Whether you’re a busy mom trying to get you kids off to the bus on time, or a student who only has a few minutes each morning before your first class, breakfast is one of those meals that often gets left in the dust.
We know that it’s an important meal (especially if you wake up feeling hungry, or are trying to lose a pound or two), but creating something that has enough protein, fiber and nutrients to qualify as as balanced usually calls for prep time that most people don’t have.
That’s why we’ve come up with a super green smoothie that’s perfect for both hectic mornings and discerning palates. If you think your kids wouldn’t be into green smoothies, or if you yourself are a little hesitant to go “full green,” this smoothie will not only change your mind, but will help you feel energized and satisfied for hours. Let’s see a dry bowl of cereal do that!
The Perfect Green Smoothie
Makes two, 12-ounce servings.
- 1 1/2 oz spinach
- 1 small squash
- 1 banana
- 1 handful strawberries
- 1 lemon, juiced
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 1 tablespoon pea protein
- 1 cup coconut water
- 1 cup ice
An easy to find, and relatively cheap leafy green, spinach is great for smoothies because its flavor is virtually undetectable when combined with other things. Spinach is high in iron, which is great for keeping red blood cells healthy and transporting oxygen throughout the body. One of the best sources of vitamin K (which helps to keep bones strong), spinach is also high in vitamins C and A, folic acid, and manganese.
Rich in beta-carotene (which is essential in the production of vitamin A, a vitamin our bodies need for healthy vision and bones), squash is another vegetable that virtually disappears into smoothies. Getting a healthy amount of potassium on a daily basis is great way to naturally control blood pressure, and squash has got it in spades.
Speaking of potassium, bananas are known for having it in high amounts, as well as fiber and vitamin C. Because of the electrolytes present in bananas, they’re a great ingredient for active kids or adults. Bananas are also full of magnesium, which is excellent for calming the nervous system.
Low in sugar and calories, strawberries are an excellent source of vitamin C. They’re one of the top fruits when it comes to antioxidants, and have a good amount of manganese (crucial to bone production and healthy skin). Despite their relatively low sugar content, they’re a great way to sweeten smoothies (especially when paired with citrus), and if you buy organic strawberries, you don’t even need to cut the tops off! You can throw them in your blender whole.
The original vitamin C superstar, adding lemon to smoothies with dark, leafy greens cuts the “vegetable” flavor, keeping things light and sweet.
These little powerhouses are full of fiber, protein, and healthy fats, which means they’ll keep you satisfied and energized for hours. If you soak them for an hour in water before adding them to your smoothie, they’ll also make the consistency thicker and more “milkshake” like. Additionally, chia seeds are a great source of calcium and iron.
An easy-to-digest vegan variety, unflavored pea protein is a virtually fat-free way to make sure your smoothie has a healthy dose of lean protein. It’s also recently been linked to lowered blood pressure and quicker muscle recovery after a workout.
In addition to its slightly sweet, tropical taste, coconut water is full of potassium and natural electrolytes. It’s also serves up a helping of calcium and magnesium.
Blend all of these ingredients up for about 60 seconds (to keep things smooth), pop them in mason jars or an ice cube tray for later, and you’ve got the perfect breakfast for anyone who only has a few minutes to spare before their day officially begins.