2

votes

What's the best smoothie?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 20, 2010 at 5:31 PM

The topic of smoothies sometimes comes up and I LOVE fruit smoothies! I don't mind eating a bit of berries but I need other things to add in as well. I prefer to eat whole foods, not processed stuff like separated whey. Plus I'd like to avoid diary and I am not a big fan of vegetables. I sometimes add a bit of kefir but that stuff is way to sour for me to appreciate as a major ingredient. Smoothies taste excellent with low carb icecream but I'd like to find a healthier but still very good tasting substitute. Any ideas? I have been thinking of trying coconut milk. Recipes are appreciated. My goal is for it to be reasonably healthy and paleo but also to taste REALLY good and a bit sweet.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 21, 2013
at 07:14 AM

Juicing hits your blood sugar like candy, albeit nutrient-dense candy... Unless you're really working out some greens or wheat grass. I don't eat raw greens that I didn't grow anymore. Too much contamination.

7fb5e7849c5d9d8ebdfa9d36786b1fe9

(178)

on February 21, 2013
at 04:08 AM

I think blending and mashing food is simply another form of external digestion, just like cooking. Juicing could be argued that it alters the absorption due to taking out the fiber, but its so good, and such an efficient method of digesting A LOT of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients quickly and efficiently.

778b36f4f699f202de135ef176fe9ab7

(1123)

on January 16, 2012
at 06:39 PM

I like the idea of adding a 1/2 avocado, but what do you do with the other half? Is there a secret to keeping them from getting brown an icky once you cut them open?

5ef574d7893bc816ec52e04139e9bc09

(6097)

on November 03, 2011
at 08:11 PM

Maybe the process of chewing signals the production of digestive enzymes, but I doubt this makes smoothies the bane of all healthful eating.

5ef574d7893bc816ec52e04139e9bc09

(6097)

on November 03, 2011
at 08:09 PM

I'd like to see some evidence that mashing your food alters its absorption by your body in any significant way. Your teeth already do this, btw.

60199d3a580a4e17969059609e48e678

(883)

on May 17, 2011
at 06:21 AM

same, I don't understand the phobia of fruits... the fruits I eat are packed with vitamins so why not? not to mention they are perfect when you are craving something refreshing and sweet. people shouldn't deny all their cravings, you just end up stressed out and unhappy for the sake of nothing. JMO!!

60199d3a580a4e17969059609e48e678

(883)

on May 17, 2011
at 06:18 AM

I never thought of using sweet potato!!! Oh how clever!! :D

60199d3a580a4e17969059609e48e678

(883)

on May 17, 2011
at 06:17 AM

ramen to that sister!

60199d3a580a4e17969059609e48e678

(883)

on May 17, 2011
at 06:15 AM

there are many ways that indigenous people prepared their foods so saying that they didn't "blend" their foods is kinda.... eh I'm not going to get into it. I like smoothies, especially with a good bit of raw kale and berries in them!

5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on May 16, 2011
at 02:33 PM

The fruit phobia is due to fructose load on the liver. Personally, I suspect while 'bad', it's probably not as bad as the fructophobes think (as long as you aren't eating it every meal/every day). The body is a complex system.

88905cfc5bb098ad3830671a1af373a8

(803)

on April 04, 2011
at 02:27 PM

sounds good (I mention taro in my response but i'll have to try sweet potato)

88905cfc5bb098ad3830671a1af373a8

(803)

on April 04, 2011
at 02:19 PM

Chris has a point, but since I just bought a blender yesterday, I'm siding with Eva on this one.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on March 01, 2011
at 02:01 AM

It sounds delicious, Laura. I couldn't have it -- it would cause cravings at the very least in me, but I hope it works for you.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on February 28, 2011
at 08:10 AM

Any comments on this recipe? 1 cup Homemade whole milk plain yogurt, 1/2 small sweet potato. 1/4 C frozen raspberries, splash of Kombucha (about 2T). I've only been doing paleo for a short time but I love smoothies and don't want to give them up yet. I know dairy is questionable for some. I'm leaving cultured dairy in for now. btw this is about 2 small servings. Probably wouldn't hurt to consume in one but I want to moderate these kind of things.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on July 25, 2010
at 04:38 AM

Ancient people ground up things with stones and made gruels and various mixes. They had tools. squishing up stuff together is not exactly rocket science. Plus it tastes good.

