Learn how to make a quick, delicious and nutritious smoothie using this simple how to build a balanced smoothie guide.
Smoothies are delicious, fast, and nutritious meals on the go – when made correctly. It’s important to remember that meals, whether served on a plate or in a glass, should be nutritionally balanced. So, while an all-fruit smoothie may make your taste buds happy, the lack of protein and fat will leave your stomach unsatisfied.
Luckily, making a nutritionally balanced smoothie is simple – just follow these six steps, and you’ll have a healthy and satisfying meal on the go:
Choose a Base (1/2 – 1 cup):
- 100% Fruit juice
- almond milk
- oat milk
- brewed tea
- coconut water or milk
- cow’s milk
- rice beverage
- soy milk
Choose a Fruit (1 – 1 1/2 cups):
- All fruits taste great in smoothies but some are sweetener than others.
- Decide between fresh fruit or frozen fruit
Choose a Vegetable (1 – 2 cups):
- Beet greens
- butternut squash
- collard greens
- kale or spinach
- pumpkin or sweet potato
Choose a Protein (amount varies):
- Cottage cheese
- Greek yogurt
- Protein powder
- Silken tofu
Choose a Healthy Fat (Amount varies):
- avocado (¼ avocado)
- chia seeds (1–2 Tbsp)
- chopped nuts (1/8 cup)
- ground flax seeds (1–2 Tbsp)
- hemp seeds (1–2 Tbsp)
- nut butter (1 Tbsp)
Give it a Boost (amount varies):
- Cocoa powder
- fish oil
- lavor extracts (vanilla, almond, mint, etc)
- herbs and spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, mint, etc.)
- wheat germ
- If you’re making a post-workout smoothie, aim for a ratio of 3:1 to 4:1 carbohydrate to protein – this is optimal for recovery.
- If you use frozen fruit, purchase varieties with no added sugar.
- Be aware of the fat content of your liquid base and protein – try to choose low fat or fat free varieties.
- You can adjust the consistency of the smoothie by adding more liquid or using less dense fruits and vegetables.
- Be creative! This formula guarantees a nutritionally balanced smoothie – so throw your taste buds some (delicious) curve balls!