Peanut Butter Spinach Smoothie





Peanut Butter Spinach Smoothie 4 Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri

Smoothie time!  But before we get to smoothie time, here is a quick pic of the beautiful senior I had the pleasure of photographing last week.  The next day I learned that the park had mowed the grass  — so we got there right on schedule!

Molly50 For Facebook

Back to smoothie time!  I am a huge fan of peanut butter anything.  This recipe has peanut butter powder.  Every grocery store (well, except maybe Aldi) now carries Peanut Butter Powder.  There is PB2 and this one I used here is JIF brand.  Costco carries another brand that is organic.  You can reconstitute the powder with water to make peanut butter.  But, what I do is make peanut butter smoothies!  Only 3 tablespoons of powder is 70 calories and enough to flavor one drink.  I usually need 2 Tb. of regular peanut butter.  It was something fun to try and lowers the calories of the drink.  I think it would also be great in milkshakes.  🙂

This stuff is a dieter’s dream!  I know I stayed away from peanut butter the whole time I was trying to lose weight.  It just wasn’t worth the calories when all you could have is a small spoonful!  190 calories in 2 Tb. of regular peanut butter – or 70 calories in 3 Tb. of PB powder???  But the peanut butter powder tastes like peanut butter because it only has one ingredient: peanuts.

Peanut Butter Spinach Smoothie Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri

The powder blends very well in a smoothie.  The regular peanut butter can get stuck or clumpy in the blades of some blenders.

Or add it to your oatmeal.

Or add it to frozen bananas that are pureed to be like ice cream.

Peanut Butter Spinach Smoothie 3 Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri

Or add it to muffins, pancakes, cookies, cakes or brownies.

Here’s a blog post with a lot of ideas.  I really don’t think I will be adding this stuff to my chicken though. … It also doesn’t taste good if you dip your fruit right into it.  Now, if you mixed it with some cream cheese and dipped that might taste better.

Peanut Butter Spinach Smoothie 2 Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri

Peanut Butter Spinach Smoothie
 
:
Serves: 2 servings
Ingredients
  • 2 cups almond milk (I use vanilla unsweetened), or regular milk
  • 1 banana, cut in half (or frozen banana chunks)
  • 1-2 handfuls baby spinach
  • 6 Tb. peanut butter powder
  • 4-6 ice cubes
Instructions
  1. Blend everything in the blender until smooth.
  2. -Add plain Greek yogurt for more protein!
  3. -Add strawberries to make a PB &J smoothie

Super Orange Juice


Superfood Orange Juice Mary Riley Photography LLC Wentzville Missouri

Good morning everyone!  It was a little disappointing this morning after yesterday’s beautiful “hamster sized snowflakes” fell from the sky.

Kids in the Snow Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri

But, this smoothie will make up for that!

This smoothie was created to use up my favorite super foods in the refrigerator and to keep us all healthy this month.  It seemed many were falling down with the flu or stomach bug, so we threw in our super foods, blueberries and spinach, and made it taste great with my biggest smoothie secret — the rind.

My kids love orange juice.  Most do.  And this smoothie tastes like orange juice!  Why?  Because I throw in half the rind of one orange (cut up into 1″ pieces).  The Vitamix blends that all together into one smooth smoothie.

I serve these often when we make “brinner”.  It’s difficult to find veggies to go with some power protein waffles… but the smoothie has vegetables, fruit and tastes great with the menu.  Plus it is fast and easy with little clean up!

Superfood Orange Juice 2 Mary Riley Photography Wentzville Missouri

**Smoothie Tips**

After many, many days of smoothies I have discovered a few things:

  1.  The blender does better if the frozen fruit thaws for 5 minutes or so.  Or if you are impatient like me, put in the microwave on high for 1 minute.
  2. The banana can make or break your smoothie!  Yeah a banana.  If there aren’t enough sweet components, a banana can make your smoothie awesome.  But if your banana has a lot of brown spots, the banana taste can really overpower everything.  I like my banana yellow with no brown in smoothies.  That way some of the starches have converted to sugars, but the super sweet banana flavor doesn’t overpower the entire smoothie.
  3. If the smoothie is not cold enough – add a cup of ice!  Smoothies taste better cold to me anyway.
  4. If the smoothie doesn’t taste great, add a quarter of a lemon or half of an orange – the rind and all.  This gives the smoothie a clean, fresh taste.

