I've always been a big fan of white and yellow foods - mac and cheese, white bread, mashed potatoes, string cheese, pudding, you get the idea. So when I was pregnant with my son, I knew I needed to start eating healthier. I've never been a big fan of veggies; I'll eat them here and there, but I certainly wasn't getting 5 servings a day. My solution? Green Smoothies. Okay, well mine aren't typically green, they're usually more of a purple-ish hue once I add the berries, but hey - they have more greens in them than I usually would eat in any given meal. So to me, it's green!
I think I gulped these down almost daily for a good portion of my pregnancy (they're great for breakfast, lunch, or a snack), and I've since continued to eat them at least 3 times a week as they are quick, surprisingly delicious, nutritious, and better yet - easy to eat (drink) while chasing after a 9 month old who can't sit still. I can't wait to introduce my son to these when he's a little older as a way to sneak in all sorts of nutritious veggies...without him knowing of course. Sometimes moms have to be sneaky like that.
I don't really have a "recipe" for these (I never measure), but below is a rough estimate of what I use when I make them. If you want yours to be a true green (as in the color green) smoothie, then add more veggies and fewer berries. I'll say the best part about these smoothies is that they can be varied to include whatever fruits and veggies you want. As long as you use about a cup of frozen berries, they will overpower any greens or other veggies you (or your picky eater kids) might not normally be craving. If you're interested in finding more ideas and suggestions for variations on green smoothies, check out The Green Monster Movement.
Mrs. T's Green(ish) Smoothie
- 1 cup non-fat greek vanilla yogurt (any yogurt will do)
- 1 heaping cup of frozen berries (I use a blackberry, blueberry, raspberry, strawberry blend)
- 2 handfuls baby spinach (I've also used kale and arugula with excellent results)
- 1 banana
- 1/2 to 1 cup milk (I use vanilla almond milk, but any milk will work, or water if you want a thinner consistency)
***The above ingredients would be a great base recipe for green smoothie newbies, but I've since started adding even more to mine:
- 1/4 english cucumber, chopped
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed (you can find it in the baking aisle)
- 1-2 tablespoons almond butter (or peanut butter)
- 1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
- 1 almost thawed cube of wheatgrass juice (I know what you're thinking - "Huh?" Well read this.)
- Put all ingredients in a blender and blend on high for 1-2 minutes until smooth.
- Pour into a glass, drink it, and feel good because you've just eaten something both delicious and incredibly nutritious.
I've found that putting the spinach, flaxseed, and milk in first (leaving the heaviest ingredients on top) helps weigh everything down and makes blending faster. Be sure to vary it up and try different veggies, different fruits, anything you have on hand.
If you're wondering where to get WheatGrass juice, I found mine in the freezer section at Whole Foods, right below all the bags of frozen berries and other fruits. Here's a picture of what to look for (next to it is the ground flaxseed, which you can easily find in most baking aisles):