Every. Single. Time. Every single time I throw a smoothie together for a friend or family member....they tell me its the best smoothie they've ever had! They also say that about my salads....but that's another blog and another day. Part of me wonders if they are just saying that because they are lazy and don't want to make their own! But honestly.....my smoothies are pretty darn good! Let me tell you my six secrets to make the perfect smoothie every time...
I do need to address one thing.....my concoctions are REAL smoothies! They do not contain things you will find in a smoothie at trendy places such as Smoothie King or Orange Leaf. They are nutrient dense to feed your body.....well balanced and won't cause a sugar spike. They are a MEAL...not a dessert (unless you want them to be).
My smoothies are based on the AIP lifestyle. I use ingredients that are AIP compliant while in the elimination phase (you can see the full list of approved foods HERE). The ingredients can be altered as you enter the reintroduction phase.
So what are my secrets? I have six tips to make the perfect smoothie.....
Perfect Smoothie Tip #1: Frozen Bananas
I allow my bananas to fully ripen to the "super spotty brown" stage and then cut them into chunks and freeze them in individual bags in my freezer. The ripe banana is extra sweet and full of flavor. The frozen banana acts as the ice and doesn't water down my smoothie.
Perfect Smoothie Tip #2: Frozen Avocados
I purchase large bags of frozen avocado from Costco...although I've seen small bags at our local HEB as well. Did you even know there was such a thing?
I can't imagine what anyone uses it for other than smoothies....but I am so glad they exist! Adding a handful of frozen avocado adds a fist full of nutrition as well as a good dose of healthy fats that our bodies need! This also helps to stabilize blood sugar spikes! The avocado adds a creaminess that can't be matched! And no....you do NOT taste the avocado!
Perfect Smoothie Tip #3: Bone Broth+Collagen Powder
Bone Broth + Collagen Protein is an absolute must when making a smoothie! One full scoop is the key to a balanced frozen concoction that is healthy and delicious. The protein is essential to regulating your blood sugar but also keeping you satisfied longer! I have tried several varieties and I prefer Peak Performance - unflavored with zero additives!
Perfect Smoothie Tip #4: Spinach
Spinach is your powerhouse! One cup added to your smoothie provides you with fiber, protein, Vitamins C, K, A...potassium, magnesium, folate, phosphorus, and calcium. You will NOT taste this addition.....yet you still get all the added benefits!
Perfect Smoothie Tip #5: Coconut Milk
Coconut milk is the safest option for me....however I sometimes use almond milk as I have safely reintroduced almonds. I don't really notice a difference in my smoothie when I use one in place of the other. You can even use water as your liquid....but I prefer the added nutrition that the unsweetened milks provide.
Perfect Smoothie Tip #6: Stevia Drops
Sweeteners are not recommended for those in the beginning of the healing AIP journey.
However....if you've completed the elimination phase and are feeling the benefits of the AIP lifestyle, you can eventually use a few suggested AIP approved sweetness such as stevia, monk fruit, maple syrup, coconut sugar and date sugar. I prefer Stevia.....specifically I LOVE the flavored drops by Sweet Leaf...particularly English Toffee.
I will say.....you need to use this sparingly! Part of the AIP journey is to reset your tastebuds which allows you to begin to taste the natural sweetness in foods...such as the fruit that you choose to use in your smoothie. Too much stevia in your diet will not help with this part of the process. It is also questionable for long term effects on hormone regulation when used in excess. So remember....just a few drops will do!!!
The rest is up to YOU!!!
Build your perfect smoothie with whatever you are feeling at the moment!!! There are hundreds of thousands of recipes out there on the inter-web or check out MY favorites HERE! Just keep in mind......you want your concoction to FEED your body......not just FEED your craving! So stick to my six tips to the perfect smoothie mentioned above....and build from there!