I have developed a culinary interest in smoothies in recent years, especially since I enjoy adding protein powder in mine to pump it up and keep me full until my next meal. After a few years of experimentation, I’ve found the following healthy ingredients can help me pack in more nutrients without sacrificing taste. I know at first, it’s a little weird to drink milk made from almonds or blended spinach, but it’s delicious, I promise. 🙂
Almond Milk vs Dairy Milk
I realized that dairy milk sometimes makes my stomach upset and I get a little bloated. While I will never give up the combination of cookies and milk once in a while, I have switched to almond milk for baking and smoothies. I usually get the vanilla unsweetened version, which is only 30 calories per cup. If you aren’t watching calories or sugar content, the sweetened version might taste better (Silk also makes an amazing added fiber and protein version, which I highly recommend).
Substituting almond milk is an easy change that you won’t even notice. Because it’s blended with everything else, you won’t taste the difference (even though almond milk on its own isn’t terrible, just different).
Matcha Green Tea Powder
I was contacted by Kiss Me Organics to try their matcha green tea powder (not an affiliate link), which has 137 times the antioxidants of brewed green tea and can increase metabolism and focus. It has about the same amount of caffeine in a serving (one teaspoon) as a cup of coffee. Once my packet arrived in the mail, I put in a teaspoon in my regular smoothie, worried that I might taste it in the smoothie. But, I didn’t! Kiss Me Organics also recommends just drinking it with water or even adding it to baked goods for an extra boost, which is something I could see myself doing in the future. Because antioxidants can help your skin and slow down aging, I will definitely keep using my tea powder.
So, this is sort of a lie. You can “taste” chia seed when it comes to texture, but you can’t actually taste them. They blend right in with the other flavors and I kind of like the slight crunchiness it adds to my smoothie. ONe serving adds a whopping 5 grams of fiber and 3 grams of protein, so it’s definitely worth the 60 calories, in my opinion. I like the Nutiva organic chia seeds and usually find them cheaper online or in warehouse stores like Costco instead of trying to buy them at a supermarket.
I thought this was a little weird, but other bloggers swore you can’t taste any spinach that you mix in with your fruit smoothies.I bought a big bag for about $4 and gave it a try. Besides turning a lot of my smoothie creations green, I can honestly say that I can’t taste it at all. One cup of spinach has 7 calories and about 1 gram of fiber and 1 gram of protein, along with 56% of your daily recommended vitamin A.
I had heard that carrots supposedly have a sweet taste when they are blended or juiced, but I didn’t believe it until I tried it for myself. It’s true! There isn’t a carroty taste at all, and when it does bring an orange tint to some smoothies, it’s an amazing source of vitamin A: 203% of your daily recommended amount in one medium carrot. It also has about 2 grams of fiber and .6 grams of protein.
What are your favorite “hidden” ingredients to add to smoothies?