Super Orange Juice
 
Prep time
Total time
 
:
Serves: 2 large smoothies
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup water
  • 1 banana, cut in half (optional)
  • ½ cup blueberries
  • 2 cups mango, 1" chunks
  • 2 handfuls baby spinach
  • 1 orange, remove rind and cut orange into fourths
  • 1 half of the orange rind, cut into 1" chunks (you should have about 3 or 4)
  • 1 cup ice (optional)
Instructions
  1. Add the ingredients as listed or recommended on your blender.
  2. I put my machine on "Smoothie" and hit start. For non-smoothie blenders, start slow. After about 30 seconds, turn the machine up slowly to high. Stop the machine and use a spoon to push items down towards the blades if needed. The smoothie should form a tornado for 30-60 seconds and you will know then it is ready.
  3. Add ice to make it colder. I always add ice especially if my ingredients are not frozen.
Notes
I really like Cara Cara oranges in this recipe for their texture and flavor. Any orange will do as long as it is juicy and looks fresh.
If you are purchasing just a few lemons or oranges for smoothies, consider buying organic ones. I am not a huge organic fanatic by any means, but it does make sense to try if you are buying them just for smoothies since the skin is being consumed.

 

 

Pumpkin Banana Bread & Book Review

Pumpkin Banana Bread-0004 on Whisk Together

 

Book Review:  

9780804187923

 

Full of large color photos and plenty of recipes, Giada’s new book is chock full of healthy ingredients and no canned recipes. This book is a great introduction for someone who might want to try eating healthier and introduce themselves to new foods like chia seeds, bone broth and vegetable noodles. There is a chapter for every food group from breakfast, to lunch, to dinner, to dessert. You will even find specialty items like peanut butter dog bone treats and lavender salt scrub.  The book states on the back that it is about Eating Clean and this is done very well. The photos of the food are gorgeous.

I have two issues with the book: I wish the 44 pages of portraits of Giada had been replaced with more recipes. I can accept a few… but the book seemed to go a little overboard. Two, if you already make your food from scratch this book may not have you running into the kitchen. If you don’t make your food from scratch, please start and give this book a try!

In regards to the recipes, there are some very delicious ones. The Ricotta Toast with Strawberries is simple, but delicious. A great breakfast or looks fancy but not when you have guests. I made and tried the dog treats myself for our neighbor’s new puppy. They were really easy to make and pretty tasty! The brown butter tortellini again is simple, but delicious. Creamy and full of flavor with a few simple ingredients.  The lemon ricotta cookies with lemon glaze are from one of her previous shows I think. I made the recipe years ago and it is one of my favorites and included in this book. Soft cookies with a lemon glaze that have a nice lemony punch.

I received this book from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for this review.  All opinions are my own.

Pumpkin Banana Bread-0008 on Whisk Together

 

Recipe:  I have made quite a few pumpkin breads and banana breads in my time… but not a pumpkin banana bread!  This was really a nice treat.  Everyone loved it from hubby to the smallest kiddo.  I love having a recipe that takes the leftover pumpkin from a can and the few bananas leftover going brown.  Sometimes you just don’t have enough bananas to make bread or have 1 cup of pumpkin leftover from making pumpkin oatmeal.  This recipe uses them all up!

It is a sweet bread, but not too terribly sweet.  The flavors work very well together and texture is absolutely perfect.  The bread will freeze well if you want to bake and cool it off.  Then, wrap it in a few layers of plastic wrap and throw it into a freezer bag.  Once sealed and air removed, the bread should be fine for a month or two.

