Cucumber Basil Smoothie

I have a basic recipe fort smoothies that I embellish on with various things (such as dandelion leaves).  I use frozen strawberries, a banana, and kefir and then add other ingredients as desired.  This time I used cucumber and basil.

Cucumber Basil Smoothie

4-5 slices cucumber

1 full banana

2 leaves of basil

a handful of frozen strawberries

about 1/2 a cup kefir (don’t bother measuring, just know more kefir = more liquid smoothie)

Blend.  Enjoy.

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It was really good.  Very cooling on a summer day.  There was first the taste of strawberry and then the after taste of basil.  The cucumber adds a bit of froth and coolness to the smoothie.

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A Quick List of Healthy Smoothie Tips

  • If you use frozen yogurt, it’s a milk shake not a smoothie
  • You can, however, freeze regular yogurt, just make sure it’s plain since the flavored kinds have loads of sugar
  • Bonus points for Greek yogurt or kefir
  • Juice has more sugar that you think, stick to whole fruit
  • Nut butters add protein and strong flavor
  • Avocado can be used frozen or fresh and adds healthy fats with an easy to cover flavor
  • Flax seeds can be added to include omega fatty acids
  • You can use green tea as a liquid for antioxidants
  • You can use any type of ‘milk’ cow, goat, soy, rice, hemp, almond, ect

Dandelion Smoothie

I know most people don’t really care for dandelions.  They’re a weed right?  In my opinion any plant that doesn’t have a use is a weed.  Like grass.  But that’s for another post.

I have heard about many uses for dandelion, the root can be roasted like coffee, the sap can be used as a glue, and there are medicinal uses for the flower.

The leaves can also be used.  They can be eaten just like salad greens.  Now, I’m not a fan of straight salad, maybe it was too much bland iceberg in my youth, but I still want to get the nutrients from the greens.  So my solution is to put them in smoothies.  I’ve done this already with a variety of lettuce, spinach, cilantro, and celery greens.  But this was the first time with dandelion.

I picked some leaves off a plant in the yard.  I made sure to only get the greenest and avoid any with obvious rot or bug holes.  I washed the leaves well in the sink and patted them dry.  Remember when picking the leaves, the sap can be used as glue, so it can get a little sticky.

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I made this smoothie with a variety of fruit, almond milk, and the dandelion greens.  It was yummy.  If you’ve never had greens in a smoothie, you may want to ease into it.  Start with just a little and slowly add more as you get used to the taste.  Also consider using stronger flavored fruits to help ‘hide’ the taste.  This is the recipe I used, but feel free to experiment with different fruits, different greens, and different liquids.  Just keep in mind my quick list of healthy smoothie tips.

Dandelion Smoothie

1 Banana

About 5 large frozen strawberries

About half of an avocado that I had frozen earlier

A few small pieces of pineapple

A splash of almond milk

Dandelion greens to taste

Blend

Enjoy

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