1a8020e101199de55c1b3b726f342321

(1973)

on July 21, 2010
at 10:11 PM

The real point is, that processing your food, even with a blender, alters how it is digested, the rate of insulin spines, duration and magnitude of blood glucose spike etc.

1a8020e101199de55c1b3b726f342321

(1973)

on July 21, 2010
at 10:11 PM

Yes, an lots of indigenous cultures and hunter gatherers have blenders in which they blend up fruit, year round!

8347d512bca9b034d53da40dab8cd21c

(2517)

on July 21, 2010
at 03:12 PM

And in podcast #37, he touches base on said custard with a variation that a listener made with coconut oil -- which I think I may try because it sounds freakin' awesome.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on July 21, 2010
at 02:54 PM

I think most people naturally lay off the fruit eventually.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on July 21, 2010
at 04:45 AM

I don't have any blood sugar issues, so I am not in a big panic about avoiding fruit as if it were poison. However, I do use mostly berries most of the time and rarely use banana. And I limit my smoothie intake. I see no prob with fruit in moderation if you have good blood sugars and are healthy. Conveniently, the less carby fruits also happen to be my favorite.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on July 21, 2010
at 04:40 AM

If you reread the question, I said I was planning to try coconut milk in the near future (had not yet had time to go buy it). In the past, what I put in has been some berries, some low carb ice cream, some kefir, and sometimes some cream. Once in a while, I will throw in things like a few chocolate chips, some banana, or some other fruit that is growing on the trees outside (citrus is good) What I want is to get rid of the low carb icecream, but so far, versions without it have not been super tasty. I could put in more banana but that is very carby.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on July 21, 2010
at 04:33 AM

I make my own smoothies. No added sugar. And who the heck puts flour in a smoothie! Sugar comes from the fruit itself. A smoothie is just a fancy name for blended stuff to drink. Many people make very healthy veggie smoothies.

1a8020e101199de55c1b3b726f342321

(1973)

on July 20, 2010
at 08:14 PM

The best smoothie is no smoothie. Smoothie's are highly processed foods, like sugar and flour.

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16 Answers

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5
145d4b0f988af15acc6b26eccc1f4895

on July 20, 2010
at 06:58 PM

Oh my, you haven't tried coconut milk yet? Try pouring it into ice cube trays, freeze them, then pop the little cubes out and use them in your smoothie. If you like yours really cold like I do (typically, mine's like soft serve ice cream) this will help you get that texture.

It is my personal opinion that in the summer, most fruits are okay (and the ones - like banana - that are problematic, are still okay in very small quantity). Is that simply because I WANT it to be so? Probably, but a life lived in self-denial is hardly worth living. I have less justification, I think, for eating much fruit in the winter, but even then, I like my smoothies. Just not as often, perhaps.

My favorite additions are banana and mango, but in very small quantities. And every smoothie I make has coconut milk in it. (I add other things, but they don't necessarily fit your constraints, so I won't bother with those.)

Oh, one other thing I do, which I am sure is very strange (I found this out by accident).. After I make my smoothie, I stir in a tablespoon of melted coconut oil, but I make sure it solidifies in chunks (i.e. don't stir it in until it's smooth). Then as I am drinking my smoothie (which is usually thick enough to eat with a spoon, I get the little crunchy bits of coconut oil, which is just delicious!

