Here’s a great smoothie for iron (and calcium). The dark, leafy greens in this recipe are masked by the ripe, flavorful fruit. I did detect a subtle “green” flavor, but it’s just a hint and mostly from the fresh-tasting Italian parsley. If you’d like to mask the green flavor further, simply add an extra banana or a cup of fresh pineapple. A handful of raspberries or strawberries would enhance the flavor further while adding even more iron! I really liked this recipe as-is, though.
If you are wondering why I call this smoothie recipe “Iron 101”, it’s because it has 101% of your daily value of iron. A significant amount of iron comes from the fresh parsley which has 47% of your recommended daily allowance (RDA) of iron alone. *
Pregnant women should not consume parsley. Parsley contains an essential oil called apiole. Apiole is a kidney stimulant. Because this essential oil can stimulate uterine contractions, pregnant women should avoid eating large quantities of it.
Iron 101 Smoothie Recipe
- 1 ripe mango, peeled and pitted
- 2 large ripe bananas, peeled
- 3 cups kale
- 1 cup fresh, Italian parsley (or use curly parsley)
- 8 ounces of filtered water
Start by adding the liquid to your blender (see my blender recommendations), followed by the soft fruit. Add the greens to your blender last. Blend on high for 30 seconds or until the smoothie is creamy.
Calcium: 32% RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance)
Iron: 101% RDA *
Vitamin A: 1257% RDA
Vitamin C: 447% RDA
This smoothie is also a rich source of folate, vitamins B1 – B6, vitamin E, vitamin K, copper, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, and potassium.
Serving Size: One. (This recipe makes a large, 32-ounce smoothie. It is a meal-replacement smoothie and not a snack. I recommend drinking half right away and the other half about 30 minutes later. If it is too much for you, store leftovers in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours.)
* Special Note for Women and Vegetarians/Vegans: This green smoothie provides 8 milligrams (mg) or 101% of the recommended dietary iron intake for adult men and post menopausal women. Adult, pre-menopausal women need 18mg of iron per day. Vegetarians and vegans also need a higher dietary intake of iron due to the difference in bio-availability of animal-sourced and plant-sourced iron. An adult male following a vegetarian diet should consume about 14 mg of iron daily while vegetarian, pre-menopausal women should strive for 33 mg daily. These figures are based on recommendations set in 2000 by the Institute of Medicine at the National Academy of Sciences.
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Tracy Russell is the creator of RESET 28: A 28-Day Program For Energy, Weight Loss & A Healthy Glow, and founder of Incredible Smoothies. She has been helping people take control of their health and well being with green smoothies, a whole foods diet, and fitness since 2009.