Pumpkin Banana Bread-0007 on Whisk Together

Why I love this bread:

  1.  Made with whole wheat flour and Greek yogurt.
  2. Uses up some leftover items in the kitchen.
  3. Flavor is phenomenal.
  4. You can use this recipe for breakfast, snack or dessert.
  5. Freezer Friendly!  I may just have to stock up on these during the holidays.
  6. I love almost anything with molasses in it.  🙂

    Pumpkin Banana Bread-0005 on Whisk Together

Pumpkin Banana Bread & Book Review
 
:
Serves: 1 loaf
Ingredients
  • 4 Tb. unsalted butter, melted
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 6 ounces plain or vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1 Tb. vanilla extract
  • 2 Tb. molasses (optional)
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1 cup mashed bananas (2 bananas)
  • ½-1 tsp. ground cinnamon (add ½ tsp. for less flavor and 1 tsp. for more)
  • ½ tsp. pumpkin pie spice (or simply use the 1 tsp. cinnamon above with ¼ tsp. nutmeg and ginger, each)
  • ¼ tsp. ground cloves
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 and ⅔ cups white whole wheat flour or all-purpose flour
  • 1 and ½ tsp. baking soda
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x5 pan with baking or cooking spray. I love baking spray myself.
  2. In a great big microwave safe bowl, add the butter to melt if you have not done so.
  3. Add the sugars, egg, yogurt, vanilla, pumpkin and bananas. Mix until smooth with a fork or mixer.
  4. Add the spices. Stir until mixed in.
  5. Add the flour and baking soda on top. With your fork, blend the flour and baking soda together so it is mixed around. Then, use your fork or a spatula to mix the wet and dry ingredients together. Stir until JUST combined. A few streaks of flour is okay.
  6. Pour into the 9x5 pan and bake for 60 minutes. Begin watching it after about 50 minutes.
  7. If the bread becomes too dark on top while baking, loosely cover with foil. I usually check for this around the 30-45 minute mark.
Notes
Recipe adapted from Averie Cooks

 

FREE Shipping Coupon Code & New Recipe: Tropical Green Smoothie

Cook Simple Promo

 

I purchased a new item at Fresh Thyme Grocery store last month from Cook Simple Meals.  It was Tamale Pie and one of the best ones I have ever made.  I couldn’t get enough of it!  In addition, it was so simple to make even my 8 year old could throw it together based on the instructions on the back of the box.  I enjoyed the meal so much that I contacted the company.  They sent these meals for us to review and share with you as well!

PLUS a coupon code JUST for Whisk Together readers.
You get 10% OFF plus free shipping on your entire order.  So even though they may have these at Fresh Thyme grocery store, I can have them shipped to my house for FREE!  Woo hoo!

Why Cook Simple Meals?
1.  No artificial anything.  All real food.
2.  The meals use quinoa, spinach, broccoli, lentils and other healthy items.  The Strogonoff for example uses black bean pasta.
3.  The bags inside that contain the meal also have measurements on the side – so you can measure the water right there in the bag instead of getting out another dish.
4.  My favorite is the Tamale Pie.
5.  My husband’s favorite is the Cowboy Chili after adding some hot sauce for more heat.  Without hot sauce it is rather mild.  I like that because we can always add our amount of hot sauce.
6.  All the meals can be made in 30 minutes or even faster.
7.  My daughter – who loves mac and cheese – LOVED the cheesy broccoli.
8.  I like the suggestions on the box to make it your own.  I liked the Sloppy Joes in our pizza pocket crust.

They are more expensive than making it all yourself.  But I like having these boxes on hand to make a quick meal which is far cheaper than going out to eat for the four of us.

If you want to try just ONE of the meals, I would suggest the Tamale Pie.

 

Tropical Green Smoothie

 

Speaking of wholesome and natural ingredients, here is Day One of the  Green Smoothie Challenge I am doing.  There is a 10 Day Smoothie Challenge in the book I received for Christmas which provided a grocery list and menu list for a different smoothie for each of the 10 days.  The very first one was very good!  We love green smoothies and always looking for a great recipe.  The internet contains a plethora… but some of them I wonder if anyone actually tried because they taste terrible.

Here we will only post the good ones that we all liked – even the kids!

To make this a meal replacement for lunch or breakfast, I add a cup of plain Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup cooked beans (usually white like Great Northern beans), or peanut butter for added protein.

