Spotlight Recipes: Simple Smoothies

by in Healthy Recipes, March 9, 2009

Smoothies are a healthy dieter’s best friend, but not all are created equal. Here are tips for creating a light and satisfying drink — all in five minutes or less.

The Base
Deciding the base of your smoothie is essential for keeping those calories down. Whole milk contains 150 calories per cup and 5 grams of saturated fat. Using fat-free (skim) milk cuts 65 calories and eliminates practically all the saturated fat.

With 130 calories per cup, soy milk is another option. Look for light soy milk, which comes in plain, chocolate and vanilla flavors and has only 70 calories per cup. Silken tofu also works well to give smoothies thickness and a great thickness. The tofu will pick up the flavors you mix it with — so make no faces until you’ve tried it (that’s my rule!).

For frothier smoothies, use a small amount of flavored sorbet. Ice is also a great option that will save you calories so you can add other goodies to your smoothie.

The Mixers
Fruit combinations really make a smoothie. Try a combo of various berries or tropical fruit blended together. Add a splash of fruit juice to add more flavor — for example, add 1/4 cup pomegranate juice to strawberries and peaches.

Fresh fruit always works, but beware of the frozen ones. Some packages have added sugars — check your list of ingredients. You can also freeze fresh fruit. Freeze a sliced banana overnight and it’ll be ready for a morning drink.

The Protein
If you’re recharging post-workout or want to try a smoothie for breakfast, you want some extra protein. Try adding a tablespoon of peanut butter or a scoop of whey or soy protein powder. Choose a protein powder without added herbs, chemicals or artificial sweeteners. Don’t overdo it with powders, though — it can create a grainy, chalky texture.

Be Creative
Experiment with different foods to create different flavors. Avocado adds texture and healthy fats — just add a sliver since it’s a high-calorie fruit. Add whole grains such as rolled oats or cooked quinoa. One of my all-time favorite smoothies I had overseas featured cooked quinoa mixed with various melon juices. Try flaxseeds for some omega-3 fats or ground instant coffee, a shot of espresso or a dash of cocoa powder for an extra kick.

More posts from .

Similar Posts

Why We’re Mad About Maitakes

Maitake mushrooms are showing up all over restaurant menus thanks to more than their meaty flavor!...

Comments (40)

  1. Toby Amidor says:

    Hi Pat,

    Look at the bottom of the smoothies article under “Recipes to Try) and 5 (of 6) recipes are banana-free (and Healthy Eats approved!). Click on the name and it will take you to the recipe. The Blueberry Blast is one of my favorites! Enjoy!

  2. Kim says:

    A great non-banana smoothie….

    1/4 c. lime juice (fresh or “real-lime”)
    1/2 c. skim milk
    1/4 c. coconut sorbet
    Blend together…Fabulous.

  3. cat says:

    actually I’m looking for a banana strawberrie smoothie. My husband loves the ones they have at Jack in the box. I wish I could make them at home. They are very delicious and are refreshing and filling. So if any one knows a good recipe. Please forward.

  4. Lena says:

    I don't like yogurt, what's the best way to make a smoothie without it

  5. Toby Amidor says:

    Hi Cat,
    Try the Wake Up Smoothie and use strawberries as your berry. Enjoy!

  6. Shugah Free says:

    I’m diabetic, but I LOVE SMOOTHIES! It’s hard to make sugar-free smoothies. Got any ideas?

  7. Toby Amidor says:

    Hi Shugah Free,
    Diabetics should be very careful if consuming smoothies- since fruits and milk contain sugar it’s very easy to go over your carb limit. Using soy milk or silken tofu may help, but portion size is of extreme importance. Bring the smoothie recipe to your registered dietitian and they can advise you on the appropriate portion size based on your individual needs and can adjust it appropriately.

  8. ginger says:

    here is a winner arnd my house (no bananas needed) and it is the easiest to remember – 4 ingredients – the 1 cup smoothie:
    1 cup of ice
    1 cup juice (any – i make a homade carrot and orange) :)
    1 cup any fruit
    1 cup any yogurt

    and blend!

  9. Marlee R. says:

    1 C ice
    1 C yogurt (vanilla is good)
    1 C frozen fruit (fresh works too)
    1 T honey
    1 C low fat (2% is my pick) milk
    Blend in blender. Flax, protein or any other additive of your choice can be added, also. Great way to satisfy the morning grumbles and a sweet tooth and quiet the naggy "shoulda" voices.

  10. Hayden says:

    Try "Keifir" in your receipes in the place of yogurt & milk. Taste great and boy do I have more energy!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>