A Green Smoothie for Beginners

A Green Smoothie for Beginners

I’m a little behind on the green smoothie trend. A smoothie instead of a meal just does not satisfy me, and I tend to go for more savory snacks. Some might call me a high-maintenance eater. It’s fine.

It wasn’t until I started marathon training last summer that I became a smoothie drinker. When I would get back from a long run, a cold, refreshing smoothie was usually exactly what I wanted. (Not having air conditioning last summer probably also had something to do with it…)

Once I got on board with the whole smoothie thing, it took me awhile to start adding greens. One day I decided to throw a handful of baby spinach into my regular smoothie to see what all the fuss was about. I was shocked that I could barely taste it.

A Green Smoothie for Beginners

Since then, I’ve been experimenting with different combinations. My favorites always include frozen bananas, which do a great job of masking any bitterness from the greens and make the drink a little frosty. I’ve found that baby spinach is the easiest green to incorporate into a smoothie because of its mild flavor and tender leaves. I also think that a spoonful of nut butter makes all the difference. Plus, it adds a little protein and some healthy fat. When I have chia seeds on hand, I usually throw in a spoonful because they’re such a nutritional powerhouse and you can’t even taste them.

A Green Smoothie for Beginners

As delicious as it tastes, I admit it’s hard to make a green smoothie look appetizing. Serving it in a beer glass helps a little. And I like the irony.

Speaking of beer…next time you over-indulge, try one of these in the morning. It might not seem appetizing at the time, but I swear it helps.

A Green Smoothie for Beginners

Yield: 1 16-ounce smoothie

A Green Smoothie for Beginners


  • 1 tablespoon almond butter
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds
  • 2 cups loosely packed baby spinach leaves
  • 1 small frozen banana, or half a large, cut into chunks (see notes)
  • 1 1/3 cup almond milk
  • Sweetener of choice (I usually use a pinch of stevia, but you could also use regular sugar, agave, or even honey)


  • Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth.


Whenever I buy bananas, I let a few get extremely ripe and then put them in the freezer. That way, I always have frozen bananas on hand.


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