Week #4 ~ December Green Smoothie Challenge (Recipes & Shopping List)

“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world.  Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.”
―    Rumi
31 Day Green Smoothie Challenge

Congratulations to you for reading this post. There may be various reasons that you are reading it: 1. You are in week #4 of our green smoothie challenge, or maybe 2. You stumbled upon my blog because you are researching green smoothies or are looking for new healthy recipes. Regardless, I commend you for placing your health as a priority and making precious time for yourself.

As a Weight Watchers leader for the past six years, I firmly believe the adage, “Small changes can lead to big results.” Yesterday I received a message from a woman who said that for the past three weeks the only change in her diet has been swapping out her breakfast for a green smoothie and she has lost seven pounds. Maybe you have noticed results too. Do you have increased energy? Maybe your cravings for sugar and starchy carbohydrates have decreased and your digestion has improved. Maybe your skin is brighter and your hair and nails are stronger. Perhaps you notice yourself reaching for fresh fruit and vegetables as snacks because you are buying more produce.

Before this challenge I was already making my husband Mike and I a daily green smoothie for breakfast. However, since I had to design recipes for this challenge, this month I have been much more creative with our smoothies. Since I have not been just tossing together my favorite couple combinations, we have consumed a wider range of nutrients since I have been rotating our greens and fruit. So thank you to those who asked for recipes and a shopping list! 🙂

If you are interested in the previous weeks’ posts here they are:

WEEK #1 RECIPES AND SHOPPING LIST

WEEK #2 RECIPES AND SHOPPING LIST

WEEK #3 RECIPES AND SHOPPING LIST

Week #4 December Green Smoothie Challenge Recipes & Shopping ListWeek #4 Shopping List: (Printable List Below)

  • Greens (I suggest a combination of greens ~ spinach, turnip greens, kale, chard, carrot tops, beet greens, or spring mix and dark green lettuces) Since the week #4 recipes are for 10 days, you may want to buy enough for the first five-7 days and purchase more mid-week.
  • Bananas (plan for ½-1 banana per smoothie, unless you plan to sweeten with honey, dates, or another sweetener)
  • Celery
  • Frozen strawberries
  • Frozen mango
  • Bag of fresh cranberries
  • 3 kiwi
  • 1 red apple
  • 1 green apple
  • 1 pear
  • 1-2 avocado (two recipes call for avocado so it depends if you want 1/2 or a whole avocado in your smoothie)
  • 1 pomegranate (if you do not have a Vitamix or a high-speed blender you may want to buy a high quality pomegranate juice so you do not have seeds in your smoothie)
  • 2 grapefruit
  • 4 limes and 1 lemon
  • Fresh ginger root
  • Parsley and/or cilantro
  • 1 can light coconut milk
  • Cinnamon
  • Nutmeg
  • Optional ~ chia seeds, hemp seeds, or flax seeds and coconut water

Printable Shopping List: Week Four December Green Smoothie Challenge Shopping List

WEEK THREE RECIPES
*Each recipe will render approximately 3-4 cups. If you want a smaller amount reduce the ingredients. If you want to drink part of the smoothie and save the rest for a snack they will keep fresh for a few days in the refrigerator (some separation may occur but they will still be nutritionally intact. This means they can also be made the night before to save precious time in the morning). I often pack a green smoothie to sip on my 1/2 hour commute home from work.

Printable recipes posted below.

Day #22 December Green Smoothie ChallengeSunday ~ Day #22: Tropical Dream Green Smoothie
*3 – 4 – cups of your greens of choice
*1 banana
*1/2 cup of mango
*1/2 cup of strawberries
*Cilantro or parsley to taste
*Lime juice and zest (to taste. I like to use the whole lime but you may want ½)
* ½ cup of light coconut milk
*1/2 cup of coconut water/or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds/flax seeds/or hemp seeds

Day #23 December Green Smoothie ChallengeMonday ~ Day #23:  Apple Pie Green Smoothie
*3 – 4 cups of your greens of choice
*1 red apple
*1 banana
*1 teaspoon vanilla extract
*1/2 cup of light coconut milk
* ½ cup of coconut water or water
*Cinnamon & nutmeg to taste
*Optional ~ 1- 2 Tablespoons of chia seeds/flax seeds/or hemp seeds

