Thursday, April 26, 2012

Power Breakfast Smoothie

I am not a morning person. Nor am I a breakfast person. Most days, I tumble out of bed, brush my hair and teeth, pull on some clothes and head out the door with a big to-go container full of a riff on this smoothie. It keeps me full until lunch, is super fast to set up, and also makes me feel like a responsible, non-Lucky-Charms-eating, adult. Woot.

Power Breakfast Smoothie
makes enough for two smoothies (give the other portion to someone you like, they'll appreciate it)

Ingredients & Directions:
This is mostly just a basic idea of how to go about making a normal tasting smoothie that doesn't have a lot of sugar going on. I never add any sugar to mine because all the yogurt in China is already sweetened, I counteract this sweetness with a squeeze of half a lemon in there because I like some zing, but your welcome to put some honey or agave in there if it needs sweetening to you, both of those sweeteners are healthy and yummy!

Hardest part: Get a blender and assemble it in the right order for it to work. Plug it in. (MAKE SURE IT'S SWITCHED OFF FIRST THOUGH!)

In every smoothie I make, there is:

1-2 bananas, depending on how many people I am making it for. 1 banana is fine for 2 people
1/2 cup of plain, dried oatmeal, preferably rolled, but quick will work in a pinch.
a large handful of washed spinach, trust me you can't taste it at all (it's a miracle!)
1 cup of whole milk yogurt with live cultures. Plain would be best, but all yogurt in China is sweetened...
a splash of whole milk
a splash of 100% juice

Here's where you can get funky:
Add whatever other fruit you have on hand. I like my smoothie to be interesting and light tasting, so I go for puckery fruits like pineapple, oranges, mangoes, and peaches. Berry's get lost in smoothies to me, unless you put a ton in, so I just save the berries for more berry-centric things.... like tarts. If all else fails and I don't even have a measly orange to throw in, I always have lemons in the house, and I just squeeze the juice of half or a whole one in there.

Alternately, instead of extra fruit, you could add a tbsp of nut butter for a rich, thick smoothie, if you're into that sorta thing.

I like to add some 100% juice to up my fruit intake, but if you don't have 100% juice, I'd just leave it out. Avoiding corn syrup laden cereal is the goal here for me, so I wouldn't add juice that has it in it either.

If you're feeling bored, throw in some spices. If I've got bananas and peaches in there, I add some cinnamon and trick myself into thinking I'm eating a peach cobbler. If it's bananas and pineapple, cardamom would be fine. In a nut butter and banana smoothie, a tsp on cocoa powder could amp it up a bit.

If you've got a strong juicer/blender, throw in some cut up carrots instead of spinach and add a small piece of ginger, add some cinnamon and a little honey and you'll have a carrot cake like smoothie! Mm!

You could add some flax seeds or a green machine type powder to make it extra good.

And lastly, if you are on a diet, I highly recommend a tbsp of virgin coconut oil. It'll keep you full and satisfied for longer and coconut oil (of the organic, virgin variety, like Dr. Bronner's) is extremely good for you!

Basically, add things that are good for you to get the most out of this breakfast. White sugars, corn syrup-y granola, and diluted juice won't do anything for you, so just stick to whole things as much as possible for this. It'll jump start your day with a serving of fruits and vegetables and get your metabolism working without having to spend 20 minutes cooking something. Enjoy!

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