From berries, melons, citrus, and tropical fruits to spinach, kale, and collard greens, fresh produce is finding its way into the blender as the star of an on-the-go sensation: the healthy breakfast smoothie. Spring and summer bring a bounty of sweet fruits and leafy greens to the produce stands at your local farmer’s markets. Here’s how you can incorporate fresh produce into healthy fruit and green smoothies.
Healthy Fruit Smoothies
Smoothies are a great way to reach the recommended daily intake of fruits and veggies. They are also ideal for getting more fiber, protein, and calcium into your diet. However, it’s very easy for a healthy fruit smoothie to turn unhealthy as the calories and added sugars quickly stack up.
Fruit is already high in natural sugars, so you need to be careful about what you toss in the blender alongside it. First of all, you want the fruit in your smoothie to come from whole fruit (fresh or frozen), not from fruit juice, flavored yogurt, or fruit puree, which can happen at many smoothie and juice bars. Additionally, you should avoid ingredients like sweetened yogurt, sweetened dairy substitutes (like flavored almond or flavored coconut milk), or honey. Instead opt for dairy milk, unsweetened dairy substitutes, and plain yogurt as the base for your smoothie.
Here are some healthy fruit combinations you may want to try in your breakfast smoothies:
- Strawberry + Mango + Unsweetened coconut milk
- Peach + Blueberry + Plain greek yogurt
- Cherries + Banana + Unsweetened almond milk
- Peach + Mango + Banana + 100% Orange juice
- Raspberry + Orange + Plain greek yogurt
- Pineapple + Mango + Unsweetened coconut milk
- Cherries + 100% Pomegranate juice
- Blueberry + Pear + Plain greek yogurt
Healthy Green Smoothies
Adding greens to your smoothie instantly gives you a boost of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. But, not all greens offer the same flavors — some are mild and can go undetected while others can be bitter or overpowering.
For a mild taste that blends well with any ingredients, try spinach, swiss chard, beet greens, romaine, or swiss chard. Other greens are more bitter. These include kale, collard greens, arugula, and dandelion greens. Pair these with sweet fruits to balance the final flavor.