Short on time and ingredients to make a balanced meal? A smoothie might be just what you need to get you through to your next solid meal. I created this infograph and post, to give you a quick list of ingredients to choose from, when you build your own smoothie.
Sometimes I use smoothies for breakfast or lunch, because I always have the ingredients on hand and it takes me just 2-4 minutes to make. I like that smoothies make it easy to get in protein (that I don’t have to cook) and veggies, before lunch. I’ll admit, it doesn’t keep me as full as a solid meal, no matter how many calories I put in it. It’s common for people to not feel satiated from a few hundred calories of a smoothie, versus the same calories from solid food, so take that into consideration. I prefer to have a handful or two of nuts with my smoothie, for this reason. Smoothies aren’t magic, so if they don’t work for you, no problem! See some other breakfast ideas at the end of this post.
There are a few variables you can adjust to ensure your smoothie has more staying power. Balancing your smoothie with adequate protein, fiber and fat, will help slow down digestion (though still a liquid, so will still be faster than solid, chewed food) and promote more satiety. With that said, if my options are eating nothing, or a food I otherwise wouldn’t have chosen, I’ll take the smoothie.
I’ve created a mix and match guide to building your own balanced (adequate protein, fat and fiber) and nutrient dense, smoothie. Below the infograph, you will find a few more details with some product links and the benefits of certain ingredients.
- Organic, plain or lightly sweetened (around 5-7g added sugar is reasonable) Greek yogurt or Keifer
- Siggi’s plant based yogurt (has pea protein added
- 3 Tbs hemp hearts (10g protein)
- Powders (favorites are listed below):
Fat options (feel free to use more than one):
- Nut butter
- Coconut cream or canned coconut milk
- Hemp seeds, chia or flax seeds (also add fiber)
- Whole milk dairy products
Fruit and veggie options (also adds fiber):
- Fresh spinach
- Riced cauliflower
- Frozen berries and cherries
- Frozen mango
- Frozen banana
- Water. Works better than you may think, especially if you have a creamy protein powder or coconut milk/cream.
- Unsweetened non-dairy milk. Oat milk will have the most carbs
- Coconut water. Does add some additional natural sugar.
Extras (for taste and nutrient density):
- Berry powder. Great for feeding the good gut bugs
- Acacia powder. Again, good for feeding gut bugs
- Probiotic capsule, opened up and poured in
- Cacao powder
- Greens powder
- Almond or PB powder
Other easy breakfast options:
- Breakfast sausage scramble or patties with fruit and nuts
- Banana Bread with nut butter and some eggs, sausage or yogurt
- Oatmeal with a protein source added (in it or next to it)
- Eggs with cheese, fruit or toast
- Yogurt (minimal added sugar) with nuts, seeds and fruit
- Leftover sweet potatoes and eggs, sausage or both