…that would be your juicer 😉 OR blender, or nutri-bullet, or whatever you can get your hands on to puree some green goodness into something you can drink!
I have an old school Hamilton Beach that I’ve become very close with over the years. The boy brought this to us when we first lived together in Toronto. I never cared much for it until I got into “juicing”. Ok, so I don’t really juice, per se… I blend. But I am still concentrating spinach, romaince, cucumber, celery, apple, pear, WHATEVER, in a quantity much greater than any normal person would ever consume in solid form on a regular basis. The only real difference is my blended concoction has more pulp than a juice (a little longer digestion time but that pulp is loaded with nutrients!). So whatever you need to do to get your greens, do it! You won’t regret it.
My current go-to combination consists of the following:
- 1 head of romaine lettuce
- 1 English cucumber
- 2 large handfuls of spinach
- 1 granny smith apple
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 2 cups of water (not needed for a juicer – womp, womp… someday!)
This recipe makes 4 mason jars of juice. I sometimes swap the cucumber for half a stalk of celery (when I say stalk I mean the entire thing, not one piece). I also switch up the apple for a pear and if I steam veggies that day I’ll pour the asparagus water in. Yes, that’s right; ASPARAGUS WATER 😉
Juices should be created and consumed same day or next. The nutrients begin to break down as soon as the veggies are torn apart. However, if you don’t have the luxury of TIME to juice every other day, buy some air-tight jars and make a big batch for 3-4 days. I got these at our local Sobeys; 12 jars for about $15. Pumped!
I do plan on purchasing a juicer sometime this year but I really wanted a Vita-Mix first. Still undecided but when I do I will certainly post about my future love for juiced carrots, beets, etc!
Of course you can also go for green smoothies, which I also enjoy several times a week, or use green juice as a base for your smoothie. Throw in a banana, some extra fruit and some hemp seeds or avocado for a little healthy fat and voila: green goodness like dessert.
My current favorite Green Monster is the Fitnessista’s Green-a-Colada:
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1 frozen banana
- 1/2 cup pineapple
- 2 tbsp oats (or coconut)
- 1/2 or 1 scoop protein powder
- as much spinach as can fit…
A VERY close second is my variation of Dreena Burton‘s Drink You Greens smoothie:
- 1 cup almond milk
- 1 frozen banana
- 1/4 avocado
- 1/2 cup pineapple or cantaloupe
- 1 tbsp hemp seeds
- as s much spinach as can fit…
NOTE: frozen bananas make ALL the difference in the world. You can use less ice to make it cold to maintain the creamy texture vs. an icey one (unless that’s your style). Let your nanners get ripe until browning on the outside. Peel them and put them in the freezer for at least a few hours. Avocado also makes for an unbelievably smooth smoothie!
I never follow a direct recipe for my green smoothies. I just throw in whatever is on hand to get a 300-400 calories smoothie. Sometimes I need protein powder, sometimes I’d prefer a healthy fat. Mess around until you find something you like but please remember… Greens are not gross!!! They are amazing. Sure the color can get a bit swampy (or sometimes a highlighter shade) but the sweetness of the fruit completely masks the taste. If you need to add a little agave or maple syrup to get into it… go for it!
The benefits of juicing are endless. It gives your body an instant shot of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, energy, and more! It is best to drink your juice on an empty stomach but hey, whatever works for you.
Juices vs. smoothies, you ask?! I wouldn’t say one trumps the other, but juice has a more instant effect where your body needs to work a bit harder to break down the goodies in a smoothie. As with my blended juice, smoothies retain the pulp which again has a lot of good stuff so no harm there. Just to name a few benefits –
- Clearer, brighter skin
- Shinier hair
- Improved pH balance
- Improved immune system
- Increased absorbance of vitamins and nutrients
- An easy way to include more fruits and veggies into your diet
- And on, and on and on 🙂
More green monsters and other favorite smoodee recipes to come 🙂