This article is written by Karmen from The Healthy Cuisine.
Smoothies can make a great breakfast but only if you choose your ingredients right. In this article, we take a quick look at what you need to make a healthy and filling breakfast smoothie as well as share five delicious recipes you can try today.
There are certain rules to be followed when making a smoothie if you want it to turn out not only tasty but also healthy. This means you cannot just throw your favorite treats in there and call it a success. Here are a few tips and tricks on how to do it right so you do not end up with a dessert rather than a healthy breakfast.
Rule # 1: Proportions are everything
A healthy and energizing smoothie has a nice balance of everything. This means you have your fruits, veggies, proteins, carbs, and healthy fats. The key is to get them in the right proportion with low-sugar fruits and vegetables being the stars of the show.
Rule # 2: It’s ok to use sweeteners but in moderation
More often than not, the fruits you use will give the smoothie the nice sweet kick it needs. However, smoothies with a heavier vegetable base might need a little boost of the sweet stuff. Go for healthy options like honey, maple syrup, coconut sugar, or beets. Just don’t put in too much or the flavor balance will be disturbed.
Rule # 3: It’s not about the calories
Smoothies are about getting all the important nutrients in one delicious liquid medium. Do not be too hard on yourself about the calories and definitely do not leave any important components out because of this. Remember – balanced proportions are everything.
Rule # 4: Yes, there is such a thing as too many boosters
Boosters are ingredients added to the smoothie to improve either the flavor or its nutritional value. These include things like turmeric, ginger, lemon, chia seeds, nuts, and many others. With flavor boosters in particular, it is very important to not go overboard as they can pack quite a punch.
Rule # 5: Frozen fruits blend the best
This is a fun little secret that will help you achieve the best consistency with your breakfast smoothie. It works great whether it is berries, bananas, mangoes or whatever else you plan on using. Alternatively, you could just throw in a few ice cubes to get a nice and thick mix.
Rule # 6: Add, blend, enjoy
That is how easy it is to make a healthy smoothie! Whatever your ingredients are, just throw them together and hit the pulse button on your smoothie blender. You could always add a few things after if your taste test reveals something is missing from the flavor.
5 Healthy Breakfast Smoothie Recipes
Honestly, when it comes to perfect smoothie recipes you are only limited by your imagination! It all depends on your specific taste and nutritional preferences. We’ve picked out five delicious smoothie recipes that will help give a wonderful start to the day.
1. Mango White Bean Smoothie
- 3/4 cup of milk or its plant-based alternative (i.e. almond, rice, or coconut milk)
- 1/3 cup of white beans
- 3/4 cup of chopped mangoes
- A couple of ice cubes
- Optional boosters including 5-6 mint leaves or 1 tbsp of coconut flakes
Why it’s healthy: The beans add dietary fiber and protein as well as boost the smoothie’s vitamin and mineral content. It’s high in vitamin C, vitamin A, magnesium, and potassium. It’s also a good source of iron and folate.
2. Dairy-free blueberry and avocado smoothie
- 1/4 an avocado
- 1/2 cup of blueberries
- 1 tsp of maca powder
- 1 tbsp of honey (or more to suit your taste)
- 1 tbsp of almond butter
- 1/2 cup of water
Why it’s healthy: It is a great option if you are avoiding milk for some reason. The avocado and almond butter make it thick and filling while adding healthy fats. The berries offer great detox benefits which will leave you feeling refreshed and energized all day.
3. Banana Oatmeal Smoothie
- 1/4 cup of rolled oats
- 1/2 cup of Greek yogurt (or plain)
- 1 banana
- Optional flavor and nutrition boosters like a handful of nuts or 1 tbsp of honey
Why it’s healthy: This is literally an entire traditional breakfast in one cup! The oats provide dietary fiber and complex carbs that will keep you full and energized all morning. The Greek yogurt adds fats and protein. You can jazz things up a little by adding a bit of orange juice for an extra layer of flavor (skip the honey if using juice).
4. Coconut Mango Smoothie
- 1/2 cup of coconut milk
- 1 cup of chopped mangoes (half a cup for every one cup of milk)
- 1/4 cup of water (or more if the smoothie comes out too thick for you)
- Optional boosters like 1/2 tsp of chia seeds or flaked coconuts
Why it’s healthy: This yummy tropical inspired smoothie is a great alternative to dairy-based smoothies without compromising on the protein and fat content or the filling quality. Chia seeds add an extra punch of nutrition in the form of omega-3 fatty acids, calcium, iron, magnesium, and potassium.
5. Berry Green Smoothie
- 1/4 cup of raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries
- 1/2 cup of spinach (cooked)
- 1/2 cup of Greek yogurt
- A couple of ice cubes (optional)
Why it’s healthy: This breakfast smoothie includes both fruits and vegetables in one delicious meal. It is incredibly filling and nutrient dense with a high content of vitamin C, vitamin A, calcium and magnesium. It’s also full of antioxidants, which are known to have numerous health benefits such as helping with the body’s natural detox process as well as improving digestive function.
With all this information, you should know exactly how to make the perfect breakfast smoothie for you. Just remember that the most important thing when choosing your ingredients is to have a final product that is not only tasty but also filling. You can use the five great recipes as a start as you figure out what works best for you. Happy experimenting!
Author bio: Karmen is a health and wellness enthusiast from Tartu, Estonia who loves to write about food and nutrition. She got her nutrition counselling certificate in 2016. Karmen shares her partner’s passion for cooking and is always looking for ways to make recipes healthier (and meat-free) that she publishes on her blog TheHealthyCuisine.com. She’s also interested in leading a natural lifestyle and is taking baby steps to a cleaner and more eco-friendly life.