The Wonders of Green Smoothies

img_5296Did you know that through one green smoothie you can consume 5-8 servings of fruits and vegetables? Did you also know that eating green smoothies is one of the easiest way to digest the full nutrients of fruits and vegetables?

Green smoothies are a wonderful alternative, as opposed to juices, of absorbing the full potential  by retaining the entire whole form of the fruit/vegetable, thus receiving all the fiber. They can assist in boosting energy, building your immune system, detoxing impurities, and loosing weight. Greens are rich in magnesium and alkaline minerals like calcium and are superb in their Omega-3 unsaturated fat content.  Believe it or not, greens are one of the richest sources of protein.

Another one of my new year goals was to begin eating more greens in our diet. What better way than to include these in our morning smoothies? We serve kefir smoothies three times a week for breakfast, so my desire was to discreetly begin adding some nutritious greens to the mix. I have found it to be incredibly simple, delicious, and so much easier to eat than a large salad (especially for the kids). Not only can you really not taste the greens at all, but you are getting a huge boost in nutrition. Greens are especially frugal and thus another good encouragement to begin consuming them. We have stayed amazingly healthy over this past month since beginning the green smoothie pursuit, even when we have been exposed to some nasty illnesses around us. Could it be?

The best combination is a balance of 40% greens to 60% fruits. Keep the greens varied as well. Spinach is our favorite, in addition to kale. Other options include:  celery, chard, romaine, alfalfa, parsley, beet greens, and collard greens.

I have found you can make a green smoothie out of pretty much any fruit and greens combination!

Here is how I start. Combine:

I have found it easiest with a traditional blender to combine the greens first in order to get them real smooth. This would not be necessary with a Vita-Mix, but with a standard blender combining all the ingredients at once usually leaves you with green clumps.

img_52981 1/2 cups of liquids (I usually use a combination of water, coconut milk, and kefir)
3 oz or more fresh greens, which is approximately half a bag or 3 large handfuls (spinach or kale are best!) -start with smaller quantities and work you way up!
2-3 Tbsp orange juice concentrate, optional (this is a more frugal alternative than using pre-mixed juices – it stretches the juice further)

After these ingredients are thoroughly blended, you can add an assortment of fruit.

Here are our favorite additions:

1/2-1 cup Frozen strawberries or raspberries
1 Banana
1/2 cup Frozen Blueberries
1/4 cup Frozen Pineapple
2-3 Frozen Peach slices

I have also used canned pears on occasion as well.

Blend and add a little stevia or honey to sweeten and any additional boosters.

Additional boosters:

Ground flax seeds
Ground pumpkin seeds
Coconut oil


Further Reading & Recipes

There are a wealth of recipes out their for green smoothies!

Green for Life by Victoria Boutenko – This book is a great resource of information on all the health benefits of eating greens!

Green Smoothie Recipes & In-depth Info

Creamsicle Green Smoothie

Groovy Green Smoothie

Making Green Smoothies appealing for Kids

Ode to My Green Smoothie

About Lindsay

Lindsay Edmonds is first a lover of Jesus, wife, mother of four, homemaker, and writer. She loves inspiring women around the world toward simple, natural, and intentional living for the glory of God.

110 Responses to The Wonders of Green Smoothies

  1. Annie July 17, 2012 at 5:18 am #

    Thanks for this post! I am so excited-I just got a nice blender and made green smoothies this morning as a part of our 40 Day Real Food Challenge! My picky 2 year old loved it and it is going to be a regular part of our routine now. I have a great excuse to pick up all kinds of fruit on sale and freeze it for later. :) Thank you!

  2. Sara June 23, 2012 at 11:02 am #

    Thanks for the recipe, how many servings does this make?

    • Lindsay June 23, 2012 at 6:13 pm #

      Probably 3-4 servings

  3. vitamix vs blendtec February 9, 2012 at 3:13 pm #

    My 18 month old has taken a liking to pears recently (thank goodness) and I have never tried to use frozen pears as you have here. I have some right now that I can freeze so I am excited to try this out!!

  4. Elizabeth September 29, 2011 at 1:04 pm #

    We do not like cooked carrots too much around here, and find with our local coop we get more than we would normally eat. I let my girls drop them into a food processor and shred them. We freeze them flat in a zipper freezer bag. Then I can break off chunks for whatever I want. Muffins, bread . . One of our favorite smoothies:
    1 banana,
    Kefir from Raw Cows Milk,
    handful of frozen blueberries,
    handful of frozen carrots (gets one more veggie in!) .

    I make a habit of keeping frozen bananas in my freezer – so we never need extra sweetener. I think I’ll try our favorite smoothies now – using greens too! Thanks!

  5. Lexi Porter August 19, 2011 at 5:31 pm #

    Great article! I’ve been having green smoothies for years – every morning for breakfast!

