Save Money and Get Better Taste
Most people would agree that smoothies are refreshing and delicious, but may not be able to experience them as often as they’d like because of their high prices and inaccessibility. For example, a regular sized Jamba Juice smoothie costs around $4.50 and their store locations are usually only found either inside a mall or as a small store in an outdoor strip mall. Without the convenience of a drive thru, smoothies seem to be more of a treat than a regular part of the diet. However, what most people don’t realize is that smoothies can be extremely nutritious and easy to make at home. All you need is the proper liquid, fruits and vegetables, and a good blending technique to achieve this fruity favorite. With an understanding and collection of these, smoothies can become a treat more often and an experiment of flavors.
Any good smoothie is going to need to start off with a base liquid. Without this, smoothies would have to be eaten with a spoon rather than drank from a straw. Soy milk is a great place to start and has many benefits over fruit juice or cow’s milk. One cup of soy milk contains approximately 7 grams of protein, 4 grams of carbohydrates, 4.5 grams of fat, and no lactose or cholesterol. Soy milk is made from the soaking and grinding of soy beans which is an excellent alternative for those who are lactose intolerant or vegan. Another beneficial aspect to soy milk is that it can help lower the risk for heart disease. Although some people may prefer the flavor of real cow’s milk, smoothies are all about preference and experimenting with new combinations. Others may prefer fruit juice but since fruit is already going to be added, why not choose the nutritious benefits of milk instead? Fruit juice is a fine alternative as long as a sugar free variety is chosen. After choosing your selection of base liquid, add approximately one to two cups.
Now it’s time to develop the flavor of the smoothie through fruits and vegetables. Even more so than the choice of liquid, the choice of fruits added is going to be all about preference. From options of frozen to fresh, in season to out of season, the flavor possibilities are endless and are going to take a little bit of experimentation to find out what works best together and tastes the best. Some choices to keep in mind would be: blueberries, strawberries, oranges, bananas, apples, kiwis, and papayas. All of these fruits have excellent sources of vitamin C, various antioxidants, and a rainbow of flavors to match. Some of these fruits will have a more over powering flavor than others and you’ll find yourself having to add more of one and less of the other. This is a good thing though because if you enjoy the taste of fruit, a bad flavor combination is going to be pretty hard to come by considering most fruit is sweet. With this ongoing process, you can develop your own favorite flavor combinations or use whatever fruit you have out on the counter or in the freezer.
Smoothies aren’t as complex as they seem and contain very few ingredients, so it’s already time to move onto blending. After chopping up your fruits and vegetables into small chunks, you can drop them into the blender or mixer with the liquid. Depending on whether you used fresh or frozen fruit, you may want to consider adding ice to a fresh fruit smoothie to ensure that it’s cold upon the time of drinking. Begin by pulsing the smoothie mix to chop up any large pieces of fruit. Next, turn the blender onto a power where you can see the liquid fully circulating. This means that the liquid is being pulled from top to bottom and not just being spun in circles. Doing so will ensure consistency of texture and will catch all of the fruit bits to infuse the flavors into the mix. The smoothie’s consistency is also going depend on the amount of liquid in the blender versus the blender’s motor power. If you find that the liquid is not fully circulating, you might want to add lesser amounts of fruit in your next smoothie or considering purchasing a blender with a more powerful motor.
Making smoothies is as easy as 1,2,3: liquid, fruit, and blending. With an understanding of these, making smoothies will not only be a treat but a great addition to your diet. With endless flavor possibilities, you could have different smoothie every day and have fun while making them.