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on July 21, 2010
at 04:45 AM

I don't have any blood sugar issues, so I am not in a big panic about avoiding fruit as if it were poison. However, I do use mostly berries most of the time and rarely use banana. And I limit my smoothie intake. I see no prob with fruit in moderation if you have good blood sugars and are healthy. Conveniently, the less carby fruits also happen to be my favorite.

60199d3a580a4e17969059609e48e678

(883)

on May 17, 2011
at 06:17 AM

ramen to that sister!

3
6c79890eb2299109d3caf4c6ecdfe6cc

on July 21, 2010
at 03:01 PM

My favorite options:

1) Almond Milk, Ice, Cinnamon, Maybe a little bit of banana...

2) Coconut Milk, Mixed Berries, Ice....

Both are really good!

2
100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on July 20, 2010
at 07:12 PM

If you're not eating dairy or vegetables, coconut milk or protein powder, I presume you are just talking about blended fruit? I know fruit is considered paleo, but I would not recommend consuming it more than occasionally and in small quantities. If you must have one, you should really consider adding protein (an egg?) and fat to mitigate the sugar bomb.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on July 21, 2010
at 04:40 AM

If you reread the question, I said I was planning to try coconut milk in the near future (had not yet had time to go buy it). In the past, what I put in has been some berries, some low carb ice cream, some kefir, and sometimes some cream. Once in a while, I will throw in things like a few chocolate chips, some banana, or some other fruit that is growing on the trees outside (citrus is good) What I want is to get rid of the low carb icecream, but so far, versions without it have not been super tasty. I could put in more banana but that is very carby.

1
A993550f2a130df8d3462c08582f08ec

(589)

on April 04, 2011
at 01:14 PM

Some ingredients you may not have thought of:

Semi-frozen kale or spinach (doesn't affect the flavor much at all)

Half an avocado (ditto, mostly adds creaminess)

Full-fat greek yogurt

Small container of unsweetened (or homemade) applesauce

I used to make this smoothie, or some variation of it, all the time, but it's been about eight months or so since I've made it. My memory may be a little off, but here goes:

1 cup spinach, put in the freeze for half an hour

1 container of applesauce

.5 cup or so coconut milk

Blend these until all the leaves are broken down

Add a handful of frozen mixed berries

Add some unsweetened cocoa powder

Blend again

Add some ice and a little cold water to bulk it up

Blend until ice is broken down and everything is well-mixed

778b36f4f699f202de135ef176fe9ab7

(1123)

on January 16, 2012
at 06:39 PM

I like the idea of adding a 1/2 avocado, but what do you do with the other half? Is there a secret to keeping them from getting brown an icky once you cut them open?

1
Medium avatar

(4878)

on April 04, 2011
at 04:49 AM

Pumpkin or Sweet Potato Pie Smoothie

1 can Coconut Milk 3-6 TBS of cooked pumpkin or sweet potato (to taste) 1/4tsp cinnamon 1/8tsp nutmeg 1/4-1/2tsp Vanilla extract (the more the merrier) 3-4 packets of Stevia or other subtle sweetener

Store Coconut milk in fridge Mix in blender until smooth and serve

Chocolate Butter Smoothie

(This can also be portioned into ramekins for pudding and left overnight in fridge to thicken.) 1 can Coconut Milk 1-4TBS Almond Butter (for taste and thickening power) 2-3 TBS high quality cocoa powder (unsweetened) 1/4 tsp cinnamon 1/8 tsp nutmeg 1/4-1/2tsp Vanilla extract 1-2 Stevia packets or other sweetener

88905cfc5bb098ad3830671a1af373a8

(803)

on April 04, 2011
at 02:27 PM

sounds good (I mention taro in my response but i'll have to try sweet potato)

60199d3a580a4e17969059609e48e678

(883)

on May 17, 2011
at 06:18 AM

I never thought of using sweet potato!!! Oh how clever!! :D

1
11f71e2f328117fb2d9ab70cc98d74b0

on April 03, 2011
at 03:09 PM

Before paleo I was an AVID smoothie fan. I probably had 4 per week, usually for breakfast, made with milk, soymilk or yogurt. I made my first smoothie since switching to Paleo this morning, and it was fantastic! I know a couple of my ingredients are debatable, but here it is:

