Showing posts with label smoothies. Show all posts
Showing posts with label smoothies. Show all posts

Friday, May 10, 2013

Avocado-Mango Smoothie

Having just taught a cooking class on "clean eating" to a bunch of friends + full plate blog readers, I am totally inspired to do my own 7-day clean eating gig. I've looked at the calendar, and next week looks as good as any. Check back with me afterwards... I'll be the one with the fabulously glossy hair, clearer skin, stronger nails and perhaps smaller backside. (Whether the smaller bottom is actually the case or not, all that self-care has me feeling like it is the case... which, in a happily cyclical way, makes me want to continue to take care of myself... resulting in a smaller backside. Get it?)

Anyway, this morning I concocted a smoothie worthy of sustaining me through one school meeting, two hours of vigorous tennis, and a grocery marketing run-- and I felt content and energetic. It's one I'll definitely incorporate next week:

Avocado-Mango Smoothie
(makes 4 servings)

1 ripe avocado, cut into chunks
1 banana
1 cup mango, cut into chunks
1/2 cup pineapple chunks (frozen)
3 large handfuls baby kale (about 4 cups)
coconut water, added until desired consistency
juice of 1 lemon

Blend everything until desired consistency. 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

after school snack - super green machine smoothies

Our after school activities have picked up... more often than not, my kids get off the school bus, play for a half hour or so, have a snack, and then we're off to an activity.

Lately, I have been making a green smoothie for myself in the morning, then tucking two glasses away for them as part of their after school snack.

I know what you're going to ask.

The answer: One of my kids (in the photo above) will happily try anything I offer up. And each day's smoothie is "really good!". Sometimes it's even, "the best one ever!".  My other child? It's all about an opaque glass, and an appealing (to a Kindergartner) name. And so, with that in mind, here's our latest go-to green smoothie recipe:

Super Green Machine Smoothies
(makes about 4 cups)

1 banana
2 cups fresh pineapple, rough chopped
3-4 ounces organic baby spinach
2 Tablespoons chia seeds
2 Tablespoons organic ground flaxseed meal
enough water (or coconut water) to reach desired consistency
juice of one lemon, optional (cuts the "green" taste)

Place all ingredients into your blender. Serve in a glass, or opaque, cup! 

Note that the chia seeds will make the smoothie thicken, if you're making it ahead... so, you may need to add more liquid and re-blend it right before serving, if it gets too thick for your tastes!

Monday, February 18, 2013

back on track smoothie

back on track smoothie:
frozen organic spinach + banana + pineapple + fresh mint + water

goes perfectly with a morning of decluttering / organizing

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

green smoothies 101

black cherry + mango + strawberry + frozen spinach + banana + water

I love green smoothies. It wasn't until we were recently on vacation, and I went 3 days without one, that I realized just how much I love them... and how much my body craves them.

Sure, I want to look as hot as the next mom in my skinny jeans, but my body is not a temple right now. I know that it should be. And, there are times in my life when I really focus on being healthy in every way. But not this month. Most days I eat well, but I'm not one to turn my nose up at a basket of nachos after skiing...

with my 6-year-old who thinks colder + wetter + steeper = better.

Add a local draft beer and a band playing Mellencamp to the basket of nachos, and I'd pretty much call that a perfect winter afternoon.

kale + clementine + banana + coconut water

Which is probably why I also crave green smoothies. They make me feel good. They keep my skin clear and glowing. They're portable. They balance out the indulgences of weekends, and start my weekdays off on the right note. As with most things I cook/whip up, there isn't a lot of precision in the "recipe". I make them with what I have on hand, and each day the results are a little bit different. Here is my basic formula for my green smoothies:

2 cups liquid + 2 cups packed greens + 2 cups fruit = 3 (2 cup) servings

baby spinach and kale + green apple + frozen blueberries, pineapple and raspberries + water

A few notes on smoothie making:
  • You do not need fancy equipment. I have an Osterizer blender I picked up at Target years ago that works just fine. 
  • Fresh or frozen fruit works perfectly, so you should be able to make green smoothies year-round! If I am using frozen fruit I let it thaw a bit though so my (non-fancy) blender can handle grinding it up though.
  • If a smoothie tastes too "green", try adding more fruit, or a bit of fresh lemon juice, and work up to the 50:50 green:fruit ratio. My kids like more of a 75:25 ratio fruit:greens. It's all a matter of taste, and any way you make them is great! I recommend starting out with a 75:25 ratio, then working up to including more leafy greens. 
  • Ideas for liquids: water, coconut water, almond milk, rice milk.
  • Ideas for dark leafy greens: fresh or frozen spinach or baby kale. 
  • Ideas for fruit: fresh or frozen banana, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, cherries, mango, papaya, pineapple, apple, grapes, melon, oranges, grapefruit. 
  • Optional add-ins: flax seeds, chia seeds, protein powder, oats, nuts, nut butter.
Cheers! I'd love to hear about your favorite green smoothie?