Tropical Green Smoothie

Tropical Green Smoothie
 
:
Ingredients
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups baby spinach leaves
  • 2 bananas
  • 1 cup mango (or frozen or thawed from frozen)
  • 1 cup pineapple
Instructions
  1. Blend all of the ingredients and drink!
  2. For a cold smoothie, have one of the fruits frozen like sliced bananas or pineapple tidbits.
Notes
From Simple Green Smoothies

 

Double Chocolate Banana Muffins

Double Chocolate Banana Muffins_1 on Whisk Together

 

I will be posting a lot this week to catch up on the food and crafts that I have photographed over the Thanksgiving holiday!

Here are some friends I photographed last week.  I haven’t seen a deer come through for quite a while.  This poor guy only has one antler!

Kids_13

The squirrels are always outside playing and munching on the acorns.  They are too cute.

Royal Icing Cookies_5 on Whisk Together

Sorry!  Wrong squirrel 🙂

Squirrel-5582 on WHisk Together

First off is breakfast – the most important meal of the day.  Although these double chocolate banana muffins taste so fabulous and decadent, you could eat them for dessert!  No oil, no butter and as little sugar as possible – these muffins are super scrumptious.  I had 3 brown bananas leftover and wanting something a little different than the typical banana bread.  These fit the bill perfectly.  Also, you only need ONE bowl.  I used all whole wheat flour, but you can use all purpose or half and half if you would like.

Double Chocolate Banana Muffins_4 on Whisk Together

Need some added protein?  Make a chunky monkey breakfast out of them by spreading them with peanut butter.

Double Chocolate Banana Muffins_5 on Whisk Together

Double Chocolate Banana Muffins
 
:
Serves: 12 muffins
Ingredients
  • 3 large bananas, ripe with lots of brown spots
  • ½ cup (3.5 oz.) sugar (or up to ⅔ cup)
  • 1 egg
  • ⅓ cup applesauce (natural preferably since it has no extra sugar)
  • 1 cup white whole wheat flour, or whole wheat flour, or all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder (I like Rodelle dutch processed)
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup (6 oz.) semisweet chocolate chips, reserve some for topping
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Prep a muffin pan with baking spray or muffin liners sprayed with cooking or baking spray.
  3. In a great big bowl, mash the bananas. A potato masher or fruit jam masher works great here - or use a fork.
  4. Add the sugar, egg and applesauce. Stir with a fork until mixed very well.
  5. Add the flour (or flours), cocoa powder, salt, baking soda and baking powder. Stir the dry stuff around with the fork lightly to have the dry ingredients mixed.
  6. With a spatula, incorporate the wet with the dry. Stir until just combined. Do NOT over mix.
  7. Reserve a few tablespoons of chocolate chips in a bowl. Pour the rest into the batter and stir to combine.
  8. With a large scoop or spoon, divide the batter among the 12 muffin wells. These will fill all the way to the top.
  9. Sprinkle chocolate chips on top.
  10. Put the muffins into the oven. Close the oven door.
  11. TURN DOWN THE OVEN TO 375 DEGREES.
  12. Bake for 18-20 minutes. Use a toothpick to determine if the muffins are fully cooked. The toothpick will come out with a little melted chocolate on it - but shouldn't be overly wet.
  13. Cool muffins for about 10 minutes. Remove from the muffin pan and allow to cool on a wire rack.
  14. Store in an airtight container. I put mine in the fridge after the first night because the chocolate chips had condensation on them. You can also freeze them by allowing to cool completely and sealing in an airtight freezer bag. Remove the air with a straw and seal shut. Just take the muffins out the night before you need them by letting them sit on the counter.
Notes
Recipe slightly adapted from Sally's Baking Addiction
http://sallysbakingaddiction.com/2012/11/11/skinny-chocolate-banana-fudge-muffins/

 

Green Lemonade

Green Lemonade-2358 on Whisk Together

Happy Mother’s Day!

I was just watching Netflix Ted Talks again.  One talk was heralding how great white bread is due to the fact that it represents our industrialization of food.  Without that industrialization, we couldn’t live on 2% of farming familites or feed ourselves pasta from Italy.  Louise Fresco points not to the American family that lives within driving distance of a local Farmer’s market, but the millions of southeast Asians without access and those who would not thrive without access to a supermarket that carries Wonderbread.  It was an interesting take on what we normally hear in America on how everything needs to go back to small farms and local markets.

