It’s November, which means all of our favorite summer berries at the store are less bright-tasting and more out of season than ever. But this doesn’t mean we can’t still make a fresh smoothie!
This is a great smoothie to make year-round, but kale and citrus are in season in the fall and winter, which is just nature’s way of handing us a healthy, bright pick-me-up immune boost in the cold winter months when we’re missing our love affair with strawberries, blueberries, and watermelon.
This one comes from my own recipe box, I have been making it for years…ever since I had a post-yoga Jamba Juice green smoothie and said, “I could make this!”. Drinking a single green smoothie makes me feel like I’m a superhero and so put-together, especially if I drink it with breakfast or after a workout. It’s like a little “I-had-this-healthy-kale-smoothie” smirk. Heh, I feel so Santa Monica.
Kale Citrus Green Smoothie
Serves 3-4 // Total time: 20 minutes
- (4 Cups) organic lacinato kale – torn off of the stem, massaged and washed
- (1 Cup) organic frozen mango chunks
- (1 Cup) organic frozen peach chunks
- (Juice of 1) lemon
- (1-2″ chunk) ginger root, washed, skin-on
- (4 Cups) cold water
- (1 Cup) orange juice
Aside from throwing everything in the blender and blitzing it, here are some prep steps I do for the best-tasting kale:
- Wash and massage the kale. Massage the whole leaves in a bowl of water or a salad spinner, rinsing and massaging off what usually looks like a thin white film and any dirt. Dry on a towel.
- Tear the leaves and discard the stems. Either tear off chunks of the leaves from the stem, or run a sharp knife along each side of the tough stem to get the leaves off.
- Chop. I coarse-chop for a smoothie or fine chop for a salad.
- I have a strong Vitamix blender which will take care of this step, but if your blender has a lower motor power and needs a little help breaking it down, do a quick coarse chop.
Throw everything else on top of the kale, and blitz this smoothie up!
If you’re drinking this smoothie right away, you can take a spoon and skim off any foam on top. This smoothie separates pretty quickly, so just shake it back up to combine.
This will keep in the fridge for up to 3 days, and freezes great! See below.
Always slightly time-consuming, but always nutritionally worth the effort. I have used either Lacinato or Tuscan kale, and always organic, since leafy greens are on the list of 2023 Environmental Working Group’s “Dirty Dozen”, or a list of non-organic fruits and vegetables that have the highest concentration of pesticides. Massaging and washing thoroughly removes pesticides, stretches and relaxes the tough fibers of the leaves, and makes them more easily digestible and less bitter. If I have it on hand I use the Trader Joe’s fruit and vegetable wash (it’s the cleanest ingredient list I’ve found!), otherwise just water will work.
Frozen Peaches and Mangos
I’ll always take the shortcut of store-bought freezer bags of organic frozen peaches and mangoes EXCEPT in the summer when I can buy organic peaches and freeze them myself. Peaches are the highlight of my summer! I haven’t yet mastered selecting the perfect mango and prepping it myself. Soon!
For this smoothie, I highly recommend the pungent root version over the milder ground ginger powder. Ginger root is excellent for your digestion, and keeps this smoothie, and you, balanced. Keep the skin on and everything!
Scrub those lemons first, then juice them in. After tasting your smoothie, you will be able to tell if it needs more lemon juice.
Make a double batch of this recipe and freeze the extra to drink for the rest of the week! (A double batch will need two blender batches in order to fit and have good-tasting proportions.)
Pour the smoothie in a gallon-size Ziploc bag and lay it flat to freeze. Pull it out of the freezer 12-24 hours before consuming and it will defrost much quicker than in a mason jar.
Smoothie will taste best within 2 weeks of freezing.
This is one of my all-time favorites, let me know what you think!