    I just wrote a post on my own blog about them, and linked to this article

  6. Barbeques Recipe June 23, 2011 at 4:16 am #

    I like your website, also Knowing your Barbeques Recipe, will help you know the correct and right amount ingredients. Especially since you want to be sure to fully cook meats like chicken and pork on the grill, they have a tendency to dry out.

  7. Jen June 6, 2011 at 1:18 pm #

    I love our smoothies… we smooth for snack every day (my kids are 2 1/2 & 15 months). i haven’t tried alfalfa yet, but we use spinach every day. I steam & freeze in ice cube trays a giant back of fresh spinach from Costco, then drop one cube into our smoothie!

    I usually use:

    1 banana
    1 C strawberries or raspberries
    1 cube spinach
    1/2 cup water
    1/2 cup applesauce
    1/2 cup crushed ice (if using fresh fruit instead of frozen)
    honey as needed for sweetness (depends on how yummy your banana is!)

    Another thing i’m going to do tomorrow is use one fresh peach! Or, throw in a whole apple!

    Broccoli is another green addin that doesn’t offend the palate as much as it sounds like it would! :) This is such a great way to get in all those fruits & veggies i know we’re missing out on without our smoothies.

  8. Nikki October 4, 2010 at 5:10 pm #

    I am so happy to find someone promoting green smoothies. We have been making them for a few years now and I am always trying to get people, especially moms, hooked on them. We love citrus/greens combinations. I like to juice half a lemon and throw that in as well. A little ginger is alright too (not too much though). Has anyone tried adding wheat grass juice?

  9. GreenBean October 2, 2010 at 11:31 am #

    Yes! I love green smoothies.

    My little guy has been drinking them since he was 2. It’s been the greatest discovery for us!

    You’re missing my favorite green smoothie resource:

    I can’t go a day or two without my green smoothie!

  10. Julia DesCarpentrie September 20, 2010 at 4:46 pm #

    My boys will think this is awesome! Can’t wait to try it. Has anyone tried freezing the leftovers into popsicles?

    • Lindsay September 21, 2010 at 1:11 pm #

      Yes, we have done it before. You will want to make the original a bit sweeter for popsicles otherwise it tastes rather bland.

  11. Tami July 5, 2010 at 12:37 pm #

    Am I understanding this right? You should not use raw spinach in a smoothie it should be steamed first? If we should steam it first then why put it in a smoothie rather than eating it? I am new at this so any suggestions would be great:) Thank you

    • Lindsay July 5, 2010 at 3:38 pm #

      That is what Sally Fallon suggests. She says that steaming makes it possible to absorb the calcium. I eat it raw personally and don’t worry about it, because on the other side the raw food camp says it is so healthy and valuable to eat these green smoothies raw.

  12. Sarah July 2, 2010 at 5:21 am #

    Hi, I recently found your blog and am so thankful! you make reading NT book so much easier! lol. I often make my kids smoothies but never add greens. this is perfect! just wondering how much coconut oil do you add? and do you add all of the fruit listed or just one?

    Thank you so much for this blog! I post a couple links daily from it on FB and have several friends begging for more. We all love your blog. We love your shopping list too, it helps especially since we are also from the portland area. I can’t thank you enough for this vital information!! :)

  13. Marie July 1, 2010 at 11:51 am #

    Can the green smoothies be kept in the refrigerator to be eaten over a few days (I am all for this, but I have not made any followers in my family yet), or do they need to be drunk right away?

    • Lindsay July 1, 2010 at 3:50 pm #

      They can be put in the fridge, but the flavor deminishes significantly. Oxidation occurs as well which causes nutrient lose.

  14. Kristen June 25, 2010 at 10:49 am #

    So, how much do you serve your family? 8 oz. for each person? Maybe less for a toddler?

    • Lindsay June 25, 2010 at 1:15 pm #

      The kiddos drink a small 8 oz glass, but my husband and I drink 16 oz each.

  15. Kelly May 14, 2010 at 4:29 am #

    Lindsay, thanks for this post. I’m new to the smoothie thing, and you’ve been helpful without being overwhelming. Hope you don’t mind, but I’ve linked to you on my blog.

  16. kc May 5, 2010 at 9:17 am #

    I just wanted to let everyone know that the bags of prewashed greens in the produce section should not be used. Those greens are sprayed with citric acid (a GMO corn derivative) to preserve them. Also, check all frozen vegetables and fruit to make sure they contain no ingredients besides the fruit or veggie itself. I have also read recommendations to diversify the greens selection every couple of days so that you aren’t eating the same greens everyday. I use raw goat milk kefir (homemade so it is GMO corn-free) and raw egg yolks in my smoothies as well (I have two chickens so I know my eggs are safe – and completely GMO corn and soy-free). The fat content is very important so that even the fat soluble vitamins are absorbed so always include coconut oil or avocado in your smoothies for the best health benefits. I am in the process of starting my own sprouts so that I can include them (some sprouts are even more nutritious than greens and good organic greens are not always available here).

