How to Make the Perfect Green Smoothie
by Ali Seiter
After nearly 475 days of blending up a mix of fruit, leafy greens, and plant-based milks for breakfast—some experiments producing tastebud-orgasmic morning meals, others grimace-inducing swamps-in-a-bowl—I have honed, refined, and (dare I say) perfected the practice of green smoothie-ing. Thus, I feel a strong urge, nay, a calling from the vegan deities above to improve upon the green smoothie how-to I offered nearly 15 months ago at the very onset of my blogging ventures.
Allow me to define my notion of the perfect green smoothie with a few adjectives: thick, creamy, subtly sweet, fruity, refreshing, substantial, and smile-inducing. Rather than serving as a liquid meal, I wholeheartedly believe that green smoothies should provide a pudding- or milkshake-esque bed on which crunchy granola clusters can happily rest.
In my experience, two methods of green-smoothie-crafting fulfill my seven aforementioned criteria of perfection:
- Banana + Frozen Fruit: produces a frosty, milkshake-textured smoothie that melts like ice cream into the granola’s crevices.
- Avocado + Fresh Fruit: produces a decadent-feeling, pudding/mousse-like smoothie in which you could almost stand up a spoon.
A minimal amount of milk serves as the secret to the thickest, creamiest, most satisfying smoothie in both of these applications. While this quality may require more effort to facilitate blending (multiple times to stop the blender and push the ingredients down…unless of course you own a Vitamix!), the impeccable results merit the slightly more laborious task than that of blending a smoothie with a more generous amount of liquid.
The Perfect Green Smoothie
Banana + Frozen Fruit Method:
- 1 large frozen banana, sliced
- 1 cup mixed frozen fruit
- 1-2 cups leafy greens, chopped (kale is my favorite, but collards and salad greens also work well)
- 1/2 cup plant-based milk (almond, hemp, soy, oat, etc.)
Avocado + Fresh Fruit Method:
- 1/2 ripe avocado
- 1 medium-large piece of rather juicy fresh fruit (apple, peach, pear, persimmon, plum, etc.)
- 1-2 cups leafy greens, chopped
- 1/3 cup plant-based milk
Optional Add-Ins to Both Methods:
- 1-2 tbsp chia, hemp, or flax seeds
- 1 tbsp nut butter
- 1 scoop vegan protein/green superfoods powder
- 1 tbsp carob or cacao powder
- 1 tsp other superfood powder (spirulina, wheatgrass, maca, lucuma, mesquite, etc.)
- 1 tsp sweet spice (cinnamon, cardamom)
- Small knob of fresh ginger, peeled
- Juice of 1/2 a lemon
- Small handful of fresh herbs (basil, cilantro, parsley)
Layer the ingredients in the blender in the order I’ve listed above. You should add any optional add-ins between the fresh/frozen fruit and the greens. Blend until smooth and creamy, pausing to push down the mixture as necessary.
Tutorial submitted to Sunday School, Wellness Weekend, Fight Back Friday, Foodtastic Friday, Fat Tuesday, Waste Not Want Not Wednesday, and Allergy-Free Wednesdays, Healthy Vegan Fridays, Gluten Free Fridays, and Raw Foods Thursdays.
With this template recipe, you too can become a master, an aficionado, a veritable connoisseur of green smoothies. If you seek inspiration until then, check out my Blueberry Basil Smoothie, my Peach, Raspberry, and Ginger Green Smoothie, or the many green smoothies on my WIAW Smoothie Pinterest board.
Until next time, Ali.