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    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

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Smoothie Baby.

I’ve never posted any smoothie recipes here, mostly because I always thought they were kind of ridiculous.  We don’t usually use recipes, but instead opt for the “dump a bunch of stuff into the blender and hit go” method.  But now that Cullen is slurping away at smoothies too, we’re paying a bit more attention to what goes in them, and how we can bulk them up with some extra nutrition and good stuff.

I’ve had a lot of emails and comments asking for our “go to” smoothie, so I figured it was high time that we shared.  The specifics change somewhat on a daily basis based on what’s in our freezer and what sounds good that day, but here is what we usually drink each morning…

Fruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily Garnish

The thing is, I’ve never really been into the whole “green smoothie” thing.  But now that I have a picky child to force vegetables into, and I’m finding it harder and harder to squeeze them in myself – smoothies are becoming a staple of our daily diet.  Even if we both snack on sunbutter, bread, and oatmeal all day long, as long as we have our smoothies I feel good knowing that we’re drinking some of the good stuff without really even realizing it. 

"Eat Your Fruits & Veggies" Smoothie

by Emily Malone

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: none

Ingredients (4 servings)

  • 2 big handfuls fresh spinach leaves (about 4 cups)
  • 2 bananas, peeled
  • 4 medium carrots, rinsed and trimmed
  • 1 cup frozen mango
  • 1 12oz bag frozen strawberries
  • 2 tablespoons flax oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups unsweetened original almond milk
  • 1.5 cups water

Instructions

Like I mentioned above, this combination often changes.  If we’re out of strawberries, we’ll use a bag of frozen mixed berries or blueberries.  There is no added sugar, so the fruit is where we get all the good sweetness to balance out the vegetables. 

Fruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily Garnish

In addition to fruits and vegetables, we also add flax oil for some good healthy fat.  Fat is a critical dietary need for babies and toddlers, as it helps their little brains grow and develop.  Cullen gets quite a bit through olive oil, coconut oil, avocado, nut butters, eggs, and hemp milk, but at this stage he really can’t get too much.  And as vegetarians, we want to make sure he’s getting a variety of different types of good fats from different sources.  Flax oil is a great source of omega 3’s, omega 6’s, and linoleic acid (source). 

Fruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily Garnish

Onto the smoothie itself!  Smoothies don’t even really need instructions, do they? Combine all ingredients into the blender, and give it a whirl!  Casey is the smoothie chef in our family, and he makes a big blender for the whole family each morning. 

Fruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily Garnish

Fruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily Garnish

Blend on high power until totally smooth, pour, and serve. (Smoothie can be stored for up to 24 hours in the refrigerator.)

Fruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily GarnishFruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily Garnish

A Vitamix is definitely not necessary for this, but makes blending whole fruits and veggies much easier and smoother!  In case you are interested, here is the model that we have

Fruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily Garnish

I mean, does that not just scream “drink me?”  :)

Fruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily Garnish

This “recipe” makes a BIG batch of smoothie – a blender full to the top.  If you’re blending for one, you might want to halve the ingredients.  We split it between the three of us and drink it all day long in between meals.  Casey usually adds protein powder to his after he’s poured some for me and Cullen (I’ve had a major pregnancy aversion to the powdery taste).  Side note: for those interested in making their own protein powder blend, check out this post! 

Fruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily Garnish

I usually drink the bulk of mine in the afternoons while I work during Cullen’s nap.  I know the color is off-putting to many, but once you get past that it honestly tastes pretty fantastic.  It’s also really filling, and I love knowing I’m getting in some greens each day. 

Fruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily Garnish

The biggest benefit to our smoothie making is definitely it’s addition to Cullen’s diet.  He absolutely loves them, and will drink as many cups as we will give him, often begging for “mooooore” long past the last drop.  Despite my best efforts, he’s a pretty picky eater just like most other toddlers, and there is no way I’d get him to eat fresh spinach every day in any other form.

