Happy St. Patrick’s Day! In order to pay homage to the Irish, may you consume something green in colour, or consume something containing Guinness 🙂
I will be fulfilling both of these criteria – starting my day with a Green Smoothie and ending it with this Guinness Ice Cream Float. If you happened to have made our Apple-Walnut Hand Pies on Pi Day earlier this week, then I know you have some leftover ice cream in your freezer 🙂
This recipe is barely a recipe, but, for completeness, here it goes.
To make a Guinness Ice Cream Float:
Place a few scoops of ridiculously tasty ice cream into a glass (we used Oatmeal Brown Sugar ice cream).
Pour a can of Guinness over the ice cream.
Grab a spoon and eat / drink your way through your dessert.
Repeat, as often as you see fit.
Easy peasy! Now, if you’re more of a visual learner, take note:
We eat a lot of beets around here, quite often on the form of this tasty dip. We eat them raw or roasted, quite often in salads, but I have never thought to have them in a smoothie before… until now!
A few months ago, I saw a recipe for a Beet smoothie in a Bon Appetit magazine edition, and it was this gorgeous deep-purple colour. That version does not include any greens, but mine sure does 🙂
The smoothie is packed full of the good stuff – beets and a banana give it a touch of sweetness, kale for the greens, mint and a healthy squeeze of lime juice to give it a nice kick.
With the addition of greens, I wasn’t sure if the smoothie was going to keep its vibrant colour, but it definitely did! It’s amazing how much one very small beet will turn everything a deep purple hue 🙂 And the taste was quite refreshing – it will not have the sweetness of an all-fruit smoothie, so I would suggest adding a small amount of maple syrup until you’re happy.
Aside from having this vibrant colour, this green smoothie boasts a great list of health benefits.
Big Beet Benefits:
High in nitrates, which help increase the blood supply to hard-working muscles, especially during those long, strenuous workouts (hello, climbing!)
Great for lowering blood pressure
High in anti-oxidents, vitamins and minerals (hello, iron, calcium, vitamins A and C!)
So whether you’re drawn to the colour, or drawn to the health benefits, both roads lead you to the same answer – you should make this smoothie! 🙂
Well, we’re officially at the end of January and, holy moly, the month seems to have gone by in a blink of the eye.
I’ve loved doing the Green Smoothie Challenge for January but, if I’m honest, it really wasn’t much of a challenge! Once I got into the hang of preparing everything the night before (or freezing multiple days worth of fruit at the beginning of the week), I found it wasn’t time consuming or difficult. Also, all the smoothies tasted good and kept me full until lunch-time, so a win all around 🙂
These last two smoothies I’m going to share with you, hit the taste-bud mark for me.
The Green Nutter Smoothie
You can’t go a full month of smoothie drinking without adding a nut-butter to at least one smoothie! I added peanut butter to this one, because that’s what we had in the house, but almond butter would be great, too. There’s something very satisfying (and somehow decadent) about tasting the peanut butter. When Jonty was mixing one of them up for me in the morning, he said “Ohhhh, peanut butter!”, and I’m pretty sure he was slightly jealous he wasn’t drinking one, too 🙂
The Crazy Carrot Smoothie
This was the only smoothie I made during the entire month that added veggies (other than the greens) to the mix.
I wasn’t sure how it would taste but, as I’m learning, when you have sweet fruit in a smoothie (like pineapple and oranges), you can add almost any type of veggie you like and you will most-likely just taste the sweetness from the fruit. In the future, I would definitely be inclined to add more veggies to my daily smoothie!
Hopefully you’ve enjoyed my Sunday Smoothie session in January, and perhaps been inspired to try incorporating some into your weekly routine!
Some of the benefits:
It’s an easy way to increase the amount of fruits and veggies in your diet.
One smoothie can keep you remarkably full for a few hours (I drink half a smoothie around 7:30 am, and finish the other half around 10:00 am). It’s always something I look forward to having.
Adding a spoonful of chia seeds or flax seeds can give your diet a boost of protein, fibre and good omega-3’s without much effort.
Goodness! How can we be entering the final week of January already? I only have one smoothie recipe for you today, but if you like those Terry’s Chocolate Oranges, this Chocolate Orange Green Smoothie will probably be right up your alley! 🙂
Now, since starting the January Smoothie Challenge, I have learned a few things.
First – You can pretty much use ANY type of fruit, and your smoothie will taste just fine!
Second – You can pretty much use ANY type of green, and your smoothie will taste just fine!
Case in point – Rainbow chard was on sale last week, so I picked up two big bundles of it, and have been using this as my green for all Week 4 smoothies. And (spoiler alert!) all the smoothies have tasted great 🙂
I suppose Swiss chard is a fairly neutral green anyway, but still – don’t be afraid to use any green you’d like, spinach and kale are not the only two options! Also, I always add the stems to my smoothies (if you have a high-speed blender like a Blendtec, getting the smoothie smooth should not be a problem). This adds a good amount of fibre to the drink and once the fruit has been added to the mix, you won’t taste any bitterness at all.
One more note – I usually add chia or flax seeds to all the smoothies. It’s a great and simple way to add additional fibre, protein, omega-3 fatty acids and other nutrients to your diet, just a tablespoon or so does the trick!
Well, I’ve just finished Week 3, and it’s been Smoothie Sailing! 🙂 But seriously, it’s been a pretty tasty challenge I’ve taken on! I may not be following the daily recipes religiously, as I’ve tried to use them more for inspiration and as a guide in order to expand my fruits and greens combinations.
The winners this week were the Apple-Ginger Smoothie (with ginger, lime, apples and chia seeds)…
… and one I’m calling the Tropical Fiesta Smoothie, with kiwi, oranges and pineapple.
Mornings can be a bit of a rush, so I always make sure to prep my smoothie ingredients the night before. Once you get into the habit, it’s pretty easy. I weigh out the greens and liquids into the BlendTec jar, along with extras like chia seeds, flax seeds and ginger. The fruit gets chopped up and put into the freezer, so it’s always nice and cold.
In the morning, Jonty blends up my smoothie for me (because it takes me longer to get ready!!), all he has to do is put the frozen fruit in the blender jar and he’s good to go! Making them takes a minute or two and just requires tweaking the liquid to get the perfect consistency as the ingredients are blending!
Preparation is the key for success 🙂
As always, these smoothies make one big glass, so if you have a few people in your house who want to partake, feel free to double the ingredient list.
Also, I can’t stop seeing a face in the Tropical Fiesta Smoothie picture above, do you see it too?! Those big green eyes and kiwi nose staring at me! 🙂