July 17, 2011

Smoothies for the Summer

Delicious and easy smoothie recipes and ideas for a refreshing summer!

There are many nutritional benefits when it comes to smoothies, because they are so versatile. You can add fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, tofu, plant milks, vegan yogurts, protein powders and et cetera to build your own nutritional powerhouse!

Smoothie Chains:
Smoothie King
Jamba Juice

3 Delicious Smoothies: Ava's, Creamsicle, & Banana Split
Ultimate Superfood Smoothie
Ultimate Superfood Smoothie 2
Blueberry Banana Smoothie
Strawberry Oatmeal Breakfast Smoothie
Perfect Purple Detox Smoothie
Blueberry Soaked Oatmeal Smoothie
Beet Smoothie
Beet Smoothies Love
Raw Vegan Chocolate Cherry Ripe Smoothie
Paulin's Unique Vegan High Protein Smoothie Recipe
Protein Chocolate-Strawberry Smoothie Recipe
Strawberry Orange Coconut Smoothie
Summer Sweet Smoothies
Mango-Peach Smoothie
Mongolian Strawberry-Orange Juice Smoothie
Healthy Green Coconut Smoothie
Tropical Pina Colada Smoothie
Sweet Veggie Smoothie
Cilantro Surprise Smoothie
Tomato Smoothie
Lemon Kiwi Cooler Smoothie
Wheatgrass Smoothie
Pure Delight Smoothie & Vegan, Organic Beauty
Vegan Protein Chocolate Bliss Smoothie
Purple Monstrosity Fruit Smoothie (use vegan honey)
Peanut Butter and Banana Smoothie (use vegan honey)
Mango Strawberry Banana Smoothie (use vegan honey)
Tofu Smoothie (use vegan honey)
Green Slime Smoothie (use vegan honey)
Gloomy Day Smoothie (use vegan yogurt)
Plush Purple Grape Smoothie (use vegan yogurt & plant milk)
Orange Smoothie (use plant milk)
Mango-Banana Smoothie (use vegan yogurt)
Kiwi Strawberry Smoothie (use vegan frozen yogurt)
Triple Threat Fruit Smoothie (use vegan yogurt)
Groovy Green Smoothie (use vegan yogurt)
Berry Healthy Breakfast Smoothie (use plant milk)
Most Awesome Breakfast Smoothie (use vegan yogurt)

Even More Smoothies
Planet Smoothie's Blog
Healthy. Happy. Life. and The Lunchbox Bunch. Smoothies
My Vegan Planet: Top Ten Vegan Smoothie Recipes
Vegan Smoothie Recipes
Vegan Chickie Smoothies

Suggestions and Tips:

Plant milks: Plant milks on their own and fortified contain many essential nutrients. And with all the different types, brands, and flavors, it is easy to experiment with. Milk is generally an emulsion of protein and fat in a water-based liquid. For plant milk, it's an emulsion of plant protein, oils, etc. The emulsion is where the creaminess comes from in milk. If you have less water, then it's (plant) cream. Plant based milk is nutritious and tasty, and it does not carry the harm and health problems associated with animal based milk.1 The most popular plant milk is soy milk (that comes from soybeans). Other plant milks include almond, rice, hemp, coconut, peanut, cashew, and oat. Most have the flavors: original/unsweetened, vanilla, and chocolate. All plant milks taste different, even within the same plant; the taste and thickness comes mostly from the brand. I have pretty much all plant-type milks and my favorites are almond, rice, soy, and hemp. My favorite brands are Almond Breeze, Rice Dream, Westsoy, Living Harvest Hemp, and So Delicious Coconut. Generally the more fat the plant milk has, the thicker it is. Although not in all cases Silk Almond is thick, with no extra fat added.

Fruit: It's a no-brainer that fruits are healthy for you, and full of antioxidants. Due to most fruits being sweet, then you most likely do not have to add an additional sweetener. Berries, açaí, grapefruit, papaya, grapes, and avocado are among the most nutritious fruits out there.2 3

Seeds: Seeds are highly nutritious and can be a great addition to smoothies. Flaxseed & hempseed are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Flaxseed & hempseed can reduce inflammation, lower the amount of lipids, help with depression, fatigue, diabetes, arthritis, Alzheimer's, and more. Flax seeds contain more omega-3 fatty acid than fish. Another hempseed source is hemp milk. Flaxseed works best when ground and not heated.4 Fennel seeds have a strong antioxidant activity.5 Sunflower seeds are an excellent source of vitamin E and can help lower cholesterol.6 Pumpkin seeds has anti-Inflammatory benefits and may promote prostate health.7 Sesame seeds are a good source of calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, vitamin B1, zinc and dietary fiber. Sesame seeds have the highest total phytosterol content (400-413 mg per 100 grams, 100 grams is equivalent to 3.5 ounces) of nuts and seeds.8

Nuts: Nuts can be a good addition to smoothies due to it's nutrient content. Nuts generally have a very low glycemic index, and help lower blood sugar. Dietitians frequently recommend nuts be included in diets prescribed for patients with insulin resistance problems such as diabetes mellitus type 2. The fats in nuts mostly are unsaturated and monounsaturated. They are good sources of vitamin E and riboflavin (an antioxidant), protein, folate, fiber, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, copper, and selenium. Almonds and walnuts can lower serum LDL cholesterol concentrations and help prevent coronary heart disease. Raw walnuts are considered the healthiest nut, and contain omega-3 fatty acids.9 10 11

Thickener: A thickener for a smoothie is not necessary; but some like a nice, thick, and creamy smoothie. Bananas are a common thickener for smoothies; they are a good source of potassium and other nutrients that make it a good addition. Other thickeners include ice, silken/soft tofu, nuts, and seeds. You could also just add less liquid and more solid.

Sweetener: Most smoothies should be naturally sweetened if you use fruit and a vanilla plant milk. If you want to add a sweetener unsulphured blackstrap molasses has many health benefits. Other sweeteners include maple syrup, agave nectar, unrefined and cane sugar, brown sugar/turbinado sugar, stevia, cinnamon sugar, vanilla, barley malt syrup, sweet sorghum, brown rice syrup, and sugar beet.12

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HAWREE said...

waw..what a wonderful presentation. thanks for sharing.

smoothies said...

Really you can include so many different healthy, nutritious foods in a smoothie . Thank you for posting these recipes!