This is also a much more cost effective way to sneak in some extra fruits and veggies without always buying the pre-made pouches (that are like $2 a piece!).  It’s worth noting that we only give him smoothies in his Playtex Lil’ Gripper cup, since it has the thickest straw.  Smoothies also serve as a healthier and filling replacement for some of his snacks that tend to be “emptier” in calories – like raisins, rice cakes, and crackers.

Fruit & Veggie Smoothie Recipe by Daily Garnish

Happy blending – enjoy!

Since we’re on the topic of food today, I thought I’d let you guys know that Recipage has a brand shiny new look!  We’ve been working on a redesign and new features for many months, and finally launched it this morning.  If you get a chance, check it out!  Thanks for your continued support of our many endeavors. 

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62 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Lauren     at 3:11 pm

WOW, your vitamix really blends up the raw carrots? Just another reason I NEED to get one of those!

[Reply]

Amy Reply:

I was just thinking the same thing! That’s impressive. I’m looking up the Vitamix on Amazon now!

[Reply]

Meagan Reply:

Vitamix blends anything!!!!!! :)

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Sara Reply:

I was about to comment the same thing! We do smoothies a lot as well but there’s no way my regular blender could handle carrots! Maybe if I gave them a whirl in the food processor first.

[Reply]

Pam K. Reply:

I would recommend looking into a Blendtec too. I have one and love it! It can blend up whole veggies like a Vitamix ,but is less expensive and the warranty is just as good! I’ve got the totalblender model that has the smoothie preset and a pulse button, but costs about $200 less than a Vitamix with the presets and pulse button!

[Reply]

April Reply:

Ha ha thinking the same about the carrots! I do have the Vitamix so going to give it a ‘whirl’ soon.

Thank you thank you thank you Emily for this recipe!!!! And i love how FULL the blender is, i am always scared to fill it to the top, ha ha.

[Reply]

Leah Reply:

still $359. :(

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Shel@PeachyPalate     at 3:16 pm

The new recipage is awesome, haven’t had the chance to explore it fully but love the new features I’ve come across and it looks great! Nothing like a veggie loaded smoothie….my go to is frozen banana, spinach, vanilla, cinnamon, ground flax seed, peanut butter (all natural organic), almond milk, water and maca powder! yum!

[Reply]

Meagan     at 3:30 pm

I love my Vitamix for doing this too! I really like putting things like orange peel, ginger chunks, tumeric root, cranberries and sometimes even romaine spring mix in my smoothies! Sounds funny but they are all delicious. Also, is that your favorite almond milk? I have always seen it at trader joes but didn’t know if it was any good. I’ve even been making my own lately!

[Reply]

Alicia     at 3:32 pm

I dream of owning a Vitamix! I’ve found these sippy cups to be awesome for smoothies.

http://www.rightstart.com/the-first-years-take-toss-straw-cup-10-oz-5-pack.html?utm_source=google&utm_medium=shopping&gclid=CLHs653J37cCFehr7AodPCEAbg

The straws are pretty big and easy to clean.

[Reply]

Amber     at 3:39 pm

I also did not realize a vitamix blended up full carrots! So do you have any need for a juicer with that? Putting that on my “WANT” list the next time we have a bit of extra money kicking around

[Reply]

Leah Reply:

I would say if you spend $374 on a Vitamix (and I know they change lives for the people that use them!) you are good to go without a separate juicer. :)

[Reply]

Caitlin     at 3:58 pm

I got past the whole putrid color thing a long time ago and love a green smoothie. My regular smoothie consists of frozen banana, frozen berries, vanilla greek yogurt, peanut butter/pb2, protein powder (if post work out), and almond milk. YUM! Thanks for sharing, Emily!

[Reply]

Ginna     at 3:58 pm

Are u using smoothie setting or just high power to blend?

[Reply]

Julie @ RDelicious Kitchen     at 4:00 pm

a vitamix is definitely on my wish list .. i want to be able to blend carrots in my smoothies .. my blender isn’t powerful enough

[Reply]

Lauren @ The Highlands Life     at 4:37 pm

My best friend is trying to convince me to go the smoothie route. I just don’t want to be all grossed out by texture but she swears by the Vitamix. So she’s determined to make me one and me like it.

