7 healthy smoothie recipes for all-day energy

  • Healthy smoothies contain a balanced mix of sugar, protein and fiber.
  • Don’t overload your smoothie with fruits and juices as this can cause blood sugar spikes.
  • Focus on a mix of fruits, vegetables and a source of protein like apples with carrots and Greek yogurt.
  • Visit Insider’s Health Reference Library for more tips.

Smoothies can be a quick and easy way to meet your daily needs for vegetables, fruits, protein, fiber, and many vitamins and minerals.

But not all smoothies are created equal, and that’s important to know since the global smoothie market reached $20.3 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach $34.2 billion by 2027.

What you put in your smoothie matters because the wrong ingredients can make a smoothie look more like a sugar-laden soda than a health drink, says Wendy Lord, registered dietitian in private practice.

Below, experts share tips for making a healthier drink, plus nutrient-dense smoothie recipes to try at home.

Are smoothies good for you?

Smoothies can be healthy if they contain a balanced mix of ingredients.

Lord says that ideally a smoothie should contain the following:

  • A serving of fruit
  • At least one serving of vegetables
  • A source of protein (Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, silken tofu, etc.)
  • A little healthy fat (avocado, flax seeds, hemp seeds, peanut or almond butter, etc.)
  • Optional: complex carbohydrates (oats, chickpeas, sweet potato, etc.)

This combination of protein, fat and fiber makes the smoothie more filling and slows the release of sugar from the fruit into the bloodstream, subsequently preventing a spike in blood sugar, Lord says.

This is important because frequent spikes and crashes in blood sugar can increase your risk of developing a number of health problems, including insulin resistance and diabetes.

Smoothies that are mostly juice, syrup, and fruit aren’t as healthy because they’re more likely to increase calorie count and spike your blood sugar. Therefore, when making or buying a smoothie, try to avoid the following ingredients:

  • Juice. Juice is loaded with sugar and lacks protein or fat for satiety. Instead, opt for a dairy alternative like almond milk.
  • Dear. If you want a thicker consistency, try yogurt instead.
  • Agave syrup. Try a dash of vanilla extract with a little cinnamon for extra flavor without the sugar.

The calorie content of a smoothie can vary greatly. According to Cory Ruth, RDN, CEO of The Women’s Dietitian, a homemade smoothie will typically be between 300 and 500 calories, while store-bought blends can be up to 800 calories or more.

The best way to make sure your smoothie delivers maximum nutrients with a reasonable amount of calories and sugar is to make it at home. Below are some dietitian-approved recipes to get you started.

1. Creamy Mango Orange Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup peeled Cara Cara oranges
  • 1/2 cup frozen mango
  • 1 cup of ice cream
  • ¼ cup plain Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup water or almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla protein powder
  • 1 C. vanilla extract

Calories: 400-500

Thanks to the oranges, Schlichter says this smoothie is loaded with immune-boosting vitamin C, and the protein powder and Greek yogurt provide enough protein to keep you full longer while helping maintain and build muscle.

2. Apple and nut smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 small green apple
  • 1 small carrot, grated
  • 2 tbsp. oats
  • ½ cup of water
  • ⅓ cup vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1 C. full tea. Peanut Butter
  • ⅓ cup of ice cubes

Calories: 280-325

This smoothie is particularly high in fiber, Lord says — containing about 8.3 grams — thanks to the combination of carrot, oats and apple. Fiber-rich foods not only help control blood sugar, but also take longer to digest, helping to stave off hunger pangs.

3. Chocolate covered raspberry smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 ¼ cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon chocolate protein powder
  • ½ frozen banana
  • ½ cup frozen raspberries
  • 2 tbsp. grated coconut
  • 1 tbsp. cocoa powder
  • pinch of cinnamon

Calories: 350

Don’t be fooled by the indulgent taste of this dessert-inspired smoothie: Ruth says it’s packed with wholesome ingredients. Raspberries are one of the most fiber-rich fruits, while coconut contains healthy fats in the form of medium-chain triglycerides, which have been shown to lower “bad” LDL cholesterol and help lower lose weight and burn fat.

4. Spicy Kiwi Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 ¼ cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla collagen peptides (a supplement found in most grocery stores)
  • 1 chopped frozen kiwi
  • 1 cup frozen cauliflower
  • 1 tbsp. cashew butter
  • ½ tsp. Turmeric

Calories: 350

One cup of cauliflower contains 16.6 micrograms of bone-strengthening vitamin K — 18.4% of the RD for women and 13.8% of the RD for men. Meanwhile, Ruth notes that turmeric has well-studied antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties: a 2017 study found it may even help reduce muscle soreness after exercise, helping to promote and speed up recovery. recovery.

5. Banana-berry chia smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup frozen mixed berries
  • ½ banana
  • 1 tbsp. chia seeds
  • ¼ cup non-fat plain yogurt
  • ½ cup of water
  • Optional: a small handful of ice cubes

Calories: 360

Strawberries are a rich source of antioxidants, which promote heart health while reducing inflammation and “bad” LDL cholesterol, Lord says.

Chia seeds provide a combination of protein and fiber along with heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids. A 2016 review found that chia seeds contain a variety of compounds that may have anti-aging, anticancer, and cardioprotective benefits.

6. Smoothie 6C

Ingredients:

  • 1 scoop collagen protein powder
  • 1 tbsp. Cocoa Powder
  • ¼ tsp. cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp. cardamom
  • 1 tbsp. almond butter (or other unsweetened nut butter)
  • 1 C. MCT oil
  • 1 C. moringa powder
  • 10 drops monk fruit liquid sweetener
  • ½ cup frozen cauliflower
  • Small greenish banana
  • ⅔ cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • ½ cup of ice cubes

Calories: 325-375

Lauren Slayton, MS, registered dietitian and founder of Foodtrainers, says it’s one of her favorite blends, in part because of the addition of moringa: This powder, which is extracted from the leaves of the moringa tree, is not not only high in antioxidants, but can help lower cholesterol. It also acts as a diuretic, says Slayton, which means it can help relieve bloating.

7. Blueberry Basil Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup blueberries
  • ½ banana
  • Large handful of spinach
  • Small handful of fresh basil
  • ¼ – ½ avocado
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla protein powder
  • ½ cup of milk of your choice

Calories: 450

Meghan Pendleton, a dietician with a virtual private practice, likes this blend because blueberries are rich sources of polyphenols, compounds known to reduce inflammation and oxidative stress, thereby reducing the risk of many chronic diseases like cancer and


heart disease

.

Additionally, spinach provides plenty of carotenoids which are converted into vitamin A, which supports healthy vision and immune function. Avocado is an excellent source of B vitamins, which help your body better use the foods you eat for energy and absorb essential nutrients like vitamins A, D, E, and K.

Insider’s Takeaways

Smoothies can definitely be a healthy addition to your diet, as long as they’re made with whole fruits and vegetables and contain a balanced blend of protein, fiber and healthy fats. Fiber is especially important because it helps you avoid blood sugar spikes from fruit.

A homemade smoothie tends to be much healthier than a store-bought smoothie, which may contain hidden calories from sugary juices or other added sugars.

For a healthy and filling smoothie, dietitians recommend adding filling ingredients like Greek yogurt, protein powder, nut butter and complex carbohydrates.

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