Day #24 December Green Smoothie ChallengeTuesday ~ Day #24: Sweet Tart Green Smoothie
*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1/2 cup of cranberries
*1 pear
*1 rib of celery
*Juice and zest of 1 lemon
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds/flax seeds/or hemp seeds

Day #25 December Green Smoothie ChallengeWednesday ~ Day #25: Strawberry Kiwi Holiday
*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1 cup of strawberries
*2 kiwi
*Fresh ginger root, peeled (to taste)
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds/flax seeds/or hemp seeds

Day #26 December Green Smoothie ChallengeThursday ~ Day #26: Citrus Sunshine Green Smoothie
*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1 orange
*1 grapefruit
*Parsley or cilantro (to taste)
*Fresh ginger root, peeled (to taste)
*Juice and zest of 1 lime
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds/flax seeds/or hemp seeds

Day #27 December Green Smoothie ChallengeFriday ~ Day #27: Persephone’s Envy Green Smoothie
*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1/2 pomegranate (or ½ cup of juice)
*3/4 cup of mango
*1 rib of celery
*Avocado (1/2 or whole)
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds/flax seeds/or hemp seeds

Day #28 December Green Smoothie ChallengeSaturday ~ Day #28: Sip of Summer Green Smoothie
*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1/2 cup of strawberries
*1/2 cup of mango
*Parsley or cilantro (to taste)
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds/flax seeds/or hemp seeds

Day #29 December Green Smoothie ChallengeSunday ~ Day #29: Sea Breeze Green Smoothie
*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1/2 cup of cranberries
*1/2 cup of pomegranate
*1 grapefruit
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds/flax seeds/or hemp seeds

Day #30 Glistening Green SmoothieMonday ~ Day #30: Glistening Green Smoothie
*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1 kiwi
*1 green apple
*1 rib of celery
*Avocado (1/2 or whole)
*Parsley or cilantro ~ or both (to taste)
*Ginger root (to taste)
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds/flax seeds/or hemp seeds

Day #31 December Green Smoothie ChallengeTuesday ~ Day #31: Celebration Green Smoothie
*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1 orange
*1/2 cup of cranberries
*Ginger root to taste
*Cinnamon to taste
*1/2 cup of light coconut milk
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1/2 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds/flax seeds/or hemp seeds

Printable Recipes: Week Four December Green Smoothie Challenge Recipes

Thank you so much for joining me in this challenge. By drinking a green smoothie a day we are giving our healthy New Year’s resolutions a running start. I plan to continue drinking them on a daily basis and I promise to share my favorite combinations. Please share your favorites with me (in either a comment on a post or on my Produce with Amy Facebook Page). Cheers to a productive and healthy 2014!

Pin this post HERE.
December Green Smoothie Challenge

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Week #3 ~ December Green Smoothie Challenge (Recipes & Shopping List)

“Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” 
―  Leonardo da Vinci 

December Green Smoothie ChallengeAs we approach the third week of the December Green Smoothie challenge, it makes me smile when I receive messages from individuals who tell me that my posts have encouraged them to try green smoothies for the first time. What makes it even better is hearing how much they love them! While my life is fraught with a busy schedule and a mile-long (and always growing) “to do list”,  I am thankful that I am making the time to share recipes that others are enjoying. Thank you for the emails, for stopping by my Produce with Amy Facebook Page, and for sharing my recipes with others. I passionately believe that we all need a community to support us and am always inspired by the power of social media to connect and transform our lives.

If one of my recipes does not suit your taste buds, try to figure out what you can add or change to make it more pleasing. Not sweet enough? Add more fruit or cut back on the greens. Add some fresh lemon juice to brighten the taste or add more fresh ginger root to mask stronger tasting greens.