    • Lindsay May 6, 2010 at 5:41 am #

      This is not the case with organic prewashed greens in bags. I am encouraging the use of organic because of the high pesticide spray content of traditional spinach and other greens.

  17. Amanda May 3, 2010 at 8:22 am #

    I LOVE green smoothies!! I happen to be sippin on one right now… (mango, pineapple, banana, coconut milk and spinach.. mm)

  18. Lori April 1, 2010 at 1:30 pm #

    I just learned that spinach should not be used raw as it has oxalic acid in it that blocks calcium absorbtion. When it is steamed, the acid is neutralized. Wonder about steaming it first, keeping it in the fridge then using???

    • Lindsay April 1, 2010 at 2:56 pm #

      Yes, or you can buy frozen spinach.

  19. Carole January 26, 2010 at 10:34 am #

    I hope I haven’t done too much of a good thing….I bought a big ol’ bag of kale and have been using about 3 handfuls in my smoothies (along with blueberries, strawberries, some ground flax seed and juice or yogurt). My concern is I want to make the Zuppa Toscana tonight and I’m wondering if I’ve had too much Vitamin A today already??!!! I didn’t realize how much Vit. A kale has :-)
    Lindsay, do you have any info on this? Maybe I should just make something else tonight…
    thanks for all you do!

    • Lindsay January 26, 2010 at 12:42 pm #

      If I were you I totally would not worry about it. I don’t think you can eat too many vegetables. ;)

      • Brianna March 13, 2010 at 2:42 am #

        The vitamin A in kale comes from beta carotene, which is only converted to vit A by the body when needed. The rest is discarded. You CAN eat too much of it, but it takes a LOT for the average adult. If you notice your hands or feet getting a bit orange, or you start getting the runs on a regular basis, cut back a little. Otherwise, you’re fine.

        Kale is also high in vit K, which is a factor in blood clotting. If you clot easily, you might not want to eat so much kale. But that’s the biggest issue I’ve heard of with eating too much dark leafy greens, kale especially. :)

    • Nodin October 2, 2011 at 9:47 pm #

      Of the ppanoly of website I’ve pored over this has the most veracity.

  20. Mandy Walker January 18, 2010 at 5:26 pm #


    I made somewhat of a green smoothie a few months ago for my now 17 month old son. He is allergic to a ton of foods and I was trying to think of a good snack for him between lunch and dinner. I made him one using spinach, banana, pure pumpkin, ground flax, rice milk, and added a little cinnamon. I made myself try it before I gave it to him and I actually liked it. So, just wanted to say thank you for posting about green smoothies.

  21. Cara November 20, 2009 at 9:32 pm #

    Oops … forgot to hit the “notify me” button ;)

    • Lindsay November 23, 2009 at 1:25 pm #

      Yes, I throw in raw eggs occasionally, but only those that come directly from the farmer. I personally think it is safer if you know the farmer and their practices…there is more guarantee of safety this way. Free range does not necessarily mean it is actually pastured. It only means it has access to pasture.

      • Heather July 19, 2010 at 3:46 pm #

        Lindsay, Do you use all of the fruit you suggested for 1 smoothie (strawberries, banana, blueberries, pineapple, and peach) or just pick a few?

        • Lindsay July 20, 2010 at 6:42 am #

          My normal everyday smoothie is: greens, strawberries, bananas, blueberries and orange juice concentrate.

  22. Cara November 20, 2009 at 9:19 pm #

    Lindsay, have you used raw eggs in any of your smoothie concoctions? I have in the past. I was even giving them to my kids with no problems … as long as the eggs were organic and free range. It would be ideal to use your own chickens who primarily forage for bugs and such. A chiropractor said to put eggs in a bowl and submerge them in hydrogen peroxide for about 20 minutes to kill any possible pathogens or contaminents. The inside of the egg is sterile. I feel sick when I eat “cooked” eggs. Not a problem in raw form and I read that they are healthier that way anyways. Just wondering about your thoughts. I am new here, by the way, and enjoying it tremendously!

  23. karen November 9, 2009 at 5:16 am #

    I often read that people are using baby spinach instead of big leaf spinach in their green smoothie. Does the flavor differ much?

    • Lindsay November 9, 2009 at 3:17 pm #

      None at all. I have used both with same results.

  24. Tomi November 8, 2009 at 7:32 am #

    I am just getting into green smoothies, and loving it! But after reading some of the above posts, it got me thinking of a concern I might have. A few years ago, I had a kidney stone, and was told to avoid leafy greens (I never stopped eating them, because I love them and know they are good for me). If I drink green smoothies every day, will I be more likely to have another kidney stone? Thanks for your help!

    • Lindsay November 8, 2009 at 8:43 am #

      I am not a doctor, so I cannot say how this might affect you. I have a hard time believing that green leafy vegetables would cause kidney stones. It just doesn’t make sense to me. Talk with a naturopath, would be my recommendation.

