There are many, many great smoothie recipes out there and lots of different smoothies to try. Even so, if you are like most people, you have your one trusty go-to smoothie recipe. You know, the one you know by heart and don’t have to think about. The one you can make on auto pilot. The one you can throw together in your sleep, which is often the case.
The only problem is that you’ve made that smoothie so many times that now you are getting bored with it. Here are 5 great ways to freshen up your smoothie:
- Add fresh lemon or lime. Along with vitamin C a powerful antioxidant that boosts your immune system, lemons and limes add a refreshing tartness that bring out the natural flavors in a veggie smoothie and offset the sweetness of a fruit smoothie. I like to add up to ¼ of a lime, skin and all to my smoothies.
- Add fresh ginger root and/or turmeric. Not only does ginger have powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, it also tastes great and will add a distinct, slightly sweet flavor to enhance your smoothie. I like to peel and add about a 1” piece (~1-2 tablespoons) to my smoothies.
Turmeric, a bright yellow- or orange-colored root that gives color to curries and is related to ginger, is also an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. Slightly spicy and not as sweet as ginger, turmeric helps relieve heartburn and upset stomach, helps regulate blood sugar, may protect the brain, and may even fight cancer! I like to peel and add about a ½” – 1” piece to my smoothie.
A word of caution: be sure to consult your physician if you are on blood-thinning medication as turmeric may slow blood clotting.
- Add cinnamon. An antioxidant and anti-inflammatory, cinnamon also helps control blood sugar levels. Cinnamon enhances the flavor of a smoothie with that familiar and comforting taste. I like to add about a teaspoon of ground cinnamon to my smoothie.
- Add some fresh mint. Mint adds a delicious and refreshing taste to smoothies and aids in digestion, soothes nausea and indigestion, and helps clear congestion in the nose, throat, and lungs due to asthma, allergies, and colds. I like to add about ¼ cup of fresh mint leaves to my smoothies.
- Add jalapeno, serrano, or other hot chile pepper. Try turning up the heat to wake up your mouth with a warming sensation. Chile peppers have been shown to protect stomach lining and reduce bleeding, have anti-inflammatory properties, and may even prevent cancer. I like to add ½ of a serrano chile or ¼ - ½ of a jalapeno chile, seeds and all, depending on the size.
It makes no difference if you make your favorite smoothie with all veggies, all fruit, or a combination of veggies and fruit. You can try adding just one or any combination of these to your smoothie and you will be amazed by how great it will taste! The amounts I like to use can be used as a guide to creating your perfect smoothie by adjusting them to your own tastes.
Please leave a comment and let me know which ones you like best, or if there are other ways you like to freshen up your smoothie.