Summer is here, and it’s a great opportunity to pick up your green smoothie habit. It’s common for your taste preferences to change with the seasons, and during the winter time, you probably craved more grounding and warm meals. Now that it’s the summer, it’s time to enjoy lighter and fresher foods.

If you tend to be someone who rushes in the morning, a smoothie might be the perfect breakfast for your on-the-go schedule. Once you have the ingredients, your smoothie routine will take less than five minutes to complete.

Keep in mind, though, that not just any smoothie will do the trick. Many smoothies that you find at restaurants and smoothie bars are packed with fruit juice, fruit, yogurt, or ice cream. When you add all of this up, you have a sugar bomb instead of a nutrient-dense booster. If you make your smoothies at home, you can have more control over the ingredients.

Adding one smoothie per day to your diet is a great way to pack healthy nutrients into one meal (or snack). You can get your fruit, vegetables, protein, and healthy fats all in one beverage.

If you’re new to the smoothie world, don’t feel overwhelmed. Here is a basic guide on how to Build Your Own Smoothie (BYOS):


1. Choose a Low-Sugar, Non-Dairy Liquid Base

Start by choosing your favorite liquid. Some great choices include:

  • Unsweetened almond milk
  • Unsweetened coconut milk
  • Water
  • Coconut water

2. Pick a Fruit (Fresh or Frozen)

Be sure to pay attention to how much fruit you add to your smoothies. Even though fruit is healthy, it contains natural sugars that can add up really quickly. Choose between ½ cup to 1 cup of fruit depending on your blood sugar levels and health goals. If you are pre-diabetic or diabetic, make sure to stick to the lower sugar fruits like berries or green apples. Some delicious fruit options include:

  • Berries
  • Green apples
  • Bananas
  • Peaches
  • Mango
  • Pineapple
  • Cherries

3. Add a Healthy Fat for Increased Satiety

Adding some type of healthy fat to your smoothie will help keep you full for longer and increase the nutrient value of your smoothie. Healthy fats typically have a high level of Omega-3 fatty acids, which are helpful for reducing your risk of inflammation, auto-immune disease, and heart health. Some options for your smoothie are:

  • Natural almond butter
  • Almonds
  • Walnuts
  • Hemp seeds
  • Chia seeds
  • Avocado
  • Flaxseed oil
  • Coconut oil
  • Coconut butter

4. Choose Your Favorite Type of Protein

According to a 2003 study presented in the American Society For Clinical Nutrition, adding protein to your diet helps to stabilize your blood sugar levels if you have type 2 diabetes. When used in a smoothie, protein may help to prevent the sugar from the fruit from spiking your blood sugar too much. If you are using a protein powder, make sure it is high quality (no antibiotics, no hormones, no artificial flavors, no processed sugars). Here are a few protein suggestions to get you started:

  • Terra’s Grass-fed Whey
  • Pure Paleo by Designs For Health
  • Jay Robb Egg white protein powder
  • Vega Sports Performance
  • Organic plain green yogurt (if you tolerate dairy)
  • Egg whites from hardboiled eggs

5. Add Delicious Greens

At the very least, you should add one handful of green vegetables or one scoop of green powder to your smoothie. This will add a good dose of essential daily vitamins and minerals to your diet. You don’t have to wait until dinner to have greens! Start at breakfast with one of these options:

  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Swiss chard
  • Celery
  • Broccoli

6. Finally, Add Ice

If you prefer your smoothie cold, simply add two to four ice cubes to your ingredients and blend in a blender. If you like your smoothie to be thicker, just add more ice. With all of these recipes, feel free to play around with the amount of liquid and ice until you find your desired consistency.

3 Summer Smoothie Recipes

Now that you have the basics down, you can start experimenting with different ingredients and flavors to create a delicious meal or treat. If you want some ideas, here are three of our favorite smoothie recipes. For all of these smoothies, just add the ingredients into a blender and blend until the ingredients are well combined.

Green Goddess Smoothie

Looking for a protein-packed smoothie that gets you some much-needed greens? Try this smoothie recipe. The avocado makes it a little creamy, while the ginger can be healing.

  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (or water)
  • 1/2 small avocado
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1 cup kale
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 1 scoop protein powder
  • 1 pinch fresh ginger (optional)
  • 4 ice cubes

Blueberry Delight

Blueberries are considered a super food, and can even play a role in improving your risk of cardiovascular disease. This smoothie recipe is perfect for a refreshing treat on a hot summer day.

  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup frozen organic berries
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 handful spinach
  • 4 ice cubes

Chocolate Coconut Joy

Everyone gets a hankering for something sweet sometimes. Instead of grabbing for something packed with added sugar, hit your sweet spot with this smoothie recipe.

  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 tablespoon coconut butter
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 scoop of chocolate protein powder
  • 1 handful spinach
  • 1/8 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 4 ice cubes