[Reply]

Marci     at 4:51 pm

One question–does the smoothie take the place of a serving of milk, or do you do the smoothie in addition to however much milk he would usually drink? Logan drinks a cup 3x/day. Just wondering.

[Reply]

Lauren L.     at 4:56 pm

I am a long ways off from marriage, but the Vitamix will definitely be on my registry. WANT SO BADLY. My blender is fairly new and nice but just takes so long to blend up the greens…whine, whine, whine :)

[Reply]

Leah Reply:

Make sure to get Amazon gift cards (and do an Amazon registry). For our Kitchen Aid Mixer we did not have a guest that spent that much on a gift (nor should they have) but we stacked up our gift cards to get the KA mixer (best decision ever). The base Vita Mix is $374 with free shipping (Amazon) but I found most guests spent $100 (some teamed up to buy a joint gift from the registry–which is cool) but you will not find too many wedding guests willing to spend $374 on top of their travel expenses and other wedding expenses (just a thought). Gift cards rock!

[Reply]

Kristi     at 5:01 pm

I usually make my smoothies in a food processor, since my blender is getting a little old and run down. I do want to get a nice blender though.

[Reply]

Mandy     at 5:03 pm

I read an article about how pureed fruit and veggies digest quicker than actually eating the whole fruit, which leads to blood sugar spikes and, can possibly contribute to metabolic syndromes later on(esp. for kids). not everything on the internet is fact, however. do you have any thoughts on this?

[Reply]

Allie Reply:

True! Same with flours- whole grain flours don’t actually show a considerably lower glycemic index than white flour. However, a whole grain flour still gives you more fiber and nutrition than white flour, just like a smoothie (while still giving you a blood sugar spike) still is a great way to get those nutrients in. The one thing that does slow the blood sugar spike, though, is mixing those easy-to-digest sugars with fats (which it looks like Emily does well in her smoothies)! Definitely something to weigh the costs and benefits about.

[Reply]

Mandy Reply:

Hi Allie,

Thanks for the follow-up! :) I think I remember the smoothie/pureed fruits and veggies lack the soluable fiber that real fruit has, which in turn makes your body digest more quickly and therefore spikes the blood sugar. I am interested in how true this is. I read that the pureed squeeze drinks for toddlers (all the rage) are actually detrimental because of this. It’s an interesting thought, but it may not be gospel, you know?

[Reply]

Allie Reply:

Cool! I personally don’t think that they are detrimental… and in a few minutes of research I’ve come across these (http://www.nytimes.com/2002/04/23/science/q-a-finer-fiber.html) and (http://www.livestrong.com/article/487543-if-i-puree-raw-vegetables-will-that-destroy-the-fiber/) which seem to alleviate your concern about lacking the fiber. You might also want to look into the difference between glycemic index and glycemic load (all fruit is considered to be low glycemic, while the GI of many appears to be quite high!).

[Reply]

Marie     at 5:28 pm

I loved the link to your protein powder how-to! Are you and Casey still using this recipe? Any new modifications? I’d really like to start making my own too.

[Reply]

Amelia     at 5:56 pm

I sneak veggies into my husband this way too. While he LOVES veggies, I’ll add carrots and/ or spinach to smoothies for a little extra boost and he never knows. Plus if I throw it in a stainless steel mug with a lid and straw, the color doesn’t influence what the brain is going to perceive the taste to be. Win! :)

[Reply]

Katie     at 6:07 pm

Yum! This is such a great post an super helpful!

[Reply]

Heather @ Heather's Dish     at 7:01 pm

This really couldn’t come at a better time! Weston just learned how to drink out of a straw like 2 days ago, and I’ve been meaning to get some smoothie into him! He’s so picky that I think a smoothie may be the best way to get some of the good stuff in!

[Reply]

Kelsey     at 7:11 pm

Thanks for posting this recipe! I am smoothie challenged and mine always taste gross. I’m daydreaming of the day I have an extra $378 so I can join you in smoothie heaven!

