Vital, healthy, and refreshing: Green smoothies are true power drinks, thanks to a good portion of vitamins, minerals, and secondary plant substances. Here you will find many tips about vegetables, blenders, preparation, and recipes.
Raise the curtain on the healthiest stars of smoothie heaven: Green smoothies have become an indispensable part of the repertoire of healthy nutrition. The vital power drink provides you with important vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber.
In the leading role: green leafy vegetables. The otherwise so popular sweet fruits, on the other hand, have to be content with a tasty supporting role.
We’ll show you the optimal ratio of vegetables to fruit in a green smoothie, which vegetables are best to put in the blender, and which ingredients you should avoid.
Green smoothies: what’s in them?
The Green Smoothie was invented in 2014 in the USA by the Russian-born nutrition expert Victoria Boutenko and triggered an absolute hype that continues to this day.
For the first time, green vegetables such as arugula, spinach, garden herbs (parsley, basil, etc.), kale, or celery were packed into the blender. But not simply by gut feeling, the nutrition expert strictly adhered to the “one true” formula:
50 percent vegetables + 50 percent fruit + a little water = Green Smoothie.
The smoothie should consist of at least 50 percent vegetables. Experienced green smoothie drinkers can also venture to 60 percent. The taste is then somewhat more bitter.
The most important criterion for the type of fruit chosen: it must be ripe. The sweeter the fruit, the more digestible and delicious the smoothie.
Lemon juice, dried fruit, ginger, honey, or rice syrup provide the still-missing acidity, sweetness, or spiciness – just to your taste.
How much is healthy or unhealthy?
The German Federal Center for Nutrition (bzfe) sees green smoothies as an enrichment and successful variety in supplying the body with nutrients. “Of the five recommended servings of fruits and vegetables a day, smoothies can occasionally replace up to two servings,” says the bzfe.
A serving size is considered to be 200-250 milliliters. However, it is recommended to do without additional fruit on the day. The missing daily ration should rather be compensated with vegetables, for example in the form of oven vegetables, salad, or vegetable pans.
Nutritionists also found that green smoothies have an enormously high nutrient density – thanks to the green leaves.
They are bursting with a wide variety of vitamins and minerals that strengthen our immune system in particular. The fiber they contain helps build healthy intestinal flora and is a plus for good digestion.
The green chlorophyll favors the cell structure. Trace elements and secondary plant substances push our performance.
Are there also critical ingredients in green smoothies?
Yes, there are, such as essential oils from parsley, oxalic acid from spinach and chard, or high nitrate content in green leafy vegetables such as spinach, lettuce, lamb’s lettuce, and arugula.
Oxalic acid can inhibit the absorption of calcium, iron, and magnesium in the intestine, among other things. But a slight all-clear: oxalic acid is only harmful to the body in very large quantities.
To absorb as little nitrate as possible, the bzfe recommends not putting the leaf stalks, the outer leaves, for example in the case of lettuce, and the thicker leaf veins into the blender.
The right fruits and vegetables for green smoothies
It should be nice and green – green leafy vegetables, salads, and herbs provide a refreshing color. Make sure to use mainly local and seasonal fruits and vegetables.
Of course, you can also use exotic fruits such as pineapple, mango, and avocado from time to time. It should remain varied – especially in the winter months when only apples and pears from domestic cultivation are available.
You should avoid these ingredients
- Carrots and beet, as their vegetable juice would color too strongly. In terms of taste, of course, they are top.
- Rhubarb is also taboo, as it is not edible in its raw state and is even harmful to health.
- Milk, yogurt, and vegetable drinks
- Store-bought juices fill water, as they contain too much sugar
- Added sugar and sweeteners are also not beneficial
Mix it up: how to prepare green smoothies in the blender
Normal smoothie makers and kitchen blenders quickly break down when it comes to green leafy vegetables, as green vegetables consist of firm, tough fibers.
Therefore, we recommend preparing them in a high-performance blender (click here for our stand mixer test). It has the advantage that with its up to 30,000 revolutions per minute, it can completely break down the cell walls of leaf lettuce, spinach, and co., perfectly chop hard vegetables such as celery, nuts as well as frozen fruit and process them into a creamy puree.
In addition, the liquid is not heated, so all nutrients are preserved.
What goes in the blender first?
There are different approaches. This variant has turned out to be optimal for us, as it is very gentle on nutrients, the blender does not get too hot, and a wonderful smoothie consistency is created:
Namely, the green vegetables go into the blender first with a little water to completely break up the tough fibers. The second step is followed by fruit and special ingredients such as linseed oil, cinnamon, ginger, or lemon juice.
5 special benefits of green smoothies
- Rich in vitamins, minerals, and secondary plant compounds such as chlorophyll
- green smoothies are alkaline and therefore balance our acid-alkaline balance
- They are easy to digest as all ingredients are finely pureed by the high-powered blender. Very gentle on the stomach
- cravings can be prevented, as green smoothies are very high in fiber and satiating
we stay fit and awake because our gastrointestinal tract does not have to expend a
- a lot of energy for digestion
Green Smoothie Recipes
Feel free to try your hand at making green smoothies. Anything goes, nothing has to.
We currently love the combo of spinach, avocado, mango, and a squeeze of lime. Thanks to the avocado, the version has a lot of power and even replaces a complete meal. Perfect when things get stressful again.
Which combination would you like?