Week #1 December Green Smoothie Challenge Recipes & Shopping ListIf you are reading my blog for the first time you may want to check out the recipes and shopping list for Week #1

December Green Smoothie Challenge Week #2 Recipes and Shopping Listand Week #2 of the December Green Smoothie Challenge. You will find printable shopping lists and recipes as well as hints and tips for those who are new to green smoothies.

Last week I discussed the importance of rotating our greens in green smoothies and this December Green Smoothie Challenge Recipes and Shopping Listweek I am including kale and turnip greens on the printable shopping list. Other greens you may consider are carrot tops and beets (after enjoying the vegetables reserve the tops and blend in your smoothie), chard, and spring mix greens or lettuces (stick to the dark and brilliantly hued varieties). It is fine if you decide you want to stick with spinach. but if you drink green smoothies for a lengthy amount of time, I recommend that you rotate the greens.

When I blend green smoothies my goal is to keep them as simple as possible. I try not to add too many kinds of fruit to make the smoothie easy for my body to digest and for maximum nutrient absorption. My husband Mike and I each drink a green smoothie first thing in the morning and find that it gives us a boost of energy. Since neither of us have an appetite in the morning, a green smoothie allows us to hydrate and nourish our bodies without the heavy feeling that comes with many breakfast foods. On occasion (like last week’s recipes) I will add pumpkin but I normally stick to non-starchy fruit. I try to follow raw foodist,Victoria Boutenko’s Guidelines for Green Smoothie Consumption.

BlueberriesThis week I decided to include blueberries in the green smoothie shopping list. In the Upper Peninsula of Michigan 2013 was a phenomenal summer for wild blueberries and I know that many of my U.P. friends have berries stashed away in the freezer. Not only do blueberries make a mean green smoothie (more like purple, or brown 😉 depending on what else you add) but blueberries are brimming with health benefits.

December Green Smoothie Challenge Week #3 Recipes and Shopping List

For these recipes I give the option of raw honey, dates, or banana for sweetness. I recommend experimenting to see how much you would need to reach your desired level of sweet.

Dates can be found in the produce section of your local grocery (especially during the holiday baking season), at organic markets, and in health food stores. I like to buy medjool dates and sometimes I buy chopped dates rolled in coconut. Not only do I like adding them in smoothies but they are so sweet that snacking on a single date can often satisfy a sweets craving.

Suggested amount to be added to a smoothie ~
*1/2 – 1 banana
or
*1 Tablespoon of raw honey
or
*2-3 Medjool dates

Week #3 ~ December Green Smoothie Challenge Shopping List
*Shopping list is based on one 3-4 cup Green Smoothie a day.

  • 2 bunches of kale, 2 bunches of turnip greens (or greens of your choice)
  • 1 bunch of parsley
  • 1 bunch of cilantro
  • 1 bag of frozen peaches (could substitute mangos or pineapple)
  • 1 bag of frozen raspberries
  • 1 bag of frozen blueberries
  • 5-7 ripe bananas (peel and freeze)
  • Celery
  • 1 kiwi
  • 1 orange
  • 1 apple (any variety)
  • 1 pear
  • 2 avocado
  • 2 lemons
  • 3 limes
  • Fresh ginger root
  • Cinnamon
  • Vanilla extract

*Optional Ingredients

  • In place of the banana to sweeten the smoothie you may opt for medjool dates (or even chopped dates) or raw honey (or rotate sweeteners day-to-day)
  • Coconut flakes (used as a garnish for couple of the smoothies)
  • Chia seeds (I add these to my smoothies each day. Some people add hemp seeds or flax-seeds)
  • Coconut water (regular water works fine but there are many health benefits to drinking coconut water. It can often be found in the Latin food or heath food section of the supermarket. I usually buy one large can per two green smoothies…or a couple liter containers).

Printable list: Week Three December Green Smoothie Challenge Shopping List

WEEK THREE RECIPES
*Each recipe will render approximately 3-4 cups. If you want a smaller amount reduce the ingredients. If you want to drink part of the smoothie and save the rest for a snack they will keep fresh for a few days in the refrigerator (some separation may occur but they will still be nutritionally intact. This means they can also be made the night before to save precious time in the morning). I often pack a green smoothie to sip on my 1/2 hour commute home from work.

