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How to Make Green Smoothies (for Beginners!)

Want to try green smoothies but don’t know where to start? This simple guide takes you from zero to deliciously green in just 5 minutes!

Green smoothie picture in a glass with a striped straw and a yellow background

So I’ve got to admit, even though I studied nutrition and cook healthy food for a living, sometimes I struggle to get in as many veggies as I know I should. I blame my sweet tooth, which urges me to think about dessert far before I think about what I’ll make as a vegetable side dish. But I found a way to get a healthy dose of veggies into my diet easily and without fuss…green smoothies!

I make a green smoothie almost every morning as a way to get the tulip-man and I filled up and ready for the day (and to pack in a few servings of veggies without bother before 9am).

Eatmail subscribers know that I’m all about smoothies, but I’m realizing that not everyone is as accustomed or comfortable with throwing a salads-worth of spinach into a smoothie. So today we’re breaking it down to the basics.

Green smoothie recipe photo in a glass with a striped straw and a yellow background

Green Smoothie Ingredients

The nice thing about green smoothies is you can adjust them to whatever you’re craving (or whatever you have stocked in your kitchen!) The basic ingredients in all great green smoothies are:

  • Leafy Greens: Spinach is my favorite because it breaks down easily in a blender, though kale is a runner up!
  • Creamy Ingredient: Something to make the texture smooth and creamy, like banana, yogurt, coconut milk, or even silken tofu.
  • Fruit: Fruit adds natural flavor and sweetness. You can use fresh or frozen, and virtually any fruit works well here (apples, mango, berries, stone fruit, kiwi, pineapple…you get the gist).
  • Optional Enhancers: Feel free to add seeds (like chia or flax) nutritional supplements (like protein powder) or flavors (like spices or honey).
Want to try green smoothies but don't know where to start? This simple guide takes you from zero to deliciously green in just 5 minutes!

How to make green smoothies taste good

The secret to ultra-smooth green smoothies is in blending the liquids and greens together first, then adding in the rest of your ingredients. This step prevents having chunky bits of spinach or kale floating around your smoothie!

Want to know how to make green smoothies but don't know where to start? This simple guide takes you from zero to deliciously green in just 5 minutes!

Then we’ll need a creamy base. I usually use chopped and frozen bananas. Pro tip: Cut your bananas into 7 pieces then freeze, that way when you need to pull the bananas out of the freezer for the smoothie, you’ll know exactly how many pieces equals one banana! If you’re not a fan of bananas, plain yogurt works well too!

Want to know how to make green smoothies but don't know where to start? This simple guide takes you from zero to deliciously green in just 5 minutes!

Next we have fruity flavors. You can use virtually any fruit you’d like here, but today we’re going with kiwi and pear.

Want to know how to make green smoothies but don't know where to start? This simple guide takes you from zero to deliciously green in just 5 minutes!

Finally, we have the optionals. You can throw in optional superfoods, like chia or flax seeds. You can also add optional flavor enhancers, like cinnamon, vanilla extract, or cocoa powder!

Want to try green smoothies but don't know where to start? This simple guide takes you from zero to deliciously green in just 5 minutes!

How to Make Green Smoothies (for Beginners!)

Want to try green smoothies but don’t know where to start? This simple guide takes you from zero to deliciously green in just 5 minutes!
Print Pin Rate
Course: Beverages (Non-Alcoholic), Breakfasts, Smoothies
Cuisine: American
Keyword: green smoothie
Diet: Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Paleo, Raw, Vegan, Vegetarian
Occasion: St. Patrick’s Day
Time: 15 minutes or less, 30 minutes or less, 45 minutes or less
Prep: 5 mins
Total: 5 mins
Servings: 2 smoothies
Calories: 202kcal
Author: Sarah Bond
4.8 from 5 votes

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup liquid milk or juice
  • 1 cup leafy greens spinach or kale
  • ½ cup creamy base 1 banana or ½ cup plain yogurt
  • 1 cup fruit today that’s 1 kiwi and 1 pear
  • 1 Tbsp optional superfood topping chia, flax, or hemp seeds
  • 1 tsp optional flavor enhancer cinnamon, vanilla, honey

INSTRUCTIONS

  • Combine liquid and greens in a blender until smooth.
  • Add the rest of your ingredients and continue blending until smooth.

NUTRITION

Serving: 1smoothie | Calories: 202kcal | Carbohydrates: 41.7g | Protein: 6.2g | Fat: 3.3g | Cholesterol: 10mg | Sodium: 73mg | Fiber: 6.3g
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More healthy smoothie recipes to try:

Wake Me Up Coffee Smoothie
Orange Dreamsicle Smoothie
Key Lime Pie Smoothie
Strawberry Watermelon Rind Smoothie
Pink Power Beet Smoothie

I first published this recipe on Amanda’s Cookin’.

Hi, I’m Sarah!

