Summer Strawberry Smoothie

Summer Strawberry Smoothie
Summer Strawberry Smoothie

My kids, on their own, created this tasty smoothie.  We watch Food Network sometimes before bed to round out our day.  This always inspires them to get in the kitchen.  My 9 year old takes this kitchen stuff very seriously.  He gets into the groove and wants to prepare food well after bedtime.  Maybe that’s just a stall tactic.  Anyway, it works on me.  I usually tell myself  “he must go to bed” or I could stay in the kitchen with him all night.  I have found it to be a wonderful place to let childhood creativity and imagination run wild.

 

Summer Strawberry Smoothie 3

 

 

Summer Strawberry Smoothie 2

 

When it comes to juices and smoothies, they are actually pretty talented.  We have been blending as a family long enough that they have  become little “blender experts.”  During the summer months we have an abundant herb garden and that’s where they find most of the accent flavors for their drinks.  This particular smoothie includes the herb mint and their two basic fruits: strawberries and bananas.  More often than not, they will choose these two as their base and then expand with whatever seasonal fruit we have in the fruit bowl.  On their own they will not willingly choose to add vegetables, and that’s okay.  When I blend a smoothie for them I add their veggies and they happily drink it, but its not a requirement when they are being creative.  This is their stage, not mine.  When they make a new drink they always say to me, “if this turns out good, you should put it on the blog.”  So here we are.  I hope you enjoy this drink that was lovingly thought up and designed by my boys.  They think of you as much as I do.  Happy Blending!

 

Summer Strawberry Smoothie

1 frozen banana

1 cup frozen strawberries

3 fresh mint leaves

2 TBSP plain Greek yogurt

2 TBSP raw local honey

1/2 lime – juiced

1 cup full fat coconut milk

1/2 cup almond milk

Place all ingredients in a high speed blender.  Blend until creamy, about 1 minute.

Detoxing Healthy Beet Juice

Detoxing Healthy Beet Juice
Detoxing Healthy Beet Juice

 

This beet juice has become the summertime favorite of my entire family.  It was a total shocker as I never expected anyone to try it, let alone drink it and ask for more.  Don’t you love it when things like that happen?  I work very hard to get my kids to eat healthy and in this case, it paid off.  It doesn’t always go that way.  Just this week I prepared a wonderful whole roasted chicken and vegetables and neither one of them would touch the vegetables.  So I let them drink a green drink instead.  My 8 year old kindly reminds me when he doesn’t like something, that he “drinks his vegetables.”  I let that slide sometimes, but most often I explain to him that yes, he can drink his veggies, but he also has to eat them too.  I may have created a monster when I allowed him to choose between eating or drinking vegetables a few years ago.  I will be blending forever!!!

If you are typically not a big fan of beets, this is actually a great way to begin getting them in your diet.  They are superbly good for you and fortunately are available year round.  Beets are widely known for their detoxification ability.  And, more specifically, beets help to detox and cleanse the liver.  The liver removes toxins and other harmful substances from the body.  Because of this, it is very important to detox your liver periodically.  Beets have become one of the most common and effective natural liver detoxifiers.  By incorporating this healthy juice into your clean eating plan, you will be cleansing your body while gaining optimal health and well-being.  If you have a great beet juice recipe, I would love to hear from you.  I am always looking for new healthy juice recipes.  I hope you enjoy!

 

Detoxing Healthy Beet Juice

1 large red or green organic apple – chopped

2 medium to large organic carrots – peeled and chopped

1 medium to large golden beet – peeled and chopped (you can use a red beet if you prefer)

Juice of 1 lemon

1 cup filtered water

In a high powered blender, place all the ingredients in the order listed.  Blend until smooth.  Because this is a juice, I strain it through a fine-mesh strainer.  This process separates all the pulp from the juice.  You can also run all the ingredients, except the water, through a juicer, if that’s what you have on hand.

Wellness Day & Superfood Smoothie

Superfood Smoothie Wellness Day

I hope everyone had a Happy Easter and for some, a spring break.  We just got home from a few days at the beach.  I love going to the beach, or traveling in general, but eating clean is often a challenge in doing so.  So, whenever my family returns home from being on the road, we immediately begin detoxing with superfood smoothies and juices.  I am participating in a wonderful wellness day at the beautiful Greenbrier Farms (www.greenbrierfarms.com) in May.  This time of rejuvenation includes a yoga session, tour of the farm, and a superfood smoothie (enters Mega Healthy Mama).  As some of you either don’t live around Greenville or are unable to attend this event, I wanted to share the superfood smoothie recipe with you.  That way you can still gain some benefit from the wellness day.  I have prepared this smoothie at many different events and it is always a hit.  It has become a crowd favorite and should become a staple in your smoothie recipes.  It has frozen organic strawberries and bananas which makes it a very creamy cold smoothie.  Kids usually love this drink and won’t even ask why it’s green.  I look forward to seeing you at Greenbrier Farms if you are able to join us.  If not, please enjoy this yummy and nutritious smoothie with your family.