Printable recipes posted below. 


Day #15 December Green Smoothie ChallengeSunday ~ Day #15: Blue Boost Green Smoothie

*3 – 4 – cups of your greens of choice
*1/2 – 1 cup of blueberries
*1/2 – 1 avocado
*Raw honey/dates/ or banana for sweetness
*1 teaspoon of cinnamon (or to taste)
*1 cup of coconut water/or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds
*Optional ~ garnish wish shredded coconut

Day #16 December Green Smoothie ChallengeMonday ~ Day #16:  Peach-Raspberry Zinger Green Smoothie

*3 – 4 cups of your greens of choice
*1/2 cup of raspberries
*1/2 cup of peaches
*Juice and zest of 1 lime
*Cilantro (to taste)
*Fresh ginger root, peeled (to taste)
*Raw honey/dates/ or banana
*1 cup of coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1- 2 Tablespoons of chia seeds

Day #17 December Green Smoothie ChallengeTuesday ~ Day #17: Blueberry Twist Green Smoothie

*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1 cup of blueberries
*Juice and zest of 1 lemon
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds

Day #18 December Green Smoothie ChallengeWednesday ~ Day #18: Spicy Apple-Berry Green Smoothie

*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1/2 cup of raspberries
*1/2 cup of bluberries
*1 apple (if organic leave the peel)
*Fresh ginger root, peeled (to taste)
*Cinnamon (to taste)
*Parsley or cilantro (to taste)
*Juice and zest of 1 lemon
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds

Day #19 December Green Smoothie ChallengeThursday ~ Day #19: Luscious Green Smoothie

*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1/2 cup of peaches
*1 pear
*1 rib of celery
*1/2 – 1 avocado
*Parsley or cilantro (to taste)
*Fresh ginger root, peeled (to taste)
*Juice and zest of 1 lime
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds

Day#20 December Green Smoothie ChallengeFriday ~ Day #20: Orange & Blue Blossom Green Smoothie

*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1/2 – 3/4 cup of blueberries
*1 orange (and zest)
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*Cinnamon to taste
*1 teaspoon vanilla extract
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds

Day #21 December Green Smoothie ChallengeSaturday ~ Day #21: Flourishing Green Smoothie

*3 -4 cups of your greens of choice
*1/2 cup of peaches
*1/2 – 1 avocado
*1 kiwi
*Parsley or cilantro (to taste)
*Fresh ginger root, peeled (to taste)
*Juice and zest of 1 lime
*Raw honey/dates/or banana
*1 cup coconut water or water
*Optional ~ 1-2 Tablespoons of chia seeds

Printable Recipes: Week Three December Green Smoothie Challenge Recipes

Pin this post HERE. 

Week Four Green Smoothie Recipes

Thank you for joining me on this challenge. I would love to hear feedback about the challenge so far. Have your noticed any health benefits? What has been your favorite combination? I hope you enjoy the recipes for week #3. Cheers to our health and for getting a jump-start on our resolutions for the new year!

December Green Smoothie Challenge

Week #2 ~ December Green Smoothie Challenge (Recipes & Shopping List)

December Green Smoothie Challenge“Above all, challenge yourself. You may well surprise yourself
at what strengths you have, what you can accomplish.”
Cecile M. SpringerWeek #1 December Green Smoothie Challenge Recipes & Shopping List

I am thankful for the December Green Smoothie Challenge on many levels. It prevents me from falling into a green smoothie rut, it inspires my creativity and desire to generate new recipes, and it allows me to network with others to give/receive support and share ideas. If you are just joining us, you may want to read: Week #1 ~ December Green Smoothie Challenge (Recipes & Shopping List). The post contains tips and advice to those who are brand new to green smoothies and also recipes and a shopping list for the first seven days. If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to ask. Also, please share your recipe reviews or your own favorite recipes in the comment section or on my Produce with Amy Facebook Page.

These margarita glasses were a gift from my WW members and were hand painted by one of my member's mothers.

These margarita glasses were a gift from my WW members and were hand painted by one of my member’s mothers.

