? Whip up one of these great green smoothies to get the big boost of Vitamin C you need to ward it off quickly.

Ingredients

2 cups fresh spinach (or 1/4 cup frozen spinach)

1 small sprig parsley

1 banana

1/4 cup of mango chunks

1/4 cup pineapple chunks

1/4 cup orange juice

Crushed ice

Blend ingredients for 60 seconds or until smooth. For a slightly thicker texture, use frozen fruit instead of fresh, or add the crushed ice into the blender rather than poring the mixture over it in a glass.

Licuado de Nopal (Cactus Smoothie)

Women in South America have been drinking this green smoothie for decades, long before green smoothies were ‘in vogue’, to help keep their complexions clear and wrinkle free. Cactus is also high in natural fiber and provides calcium, iron and vitamin C in abundance as well.

Ingredients

1/2 cup nopal (cactus pads cleaned, spines removed), julienned

1/2 cucumber, peeled and chopped

1 lime, juiced

1 cup water

Crushed ice (optional)

Combine all ingredients (including crushed ice if using) and blend. The nopal is thick, so you may need to run your blender for 2 to 3 minutes to get a really smooth consistency.

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