Get A Good Machine
Vitamix is tops. Breville and Waring do the job. Skip NINJA, Osterizer and Kitchenaid for now. These are tempting due to price, but aren’t tough enough to pulverize the really pulpy stuff. It’s all about the high-speed motor. Consider buying used, catch a good sale, or pay in installments, but get a Vitamix if at all possible.
Smoothie staples break down in two main categories: “Very Perishable” (think: raw fruits, raw veges, probiotics) and “Less Perishable” (nuts, seeds, green powders, protein powders, non-dairy milks, frozen fruits).
In the “Very Perishable” (fruits and veges department), almost anything goes! Literally, kale, avocado, lemon, carrots, berries, spinach, apples, oranges, celery, bananas, cucumbers pineapples, mangos, limes, lettuce, zucchini! Buy what looks fresh and delicious to you -- seasonal, organic and local if at all possible. If you’d like to add a probiotic, consider plain greek yogurt or open a few probiotic capsules right into your blender.
In the “Less Perishable” department, alternate between adding chia seeds, flax seeds and wheat germ for both taste and nutrient variety. Cow milk is unnecessary and not particularly healthy, so go for rice milk, almond milk, hemp milk, cashew milk or coconut milk instead. If you haven’t tried these yet, all are mild in taste -- yummy additions to any smoothie. You can even make your own in a juicer!
Quick Tip: Keep Your freezer stocked with frozen berries and frozen bananas, so you can make a smoothie even if you ASdon’t have much in the way of fresh stuff.
I’m a big fan of the green powders. They are such a concentrated way to get a bunch of diverse greens into your system. Organic Barlean’s Greens (my personal fave) contains land and sea grasses and sea vegetables. Shakeology is another good one, especially for those with sensitive taste buds. You can develop a taste for the flavor of chlorophyll (It tastes like health to me!), but start with small scoops if you aren’t yet accustomed to it. I also add a splash of oj to every smoothie I make because I love the mellow citrus flavor and how it brings the other flavors together.
So that’s the skinny on smoothies for newbies. Recipes to come next :)