While creating recipes, my intention is to keep the green smoothies simple and to work from a shopping list that will not be too expensive. The recipes would be easy to tweak if you do not like a particular ingredient. Also, if you have any “leftovers” from last week you may decide to make amendments to the shopping list. If you like your smoothies sweet, you may want to buy extra fruit. Bananas work well as a sweetener. If you have a banana allergy pineapple, mango, and oranges are all high-sugar fruit. Sometimes I sweeten my smoothies with medjool dates and some people add a little raw honey or maple syrup.Sunrise Green Smoothie

Most of my recipes make approximately three cups. While I drink mine for breakfast, I often make extra so I can sip on it during my half hour commute home from work. One of the benefits of green smoothies are that they can help fight food cravings and sometimes my husband Mike and I will drink one before dinner or as a post-dinner snack.

In the second week’s shopping list I have included spinach and also kale. I do warn that kale tastes much stronger and more “grassy” than spinach, so I recommend that you a little at a time. Also, if you enjoy the taste of fresh ginger root (I personally could add it to every smoothie I make)

Tart Cherry Juice from Michigan

Tart Cherry Juice from Michigan

it does a great job of masking strong-tasting greens. In the past I also purchased tart cherry juice to flavor my green smoothies. Tart cherry juice is pricey (but it tastes terrific) and a little goes a long way. Plus, tart cherries have many health benefits. 

When you drink green smoothies for weeks-on-end it is important to rotate your greens. While spinach is my favorite ~ I also enjoy kale, carrot tops, beet greens, radish tops, spring mix greens, dandelion greens, and turnip greens. If you look in the produce section of your local market you will be surprised how many varieties of greens there are. While in the summer I enjoy growing my own, during winter months I will often buy bunches of beets, radishes, and carrots and lop off the tops to use in my smoothies. (Tip: if they are wilted when you purchase them you can immerse in cold water and they will perk right up).

When I started drinking green smoothies five years ago I read all that I could about green smoothie guru, Victoria Boutenko.  I highly recommend her books Green for Life and Green Smoothie Revolution. In her books, Victoria Boutenko stresses the importance of rotating our greens because of the alkaloids found in them. Read more about it here.

December Green Smoothie Challenge Week #2 Recipes and Shopping List
Week Two ~ December Green Smoothie Shopping List:
*
Shopping list is based on one Green Smoothie a day. If you are making green smoothies for two, or more, you will want to increase the amount you purchase.

  • 2 (9 ounce bags) of spinach
  • 1 bunch of kale (or an alternate green. If you are adventurous, try a variety of greens in place of the spinach)
  • 1 bunch of cilantro
  • 5-7 ripe bananas (peel and freeze)
  • 1 pineapple (unless you have some left from last week. You will need 2 cups)
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 orange
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 Granny Smith apple
  • 1 pear
  • Celery
  • Frozen mixed berries (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries ~ or similar mix)
  • Fresh ginger root
  • Cinnamon
  • Nutmeg
  • Vanilla extract
  • Can of pumpkin
  • Can of light coconut milk (often found in the Asian food section)

*Optional Ingredients

  • Molasses (used as flavoring in one of the smoothies)
  • Coconut flakes (used as a garnish for couple of the smoothies)
  • Chia seeds (some people add hemp seeds or flax-seeds)
  • Coconut water (regular water works fine but there are many health benefits to drinking coconut water. It can often be found in the Latin food or heath food section of the supermarket. I usually buy one large can per two green smoothies…or a couple liter containers).

Printable List:Week Two December Green Smoothie Challenge Shopping List

WEEK TWO RECIPES.
Each recipe should render approximately 3 CUPS of GREEN SMOOTHIE. They are so delicious you may want to make extra (or leave a little) for a mid-day snack.
Printable recipes posted below.

*If you plan on drinking your smoothies in the morning you may prep your smoothies the night before. You could even freeze ingredients in individual containers for the week. Sometimes when I know I am going to be in a time pinch in the morning I blend the night before and they stay fresh.

