Wednesday, January 05, 2011

My new Favorite Smoothie!!

My favorite breakfast of all times is yogurt with fruit and homemade granola. I have plain yogurt and fruit basically every morning and never get tired of it (varying the fruit is key!), and one of my favorite ways to eat this combo is in smoothie form.
I love all creamy things, creamy is definitely my favorite texture of all: creamy ice cream, smoothies, pureed soup... you get the idea. So no wonders that I love smoothies so much: I usually have a smoothie (or shake of sorts, whatever you like to call them) at least once a day.
They are good vehicles for getting your daily dose of fruits, protein, and even veggies - yep, as weird as it may sound to some, I add spinach to my smoothies all the time, and I love it (I will share my green smoothie on my next post)
One thing I do when I make a breakfast smoothie though is to make sure I am getting proper nutrition in my glass. It is easy to blend a piece of fruit with a bit of milk and call it breakfast, but that is not how I see it.
Three things I make sure to add to my smoothies are: protein, fruits/veggies, and healthy fats.
As far as fruit goes there are a variety of combination to try. I like all berries, bananas, papaya, peaches and mangoes the best - especially mangoes, they make the smoothie oh soooo creamy!
For protein I like plain Greek Yourt (my favorite is FAGE), and sometimes I add a little protein powder along with it (if I am using hemp protein I don't add yogurt though, for some reason they don't go too well together for me).
For my healthy fats I vary between these choices: ground flaxseeds, chia seeds, coconut oil, and avocados. I like the flavor of flaxseeds a lot, especially paired with yogurt - love plain Greek yogurt with flaxseeds, totally delicious. Chia seeds are a powerhouse of nutrients, but they thicken the smoothie a lot, so need to be aware of that and add a bit more liquid than usual when using them. Coconut oil adds not only awesome fats for you (medium chain fatty acids) but also flavor and a hint of coconut sweetness, which I really like.
However, my favorite fat for smoothies are avocados, they make the creamiest and fluffiest smoothies ever, I love avocados! And not only in smoothies, I like them in my salads, in guacamole, and even mashed with a bit of sugar, but in smoothies they are stellar.
And that's why I just finished off my breakfast smoothie and wanted to come here and post about it. I have been adding avocados to my smoothies lately and I can't get over the deliciousness of it, I just had an amazing bowl of thick and creamy smoothie and I am as happy as one could possibly be in the morning! (yes, I like mine thick and creamy, in a bowl to eat with a spoon!)
If you want to add a bit of whole grain to your smoothie too then one thing I like is to add is oatmeal. Just add a couple tablespoons of rolled oats to the smoothie and blend away, makes it creamy and thick (adjust liquid to your liking), it is super nutritious and tastes delicious!
(you can also add plain, unflavored/unsweetened cooked oatmeal to it, adds wonderful creaminess)
I am posting here one of my favorite smoothies, but know that the possibilities when it comes to smoothies are endless, this is just one that I truly enjoy.
Now during the winter months I use frozen fruit and leave them in the counter for 10 to 20 minutes to defrost before I blend. By using frozen fruit the smoothie gets deliciously thick without the need of adding ice, but you can always add that if you prefer.
And always adjust the amount of liquid to your taste, add more or less water/milk depending on how thin of thick you like your smoothie. If you want to sip it through a straw then add more. I sometimes like it thick and creamy and eat with a spoon on a big mug or bowl, so I add only the 1/2 cup water mentioned.
Making a smoothie is all about creating a delicious concoctions that suit your palate, so don't be shy and experiment. It is fun and good for you!

Breakfast Smoothie

1/2 cup blackberries
1/2 cup raspberries
4 strawberries
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
1/4 of a small avocado (2 thick slices)
Stevia to taste
a few drops of vanilla extract
1/2 to 1 cup water (or milk if you prefer - coconut milk is a delicious addition too!)

Optional: 1 to 2 tablespoons protein powder (I use plain, Unflavored Whey Protein but vanilla also works, just be aware of any thickening gums they might have added and adjust liquids accordingly)
If using fresh fruit you might want to add ice too

Put everything in the blender and whiz it away until creamy!


Marley said...

Nice info. Happy new year to you and all your blog readers! Here's to a great 2011!

april said...

Mmm this sounds wonderful! I love thick, volume filled smoothies/shakes too.. I will have to try your avocado trick- maybe I can use that in place of guar gum!

Ana said...

Thanks Marley!

April, definitely try the avocado, it is a similar effect as the gum! I like the avocado way better because it makes it fluffy and doesn't affect me as much as the gums do (the gums kinda make me feel so bloated...)

Valentina said...

Oh the colour of this smoothie is gorgeous. Would have never tried to mix avocado here so love the novelty. Will give it a go and report back.x

small kitchen said...

Blackberries, raspberries and strawberries ...great choice. Remember: There are no kitchen mistakes, only experiments.

Taran Alexander said...

Looking good - I use Fage Greek yogurt and add my own raw honey, instead of buying the actual "Fage with honey" option. Delicious smoothies result!

Anonymous said...