Frozen blueberries, blended by themselves, before adding the following: - coconut milk (I used 1/2 the can, and then poured the rest into an ice cube trays - I'm excited to use the frozen milk!) - 1/2 ripe banana (for two reasons: 1. I love the blueberry-banana flavor combo, and 2. I use the banana as a sweetener. I don't like stevia or honey) - scoop of whey protein powder (I can't bring myself to chug raw eggs, yet.) - spoonful of almond butter

I thought that the blueberries and coconut milk would complement each other well, but wasn't sure how the rest would go over. This was actually better than any pre-paleo smoothie I ever made! Delicious!

Side note/PSA: If you have a Trader Joe's nearby, and haven't checked them out, go! They have the best price on coconut milk I can find in Columbus, at $0.99 a can.

1
100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on July 21, 2010
at 02:30 PM

This should have been a comment to Melissa's answer, but it was too long, and I didn't want to shorten it.

By "people", I assume you mean me. :) I'm not fruit-phobic, I just don't consider making a meal of it to be a good idea for anyone, and for many people I think it would be best not included at all. Fruit has always been controversial in the paleosphere, and in previous questions here, we have tended to agree to disagree by saying it's an "individual matter". Insofar as it's controversial, it's important that the spectrum of answers are heard, including yours and mine. My "transition" included high-fiber, low-sugar fruit, and I continued to be fat, have mood problems, and sugar cravings, and I would have been better off knowing from the get-go that it's not for everyone.

Of course, I agree that's it's better than going off paleo, and if it's helpful or harmless to some people, that's great.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on July 21, 2010
at 02:54 PM

I think most people naturally lay off the fruit eventually.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on March 01, 2011
at 02:01 AM

It sounds delicious, Laura. I couldn't have it -- it would cause cravings at the very least in me, but I hope it works for you.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on February 28, 2011
at 08:10 AM

Any comments on this recipe? 1 cup Homemade whole milk plain yogurt, 1/2 small sweet potato. 1/4 C frozen raspberries, splash of Kombucha (about 2T). I've only been doing paleo for a short time but I love smoothies and don't want to give them up yet. I know dairy is questionable for some. I'm leaving cultured dairy in for now. btw this is about 2 small servings. Probably wouldn't hurt to consume in one but I want to moderate these kind of things.

1
9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on July 21, 2010
at 01:18 PM

Geez, what's with the fruit phobia people? Some people aren't doing paleo because they have insulin problems- my own blood sugar does NOT spike when I drink smoothies and they are an excellent and palatable transition food that you'll probably find yourself eating less of over time as desire for sweet decreases and cooking skills improve. Maybe they should be avoided if you are very overweight and insulin resistant, but if it's a choice between not doing paleo and drinking a smoothie...well I'm all for them.

The goal should be to keep sugar minimal and fiber high. Look for fruits with a high ratio of fiber to sugar. Berries + coconut milk is a good one, though honestly I prefer young thai coconut and coconut water. You can even add some greens if you are brave. Some off the beaten path berries like currants are an awesome choice- if your smoothie ends up too sour, a few drops of stevia can fix it, but usually when I do some sweeter berries (blue or straw berries) plus some sour berries (currants, aronia) it works out fine.

Robb Wolf has also discussed an apple coconut custard in his podcast. I think to make it you just cook down apples in coconut milk and then refrigerate and it gels because of the pectin.

8347d512bca9b034d53da40dab8cd21c

(2517)

on July 21, 2010
at 03:12 PM

And in podcast #37, he touches base on said custard with a variation that a listener made with coconut oil -- which I think I may try because it sounds freakin' awesome.