Green Lemonade-2457 on Whisk Together

RECIPE: We have been trying to perfect green smoothies for about 4 years now…. I may like them and then the kids do not.  This Green Smoothie here was the last success – and quite a few years back!  Now a Vitamix blender does help mix it up so there are no flecks, but I have made this in a regular blender as well and it works great.  The regular blenders sometimes take a little starting and stopping to get the spinach to pull down into the blended mixture.
Or this could work in a Magic Bullet!

Green Lemonade-2464 on Whisk Together

In regards to ingredients, I always make it with several core ingredients listed below.  The 1 cup of fruit changes depending on what I have left in the fridge or what is going to be too ripe in the fruit basket.  It doesn’t matter if I use a pear, pineapple, grapes or kiwi – the kids LOVE this smoothie.

Green Lemonade-2454 on Whisk Together

 

Blending Tips:  Always add liquid first.  Add the soft ingredients, then the spinach and ice always last.  The weight of the ice will push the rest of the ingredients down towards the blades.

Lemon Tip:  We love lemon with spinach.  It really masks the bitter flavor of spinach and kale in smoothies.  We have had to increase the amount of lemon from 1/2″ square of lemon peel to 1″ square of lemon peel.  The Vitamix blender blends it to a pulp and a regular blender may need lemon zest.  Feel free to add or subtract the amount of lemon zest to your tastes.

Green Lemonade-2365 on Whisk Together

Green Lemonade
 
:
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup water
  • 1 banana, sliced in half
  • ½ apple, sliced into quarters
  • 1 cup fruit, diced (pear, pineapple, grapes, etc.)
  • juice from 1 lemon
  • 1 tsp. of lemon zest or 1" square of lemon peel
  • 2 handfuls spinach
  • ½-1 cup ice
Instructions
  1. Add ingredients to blender in order listed. Blend and serve.

 

 

Yeast Banana Bread

 

Yeasted Banana Bread-1941 on Whisk Together

 

Book:  I am still on Dan Ariely’s “The Upside of Irrationality”.  It’s interesting…. but I still don’t see an upside.  His last experiment was basically about how we should break up our activities that we derive pleasure from (like read a book, hobbies, etc.) and just plow through those activities that we find annoying (like doing taxes).  Why?  Because our brains always adapt.  If we get a brand new car, yeah it’s great for a little while and most people go to the next best thing.  We adapt and get used to the things that are new or fun to us.  But if we break these moments up, then we will not get used to them and we will enjoy them more.  On the flip side, just get your taxes done and don’t break it up. 🙂  It’s April 15th soon!

Yeasted Banana Bread-1939 on Whisk Together

Recipe:  This bread rocks!  I do like banana bread.  But, I thought it would be fun to try and make something new out of those overripe bananas.  We have had our share of super yummy banana bread here on Whisk Together.

Banana Bread

Caramelized Banana Bread

Apple Butter Banana Bread

Bakery Banana Bread

Banana Bread Pancakes

Banana Bread Bars

This yeast bread allows you to make THE BEST French toast.  Use it with your favorite french toast recipe, or a casserole, add some walnuts or pecans and you are in heaven.  Or, use the bread to make a super awesome peanut butter sandwich which will give you a hint of banana with your peanut butter.  Or just eat it plain.  Or add some nutella.  It’s a delicious way to get rid of some extra bananas.

You can make this in the bread machine or by hand.  I’ve done it both ways and the bread machine on the dough cycle does make less of a mess.  Making this by hand is perfectly acceptable and tasty too though.

If you freeze your leftover bananas like I do, simply thaw them for an hour or so before making the recipe.  Since yeast is involved, I would even warm them up just a bit in the microwave so that the frozen cold banana doesn’t inhibit the yeast.

