Monday, 13 July 2015

Green Smoothies - Breakfast of Champions!

Last year I did a post about breakfast cookies and green smoothies. I was happy to tell everyone that breakfast could be easy and quite portable if necessary. I still adore the breakfast cookies, but I have to say green smoothies have been my go to weekday breakfast since I took a temporary full time job. They are fast and easy to make. They pack an excellent nutritional punch and can be consumed right away or taken to go. Win - Win - Win I say!

I am not big on breakfast first thing in the morning and certainly not at 7 AM. Instead, I try to start my day with a warm lemon water which has great health benefits. Half of a fresh squeezed lemon, a 1-1/2 cups filtered water and topped with 1/2 cup boiled water provides me with a good start to achieving my daily requirements of vitamin C, helps to promote a healthy digestion system, and is a tasty way (once your taste buds get used to it!) to get some water into the bod after 8 hours of sleep! As a side note, lemons are acidic and can be hard on tooth enamel so I usually drink my lemon water out of a straw... just in case. While I am drinking my lemon water, I make our lunches for the day and blend a green smoothie for 2 to tuck into our lunch bags (my favourite way to transport is in a 500 ml mason jar with the canning lids). Later in the morning, around 9:30/10:00 am my tummy is ready to welcome the green smoothie breakfast I packed in my lunch bag. My husband quite enjoys his as a mid morning snack since he likes his cereal first thing.

Over the past several months, I have perfected my version of the green smoothie. I think it has the perfect amount of sweetness. When my daughter was home for a visit, I got a two thumbs up too. This smoothie recipe can be made in a regular blender but it reached new heights of healthy decadence in my Vita-mix!

When I started blending smoothies, green or fruity, I had a heck of a time not ending up with a blend full of smoothie big enough to feed a small army. Finding the right quantities  and proportions for the ingredients was key, after all, there is only so much smoothie one can drink at one time. Sometimes my smoothie was so thick that I had to thin it down with more liquids or the too thin so I would add more fruit/greens. Before you knew it, my blender jar was overflowing.  Not a good thing! Now after several years of smoothie making, I have managed to eyeball the fruit/greens ratio to liquids so I can consistently make a smoothie for 1, 2, or 3.

My recipe for my favourite green smoothie is pretty consistent in yielding essentially two 500 ml mason jars, the perfect size for breakfast or a mid morning/afternoon snack. This recipe is based on my blender jar which is 64 ounces when I measure out the spinach. If your blender jar is smaller, you may want to add a handful or 2 more greens once you've reached the 1/3 mark. You can also use a little more or less maple syrup too, depending on your taste. I find that if my pineapple is nice and sweet and my banana is quite ripe, I need only 2 tablespoons of the maple syrup.



Fill your blender jar about 1/3 full of baby spinach, organic please, and gently packed
1 slice 3/4" or 1" thick pineapple ring, fresh or fresh frozen; not canned
2 Tbsp hemp hearts
1 medium/large banana, preferably with many brown spots (I keep a stash in my freezer)
1 medium avocado
2-3 tablespoons maple syrup
1 to 1 1/2 cups milk of your choice (dairy or non), a little more depending on personal preference.


Add the ingredients to you blender in the order given.  Start with 1 cup of the milk.

Blend on high, stopping if necessary to scrape down the sides and make sure the ingredients blend.

Add the remainder of the milk as necessary. Continue to blend on high until your smoothie is smooth. You may wish to add a little more milk at this point if you prefer your smoothies less thick.

Pour into drinking vessels of choice. I like using the 500 ml wide mouth mason jars with the canning lids if I am taking my smoothie to go!

Substitutions and Options

Hemp seed can be substituted for 2 heaping tablespoons of almond butter or peanut butter 

Spinach can be mixed with some kale, for my tastes, I would only switch out about a handful because kale has a strong flavour. Typically, I use more spinach than kale, but if you like the "extra green flavour", add more kale than spinach.

Maple syrup can be subbed with a good quality raw honey, local if you can get it.

No milk, no problem - cold filtered water or cold green tea will work too!


When fresh cored and peeled pineapple is on sale, I buy a bunch and then slice it. I then lay the slices on a cookie sheet lined with a silpat sheet and freeze the rings. Once frozen, I transfer them to a freezer bag.

As Kermit the Frog says... "it's not easy being green"! This green smoothie is creamy, tasty and an excellent start to your day OR as my husband can attest, it is also a great mid morning snack. This is truly a guilt free pleasure any time of day!


  1. Yum, looks so good! Loved the comment about chia seeds. Do you also grow chia pets?

    Beautiful photos for all you 2015 entries, too. Nice work!

    1. Thanks for checking out my blog. No chia pets here though! LOL


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