smoothie ingredientsBuilding the best smoothies can be a challenge because if you are an inventor like me, you want to just dive in and make your own. This however can lead to some problems especially if you are kind of new to eating healthy.

I started making smoothies pretty early on in my healthy living journey. Back in 2010 I found out I needed to be coffee, corn and gluten free (among other things) in order to avoid chronic migraines, joint pain and IBS. It was a journey I knew absolutely nothing about. But smoothies quickly became a favorite because well, I knew I needed to give up ice cream which almost always contains high-fructose corn syrup and it was a staple in my life. Making healthier versions was my new mission so I began with what I had on hand. I have since learned never, and I repeat never put (sweet) pepper in a smoothie. No matter what you always taste it- blah!

Here are some tried and true ingredients to always have on hand when making smoothies;

*frozen bananas (take the peel off when ripe and stick in a freezer baggie)

*fresh berries (strawberries/raspberries/blueberries)

*kale or baby spinach (you barely taste it and it’s super healthy)

*avocado

*almond milk (unsweetened vanilla)

*raw local honey

*peanut butter (or sun butter if you are nut free)

*cacao (raw chocolate powder)

*almonds, cashews or walnuts (optional for protein)

*chia seeds (ground or regular)

 

These ingredients are staples in my kitchen and pantry and I never make a smoothie with out them.  Now, if you are looking for thick and creamy that is your banana, avocado or chia seeds. They add the texture. If you are looking for sweet (like a peanut butter cup) use the banana, cacao, honey and or peanut butter. Those are all good and a huge kid favorite. If you are going for healthy and or green, go with the nuts, berries, kale and avocado and sweeten with honey if needed.

Start with 8-12 oz. of almond milk.  Add your thickener, add your fruit (or sweet), add nuts for protein. For healthy ones, add the kale and spinach. If you want to avoid brown colored smoothies don’t mix too many greens and red berries. Add more berries for the color and a small handful of the kale or spinach. 

With the right combination of any of these items you are off to a great healthy start. The best one tip I can offer (other than avoiding the pepper) is to Keep It Simple.  The fewer the ingredients the better. Do 4-5 things and you are good to go!

 

Enjoy making your Summer Smoothies now that you have the goods! (and let me share, boy are they good! Your body will thank you!