[Reply]

Sally     at 8:04 pm

I need to start trying different smoothie recipes and this one sounds great! Would say looks great but I’m not sure on the colour! lol

Do you find that the smoothie separates if you have it in the fridge for a few hours?

Juices have done that to me in the past but not sure if this is the same?

Thanks

[Reply]

Jane @ Not Plain So Jane     at 10:20 pm

It is funny how the color of foods can really change how appealing something looks. I’ve tried some Nutribullet blasts (smoothies) lately and they are delicious and more single-serve size!

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Emily     at 12:44 am

quick question – what is the band that you have on cullen’s cup?

[Reply]

Kristi Reply:

I’m curious too!

[Reply]

Ashley Reply:

I was lurking comments hoping to find an answer to this as well!

[Reply]

elle Reply:

Looks like you can get them by googling “sippy cup name band.”
http://www.myprecious kid. com/name-labels-sippy-cups.html

[Reply]

Christine Reply:

They look like http://www.inchbug.com We use them for daycare and love them!

[Reply]

Holly     at 4:40 am

This looks delicious but I have to admit I think this recipe needs a disclaimer that you need a Vitamix to make this. There is no way a regular blender would chop carrots, including mine.

[Reply]

char eats greens     at 5:03 am

I’m all over the green smoothies!!! My little 6 month old will have a sip the odd time when I make them. I keep them pretty simple when she IS having a sip, but I make them as green as possible without tasting like it. Those are seriously the best!!

[Reply]

Katie     at 5:54 am

Fantastic! We love green smoothies at our house. It’s also just about the only way I can get Jack to eat veggies. I’m holding out hope that if we just keep putting them on his plate, he’ll eventually get interested. Yum!

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Katie     at 5:58 am

Here’s a thought for the non-vitamixers out there: What about shredded carrots? I know you can grab a bag at the grocery store and it might be a little easier for a blender to handle.

I make a green smoothie every morning for myself and my husband. My KitchenAid has no problem whatsoever with huge chunks of apples. I haven’t tried carrots but it seems like you guys have and it’s not so successful. I wonder if shredded carrots would work? Thoughts?

[Reply]

Ali @ Peaches and Football     at 6:23 am

I really need to work on getting over my fear of green drinks – I know they are so healthy.

I never noticed Cullen’s name on his sippy cup. How awesome is that!!!

[Reply]

Courtney Leigh     at 6:26 am

Are those doggie teeth marks on your vitamix lid? Did the pups try and take out another one?

I need to get back into my green smoothies for breakfast. Especially now as the Southern heat and humidity is in full force. I do need to upgrade my blender first though, the last time a used it, it was starting to struggle with spinach.

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Suzanne     at 6:43 am

I’ve become so used to drinking green smoothies that I now find myself analyzing the different shades of colour that result. That is a very appetizing green!

PS. Love the new recipage :)

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P.J. Murphy     at 7:16 am

Your point about picky kids getting all the nutrients they need really hit the nail on the head. Both of my kids are VERY picky (even some smoothies won’t work for them!), so it’s always a struggle for us to get them to eat what they need.

As an aside, I love that you put this particular smoothie in your Flying Pig pint glass for a couple reasons. I love the Flying Pig (and Cincinnati) and drinking smoothies is primarily what our pint glasses are now used for.

Thanks for the new smoothie recipe!

[Reply]

Kristina     at 8:29 am

Thanks for the carrot recommendation. I tried it this morning and you can’t even tell it is there.

[Reply]

kristen @ verbs and vignettes Reply:

i’ve never thought of carrots, either! i love spinach, but i can taste kale… gotta give this a try!

[Reply]

Nic     at 9:47 am

Could drinking this between meals be bad for your teeth?

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Rucky     at 9:48 am

Oh, good to know about the Flax Oil. One of my twins has a peanut allergy (How could this happpen to a nut-lovin family?!) and Ped told us to avoid all tree nuts…and as vegetarians…this leads us to avocado/dairy fat sources…I havent actually given them smoothies yet (16mo) but I will try this weekend! Already have those straw sippies :-)

[Reply]

Emily N     at 10:13 am

Thanks for sharing. I am always looking for more goodies to shove into my vitamix and call a meal! :)

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Tracy     at 1:19 pm

I made a veggie packed smoothie for my twins last week. They can’t get the hang of drinking from a straw, so I just put it in a bowl and let them use a spoon. They loved it and I can’t wait to make more smoothies!!

