Monday, March 5, 2012

Smooth(ie) Operator: The Elphaba

The smoothie. It's kinda like the crock pot meal where you put a bunch of stuff in a contraption and press a button to take care of the rest.

I happened to have a conversation recently with a friend who made me think about these drinks. She said that she goes to Jamba Juice all the time because she doesn't know how to make them herself and have them taste as good (that's important!), needing inspiration to make her want to blend her own. I can completely relate to that and was the same way until I bought a blender because I felt I needed one, but then never used it because I didn't know what I wanted to make with it. It's like that fabulous pair of red shoes you bought for that one dress. They just sit there, you want to be able to use them, so you find whatever you can (appropriately) pair them with to get more use out of them. Then, before you know it, you have found all kinds of outfits to wear with and love them to pieces! So there, blenders are just like shoes.

I had always been a berry-smoothie person, but in the last few months, I've encountered a switch. I have now replaced the berries with banana, my usual kale with spinach, and the juice with almond milk. The conversation with said friend above made me decide to post, just in case someone else out there is searching for a quick smoothie that appeals to you. This type of recipe goes by many names: Green Monster, Green Machine, Green Goddess, ... I think you get the picture! I'm going to call this the Elphaba, if you understand that reference, we can be best friends.

Now a personal disclaimer, intended for those with aversions to drinking green stuff: I used to have an issue with the green color, which is why I would use the Kale and mixed-berries combo, it gave me the nutrients but kept it looking purple and berry-licious. However, I was growing kinda tired of berries, getting the seeds in my teeth, and needed to switch up my taste to keep my palate interested. After a sampling at Whole Foods, I really liked a PB/Banana/Vanilla combo, but those are all light colors, does not disguise the green. The spinach does have a more mild taste than the kale, so that part was actually better. I remembered I used to drink Green Tea Frappucinos all the time, obviously, those are green. So I Jedi-mind-tricked myself and now don't think twice regarding the color, enjoying every last drop.

Click here for my nutritional facts calculated at Makes enough for one 24 oz. or two 12 oz. smoothies, facts are for one 12 oz. serving.

Grocery List:
  • 1 cup frozen bananas, pre-chopped
  • 2 cups baby spinach leaves
  • 1 cup vanilla almond milk (unsweetened)
  • 1/2 cup Greek vanilla yogurt
  • 1 tbsp. peanut butter
Pile your contents in the blender. I go: fruit, liquid, greens, yogurt, peanut butter. I've also used Nutella instead of peanut butter, but you get much more dimension with 1 tbsp. PB, than with 1 tbsp. Nutella.

    Make sure is all locked in place and hit the liquify/blend/puree button... whatever strikes your fancy. Depending on the state of your blender, you may need to jiggle it a few times, stop it to push the contents down, things of this nature... blend until you reach a perfectly smooth consistency.

    Pour into a cup and you have a perfect breakfast, lunch, or post-workout snack!

    Tastefully yours,

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