Yeast Banana Bread
 
:
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup lukewarm milk
  • 3 cups (12.75 oz) bread flour
  • 2 Tb. butter, room temperature
  • 2 and ¼ tsp. instant yeast (1 packet)
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 2 Tb. honey
  • 1-2 medium bananas (3/4 cup), cut into chunks
Instructions
  1. To make in the bread machine: add ingredients per the machine's directions. My machine wants liquids first and then dry stuff piled up in the middle on top. Then, poke a hole in the middle of the mountain of flour and pour the yeast into there. Start the Dough Cycle or Select the Medium Crust cycle to mix and bake in one machine. While mixing, watch through the window to determine if it needs more flour. Mine needed about ¼ cup more flour. The dough is soft. You will know because the dough ball will look wet and not pull away from the sides of the bowl. Then bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes. Tent with foil maybe halfway through to prevent the top from getting to brown
  2. To make by hand: In a great big bowl, mix everything together. Knead by hand for 10 minutes or mixer with the bread dough hook for 5 minutes. Put into a greased bowl for 1 hour covered.
  3. After the first rise, shape the dough into a log and place into a greased loaf pan (8.5"x4.5" preferable, but doable in a 9x5"). Cover the pan and rise another 45 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes. Add foil to the top about halfway through baking to keep the top from getting to brown.
Notes
Recipe adapted from King Arthur Flour

 

Green Oats Smoothie

Green Oats Smoothie_3 on Whisk Together

Book:  I hope everyone had a fabulous Valentine’s Day!!!  I forgot to post the sugar cookies I made for the Super Bowl last week, so here they are!

Football Sugar Cookies on Whisk Together

Superbowl Sugar Cookies on Whisk Together

I found a science project book at the library – it was published in 2000 that states that the public is now moving towards margarine and away from butter because it is more “heart healthy”.  And then goes on about the experiment.  Ha!  Too bad he didn’t do experiments on trans fats and cholesterol….

Green Oats Smoothie_4 on Whisk Together

Recipe:  I needed to use up my extra spinach and got really tired of salad.  This smoothie fit the bill.  Even Juliana drank it all 🙂

Green Oats Smoothie_1 on Whisk Together

You really taste the oats which to me isn’t a bad thing.  Certainly yummy and delicious, smoothie creamy and tastes like a bowl of cold banana oatmeal… in a good way.  Next time, I might try adding a little dash of cinnamon.

Green Oats Smoothie

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup milk or almond milk
  • 1/2 banana (or frozen banana)
  • 1 handful spinach (about 1 cup)
  • 1/4 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1 Tb. ground flaxseed
  • 4-5 ice cubes (optional but I like it cold)

Instructions

  1. Blend it all up and drink! I blend everything but the ice first. Once the smoothie is smooth, I add the ice.
  2. Enjoy!
http://www.whisktogether.com/2015/02/16/green-oats-smoothie/

Green Oats Smoothie
serves 1

3/4 cup milk or almond milk
1/2 banana (or frozen banana)
1 handful spinach (about 1 cup)
1/4 cup old-fashioned oats
1 Tb. ground flaxseed
4-5 ice cubes (optional but I like it cold)

Blend it all up and drink!  I blend everything but the ice first.  Once the smoothie is smooth, I add the ice.

Enjoy!

 

The Secret Ingredient Missing in Your Smoothies

Smoothie_9 on Whisk Together

We are still in peak holiday season, but that doesn’t mean we still can’t prep for the rest of the day’s nutrition before the cookies and candy come.  This week – in addition to a Minecraft birthday party celebration (a future blog post)- I have been researching smoothies and how to get maximum nutrition into them while still being tasty.

Smoothie_3 on Whisk Together

I know a lot of people use protein powder which is fine.  But, I found replacement for all those recipes that say add “protein powder”!  BEANS!  Yes, beans!  I tried out lots of smoothies, and these were the top two smoothies in the kid/parent taste test using black beans and white beans.  For white beans, I used great northern beans because that is what I had on hand.  You could use navy beans or cannelini beans instead.

Smoothie_10 on Whisk Together

In addition, I have been cooking beans from dried.  Cooking beans yourself means using the amount of salt you want to use, and it is much cheaper.  The conversion I used is 3/4 cup of dried beans (about 4.5 ounces) = 15 ounce can of beans.  Four cans of beans is about $4.  Two pounds of dried beans is $2 …. or equal to 7 cans of beans!  Almost half the cost… not quite and some people may not think it is worth the time.  But there’s the money breakdown for you.

