It’s mid-may, which means it’s getting warm outside. It’s a well known and oft repeated fact on this here blog that I hate summer. I don’t like to sweat when I’m not exercising, I hate bathing suits and let’s not even talk about the torture of the long school-less break us mothers are subjected to. No really, let’s not talk about it. For if we talk about it, I’ll start weeping. I like to save my weeping for more important things; like for when Caroline is playing ‘Ode to Joy’ on her recorder on a peaceful Sunday morning and I can still hear her over the running water in my shower.
Despite all that I dislike about summer, when the weather gets warmer, I do get a little bit excited about making smoothies.
Nothing tastes better after a hard workout than a cool, refreshing smoothie.
I’ve been making smoothies for quite some time, with a standard concoction of almond milk, vanilla protein powder, ice, banana and spinach. And if I’m feeling particularly cheeky, a tablespoon or two of Ovaltine chocolate powder might make its way into the blender. It’s a mix I’ve perfected to my liking, but it’s also a mix I’ve grown a bit tired of. Smoothies, much like life, require a bit of variety. But let’s get real for a moment: my smoothies are filled with much more variety than my life ever will.
Hey, if you can’t have an exciting life, you may as well drink an exciting smoothie.
Lately, I’ve been all about adding Greek yogurt instead of protein powder to my smoothies. And because there are a zillion different flavors of Greek yogurt on the market, it’s safe to say that my smoothies have been quite diverse. Deviating from my old standby has been fun, but I still stick to a basic formula. Because I’m rigid like that.
I’ve always gone the milk route, but we had some orange juice to use up a few weeks ago, so I gave the oj a whirl, which proved to be a very wise decision.
I use about 1 cup; sometimes I add a splash of water if I feel I need more liquid.
Next up: PROTEIN
As mentioned above, I’m on a yogurt kick, so that’s what I’ve been using instead of protein powder. Protein powder is always a good option, however.
I think bananas are absolutely necessary in a smoothie. NOT just for flavor, but for texture; bananas help emulsify and make a creamier smoothie. I keep a bag full of bananas in the freezer, but using the frozen variety is optional. There will be other ways to incorporate the ‘chill factor.’ Such as……
Fourth: FROZEN FRUIT
I like variety and mix and match my frozen fruit with the type of yogurt I’m using. Frozen cherries are my favorite, but, of course, they’re also the most expensive.
You know what ice looks like, yes?
Six: FLAVOR (optional)
I like the PB2 because it adds peanut butter flavor without the extra fat and calories in real peanut butter. Believe me, I get enough of the peanut/almond butter fat and calories when my spoon takes its daily dunk (or five) in the nut butter jar each afternoon.
The extra flavor in smoothies is optional and also dependent upon the combo of liquid + yogurt + fruit I’m using. If I’m doing oj and berry flavored yogurt, I won’t add anything else. But if I’m doing vanilla yogurt + almond milk + banana I’ll add chocolate or PB2. Or both. Also, I’m quite fond of almond milk + berry yogurt + PB2 to make a PB and J type smoothie.
The options are limitless.
Seven: GREEN STUFF
Make Popeye proud.
Eight: HEALTHY STUFF (optional)
Oatmeal, milled flax seeds, chia seeds.
I personally don’t like chia seeds in my smoothie, but oatmeal is good, just as long as I blend it a long time. No one wants chunky oats in their SMOOTHie.
and finally (step nine): BLEND, BLEND, BLEND until it’s smooth and creamy and everything you’ve ever hoped for.
(insert picture of blender or finished product, neither of which I currently possess).