  25. Rachel November 4, 2009 at 6:54 pm #

    Have you tried freezing them? I often need a healthy and refreshing pick-me-up after school (I teach)(especially now that I’m pregnant) and think that this sounds like a good idea. I’ve tried smoothies that keep in the fridge but either they aren’t juicy enough (like Naked Juice) or they aren’t frozen enough (like Jamba Juice).

  26. Renee November 4, 2009 at 10:05 am #

    Oh my goodness, these smoothies are so good! I can’t wait for my husband to come home so he can try it. I have never tried kale before and it was wonderful in this smoothie. I did a combo of pineapple juice, frozen mango, and frozen blueberries with homemade yogurt, kale, organic agave nectar and ground flaxseed. Thank you for another great recipe!

  27. k October 31, 2009 at 3:46 pm #

    I tried this after I had oral surgery and wanted to get enough nutrients while breastfeeding. I used yogurt for the liquid, and they came out really thick (our preference). My husband didnt even know there was spinach at first. I told him my smoothie had fresh spinach and his response was ‘EWWW!Popeye!’ Then I revealed his had spinach too! He was shocked! Of course I used extra steawberries and blueberries to give it a nice purple color.

    • Tami November 11, 2009 at 5:19 pm #

      I was going to recommend this if no one else did, but I’m glad you have. :) My husband also tried the smoothie with yogurt mixed with spinach and had no idea it was in there. He was surprised he couldn’t taste it and that the kids loved it so much!

      My kids like the green smoothies mentioned on here in a love/hate way, so I had to get creative for them to really love it.

      I still juice as mentioned here, but for the kids, they will readily gulp down a green smoothie that has these ingredients:

      -Organic yogurt (or homemade if we have some), preferably
      Stoneyfield’s Strawberry (I buy a big tub of it).
      -Organic berries of some sort from VitalChoice (blueberry, strawberry, ect…) OR I use Wyman’s berries, because they are flash frozen.
      -Real peanut butter (I usually use a flavored kind from Peanut Butter & Co. They are delicious!)
      -Mercola’s Whey Protein (Strawberry or Vanilla)
      -Maybe a little raw milk, depending on the day
      -A banana or two, if we have some that morning (usually do, but not always)
      -Big handful of organic spinach, collards, romaine, or what not for my “greens”, depending on what I have in the house that day.

      Kids love it and ask for seconds! Good breakfast beverage. I just tried Lindsay’s egg nog and wonder if I shouldn’t add a raw egg yolk to the mix, too? Hmm? Will have to do more research on that first with young ones drinking this, too. Even wondering if I should add some organic EVCO? Haven’t thought about it before, but this website inspired me, and I doubt the kids would taste it. :)

      Green smoothies are wonderful when you find the right mix for your tastes! :)

  28. amanda July 14, 2009 at 9:17 am #

    i love green smoothies. i have however had some unfortunate problems after drinking them. i usually do about a cup and a half of raw spinach, half a cup of frozen fruit, soymilk, honey and some genisoy protein powder (8-12ish grams). and every single time i drink them, about 2 hours later i start having sharp pains in my stomach (not of the bowel movement sort, rather of the knife-stabbing sort). i’ve been a vegetarian for years, vegan for part of that, and there’s nothing in my smoothie that i don’t consume every day. have you ever run into this problem? i eat “like a rabbit” as my husband says, so it’s bizarre.

    ps, praise God for your sweet blog. how good He is to move through you to serve so many women.

  29. Tammy June 7, 2009 at 2:27 pm #

    Do you think it would be okay to make popsicles out of a green smoothie? Would it lose any of the nutritional value? I have a son with some sensory issues and I can’t get him to drink smoothies but he’ll eat my homemade popsicles that sound just like these smoothies minus the greens…

    • Lindsay June 9, 2009 at 6:54 am #

      Green popsicles are an excellent way to drink green smoothies. Freezing fruits and vegetables preserves the majority of the nutrients, much superior to the canning process.

  30. brooklyn nurse June 4, 2009 at 7:13 pm #

    Thanks for the great recipe! A friend of mine juices frequently, she adds the pulp left behind in the juicer to breads, meatloaf, sauces, etc, to add fiber & texture. Question: Do you use your blender & juicer to make smoothies, or just the blender?

    • Lindsay June 5, 2009 at 6:57 am #

      I use a blender for my smoothies.

      • brooklyn nurse June 6, 2009 at 12:18 pm #

        Thanks so much! My fiance & I are getting married next year and looking for ways to create a healthy lifestyle for us (and eventually our family to come). I appreciate your tips, and am looking forward to making some smoothies. Have a wonderful weekend!

  31. Emily May 30, 2009 at 2:19 pm #

    This might be a silly question, but do you put ice in your smoothie? It looked like it in the picture but wasn’t listed. And do you use plain yogurt?

    • Lindsay June 2, 2009 at 7:22 am #

      No, I don’t put ice in my smoothies. I find the frozen fruit keeps it perfectly cold. Yes, we use plain homemade yogurt and/or kefir.

