Building the Best Smoothie

Smoothies are very popular. Whether you’re downing a protein smoothie after a workout or enjoying a smoothie as a meal replacer or even a dessert, smoothies are big right now. And for good reason. They’re easy to make and very customizable. For the purposes of this post, we’ll be sticking to healthy meal replacement smoothies.

If you’ve read my post on building a perfect gift package, this post will function the same. I’m not here to tell you exactly the type of smoothie you should make. Below is a table of various smoothie components to help give you ideas, then I want you to have fun experimenting making your own smoothies. Of course, not every ingredient out there is on the list, so feel free to make your own starting with what I have here and add other ingredients you really enjoy! At the end of the post, you’ll find a few of my favorite smoothie recipes to give you some ideas.

Fruits (fresh or frozen)Tropical
Berries [superfood]
Avocado [superfood]
Veggies (fresh or frozen)Greens (spinach/kale) [superfood]
Pumpkin (cooked)
Sweet potato (cooked)
Beet [superfood]
Nuts and SeedsFlaxseeds (whole or ground) [+protein] [superfood]
Chia seeds [+protein]
Nut butter (peanut, almond, sunflower, etc.)
Hemp seeds [+protein]
Walnuts [superfood]
SupplementsProtein powder
(there are a lot out there, consult your physician when adding in other supplements to your food, e.g. fiber)
LiquidPlant milk
Unsweetened almond milk [low calorie]
Soy milk [+protein]
(There are many more, so choose what you enjoy most or depending on your nutrition needs)
Tea [+caffeine boost]
Coffee [+caffeine boost]
Flavor add-insVanilla
Cinnamon [superfood]
Turmeric [superfood]
Pumpkin pie spice
Cocoa powder
Sweetener (maple syrup, agave nectar, etc)
Matcha powder [+caffeine boost]
Yogurt (we prefer plant-based) [+protein]
Shredded coconut
Mint (fresh or extract)
GrainsCooked rice
Oats (cooked or raw rolled oats) [superfood]

Ariel’s Favorite Smoothies

Turmeric and Walnut

  • Unsweetened soy milk (as much as needed or desired)
  • palmful of Walnuts
  • 1 tsp Turmeric
  • 1/2 Banana
  • 1 scoop Unflavored protein powder (opt)
  • 1 tsp or 1 Tbsp Almond butter (depending on how much you like the taste)

Matcha and Banana

  • 1/2 Banana
  • 1 tsp Matcha powder (dissolved in a bit of warm water)
  • 1 scoop Unflavored protein powder (opt)
  • Handful of frozen greens
  • 1/2 Avocado
  • Unsweetened soy milk (as much as needed or desired)

Pumpkin Pie

  • 1/2 cup puree pumpkin
  • 1 scoop unflavored protein powder (opt)
  • 1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or more if you like)
  • Maple syrup (to your likeness for sweetening)
  • Palmful of walnuts
  • Unsweetened vanilla almond milk (as much as needed or desired)

Classic Strawberry Banana

  • 1/2 banana
  • Handful of strawberries
  • 1 large stick celery
  • Unsweetened vanilla almond milk (as much as needed or desired)
  • 1 Tbsp flaxseed meal
  • 1 scoop protein powder (opt)

Other fun ideas

There are so many combinations, you could experiment for weeks. You could make a tropical smoothie, a green smoothie (with lots of veggies and just enough fruit for flavor), a coffee smoothie, an apple pie smoothie, or anything you can imagine.

You can also make smoothie bowls! To make a smoothie bowl, add less liquid so the smoothie is thicker. Pour the smoothie into a bowl and top with ingredients like crushed nuts, seeds, fresh fruit, shredded coconut, mint leaves, fresh blueberries, and anything else you’d like!

A note on the tools of the trade (a blender)

I wanted to note that you do not need an expensive blender to make smoothies. My partner and I are still using our $20 Oster blender and have been for years. I’ve also used a classic Magic Bullet and Ninja single-serve blender, and they’ve both worked great. The more expensive blenders are, of course, amazing, but if you need one now and don’t have a lot to spend, a budget blender will get the job done just fine.


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