Every morning, my family has a delicious, nutrition-packed smoothie for breakfast. Here’s the recipe, followed by some notes on why we include each ingredient:
Stalcup Mega Smoothie
- 2 cups soy milk
- 1.5 cups water
- 1 banana
- 1 cup frozen blueberries
- 1 cup frozen mixed berries
- 1/2 cup oats (uncooked)
- 1 handful or cup kale
- 1 handful or cup spinach/other green
- 2 tbsp flax seed
- 2 tbsp peanut butter powder/peanut butter
- 1 tsp amla (ground gooseberry)
- 1.5 tsp turmeric
- 1/8 tsp black pepper
- 1/8 tsp cinnamon
- Blend all ingredients at maximum power for 60+ seconds
- Makes 48 oz (two large smoothies)
We blend and pour two 20 oz. smoothies (me and my wife), one 8 oz smoothie (toddler), and a couple tablespoons mixed with a little baby oatmeal into a bowl (baby).
Here’s why each ingredient is important:
- Soy milk – My favorite plant-based milk thanks to the added protein. Go with unsweetened if possible to minimize sugar.
- Water – Gives additional volume; you could substitute another liquid, but this keeps the price lower. Hydrating in the morning feels great.
- Banana – Keeps the texture smooth and creamy.
- Frozen Blueberries – Berries serve as the main flavor of the smoothie. They add tons of fiber, antioxidants, and nutritional benefits.
- Mixed Berries – Adds some other flavor notes beyond blueberries, with similar benefits. Look for berry mixes that have blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries but not strawberries, as strawberries are slightly less nutrient- and flavor-dense.
- Oats – Gets some whole grains in the smoothie and adds some mellow oat flavor. Thickens the texture a little bit. Oats are cheap, yummy, and very good for you.
- Kale – Both a leafy green and a cruciferous vegetable, kale is one of the healthiest foods on the planet. It boosts immune function, lowers cholesterol, and more. Flavor is unnoticeable when blended with berries.
- Spinach/Greens – We’ve found 2+ cups/handfuls of greens have no impact on smoothie flavor. We do one handful of kale and one handful of another green in the fridge, usually spinach. Greens have tons of documented health benefits, including cancer prevention.
- Flax seed – Another one of the healthiest foods. Packed with omega 3’s and fiber. Good blenders can handle whole seeds, but we use pre-ground flax seed which is just as cheap and can be used in baking too.
- Peanut butter powder – We used to use peanut butter, but peanut butter powder trims the fat, has great shelf life, and is easier to measure and pour than the butter. Adds great flavor.
- Amla – This ground, dried, low-flavor berry is the most antioxidant food (28x more than blueberries, 230x more than Cheerios), with tons of health benefits.
- Turmeric – Not to sound like a broken record, but turmeric is one of the most healthful foods in the world. It’s also mellow enough (compared to spices like cloves, pepper, cinnamon, etc.) to not have an impact on flavor at 1.5 tsp.
- Black pepper – A potent spice, but at 1/8 tsp, you’re unlikely to notice it. Included because it improves effectiveness of turmeric, even in tiny quantities.
- Cinnamon – Adds just a little bit of kick to the smoothie, plus anti-inflammatory benefits.
The end result is a thick, mlikshake-like berry smoothie packed with flavor. But it’s also filled with nutrition: fiber, vitamins, minerals, complex carbs, protein, antioxidants, etc.
It takes about 10 minutes to measure out all of the ingredients, blend, and pour. But we’ve figured out how to speed that up by creating “smoothie packs” – containers with all non-liquid ingredients pre-measured – that we just toss into a blender with liquid. We freeze the packs and they last as long as we need without worry of the greens going bad.
Assembling the smoothie packs takes 20-30 minutes per batch that lasts 2-3 weeks, but then it only takes a minute or two to prep in the morning. Packs fit in medium-large plastic containers (48 oz.) or gallon Ziploc bags.