  32. Marjorie Walton May 26, 2009 at 10:22 am #

    The article is informative. I will try a green smoothie.

  33. Larissa May 14, 2009 at 6:08 am #

    So I finally remembered to look at this page/recipe and I am totally going to do green smoothies on my diet starting Saturday. Woohoo! Thanks dear…

  34. Kate April 23, 2009 at 11:37 am #

    How much would you say to add of the flax seeds, pumpkin seeds and coconut oil?

    and do you add ALL the fruit you listed, or do you just make a green pineapple one day and a green peach one the next time?

    how much stevia or honey would you say to add? A tbsp or two?

    • Lindsay April 23, 2009 at 1:33 pm #

      I add about 1 Tbsp ground flax seeds and about the same of melted coconut oil (putting it solid usually leaves clumps, so I melt in advance!). I usually do a combination of the fruits listed but not all. Our favorite is pineapple, banana and strawberry, or apple, banana and pear. If I use stevia you only want to add a small dash because it is so concentrated and very sweet. If I add honey, it is about 1 Tbsp as well.

      • Kate April 23, 2009 at 2:06 pm #

        Thanks!! Ou church is going on a “daniel” fast, and since I’m on some meds, I can’t go on a total daniel fast, but wanted a good alternative!

        Thanks so much!!!

  35. Kerrin March 30, 2009 at 5:47 am #

    I use hemp milk or almond milk, 2 tbsp almond butter, 1 banana & 1 cup of frozen berries. I often will add 1 scoop of green vibrance: 25 billion probiotics per dose from 12 strains…certified organic greens, wild crafted herbs & gluten free.

    I’m going to try yours this week. Thanks!

  36. Tribal Talk March 25, 2009 at 11:05 am #

    Thanks for the idea. My family is lovin’ it.

  37. Hannah March 23, 2009 at 10:40 pm #

    I thought that I read in Nourishing Traditions that kids are not able to absorb the nutrients from spinach. Am I wrong?

    • Pamela May 12, 2009 at 1:16 pm #

      That’s a good point,Hannah. Sally Fallon quotes Dr. Weston Price: “Data have been published showing that children absorb very little of the calcium or phosphorus in spinach before six years of age.” Even for adults, it seems that the minerals can’t be fully utilized without enough fat-soluble activators.

  38. Mrs. G March 11, 2009 at 5:28 pm #

    We tried these tonight and loved them!

  39. Allyson March 10, 2009 at 10:46 am #

    We’ve been enjoying green smoothies for the past month or so. We even blogged about how much we like them.

  40. Stacy March 4, 2009 at 11:00 pm #

    I’ll definitely have to try this the next time I make a smoothie. I drink a lot of them in the summer here in AZ (we’re already hitting 90*F here). I generally make a smoothie with plain yogurt, whatever frozen fruit I have around, and a bit of milk to thin it down.

  41. MommyAmy March 4, 2009 at 2:56 pm #

    Ok, you totally inspired me! I’m drinking my very first green smoothie right now! (except it’s actually purple.)

  42. Susan February 28, 2009 at 11:03 am #

    I’m new to looking at your blog, but inspired already! A friend showed it to me and it looks like you live like I like I aim to live. The first thing I had to do from all your tips was this green smoothie because it looked so good and nutritious, I’m happy to say I wasn’t disappointed. Thanks for your time to give us happy homemakers good tips!

  43. alyssa February 25, 2009 at 10:07 am #

    I ran out of frozen fruits, but have a lot of spinach to use, so decided to try a simpler green smoothie. I used:
    1 apple
    oj concentrate
    Lots of baby spinach

    I’ve made this several times and it’s really yummy! With no colorful fruits, it stays a very pretty dark green. :) The orange and apple flavors make it not taste like spinach, even though I made it at least 75% spinach!
    I do love it with strawberries, bananas, etc., but found this to be a delicious version, too!

  44. Naturally Recommended February 23, 2009 at 9:42 pm #

    I enjoyed your tips on making a green smoothie. Smoothies are definitely a great way to get more fresh fruits/veggies in your diet!

  45. joanna February 19, 2009 at 12:17 pm #

    I haven’t read the comments yet so this may have been mentioned, but in a juicing book I read once (and I’ve also heard in other places) that the only fruit that should be juiced with veggies is an apple. I forget why this is so, but reading that has always stayed with me.
    Last fall I bought a Breville juicer on Amazon that I read about on another blog and I love it. My herbalist told me the following recipe that is delicious and I make this often-(I believe Martha Stewart has recommended this also)-
    Green Lemonade
    1 head of romaine lettuce
    1 bunch of kale (use the whole bunch that comes tied together)
    1 green tart apple
    1 lemon (I know this goes against what I wrote above but my herbalist/nutrionist told me about it so I won’t argue! :) )
    Blend in juicer and enjoy.
    I actually add at least half a clump of spinach also. I don’t like the foam,
    so I scrape it off even though I know it has vitamins and minerals in it. Even with the leftover pulp that gets wasted, it is still more than I would normally eat so I am still ahead. This is the only way I will (at this point) get these things down. I actually crave this sometimes. It may take some getting used to but try it a few times-I believe you will come to love it.