Day #8 December Green Smoothie ChallengeSunday ~ Day #8:  Jamaican Dream Green Smoothie
(My husband Mike and I got married on the beach in Jamaica and this smoothie transports me back to the tropics. We feasted on pumpkin soup and loved fresh fruit and frozen drinks)

  • 3-4 cups of spinach
  • 1/2 – 1 banana
  • 1/2 cup of pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup of pineapple
  • 1/2 cup of light canned coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 Tablespoon Molasses (since molasses has a strong taste you may want to add a little at a time)
  • Garnish with shredded coconut and nutmeg
  • 1/2 – 1 cup of coconut water (or regular water)

Day #9 Green Smoothie ChallengeMonday ~ Day #9: Berry Blast Green Smoothie

  •  1/3 of a bunch of kale
  • 1/2 – 1 banana
  • 1/2 bunch of cilantro (to taste)
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 3/4 cup of mixed berries
  • Fresh ginger root to taste (peeled)
  • 1 cup of water (or coconut water)

Day #10 December Green Smoothie ChallengeTuesday ~ Day #10: Lean & Green Smoothie

  • 2-3 cups of spinach
  • 1/2 cup of pineapple
  • 1 Granny Smith Apple (if it is organic, leave on the peel)
  • Celery (1 rib)
  • 1/2 cucumber (if it is organic, leave on the peel)
  • 1/2 avocado
  • Juice and zest of one lemon (1/2 if you want it less tart)
  • 1/2 bunch of cilantro (to taste)
  • Optional ~ banana (if you want it more sweet. I leave it out. You could also add another 1/2 cup of pineapple for sweetness)
  • 1 cup of water

Day #11 Green Smoothie ChallengeWednesday ~ Day #11: Berry Bliss Green Smoothie

  • 1/3 of a bunch of kale
  • 1/2-1 banana
  • 1 cup of mixed berries
  • 1/2 cup of light canned coconut milk
  • *Optional ~ ginger root to taste
  • 1/2 – 1 cup of water

Day #12 December Green Smoothie ChallengeThursday ~ Day #12: Autumn Harvest Green Smoothie

  • 3-4 cups of spinach
  • 3/4 – 1 cup of pumpkin
  • 1 pear
  • Ginger root (to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon 
  • 1/2 cup canned light coconut milk
  • 1/2 – 1 cup of water 
  • *Optional ~ banana (depending on how sweet you want it to be)

Day #13 December Green Smoothie ChallengeFriday ~ Day #13: Pina Colada Green Smoothie

  • 3-4 cups of spinach
  • 1 cup of pineapple
  • 1/2 – 1 banana
  • 1/2 cup of light canned coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup of coconut water or regular water
  • Garnish with coconut

Day #14 December Green Smoothie ChallengeSaturday ~ Day #14: Citrus Fusion Green Smoothie

  • 1/3 bunch of kale
  • 1 orange (you could also zest the orange for extra flavor)
  • 1/2 – 1 banana
  • 1/2 cup of light canned coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • 1/2 – 1 cup of coconut water or regular water

Printable recipes:Week Two December Green Smoothie Challenge Recipes

Week Three Green Smoothie Challenge Recipes

Pin this blog post here.

Whether you are new to green smoothies, or a veteran blender, I hope that my posts are helpful to you. I would love your feedback on the daily thread I post on my Produce with Amy Facebook page. Please like my page so you can join the conversation. Cheers to health and thriving in 2014!
December Green Smoothie Challenge

Week #1 ~ December Green Smoothie Challenge (Recipes & Shopping List)

Visualize this thing you want. See it, feel it, believe in it. Make your mental blueprint and begin. ~Robert Collier
December Green Smoothie Challenge
First off, I want to thank you for joining me in the December Green Smoothie Challenge. The goal of this challenge is to have one green smoothie a day (either for breakfast or another time during the day). We will be incorporating more nutrients into our diet and together we will stay accountable and share recipes and ideas. This is not a fast but a way to increase our intake of greens and fruit. All you need is a blender (I used a regular blender for three years before I invested in a Vitamix) and the desire to be healthy.

