Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Smoothies: Happy Blending!

With kids going back to school and halloween costumes already popping up on the shelves, it may seem like it's already Fall.  But Summer lasts until late September and so does the heat that comes with it.  Fortunately, the heat makes Summer the perfect season for one of my favorite foods: Smoothies.

Smoothies are a fabulous choice because they are healthy, delicious, versatile, and nearly fool proof.  When you think you've got nothing on hand to eat, just some fresh or frozen fruit and a blender and you have a yummy vitamin packed meal.

I know it can be appealing to find one smoothie recipe and stick to it everyday, but try mixing up your routine.  By eating a varied diet you provide your body with a broad range of vitamins and minerals.  Plus mixing and matching flavors is fun and keeps your meals interesting.

I prefer creamier smoothies so my basic recipe starts with a cup of nut/seed milk and a frozen banana.  From there I add in whatever other ingredients call out to me that day.  If you prefer a less creamy smoothie, use juice or coconut water as your liquid base.

Having trouble thinking of ideas other than fruit for smoothies? Here are some ideas for new ingredients to spice up your smoothie:

Veggies: A handful of fresh kale, spinach, or other greens, frozen broccoli or peas, shredded carrots or beets

Herbs: I love adding a heaping handful of basil or mint to brighten up my blended beauties.

Spices: Cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, cayenne, ginger, turmeric (Try this Turmeric & Fig Shake)

Nuts: Just about any nut goes well and adds some richness.  I especially like using cashews or brazil nuts (major selenium boost!).  Soak and rinse your nuts first.  They will blend more easily and become more digestible.

Superfoods: Cacao nibs, goji berries, maca powder, spirulina, chlorella, wheatgrass powder or juice, chlorophyll, chia seeds, flax seeds, hemp seeds, protein powder, bee pollen

Some of my favorite combinations are Mint and Cacao, Berries and Basil, and Cherry Brazil Nut.  What are your favorite smoothie flavor combinations?

The Naked Fig

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