Green smoothie with spinach, kale, cherries, peaches, blueberries

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:

  1. Choose a Base (1/2 – 1 cup):
  • 100% Fruit juice
  • almond milk
  • brewed tea
  • coconut water
  • milk
  • rice beverage
  • soymilk
  • water
  1. 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
  1. Choose a Vegetable (1 – 2 cups):
  • Beet greens
  • butternut squash
  • carrots
  • celery
  • collard greens
  • cucumbers
  • kale or spinach
  • pumpkin or sweet potato
  1. Choose a Protein (Amount varies):
  • Cottage cheese
  • Greek yogurt
  • Protein powder
  • Silken tofu
  1. 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)
  1. Give it a Boost (Amount varies):
  • cocoa powder
  • fish oil
  • lavor extracts (vanilla, almond, mint, etc)
  • herbs and spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, mint, etc.)
  • ice
  • wheat germ

Extra Tips:

  • 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!