Smoothie on Whisk Together

Secret to great smoothies?  Use white beans in non-chocolate smoothies and black beans in chocolate smoothies.  Start with 1/4 cup of cooked beans per smoothie in your recipes.  I always rinse and drain my canned beans to remove the sodium and improve the texture of the beans.  I always have frozen chunks of bananas on hand.  There is no need to soak the bananas in orange juice to prevent browning, but you could.

Smoothie_5 on Whisk Together

I always add the liquid ingredients first (I don’t have a fancy machine.).  Everything is diced into small chunks.  Straws make drinking them more fun 🙂  I add 1/2 -1 Tb. of ground flaxseed to most smoothies.  I use the Simply Balanced vanilla Greek yogurt from Target – I really like the flavor, texture, price and the sugar isn’t as high as many other vanilla flavored yogurt brands.  Add ice to make the smoothie thicker.

Smoothie_6 on Whisk Together

Before we get to the recipes – I have to mention one of my favorite places for great baking and cooking products, Williams-Sonoma.  I have seen the Vitamix in action many times and it will pulverize even spinach to a pulp!  Their products have never failed and they keep improving even their best which shows me they care.  If you are interested in a blender to make smoothies for 2015 – here is a great start!

**I have not been paid and given products for this opinion.**

 

 

Chocolate Peanut Butter and Tropical Green Smoothie

Serving Size: 1 smoothie

Ingredients

  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothie
  • 1 large smoothie
  • 1 banana (preferably frozen and in chunks)
  • 1/4 cup cooked black beans (or 1/4 cup black beans drained and rinsed from can)
  • 4 Tb. cocoa powder (regular or Dutch processed)
  • 6 ounces Greek plain or vanilla yogurt (by weight)
  • 1/2 cup milk (almond, cow, goat, chicken, etc.)
  • 2 Tb. peanut butter
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract (if using plain yogurt)
  • sweeten to taste with honey or stevia if preferred
  • 3/4 cup ice (optional)
  • Tropical Green Smoothie:
  • 1/2 cup almond milk
  • 1 banana (preferable frozen and in chunks)
  • 1/4 cup great northern beans
  • 1 cup ripe pineapple, cut into small chunks
  • 2-3 cups (2-3 ounces, or 2 large handfuls) packed baby spinach or kale - your favorite leafy green
  • 1/2 Tb. ground flaxseed
  • sweet to taste with honey or stevia if preferred
  • 3/4 cup ice (optional)

Instructions

  1. In my blender: Add liquids first. Add everything else but the ice. Blend until smooth. Add ice and blend again.
  2. In nice blenders: throw everything in and hit "smoothie" or blend until smooth.
http://www.whisktogether.com/2014/12/15/the-secret-ingredient-missing-in-your-smoothies/

Smoothie_7 on Whisk Together

Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothie
1 large smoothie

1 banana (preferably frozen and in chunks)
1/4 cup cooked black beans (or 1/4 cup black beans drained and rinsed from can)
4 Tb. cocoa powder  (regular or Dutch processed)
6 ounces Greek plain or vanilla yogurt (by weight)
1/2 cup milk (almond, cow, goat, chicken, etc.)
2 Tb. peanut butter
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract (if using plain yogurt)
sweeten to taste with honey or stevia if preferred
3/4 cup ice (optional)

In my blender:  Add liquids first.  Add everything else but the ice.  Blend until smooth.  Add ice and blend again.
In nice blenders:  throw everything in and hit “smoothie” or blend until smooth.

 

Green Tropics Smoothie
1 large smoothie

1/2 cup almond milk
1 banana (preferable frozen and in chunks)
1/4 cup great northern beans
1 cup ripe pineapple, cut into small chunks
2-3 cups (2-3 ounces, or 2 large handfuls) packed baby spinach or kale – your favorite leafy green
1/2 Tb. ground flaxseed
sweet to taste with honey or stevia if preferred
3/4 cup ice (optional)

In my blender:  Add liquids first.  Add everything else but the ice.  Blend until smooth.  Add ice and blend again.
In nice blenders:  throw everything in and hit “smoothie” or blend until smooth.

Recipe adapted from FatFree Vegan

Smoothies on Whisk Together

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