Showing you how to make easy vegetarian recipes, one ingredient at a time. Read more

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Comments (26)

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  1. GW says:

    Chia and flax seed to tag the Omega 3s. Great idea. People who.havent tried your green smoothie ideas just don’t understand how easily the taste of spinach is masked by other things. Have,you tried bagged frozen spinach? Not the blocks,

    1. Sarah says:

      I didn’t know you could buy frozen spinach in any form other than cubed! I’ll have to try that, might make the smoothie extra icy 🙂

  2. GW says:

    You have lived in Europe for a while as cubed spinach isn’t a thing in the USA. There are some frozen chopped varieties in the USA. I think the cubes are a German thing, but they work great and like your chop the bananas into seven pieces idea, the cubes make an easy measuring device. I think many people can’t get around the color of veggie smoothies. The taste can be great. Like yours!

    1. Sarah says:

      I wonder, do you know how much fresh spinach is in frozen spinach blocks?

  3. Daniela says:

    Loved your beginner’s smoothie, I’ll be making it for a mid afternoon snack today 🙂 green juice is new to me and I am testing out a few recipes to see which ones I like best. Yours seems yummi 🙂

    1. Sarah says:

      So happy to hear, Daniela! Let me know how it goes! If you haven’t already, you can subscribe to my Eatmail where I send free weekly smoothie recipes, in case you need more inspiration 😀

  4. Daniela says:

    Sara, the smoothie was amazing!! Even my boyfriend liked it and he is not a big fan of greens!

    I’m happy to say that this will officially be my “go to” smoothie! And I have subscribed 🙂

    Have a nice week 🙂

    1. Sarah says:

      Yay I’m so glad you liked it!! Such a great way to sneak in those greens 😉

  5. Joanna Keilson says:

    I’ve tried frozen spinach in a smoothie once…never again. Fresh is great! Frozen…you taste it. At least I did.

    1. Sarah says:

      Ah yea, I guess you probably get quite a bit more spinach if you use frozen so the taste can be too strong. I love using fresh!

  6. john JP says:

    We always seem to have tea left over in the tea pot. Some times peppermint and sometimes green tea. So instead of water I use the left over tea instead of dumping it out. works
    fine.

    1. Sarah says:

      That’s such a great idea, John!

  7. Joan says:

    for the first time I tried to make a green smoothie before I read yours.
    I used fresh baby spinach & arugula, orange juice, vanilla yogurt, frozen veg.
    & honey. I.’m not keen about it I thing the arugula may be strong different taste should I put strawberries or blueberries in it I need iron is this a good way.

    1. Sarah says:

      Hi Joan! Rather than adding frozen veggies try adding frozen fruit (like strawberries or blueberries) which will make the smoothie taste great. Then just add a LOT (2 or three big handfuls) of fresh spinach, which is packed with iron and has very little taste in a green smoothie.

  8. Oluwakemi says:

    I love this idea. I am going to try it and am sure it’s going to taste great. Meanwhile v subscribed to your Eatmail. Thanks for this piece

    1. Sarah says:

      So happy to hear!! Welcome to the Eatmail fam 🙂

  9. Nancy says:

    Fresh spinach may be packed with iron, but it also has something in it that binds the iron so that it is not absorbed. But there are other vegetables with iron.

    1. Sarah says:

      Thanks for pointing that out, Nancy! True, oxalic acid in spinach binds to some of the iron in spinach. But there are ways to make the iron more available, such as eating the spinach together with vitamin C (like orange juice and fruit in your smoothie). You can also steam or microwave the spinach to make the iron more bioavailable! 😀

  10. Salma says:

    Hey Sara,
    Thanks for this great post, I’ll try it asap 🙂5 stars

    1. Sarah says:

      You’re welcome! Would love to hear how it goes for you 😀

  11. Susan Toth says:

    Can u recommend a blender other than nutri system?
    Thk u.ready to get started.
    Have 9 grandchildren and hope to help them focus at school w a healthy brain & body.
    👍
    Obviously this machine will b multitasking!
    Unless- u don’t recommend multi purpose use.
    Thx

    1. Sarah says:

      Hi Susan! I personally LOVE my Vitamix (https://amzn.to/2tdk9rr). It’s heavy duty and can handle smoothies as well as nut butters/soups etc. I’ve also had a lot of success with a blender/food processor combo like this (https://amzn.to/2MWQ34s), which has basically infinite uses. Hope this helps!

  12. Crystal Merritt says:

    I just started juicing but I like the smoothie better I like Kale and spinach greeapple and pineapple5 stars

    1. Sarah says:

      Yesss smoothies over juicing any day! So much more fiber 🙂

  13. Bessie Ashby says:

    I am just getting into smoothies and am wondering if I can use raw mushrooms in them and if so have you tried it?

    1. Sarah says:

      That’s a good question, Bessie! While I haven’t tried mushrooms in smoothies, I don’t see what it would be a problem. Would love to hear how it goes!

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