  46. Tonya February 19, 2009 at 8:30 am #

    A little tip for speeding things up in the morning is to prep the ingredients for a bunch of smoothies at once and put them in individual ziploc bags in the freezer. I did this before my surgery last fall because I knew I wouldn’t be up to much at first. It was so easy to just grab a bag, toss it in the blender with some oj, and blend!

  47. sheri February 18, 2009 at 9:45 pm #

    De-lurking to say…we LOVE green smoothies too! We’re a high-raw vegan family, with five kids who love their daily Groovy Green Smoothies (even my little baby!) We blend all types of dark leafy greens, and a variety of other veggies can be added without affecting the final taste (try broccoli, celery, cukes, avocadoes, cabbage, etc), and then we add loads of fruits (bananas and berries) and fresh ground flax meal, hempseeds, sunflower seeds, spirulina, and raw organic cacao nibs as a treat sprinkled atop. That smoothie is like health insurance in a glass!

  48. Megan February 18, 2009 at 6:58 pm #

    Great post – never though of adding greens to my daily kefir smoothie.

    Just wondering if you do raw spinach? I used to eat tons of raw spinach salads, but then learned that the oxalic acid in uncooked spinach binds with the calcium and iron, rendering them unavailable. Any thoughts on this?

    • Pamela May 12, 2009 at 1:19 pm #

      Sally Fallon in her book “Nourishing Traditions” states that because that calcium-blocking oxalic acid is neutralized during cooking, “spinach salads should be eaten only on occasion.” I suppose that applied to raw spinach in green smoothies, too.

      It seems worth it to try using frozen cooked spinach.

    • Ginny June 12, 2009 at 4:00 pm #

      I’ve read that vitamin C helps with the absorption of the nutrients in spinach, the iron in particular. I always squeeze lemon over my spinach salads, and you could do the same in this smoothie, although the fruits and orange juice probably provide enough vitamin C.

  49. JC February 18, 2009 at 1:13 pm #

    I’d hate to admit how little we eat greens and have been on a downhill slide since my emergency surgery this past summer (which, is like using the I just had a baby excuse 6+ months out ;) ) and my husband and son love smoothies. :)

    Do you feed it to your daughter in a cup? We’re working on that skill, but my son is a little bit younger and I have enough to clean up. ;)

    • Lindsay February 18, 2009 at 4:26 pm #

      Yes, I feed it to Karis in a regular cup. It is worth the effort! I know of folks that cut a whole in the top of a sippy cup to make it easier to drink smoothies without making a big mess.

      • M.I.A in Minnesota February 18, 2009 at 7:16 pm #

        I ran into that problem too with our little sippers. I found that the tupperware sippy cups and lids work really well. These are not spill proof, thus having a bigger hole for thicker things to get through. It also works well with soup. I just strain the broth into the sippy cup and put the “chunks” into her bowl. Works well.

  50. Becky February 18, 2009 at 9:01 am #

    Thanks for the idea of green smoothies, I never would have thought to do this. I love veggies but still have a hard time getting enough in every day. This morning I made a smoothie with spinach and it was wonderful. It tasted like the banana and homemade applesauce I added even though it was bright green. My son has dairy and soy allergies so I used homemade oat milk and it worked just fine. I like the idea of calling them Incredible Hulk smoothies. My son is only 10 months so he will eat whatever I give him but I might need the marketing for my husband. :) Thanks

  51. jessica February 18, 2009 at 7:55 am #

    what alternatives could you suggest for the OJ concentrate…it’s not available to me where i live….is it simply for sweetening? If so maybe just maple syrup or raw sugar?? or maybe the juice of a fresh orange? I have to say one deterrent to smoothies for me is that I HATE that noise first thing in the morning (esp. if the kids are still sleeping) have you tried making them ahead (the night before) do they still taste as good?

    • Lindsay February 23, 2009 at 5:18 pm #

      I am surprised that they don’t sell frozen orange juice where you live. You can use any juice whether it is concentrate or already mixed. I simply use the frozen variety as it is easier to make it stretch. It adds good flavor to the smoothie, but can easily be skipped. You could also use the juice from a fresh orange as you suggested. You can make them ahead if desired. Sometimes it does impact the flavor, but it is worth a try.

  52. Shannon February 18, 2009 at 6:50 am #

    Hi liked what you said about smoothies and greens. A word of caution, I juiced from many months with Kale, collards, spinach feeling great, and then I did not feel so good and my doctor did blood work and he found my thyroid levels were out of balance, I read many studies stating that if you over load on greens it can have an adverse affect to the body. I think three times a week is good, I was doing on the average 4 to 5. I don’t drink, smoke, drink alcohol and have been a vegartarian since I was a child, I had no idea what to link it to and then I stopped the juicing and blending and when rechecked by my doctor, my thyroid levels went back to normal. Just a word of caution.

