Summer smoothies

Want to know the secret to the perfect healthy summer smoothie? Sure you’ll want to keep in mind how it tastes and what you put into it. But the recipe for a successful smoothie also involves a balance in the blender of that sweet stuff: sugar.

“Smoothies are a summertime staple thanks to their cold and refreshing taste,” says registered dietitian Brigitte Zeitlin, owner of nutrition counseling company BZ Nutrition in New York City. “The key to keeping your smoothie from sabotaging your health goals is to make sure you are keeping the sugar in check.”

Jessica Tosto, a registered dietitian in Pleasantville, New York, and clinical coordinator in nutrition and dietetics at Pace University, agrees.

“Smoothies are a great way to incorporate vitamins, minerals, electrolytes, antioxidants and fiber into your diet,” Tosto says. “Fruits and vegetables are packed with these nutrients. However, the average American struggles to consume the recommended minimum of 5 servings of fruits and vegetables per day. Blending up a smoothie could actually help you achieve this goal in just one sitting. However, it is important to note that fruit does contain a high amount of naturally occurring sugars and also calories.”

She adds that both fruits and vegetables contain a wide variety of nutrients, so it’s good to consume a healthy balance of each of these.

“A simple trick to make sure you are getting a good balance of nutrients is to eat the rainbow,” Tosto says.

Try these healthy summer smoothies for breakfast, dessert and, of course, perfect for a day at the pool.

Breakfast smoothie 

1 ripe banana

1/2 cup strawberries

1 cup spinach or baby kale

1-2 tablespoons chia seeds

1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt

1/2 cup 100% orange juice

1 cup of ice

Water as needed to reach desired consistency

Put all ingredients in blender and pulse until smooth. Add water 2 tablespoons at a time as needed to achieve desired consistency.

Recipe from Jessica Tosto 


Tropical matcha smoothie 

1 1/2 cups almond milk

2 handfuls of greens (spinach, kale or mixed greens)

3 tablespoons hemp hearts

1/2 ripe avocado

1 teaspoon matcha powder

1/2 cup frozen mango

Place all ingredients in a blender and pulse until smooth and creamy. Add more liquid if it’s too thick.

Recipe from Brigitte Zeitlin: manitobaharvest.com/recipes/tropical-matcha-smoothie/


Pool day cucumber-mango-lime smoothie 

1 cup fresh or frozen mango

2 mini cucumbers (leave unpeeled for added nutrients)

Juice of 1 lime

1/2 cup mint leaves

1/2 cup spinach (optional, for extra vitamins and fiber)

1 cup ice

1-2 cups coconut water or seltzer 

Blend all ingredients until smooth. Start with smaller amount of liquid and add more as needed until smoothie achieves desired consistency.

Recipe from Jessica Tosto


Chocolate peanut butter super smoothie

4 tablespoons protein

1 frozen banana

2 tablespoons peanut butter

1 1/2 cups of a favorite nondairy beverage

Cacao nibs

Combine and blend ingredients in a blender and serve.

Recipe from Brigitte Zeitlin: manitobaharvest.com/recipes/choco-pb-super-smoothie/


Dessert smoothie 

1 ripe banana

2 tablespoons almond butter

1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder

1 cup unsweetened almond or coconut milk

½ teaspoon vanilla extract 

Pinch of sea salt

1-2 tablespoons chia or ground flax seed

1 cup ice

Blend all ingredients until smooth. Start with smaller amount of liquid and add more as needed until smoothie achieves desired consistency.

Recipe from Jessica Tosto

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