The days are short and the the air is cool and crisp. Or it’s freezing cold!
While it’s never been a struggle for me, some of my readers have told me that they have a hard time getting excited about drinking a green smoothie on a cold winter day.
If the chill in the air makes you yearn for warmth in your cup, try these cold weather green smoothie tips:
1) Use Non-Frozen Fruits
During the summer, frozen berries in your green smoothies keep you cool and accent summer fruit nicely.
But during the winter, use fresh ingredients and drink your smoothie just slightly chilled. It’s healthier that way and you won’t chill your body unnecessarily.
2) Add Cinnamon & Spice
Since apples, pears, pomegranates, and pumpkin are in season, accent these flavors with ground cinnamon, allspice, clove, and nutmeg.
If you use spices, be sure to use subtly flavored fall fruits (avoid tropical flavors and berries) and stick with non-bitter greens like baby spinach and leaf lettuce.
3) Add a Kick of Ginger
Fresh ginger root will give your green smoothie a warming sensation.
Grate fresh ginger into your smoothie prior to blending it.
Ginger blends well with just about anything, but it is especially good with apples, pears, carrots, mangoes, citrus, pineapple, and bananas.
Don’t go overboard with bitter greens like dandelion or kale if you are using ginger.
4) Hot Cayenne Pepper
Wait, did I just tell you to put cayenne pepper in your green smoothies? Yes!
A dash of cayenne in a raw chocolate (cacao) smoothie gives a warm, Mexican flair to your chocolaty shake.
Cayenne can also be used with vegetable blender soups (see #7).
5) Use Raw Chocolate (Cacao)
Speaking of raw chocolate, there’s nothing like a little chocolate to take away the winter blues. Cacao has mood-elevating properties.
Chocolate has those “feel good” chemicals, you know!
6) Think Tropical
Okay, so you’re not sitting on a white sand Caribbean beach soaking up 80-degree sunshine while ocean surf laps at your toes.
7) Make Veggie Blender Soups
If you have a high-speed blender like the Vitamix or Blendtec, you can make warm soup in about 90 seconds.
I love to make warm blender soup with carrots, tomatoes, a little onion, some fresh dill, a clove of garlic, and a few stalks of celery. Zucchini is great, too.
Sprinkle in some kelp or dulse flakes (a type of sea vegetable) to ensure that you get adequate iodine. (One of the symptoms of iodine deficiency is sensitivity to cold.)
Blender soups provide the nutrition of fresh, whole vegetables in a steaming hot (from your high-speed blender) bowl of savory deliciousness. I can’t think of anything better to sip on a chilly fall or winter day.
These are just a few suggestions for making cold weather smoothies. What’s your favorite cold weather blend?