Saturday, July 14, 2012

chocolate-banana smoothie... and popsicles too!

Let me preface this post by admitting that today's afternoon snack came from a complete and utter desire for chocolate. Had we been well-stocked on the Ciao Bella ice cream sandwich front, I might very well have grabbed one of those and indulged under a tree in the yard. But, we're out (and of key limes ones too- oh, the disappointment). So, I had to whip up something craving-worthy with whatever we had on hand... and it ended up being both fabulous and healthy. Double bonus!

Chocolate-Banana Smoothie
(makes 6 smoothies or 8 Bellyfull popsicles + 4 smoothies)

3-5 ripe bananas (to taste)
3 cups water (or 2C water + 1 C ice)
1/2 cup (or more) raw cocoa
1/4 cup hemp seeds
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/4 cup ground flax
1/4 cup raw cacao nibs (totally optional, see notes)
raw honey, to taste (optional, to sweeten)

Blend everything until smooth. Enjoy as a sweet smoothie, or freeze in popsicle molds for a healthy frozen treat.

A few notes:
  • I have given you ranges of amounts for the bananas, raw cocoa, and honey... some people like more banana taste, some like the chocolate taste, some like it sweeter. I used 4 small bananas + 1/2 cup of raw cocoa and 1/4 cup of cacao nibs + 1 teaspoon raw honey. I am sure my kids would have liked it sweeter, but I loved it this way. And, not given them option to make it sweeter, no one said boo....
  • I used cacao nibs because I had them on hand, and am trying to work through some pantry items... but those are totally optional. If I didn't have them, I would have just used 3/4 cup of raw cacao powder to get the chocolate taste I wanted.
  • I purchased all of the ingredients you see above at our local Whole Foods Market. It's going to seem outrageously expensive if you go out and purchase all of these items at once to make this smoothie. Keep in mind, a little goes a long way. I add flax, chia and/or hemp seeds to smoothies often.... in the 1-2 Tablespoon range. So, these pantry items are still an investment, but a good one. 
  • Wondering about the ingredients? Hemp, flax, chia and cacao together provide an impressive nutritional profile of healthy omega fats, protein, antioxidants and fiber. So enjoy!

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

afternoon treat for the 4th of July: watermelon spritzers

When we roll in from the swimming pool this afternoon I know everyone is going to be hot and in need of some downtime. So, this morning I prepped some watermelon puree for an afternoon treat that's cooling, healthy, hydrating and fun. My girlfriend, Jeannie, mentioned that she was having this the other day. I tried it shortly thereafter to rave reviews around here, so it's one worth passing along. It's the easiest "soda", "spritzer", and parent/kid-pleasing drink treat ever + it's perfect for the 4th with it's red hue!

Watermelon Spritzers
(or Watermelon Soda if you want to call it that)

chunks of watermelon
juice of 1 lime (optional)
selzter (any flavor is great, pick your favorite)

Pulse the watermelon chunks in your blender until pureed. Combine with seltzer until desired level of sweetness and fizziness. Voila!

I pulsed my watermelon earlier, and set it aside for this afternoon. You'll see that the pulp separates from the juice if you do the same, so simply give it a stir or a quick whiz of the blender again right before serving. 

Hope you all have a wonderful 4th with family + friends!! - Eila

breakfast fit for the 4th

Healthy-- and quick-- start to our 4th of July holiday!

Today's 4th of July smoothie: organic strawberries + blueberries + banana + raspberries + 2 cups of organic greens (spinach this time) + 2 cups of water.

And scrambled eggs with sun-dried tomatoes + a side of red and blue berries. (Lots of berries going down little hatches today.)