0
Ad29572da3a8836995d7158c91ec673e

on March 12, 2013
at 02:12 PM

I find if you use full fat coconut cream you don't need to add banana. I like banana every once in a whole but I'm trying to lose weight and insulin resistant so I avoid it. Coconut cream from the fridge with berries, a little stevia or honey, chilled in the freezer for 10 minutes, is perfect. If I have some left over sweet potatoes I'll use that instead, maybe once a week since its carby. I add cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla, and I only use boiled mashed sweet potato since its got a lower GI than baked for some reason.

I make green smoothies sometimes too. Can't really taste the spinach. And sometimes I use full fat Greek yogurt instead of coconut cream, but it's not as fluffy as coco cream so I usually do need to add bananas and ice to it.

I only have a smoothie one or two days a week. Usually I stick to eggs. But a couple days a week won't hurt me and it's so refreshing in the hot Mississippi summer.

Being strictly zero carb for a year and then crashing and burning taught me that sensibly indulging occasionally is better than being perfect until you sit down and eat a loaf of sourdough. Or as the saying goes, the best is the enemy of the good.

0
089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on February 21, 2013
at 04:04 AM

my favorite one lately is

6 oz yogurt (i ferment mine for 24 hours so it's super tangy) 3 frozen bananas 1 capful of vanilla extract as much water as you need to make it a good texture for you

0
837459f332b3e3208cbec3f80dfcaa05

on February 21, 2013
at 02:46 AM

I would recommend a Paleo smoothie! Go to my site textarealink texttextarea

I have made a science out of the Paleo Smoothie!

Check out the ingredient list...

PaleoJay

0
9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

on May 16, 2011
at 04:04 PM

The Tropical Traditions "coconut cream concentrate" is an awesome addition to any fruit-oriented smoothie. It has high fat content (~70%) and is concentrated, which offsets the sweetness and water in the smoothie. I find that the fat content really seems to stretch out the digestion of the smoothie, I don't get a sugar rush and I could still be feeling satisfied 2-3 hours later if I used a fair amount of the stuff.

I wrote about this product here. Don't worry, I'm not an employee of the company or a distributor or anything, I just like the stuff.

0
Af43d11d60547c868ccf1e4daccb76ad

on May 16, 2011
at 02:24 PM

I don't get the fruit phobia as well. But I usually only eat a big serving of fruit pre or post workout.

One of my favorite post-workout smoothies is frozen blueberries, 3 or 4 frozen strawberries, a few slices of banana (I keep these in the freezer so I don't always have to eat a whole banana), a heaping tablespoon of cottage cheese, some frozen spinach, and almond milk.

5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on May 16, 2011
at 02:33 PM

The fruit phobia is due to fructose load on the liver. Personally, I suspect while 'bad', it's probably not as bad as the fructophobes think (as long as you aren't eating it every meal/every day). The body is a complex system.

60199d3a580a4e17969059609e48e678

(883)

on May 17, 2011
at 06:21 AM

same, I don't understand the phobia of fruits... the fruits I eat are packed with vitamins so why not? not to mention they are perfect when you are craving something refreshing and sweet. people shouldn't deny all their cravings, you just end up stressed out and unhappy for the sake of nothing. JMO!!

0
Af939911afa817f79a4625d4f503c735

on April 04, 2011
at 03:12 PM

While I agree with the idea that liquid food isn't generally the best thing for you, I will occasionally indulge in frozen strawberries and coconut milk blended together. It's really great after a tough workout, and a good substitute for ice cream.

0
88905cfc5bb098ad3830671a1af373a8

on April 04, 2011
at 02:26 PM

Attention all those who want to avoid the fructose blast:

The absolute best IMHO is a taro smoothie. They drink them in Vietnam but with sweetened condensed milk that should obviously be swapped out.

0
F643ceedde9bbf290f31fc2f814100ed

(486)

on July 21, 2010
at 02:56 PM

I agree. Fruits were far easier to hunt and eat than hunting animals with spears. I think early man had betteraccess to fruit than is often recognized.

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