    • Pamela May 12, 2009 at 12:58 pm #

      Shannon, were your thyroid levels high or low? I know broccoli will suppress thyroid function, but I’m wondering about the other greens.

      • shannon May 14, 2009 at 10:01 am #

        Hi Pamela, Sorry it too me so long to reply. My thyroid I believe was under active. It was amazing after I stopped juicing and then was rechecked it seem to go back to normal. Did you have a similar issue?

      • Jennifer May 14, 2009 at 9:41 pm #

        I’ve had a naturopath doctor tell me to be cautious with broccoli as well as greens such as spinich and kale b/c they impact thyroid. I second the caution…but still encourage people to eat these health foods in moderation. :-)

  53. Kelly February 17, 2009 at 7:16 pm #

    I am enjoying a green smoothie right now. I gave in to temptation earlier and had some fast food, and boy do I need a green smoothie. I usually do a cup of oj or a combo of half a cup oj, half a cup milk, a banana, a cup of frozen strawberries or blueberries (or a combo) and as much spinach as I can cram in the blender. I love the “fizz” that the oj gives it. I have never tried any other frozen fruit, but I will have to try pineapple or peaches or mango. I personally find the frozen fruit to be key. I think it gives it more of a “treat” feel. Plus I think it gives it a very nice consistency. And I get 4 servings of fruit/veggie in one tasty glass, which is key. I need to try expirementing with different leafy greens. And maybe some other add ins to increase the nutritional value.

  54. Christy February 17, 2009 at 6:40 pm #

    I will have to try these again. My green smoothies had chunks in them (I have an old Vitamix) and the texture was too thick to swallow comfortably. I’ll try the frozen banana trick and back off on the strong greens and start again with spinach. Thanks for posting this. I REALLY need my greens right now.

  55. Sara February 17, 2009 at 6:36 pm #

    I LOVE green smoothies! I tried it once on a recommendation, and I’ve been hooked ever since. My favorite drink includes oranges (we have an orange tree, so lots and lots of oranges around here), frozen pineapple and mango, spinach and water. delicious and healthy! (plus, I happen to think they’re pretty too!)

  56. Susanna February 17, 2009 at 5:47 pm #

    We do these too! We like to add an avocado in. And blueberries help it to look more purple rather than any number of other strange colors it could turn out to be (even though they taste great no matter what color they are!) I often add some Vitamin C powder to ours.

  57. mandy February 17, 2009 at 3:45 pm #

    This is interesting! I’ve never made a green “smoothie”, but we juice veggies all the time. Our favorite (standard!) combo is a carrot, an apple, half a head of romaine, half a cucumber and 2-3 celery stalks. I almost always buy green apples, and they are so sweet and sour that one apple per batch (the above amount makes 2 full adult servings which for us is our tallest glasses – and also a little leftover for the kids, and we have four kids) makes the entire drink sweet enough that I can’t imagine adding in other fruits. Although, I have to admit, for the kids, I usually do add pineapple or strawberries just because the “green” taste is still evident, and they’re pickier than me and my husband. =)

    Anyway, I love green juice but I will definitely have to try the “smoothie” variety!

  58. Danielle Hunt February 17, 2009 at 2:18 pm #

    Hi! What are your thoughts on green mixes like Berry Green? Thanks!

    • Britta February 18, 2009 at 10:56 am #

      Okay so I do cheat on my smoothies…lol…I use a product called Greens + Wild Berry Burst…it’s loaded with greens like spirulina, barley grass, wheat grass, and a ton of other great stuff…It also has a wonderful taste…NO I don’t sell the stuff…lol…you can get it at any health food store or maybe Freddy’s…my mom actually demos it so I get it from her for FREE…what a huge blessing…I have a horrible gag reflux so if it don’t taste good I can’t get it past my tongue…this tastes GREAT!! I load my smoothies up with bananas, strawberries, and blueberries this helps “hide” the green color too!! Hope it helps someone out there who wants to cheat and still get the healthy benefits of greens!! Blessings :)

  59. danika February 17, 2009 at 1:43 pm #

    We love our green smoothies as well. I actually had a doctor for about a year that prescribed them daily for me, called them blended salads! I just started checking in on your blog and I’m really enjoying it. I just recently started my own website and it’s actually somewhat similar to yours ( I have the same interests and it’s fun to meet others that share that. You’re really being a light to so many. How long have you been writing on your blog, it seems well established?

  60. MommyAmy February 17, 2009 at 1:02 pm #

    Very interesting! I was just thinking this morning that I’d like to add more fruits and veggies to my diet. :)

  61. alyssa February 17, 2009 at 12:19 pm #

    Thank you for reminding me of the goodness of smoothies! I’m preggo again and raw veggies aren’t always appealing right now. A green smoothie would help me get some good nutrition!
    I think I’m going to try adding spirulina, too. Has anyone tried that in a smoothie? I know it’s really good for you.

