Whether you're someone who likes to enjoy a smoothie as a healthy snack or drink one in place of traditional breakfast meals to energize in the mornings, indulging in a smoothie is a delicious and convenient way to consume a large variety of the nutrients you need to stay healthy. Here are six delectable smoothie recipes that will keep you going throughout the winter.
1. Spiced Cranberry Apple and Hemp Smoothie
This unique smoothie is ideal for flu season, as it contains plenty of nutrients that strengthen the immune system so it can better protect you from viruses. The combination of ingredients has a number of beneficial effects on the body. For example, ginger is associated with anti-inflammatory side effects, cranberries are packed with immune-boosting antioxidants and cardamom boasts antibacterial and antimicrobial properties, according to Healthy Bites.
- 1 cup frozen cranberries
- 1 cup fresh or frozen mango
- 1/2 apple, peeled
- 1/2 tsp. fresh grated ginger or 1/4 teaspoon dried
- 1/4 tsp. ground cardamom
- 3 Tbsp. hemp seeds
- 1 cup water
Combine the ingredients in a blender and pulse until smooth.
2. Wild Blueberry Basil Cheesecake Smoothie
The Wild Blueberry Basil Cheesecake Smoothie is just as mouthwatering as it sounds. What's surprising is how healthy it is, as it's filled with protein, antioxidants and fiber. While you don't have to use wild blueberries, it's important to note that they have about two times the fiber and antioxidants as cultivated blueberries, dietician Kara Lydon explained on her blog. The rich mixture of delicious ingredients has turned this recipe - created by Lydon - into an award-winning smoothie.
- 1 cup frozen wild blueberries
- 3 large basil leaves
- 1/2 cup coconut milk beverage
- 1/2 cup plain low-fat Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup cottage cheese
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 2 Tbsp. graham cracker crumbs
- 2 tsp. flaxseed
- 2 tsp. vanilla protein powder
- 1/2 tsp. lemon zest
Toss your fresh ingredients into a blender and mix until creamy and without lumps.
3. Orange Dream Creamsicle Smoothie
Do you prefer milkshakes to smoothies? This Orange Dream Creamsicle has the nutritional value of a fruit smoothie, but everything else resembles a milkshake, such as its creamy consistency. Oranges provide a good source of vitamin C and fiber, especially Halos, which are easy to peel as well. The vanilla yogurt adds the ice cream-like consistency and taste. Just be sure that you've chosen a yogurt that is low in sugar and calories.
- 2 Halo mandarin oranges, peeled
- 1/2 banana
- 1 5-oz. container vanilla yogurt (fat free or full-fat)
- 1/2 cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 Tbsp. hemp hearts
- Orange zest, optional
Puree everything in a blender on high speed to ensure you pulverize the oranges.
4. Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie
If you enjoy the classic combination of peanut butter and banana, you'll love this tasty smoothie. It makes a refreshing beverage to start your day and provides plenty of nutrients, along with a savory yet sweet flavor. The potassium and protein found in peanut butter are known to help lower blood pressure, while the fiber keeps the digestive system healthy. Bananas are also high in potassium and vitamins B6 and C.
- 2 bananas, broken into chunks
- 2 cups milk
- 1/2 cup peanut butter
- 2 Tbsp. honey, or to taste
- 2 cups ice cubes
Place all of your ingredients in a blender for about 30 seconds, or until smooth.
5. Strawberry-Kiwi Smoothie
This recipe is your classic fruit smoothie. The fruits it contains not only pair well together, but offer a lot of vitamin C and heart-healthy polyphenols. Kiwi is also packed with vitamins K and E, and is a good source of copper and folate. Strawberries have a wide range of health benefits as well, including heart disease prevention thanks to its omega-3 fatty acids. These sweet fruits also have plenty of fiber, potassium and vitamin B6.
- 1 1/4 cup cold apple juice
- 1 ripe banana, sliced
- 1 kiwifruit, sliced
- 5 frozen strawberries
- 1 1/2 tsp. honey
Place your ingredients in a blender and pulse until smooth.
6. Raspberry Avocado Smoothie
This recipe may sound strange at first, but once you try a sip you'll understand why raspberry and avocado make a great pair. Avocados are loaded with monounsaturated fatty acids and disease-fighting antioxidants. Raspberries contain gallic acid, which helps prevent serious conditions like heart disease and cancer.
- 1 avocado, peeled and pitted
- 3/4 cup orange juice
- 3/4 cup raspberry juice
- 1/2 cup frozen raspberries, not thawed
Pour ingredients into a blender and puree.