To those who are new to green smoothies, my recommendation is always to start simple. My first one was spinach, banana, strawberry, and water. Spinach is naturally sweet and you won’t believe how good it tastes. A frozen banana is key because it gives the smoothie sweetness and makes it creamy. I buy a couple bunches of bananas a week and when they get ripe I peel and toss into a bowl or bag in the freezer. Experiment with your favorite fruit. I have tried tons of different combinations and often tossing in what I have on hand. Frozen fruit works well and makes the smoothie cold (though you can add ice as well).

Sláinte!

Sláinte!

For this challenge I will come up with recipes that you can follow if you would like. Please feel free to experiment with other combinations and please share your favorites in the comment section or on my Produce with Amy Facebook Page.

I’m a green smoothie “purist” and normally stick with water, fruit, chia seeds, and greens. The chia seeds make it filling and are a great source of calcium, protein, and Omega-3.Though, many of my Weight Watchers members add yogurt, milk and dairy-free milks, and even healthy oils to their green smoothies to help meet their Good Health Guidelines.

The smoothies are a great way to fortify your iron and breaking down the cell walls of the greens makes it easier for our bodies to absorb the nutrients. My husband Mike and I both drink one for breakfast and find them really filling and satisfying. I love them and I think they give me an important boost of energy in the morning!

I have fresh mint growing in my garden and love to add it to smoothies, fruit salad, and even savory dishes.

If you do not have a high powered blender I recommend blending up the greens and liquid first and then adding the fruit (cut up in small pieces) a little bit at a time. When you freeze your bananas you will want to slice or break them into small chunks. This may not be as easy as dumping cold cereal and milk in a bowl, but I promise that it is worth your labor! 🙂

Weight Watchers members may wonder how to count the PP for the green smoothies. Personally, I do not count the PP of the fruit in my smoothies and only count the things I add that would carry a PP value (chia seeds, coconut water, avocado). Though, if you run the smoothie through the Recipe Builder, it will give you a PP value (once a fruit or vegetable is not in its natural state it is easier to over-eat). I always like to mention at my meetings that the danger of smoothies are that they may bypass our bodies hunger signals. However, I do not have this problem with green smoothies. I take a long time to sip my smoothie in the morning and it really satisfies me until I can have a morning snack at around 10:00-10:30. I attribute this to the fact that the smoothies are full of fiber and the chia seeds make them especially filling.

Week #1 December Green Smoothie Challenge Recipes & Shopping List

If you do not enjoy the listed fruit or berries, substitute them with your favorite. The amount Cherry Limeade Green Smoothieof fruit and greens that you put into each smoothie will vary depending on your personal taste. I always recommend that those who are new to green smoothies should add just a small amount of greens at first and go heavy on the fruit. You will find that the more smoothies you drink the more greens and less fruit you can start blending. If you prefer more fruit in your smoothies you may find yourself running out during the week. You may want to purchase extra “just in case.” When I first starting drinking green smoothies I found that bananas were essential to giving the smoothie its sweetness (frozen are also best). If you do not like bananas (or have an allergy), you may want to add a touch of your sweetener of choice: dates, raw honey, maple syrup, or raw sugar).

  • Spinach (3 ~ nine ounce bags of spinach) For the first week my plan includes just spinach. Week two I plan to incorporate other greens. For those who are not a stranger to green smoothies, you may want to add in some other greens such as kale.
  • Bananas (5-7)
  • 2 limes
  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 avocado
  • 1 fresh pineapple
  • 1 ~ twelve ounce bag of frozen mango (or 2 fresh)
  • 1 ~ twelve ounce bag of frozen raspberries (or 2 containers of fresh)
  • 1 ~ twelve ounce bag of frozen cherries
  • 1 bunch of parsley
  • 1 bunch of cilantro
  • Fresh ginger root
  • Coconut water (optional ~ regular water will work fine but coconut water is said to have positive health benefits. I usually buy one large can per two green smoothies or I buy a couple liter containers)
  • Chia seeds

Printable list: Week One December Green Smoothie Shopping List

December Green Smoothie Challenge

WEEK ONE RECIPES. Each recipe should render approximately 3 CUPS of GREEN SMOOTHIE. They are so delicious you may want to make extra (or leave a little) for a mid-day snack.  Printable recipes posted below.