 

Superfood Smoothie

1/2 frozen banana

1 cup frozen organic strawberries

1 cup fresh spinach – packed

1 cup fresh kale – packed

1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk

Add all ingredients into a blender in the order listed.  Blend until creamy.  This recipe makes about 3 cups of smoothie.  If you have leftovers, you can refrigerate the remainder, but I would drink in the same day.

 

Orange Broccoli Creamsicle Smoothie

Orange Broccoli Creamsicle Smoothie

Every week I try to get creative with our smoothies.  This creamy concoction came about because we have navel oranges in the fruit bowl.  My kids love to make popsicles to have as dessert, so I made this smoothie and we drank half and froze the other half in spaceship molds for later enjoyment.  Making popsicles with leftover smoothie is a great way to get your kids involved in the kitchen.  It’s also perfect for getting fruits and veggies into your family.  I love to use frozen organic broccoli in our smoothies several times a week because this vegetable happens to be one that my children will not eagerly eat on their own.  So, I started blending it with different fruits and it became a staple in my smoothie arsenal.  According to www.whfoods.com, broccoli may help us solve our vitamin D deficiency epidemic.  Broccoli has an unusually strong combination of both vitamin A and vitamin K.  Ample supplies of these two vitamins help keep our vitamin D metabolism in balance.  Those who are deficient in vitamin D would benefit from adding this nutritious vegetable to their weekly diet.

 

Orange Broccoli Creamsicle Smoothie

1 navel orange – peeled and roughly chopped

1/2 cup frozen mango

1 cup frozen organic peaches

1 cup frozen organic broccoli

1/3 cup plain greek yogurt

1 cup coconut milk – full fat

splash orange juice – no sugar added

Place all the ingredients into a blender and blend until creamy.  Drink half and freeze half in popsicle molds.  I hope you enjoy!

 

Beet the Winter Blues Smoothie

Beet the Winter Blues Smoothie

For those of you who don’t know me well or see me on a regular basis, I am a very fair skinned, blue-eyed girl.  The winter months just about kill me.  I am extremely cold natured and my hands and feet remain ice cubes from November-February.  So, while this smoothie isn’t a warm one, it is loaded with detoxifying fruits and vegetables that keep my body healthy and in turn my mood happy.  I have just started blending this mixture and my whole family drinks it down and asks for more.  So, if you have a large family or loved ones with strong appetites, you may want to double this recipe.

Beets are one of those tricky root vegetables that many people aren’t quite sure what to do with.  They also have a very “earthy” flavor that can sometimes turn people off all together. If you are one of those people, let me tell you a bit about all the benefits that come with adding beets to your diet.  According to www.WHFoods.org, these colorful root vegetables contain powerful nutrient compounds that help protect against heart disease, birth defects and certain cancers, especially colon cancer.  Another great benefit worth mentioning is that many of the phytonutrients found in beets have been shown to function as anti-inflammatory compounds.  All of these benefits help in keeping your body working in a manner that maintains a strong immune system.

This smoothie recipe uses golden beets, but if you are not able to find those, please use whatever beet variety you choose or prefer.  I like the golden beets because they seem a bit sweeter and they help produce the most beautiful yellow smoothie when added with the other ingredients.  I hope you enjoy!

 

Beet the Winter Blues Smoothie

1 cup frozen organic peaches

1/2 frozen banana

1 golden beet – peeled and chopped

1/3 cup orange juice

1/2 cup plain kefir

1 TBSP raw local honey

Place all the ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.  Serves 2.

 

Fresh Basil, Kale & Wild Blueberry Smoothie

Fresh Basil, Kale and Wild Blueberry Smoothie

I am always on the lookout for great smoothie recipes.  I stumbled upon a variation of this smoothie a few weeks ago at a very beautiful website www.mynewroots.org.  I have always been a big fan of blending blueberries and kale as they complement one another nicely in smoothie form, and the addition of fresh basil really peaked my interests.  I, like many people, have an abundance of fresh basil in my garden right now.  Any new idea of how to incorporate this great herb into my healthy eating plan, is a plus.  The result was, in my opinion, superb.

