Friday, May 9, 2014

Protein Shake/Smoothie

I had been thinking about replacing one meal a day with a protein shake/smoothie, but never really took the plunge.  I thought ice was a must for any good shake/smoothie concoction and I don't have an ice maker.  I think freezing ice cubes each day is cumbersome.  But, I learned ice isn't a must.  I had talked to several people that said they freeze bananas and use them in protein drinks and decided to give it a try. I have yet to make a shake without frozen bananas.  All you have to do is peel the banana, cut or break it into smaller pieces, and put it in a freezer safe container.  Super easy!

Kale is super popular right now because of all of the health benefits, so I add it to my smoothies as well.  I actually did a bit of research about Kale and how best to handle it because I had never eaten it.  I learned it is best to remove the center stem because it is much tougher than the leaves.  I also freeze my kale.  I clean it and put it in a gallon sized freezer bag whole, then freeze.  After it is frozen you can actually crush it, much easier to add to smoothies that way.

It took me a few times to get it right.  I played with different types of ingredients to find what I like best.  Some things I learned:

  1. Flax seed is best used in oil form rather than ground (which is what I tried first)
  2. Ground nuts do not blend up enough (I'm extremely picky about textures when it comes to food-chunky drinks, not my thing.)
  3. Raspberries and other berries of the like have LOTS of seeds and I don't enjoy drinking them.

I may change some of the add-ins, but the basics stay the same protein powder, flax oil, banana, and kale.  The other fruit I add changes depending on what I have.  Don't forget you need to have liquid of some sort or you will probably burn up your blender.  My liquid changes I may use juice, milk, or water.  What you add depends on your taste.  I have been thinking about trying Almond Milk, but haven't bought any yet.  I have also started adding local honey because I have seasonal allergies and I heard that might help.

I recently won some Barlean's Flax oil from a Twitter party; it couldn't have come at a better time either.  You can buy it at Whole Foods in several different forms and flavors.  As far as the protein powder the one I am using right now is pictured.  I prefer chocolate when I just mix with milk, so that is what I started with.  I am almost out of it and looking for a different flavor.  So, I decided to buy individual packets of different types, brands, and flavors because I don't want to spend money on a whole can of it if I won't like it.

The result might not look very appetizing, but I truly enjoy drinking my protein shakes; which if you knew me you might be surprised about.  I'm very picky.  

What kind of shakes are you drinking?  Never had one, are you inspired to try it now?



  1. I love my shakeology... it's super easy you can just mix it in a shaker bottle, or you can add extras and make it with a blender :)

  2. Frozen peaches are great in shakes so are blueberries. They don't have seeds and help add extra flavor. I use vanilla protein powder because I think it mixes better with different fruits, and I personally like the variety. I also use almond milk- but with kale you might want to stick to regular milk if chunks are an issue. Almond milk will make the consistency of the shake thinner. If you are looking to add the benefit of nuts try macadamia oil. Its a subtly nutty, I think you might enjoy it!