Nearly every time I go to the grocery store one of those huge plastic containers of baby spinach finds its way into my cart. I always have big plans of how I’m going to use it up before it goes bad. My success rate is about 20%. But I see that rate going up exponentially now that I have landed on the perfect green smoothie.
Really, Beth? The perfect green smoothie? Major side-eye coming your way.
I realize that this is a bold claim to make. But my claim is substantiated by three pieces of evidence.
- Michael (my husband) doesn’t usually like green smoothies. But he’s had this one several times, and has even said it is “really good.” This is a big deal.
- Vida (my precocious preschooler) drinks them like they’re melted candy in a cup.
- Josh (the sweetest toddler around) sucks his down and then begs for more. Seriously.
So, yes, in my book, this is the perfect green smoothie. AND, now you too can buy the Costco-sized container of spinach and put it to good use upon arriving home by prepping several smoothies and stashing them in the freezer until you’re ready to drink perfection. The best part? There are only 5 ingredients and each serving is under 400 calories! Let’s do this.
How to make the perfect green smoothie:
Here’s what you need to make the perfect green smoothie:
~ 2 cups of baby spinach
~ 1 banana (fresh or frozen)
~ 1 cup frozen tropical fruit like pineapple, mango, papaya, or a mix
~ 3 dates (make sure they’re pitted!)
~ 2 Tablespoons of raw almonds
So pretty, right? Almost seems a shame to blend it all up. But that does make it easier to drink. If you need a handy guide for how to layer the ingredients in, here you go.
If you plan to blend and drink the smoothie right away, the order of ingredients isn’t so important, but if you’re making these ahead to freeze and blend later, the order is very important when it comes time to get everything out.
The basic idea is – put loose, hard items like nuts and seeds at the bottom, then frozen fruit, then pack as many greens as will fit. Then, when you’re ready to drink, you’ll pour water into the jar and it will fill in all of the extra space and loosen everything up to make it easier to transfer to the blender. After that, you can pour the smoothie back into the same jar to drink it all up, and it will fit perfectly!
See? You’ll have that spinach used up in no time. No refrigerator science experiments for you! Or me. Most of the time. I can’t tell you how handy it is to just grab a jar out of the freezer and have a smoothie ready to go in less than a minute. I’m slowly finding my way into this meal prep thing, and smoothies are proving to be the perfect entry point.
I hope you’ll give it a try too! I’d love to hear how it goes so leave me a comment or share a pic of your smoothie prep prowess on Instagram!
Green smoothie perfection, just waiting to be had.
- 1 banana sliced into 1 inch chunks (previously frozen is helpful but not necessary)
- 1 cup frozen tropical fruit (pineapple, papaya, mango, or a mix)
- 3 dates pitted
- 1/8 cup raw almonds (soaked is great but not required)
- 2 cups baby spinach (or as much as you can pack into the jar)
- 1 1/2 cups water (see notes if using a mason jar)
- Add all ingredients to blender.
- Blend until smooth.
- Pour into serving glass or mason jar (if doing the prep ahead method).
- Drink and feel virtuous, vibrant, and alive!
*This recipe was designed to fit into a quart sized wide mouth mason jar. Layer the ingredients into the jar, starting with the nuts, then the fruit, then the greens. Pour the water over the ingredients until the jar is full. Then pour into the blender and puree. Pour the finished smoothie back into the jar - it will fit perfectly!
PREP TIP: Prepare several jars ahead of time and freeze until you’re ready drink. Layer the nuts, fruit, and spinach into the jars, then seal and freeze. When ready to blend, pour water over the ingredients until the jar is full. The water will help loosen the frozen pieces so that it can easily be poured into the blender. A 2 pound bag of frozen fruit should be enough for 6-8 smoothies, depending on how carefully you measure.