Now, anytime I prepare a smoothie blend, I add some form of superfood to boost the nutrition level.  In this particular smoothie, I added dried mulberries.  I have just learned about mulberries and from all the research I can find, they are an ancient superfood.  Botanically, the mulberry is obtained from the silkworm tree and grows abundantly in warmer climates.  There are several different species of mulberries, and the one I am using is the white mulberry.  The health benefits of this super fruit include high levels of vitamin C, calcium, antioxidants and iron.  The brand I purchase is Navitas Naturals and their website is loaded with essential superfoods and recipes.  www.navitasnaturals.com.  I hope you enjoy this delicious and nutritious smoothie.

 

Fresh Basil, Kale & Wild Blueberry Smoothie 

3/4 cup frozen wild blueberries

1/2 frozen banana

1 handful kale – chopped

small handful fresh basil leaves

1 TBSP chia seeds

1 TBSP dried mulberries

1 TBSP tahini paste – if you do not have tahini, use any type of nut butter you have on hand

1 cup almond milk

1/2 cup ice

Place all ingredients into blender and blend until smooth and creamy.  If you are not using a high-powered blender, you may need to add a bit more milk so that everything blends nicely.

 

 

Healthy Raw Tomato Juice

Healthy Raw Tomato Juice

“I should’ve had a V8″….Well now you can.  This homemade raw tomato juice is divine and it is packed with nutritional goodness.  I picked tons of tomatoes from my garden yesterday and as I pondered what to do with them, my blender was staring at me.  So, I began gathering all the ingredients that I thought would be yummy in tomato juice.  As it turns out, I did pretty well.  This drink is refreshing and spicy all at the same time.  My husband very hesitantly gave it a try and uttered, “I was scared at first, but that is really good!”  Mission complete!  I realize this method is much more time consuming than purchasing bottled V8 juice, but this version has much less sodium and unwanted products, that it boasts well for taking the time to make it.  Please feel free to experiment with this recipe as you wish.  Some people like a spicier version and some people add sweetener to adjust the flavor, so just get creative.  I hope you enjoy!

 

Healthy Raw Tomato Juice

4 cups fresh tomatoes – chopped

1/3 cup packed fresh basil – chopped

1/3 cup parsley – chopped

1 large stalk celery – chopped

1 large banana pepper – seeds removed for less spice – chopped

1 tsp sea salt

4 dashes sriracha hot sauce

1/4 cup gluten free worcestershire sauce

1/4 lemon juice

pepper to taste

Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.  Blending may produce some foam, but it will settle as the juice sits.  Refrigerate and consume within 2 days.

Basic Green Smoothie

Basic Green Smoothie

As most of you know, smoothies are a big part of my daily routine.  I love the flexibility and array of fresh whole foods that can be used in making many different drinks.  Blending raw fruits and vegetables allow you to maintain all the vital nutrients that are somewhat lost during the cooking process.  These vital nutrients are called micronutrients and they are essential for the healthy functioning of your cells and tissues.  Consuming  a well-balanced diet consisting of fresh fruits and vegetables ensures you are absorbing these healthy nutrients.  I tend to throw whatever I have on hand into the blender, so please know this recipe is just a place to start.  Use your imagination and experiment with many different fruits and vegetables.  I also incorporate recipes from The Blender Girl at http://healthyblenderrecipes.com/the_blender_girl/.  She has a wonderful assortment of different smoothie recipes and ideas.  I often take one of her recipes and tweak it a bit according to what I have on hand.  Take the time to peruse her blog…You won’t be sorry.

I have recently purchased a Vitamix and if you are in the market for a blender, I can’t say enough about this wonderful kitchen tool.  It performs exactly as it is advertised.  However, I know several other high-end blenders work extremely well.  Please don’t feel like you need to run out and purchase a new blender.  Start with the one you have and just begin the road to health with whole food smoothies.  Enjoy!

 

Basic Green Smoothie

3 stalks organic celery – diced

1/2 organic cucumber – diced

1 organic green apple – diced

2 cups packed organic romaine lettuce – chopped

1/2 avocado

juice from 1 lime

1 cup coconut water

1/2 cup filtered water

1 cup ice

Place all fruits and vegetables into blender.  Add liquids and ice.  Blend until smooth and creamy.