This is the only meal I am cooking today, as we're out and about. But, if you're looking for other festive and healthy red-white-and-blue inspiration I recommend:
blueberry-yogurt muffins
"flag" cake
mini fruit skewers (adding in blueberries too)

Hope you have a wonderful day with family + friends!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

highlights from raw day 4

Today was blazing hot in CT, and I had to do a ridiculous amount of driving two kids two different places the bulk of the day. Honestly, I was pretty thankful to do doing this raw eating week because the alternative would have most definitely involved less than stellar food from the snack bar, or mindless grabbing of things to tide me over from our snack drawer. Instead, I ate well. Really well, in fact...

a green smoothie made with 1 banana + 6 or so big organic strawberries + a few handfuls of organic spinach + 2 Tablespoons ground flaxseed + 11 oz. 100% pure coconut water

Here's a deal though: some days, the smoothies come out really pretty. Other days they come out downright nasty looking. Needless to say, appearances can be deceiving. So, I have a new deal with my children: trust mom. Take the first sip with your eyes closed, and then tell me whether you like it.

Chia pudding (which I'd made a few days ago and completely forgotten about... actually the darn stuff was taking so long to gel up that I think I'd given up hope) with fresh berries for a quick lunch in between taking a fabulous long walk and driving the kids here and there.

An afternoon snack of these cucumber boats with homemade sun dried tomato-cashew-pine nut pesto that I am totally digging... and the kids are too. Who doesn't love food you can pick up with your hands?

And, last but certainly not least, this amazing green gazpacho I concocted with what I had on hand... in mere minutes. I have a crush on this gazpacho.

Monday, June 18, 2012

cheers to 7 days of raw goodness

I'm coming out of my frump slump. Remember a week or so ago, when I told you I was feeling puffy, sluggish and well, generally just not summer-ready? Well, I am charting a new course. It took stepping back and prioritizing feeling good. I am far from there yet, but I'm on my way. For me, it took signing up for The Nutrition Mom's "Renew" cleanse, just so I had some accountability and support as I embarked on this about face. Hers was a good jumping off point for me, and it's made me  excited to compile a new binder full of super healthy, and in some cases, raw recipes. For the next 7 days, as part of The Nutrition Mom's program, I am whipping up raw meals. Of course, this won't be a perfect science... in many cases my raw main might be the kids side dish. But, I am excited to make it a healthy, delicious week ahead. I'll post a few highlights this week, and who knows, maybe one or two of these raw recipes will catch your eye, you'll give them  try, and they'll become a part of your "normal" recipe rotation.

p.s. this morning's green smoothie (pictured above): 2 bananas + 1/2 cup mango + 1/2 cup green grapes + a few hearty handfuls of spinach + 2 cups of water + the juice of one lemon... bright green deliciousness 

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

(more) simple breakfast ideas for active days ahead!

Summer vacation is just around the corner. I know this because my kids have started a vacation countdown, and with the warmer weather and green grass, I find myself wandering from being super organized and having a frittata at the ready, to taking a much more laissez faire attitude. Lately, I've been coming downstairs precariously close to when the school bus will be arriving, and scrounging up whatever we have on hand to make sure everyone heads off to play/work/school with a happily full belly. Here are three of our recent favorites...

(above) Van's 8-Whole Grain frozen waffles smothered in Oikos Greek yogurt and fresh, organic strawberries.

Oven-baked quesadillas: tortillas stuffed with the last of the leftover scrambled eggs + spinach + cheese (talk about making a small amount of leftover eggs go a looooong way...) baked at 350 until warmed through, lightly browned and crisp. Sliced into wedges and served with whatever fruit was kicking around.

And my recent favorite: green smoothies. I literally have been enjoying one a day since my clean eating week! Each day they are different, depending upon what fruits and veggies I have on hand. The one pictured above was made with: lime + fresh ginger + green apples + banana + ground flax seeds + Vega one protein powder + water. Mmmmmm.

Monday, May 14, 2012

green smoothies

On the heels of my super "clean eating" week, we've been on a green smoothie kick around here. Long after the five or so post-baby pounds came off my backside, the healthy habits have stuck. This smoothie makes a quick and easy breakfast or a healthy after school snack. Green smoothies were one of my children's favorite recipes from that week...after I got them to try them. The color is *bright*, so I tempted them by having a smoothie naming contest. I will spare you the names they came up with...

Go-To Green Smoothie
(makes 1 quart)

1-2 banana(s)
1 green apple, cored
1 orange, peeled
zest and juice of 1 lemon
6 oz spinach or kale (or a couple hearty handfuls)
2 Tablespoons ground flaxseed
1 scoop Vega One protein powder (optional)*
2 cups water or coconut water

Blend in a blender until everything is very smooth.

*If the smoothie was being enjoyed in lieu of our traditional make-ahead frittata, protein pancake, oatmeal breakfasts then I added protein powder to make sure we all had the good energy for school and play. I found this brand of protein powder at Whole Foods. It came in a bunch of flavors, but I just went with plain and let the fruits drive the flavor.