[Reply]

Liorah     at 3:52 pm

My two year old went though the same “living on air” stage at about Cullen’s age – it seems to be a pretty common thing! We loved the smoothies too to know that I was getting something good into her. (Typical though – now she’s back to eating better, she’s completely refusing smoothies!).
Do you have any concerns about the oxalate content in the spinach? I’d heard that daily consumption (especially in vegetarians who also eat soy) could reduce the uptake of other nutrients and might lead to kidney stones? There’s a bit of controversy about it, but it was enough to make me alternate spinach with other greens like romaine or zucchini…

[Reply]

Kristen @ Change of Pace     at 3:51 am

We’ve been drinking a lot of smoothies around here too. Maybe because of the weather? We love adding frozen cherries :)

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Adrianne     at 11:41 am

We’re definitely going to have to do more smoothies around here. Don’t know why I never think about them…probably because I’m too lazy to clean the blender:) I feel for you with the picky eating; my daughter is so incredibly picky!! So frustrating and defeating. Will Cullen eat oatmeal? My girl loves it, so I spruce it up a bit. Every few weeks I pull out the food processor and combine strawberries, blackberries, flax seeds and spinach. Then I freeze small containers of the puree to add to oatmeal or plain yogurt. My daughter loves her “pink oatmeal.” If Cullen will eat it, that’s another way to pack in more veggies!

[Reply]

Tiff @ Love Sweat & Beers     at 11:56 am

I’m not one to use recipes for smoothies either, at least not usually, but this one sounds pretty tasty!

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Angela @ Happy Fit Mama     at 12:21 pm

We love our green smoothies at my house! It’s the only guarantee to get some sort of veggie in the kiddos everyday. I have even started to make smoothie pancakes – just sub all liquid ingredients for a whole blended smoothie. Tastes awesome and the kiddos (and I) eat ‘em up!

[Reply]

Jen @ The Well Read Fish     at 5:18 pm

Spinach is key! You can’t taste it at all – so you can work it into any smoothie recipe (like a chocolate one!) Others use other greens, but I find you can taste them too much.

Also – avocados work in smoothies too. Again, particularly good in chocolate based ones. Can you tell I like chocolate?

[Reply]

Kim     at 5:12 am

We make a very similar smoothie each morning and it’s helped a lot during pregnancy to know I can drink my salad instead of eating it on days when I can’t stomach leafy greens.

For one full blender (2 hungry adults): 2-3 fistfuls fresh spinach, 2 frozen bananas, 2-3 tbsp ground flaxseed, 1/2 cup uncooked oatmeal, 2-4 tbsp vanilla rice protein powder, a splash of mint extract (this is key), and fill it up with vanilla soymilk. It tastes like a mint chocolate chip milkshake! My friends & the teenagers in our family love it too, especially when I surprise them with chocolate chips in the bottom of their cup.

[Reply]

annie     at 9:41 am

I have been searching for a sippy that will manage smoothies… I haven’t had any luck. What type are you using for Cullen?

[Reply]

Elizabeth     at 9:16 pm

Have you had leak issues with the sippy? I bought one after reading this post and put milk in it and it leaks like crazy!

[Reply]

Smoothies: My New Obsession | Krug the Thinker     at 3:07 am

[...] my breakfasts and snacks. I got the idea to make some healthy smoothies after seeing this post on Daily Garnish. Emily offers tons of great vegetarian recipes (and cute pictures of her son!), [...]

dave     at 5:31 pm

Awesome, thanks for sharing. I totally agree – smoothies are the best way to get kids to eat vegetables like spinach!

[Reply]

munchkin meals: 18 months!     at 9:59 pm

[...] smoothie (spinach, carrot, banana, strawberry, mango, flax oil, almond milk – from this recipe, but I used different [...]

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