  62. Sandi February 17, 2009 at 11:38 am #

    We just finished our smoothies and the kids didn’t even notice the difference. I added organic baby greens. My 8 yr old did see me put them in and was a bit reluctant but after tasting it she was fine. If my five year old boy had known he would have protested, that’s why I won’t tell him…… shhh!
    I am glad I read your post before we had our smoothies.

  63. Sara M. February 17, 2009 at 11:28 am #

    Sounds good … I can’t get 3 of my 4 children to eat salad anyway. My youngest is my best salad and veggie eater. He absolutely loves them.

    How much does this make? It looks like maybe 2 servings? I have to go shopping this week and I am definitely going to get some spinach to “sneak” in the smoothies. LOL I usually put a banana in along with other fruit – I assume you use a combination of fruits off your list (berries or pineapple with the banana)? I have a bunch of Rhubarb in my freezer … I wonder how that would be?

    • Lindsay February 17, 2009 at 2:26 pm #

      The picture is only displaying a small portion of this smoothie. I would say it makes anywhere (depending upon your combination) from 3-4 large servings. Yes, I normally use 3-4 different fruits with the greens – most often pineapple, blueberries, banana & strawberries.

    • M.I.A in Minnesota February 18, 2009 at 7:10 pm #

      It’s actually pretty good if you like your smoothies with a little zing!

  64. Anna February 17, 2009 at 11:22 am #

    This looks great. My husband and I have started to make a fruit smoothie twice a week and I never thought to add greens. It makes so much more sense :) Thanks for the great recipe, I can’t wait to try it!!

  65. Lindsey February 17, 2009 at 10:49 am #

    can you make them without dairy and have them still be tasty? We have dairy and soy allergies, among numerous others, so I’ve shied away from smoothies. If it can be done without the dairy or soy alternative that would be awesome for our family. Thanks Lindsay and anyone else who can or does answer. Oh, and Lindsay, I love your blog! It’s inspiring and wonderful and oh so lovely. I read it every day :-)

    • Lindsay February 17, 2009 at 2:27 pm #

      Most definitely. You can simply use water or coconut milk as your liquids. There is a lot of freedom for different varieties here!

  66. flo February 17, 2009 at 9:50 am #

    We are green smoothie fans over here, too. (The kids even remind me to put flaxseeds!) I agree with using frozen bananas. I have to make sure we always have them in the freezer, especially for when the kids feel like having “ice cream.”

    Have you tried using the frozen mango chunks from Trader Joe’s?

    • Lindsay February 17, 2009 at 10:11 am #

      I have not tried the frozen mango chucks, but I do use and love the frozen pineapple chunks from Trader Joes.

  67. Jill February 17, 2009 at 8:59 am #

    Sounds like a great idea. Couple of questions…which greens are the easiest to hide as far as flavor? and do you use fresh or frozen spinach?


    • Lindsay February 17, 2009 at 10:09 am #

      In my limited experience, I would say spinach is the easiest to hide. You definitely want to use fresh spinach though!

  68. Aimee February 17, 2009 at 8:56 am #

    I have been making green smoothies on and off for about a year and just love them. I get SO energized by them. My favorite stand-by recipe for it is to use 1 1/2 cups water, 1 apple (peeled and cored), 1 banana, 2 handfuls of spinach. It’s easy and sweet and I always have apples and bananas on hand. I call it “The Incredible Hulk Smoothie” for my sons and they love that :)

    • Sara M. February 17, 2009 at 11:30 am #

      I love the name … Incredible Hulk smoothie … I’ll have to use that one. I have 3 boys. ;)

  69. Mandy February 17, 2009 at 5:08 am #

    Great post! I actually just posted about this as well! I love green smoothies and so does my youngest.

  70. Hi, its me, Jen February 17, 2009 at 5:08 am #

    Standing in agreement over here! :-)

    We love, love, love our smoothies in this family so much I’ve blogged about it, too. Although, I still hide the greens (spinach usually) and make sure we have a nice pink color…hey, whatever works, right?

    • Lindsay February 17, 2009 at 8:54 am #

      Funny…the picture is of one of my actual first green-colored smoothies. Most of the time they are more of a brownish red color! My hubby doesn’t seem to mind though. He says as long as they taste good and are good for him, he will drink them! ;)

  71. Traci Best February 17, 2009 at 4:47 am #

    We love, love, love green smoothies! I have had the best luck with spinach. I (unthinkingly) used some stronger greens I had purchased on sale and regretted it once! I’m not sure what kind of greens they were now, but they were strong and peppery in the smoothie! LOL. We’ve found the key for us is to make sure we always use some frozen banana. It makes a huge difference in the sweetness and the consistency of the smoothie! Without the banana it is much more watery and less homogenized. The only problem we’ve had is that we have done so many we have nearly burned out the motor on our blender! ;)