With the Holiday Season upon us, I find myself shoring up good habits I’ve learned along the way, returning to what I know works in preparation for a new round of resolutions for 2015. Without doubt, one of the best (and simplest) is the morning smoothie routine.
I am a lover of breakfast, big sprawling leisurely breakfasts with friends and family, a breakfast of multiple courses, savory and sweet. These are, however, weekend events at this time in my life, and the workday breakfast has historically been coffee. (On some occasions, this can also be said of the workday lunch). The smoothie breakfast, then, is a satisfyingly simple strategy- energy for hours, in under 10 minutes. (Much less than 10 minutes if you have a blender that blends, rather than ruminates, as mine tends to do.)
The use of frozen fruit and vegetables as primary ingredients is a choice I was slower to adopt, as I have a preference for fresh as a general rule of thumb. Studies demonstrating that frozen produce is not only equal, but in some cases superior, to fresh prompted me to reconsider. Not surprisingly, a freezer full of easy breakfast ingredients made my smoothie routine infinitely more possible.
However often I make it to the grocery store, I peruse the frozen aisle-blueberries, raspberries, blackberries galore; mango and pineapple readily available, and the more elusive favorite, the frozen peach. Combined with nut butter (I’m a fan of almond myself), a liquid (coconut water, almond milk, rice milk, water), and perhaps a spice (decorticated cardamom is both delicious and fun to say). Et voila- a delicious and varied menu of nutrition that requires little to no preparation if properly stocked.
I mix up my frozen fruits with vegetables for the much-lauded green smoothie, and incorporate fresh fruit and vegetables as well. (Click here for a tutorial on diy-smoothie-freezer-packs from momables.com) There is little limitation as far as ingredients go, as this article on how to “drink your avocados” shows. Experimentation is half the fun.
Additional benefits? Smoothie lovers abound, and the range of recipes is enough to stave off palate boredom: for taste, for health, for seasonal eating– the options seem limitless. Here are a few from my fellow Oaties, along with my favorite peach, almond butter and cardamom smoothie recipe.
Smoothies are a versatile breakfast- they can be downed, sipped, savored, transported; one caveat? If you love berries, travel with floss and check your teeth post-consumption. Seeds are wily and seemingly inevitable.