*If you plan on drinking your smoothies in the morning you may prep your smoothies the night before. You could even freeze ingredients in individual containers for the week. Sometimes when I know I am going to be in a time pinch in the morning I blend the night before and they stay fresh.
Day #1 Sunday Energizer

Sunday ~ Day #1: Sunday Energizer Smoothie (Click here to read the original blog post)

  •   3-4 cups of spinach (more or less for one’s personal taste.)
  • 1/2 a cucumber 
  • 1/4 cup fresh cilantro 
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley
  • 1 frozen banana 
  • 1/2 cup of raspberries 
  • 1/2 cup of mango
  • 1 Tablespoon Chia Seeds (I add one Tablespoon per green smoothie that I am making. It is recommended to soak chia seeds. I do not soak mine since I have a high powered blender and my smoothie often sits for  5-10 minutes before drinking)
  • 1 inch piece of peeled fresh ginger (since it is strong tasting you might try to add a little at a time)
  • 1 cup of coconut water or regular water

Day #2 Sunrise Green Smoothie

Monday ~ Day #2: Sunrise Green Smoothie (Click here to read the original blog post)

  • 3 cups of spinach or greens of choice 
  • 1/2 cup of pineapple 
  • 1/2 cup of mango 
  • Juice of 1/2 a lime
  • 1 Tablespoon of chia seeds 
  • 1 cup coconut water or regular water

(I find that the mango and pineapple is so sweet that I do not add a banana. However, you could add one or 1/2 a banana)

December Green Smoothie ChallengeTuesday ~ Day #3: Cherry Limeade Green Smoothie (Click here to read the original blog post)

  • 3 cups of spinach
  • 1 lime & zest 
  • 1 cup of cherries
  • 1/2-1 frozen banana (more if you want the smoothie sweeter)
  • 1 Tablespoon chia seeds
  • Fresh peeled ginger root to taste.
  • 1 cup of coconut water or regular water

Day #4 December Green Smoothie ChallengeWednesday ~ Day #4: Glowing Green Smoothie

  • 3 cups spinach
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1/2 cucumber
  • 1/2 cup of pineapple
  • 1/2 cup of mango
  • Cilantro (to taste)
  • Banana (optional)
  • 1 Teaspoon of chia seeds
  • 1 cup of coconut water or regular water

Day #5Thursday ~ Day #5: Raspberry & Pineapple Passion Green Smoothie

  • 3 cups spinach
  • 1/2 cup of raspberries
  • 1/2 cup of pineapple
  • 1/2-1 banana
  • Parsley (approximately 1/4 cup)
  • 1 Teaspoon of chia seeds
  • 1 cup of coconut water or regular water

December Green Smoothie ChallengeFriday ~ Day #6: Cherry Blast Green Smoothie

  • 3 cups spinach
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 3/4-1 cup of cherries
  • 1/2-1 banana
  • Fresh peeled ginger root to taste
  • 1 Teaspoon of chia seeds
  • 1/2 lime and zest
  • 1 cup of coconut water or regular water

December Green Smoothie ChallengeSaturday ~ Day #7: Mango Madness Green Smoothie (or “Leftovers” Green Smoothie)

For day #7 you may want to repeat one of your favorites from the week or toss in what you have leftover in ingredients from the week.

  • 3 cups spinach
  • 1 cup of mango
  • 1/2 – 1 Banana
  • 1 Teaspoon of chia seeds
  • Parsley or cilantro (or both) depending what you have left
  • 1 cup of coconut water or regular water

Printable recipes: Week One December Green Smoothie Recipes

Pin this blog post here.

Week Two Green Smoothie Recipes

Please feel free to share this challenge with your friends and family. The more people involved the more ideas, tips, recipes, and inspiration we will all receive. Starting December 1st, I will be posting a daily thread on my Produce with Amy Facebook page. Please like my page so you can join the conversation. Cheers to health and thriving in 2014!
December Green Smoothie Challenge

December Green Smoothie Challenge

“Our bodies are our gardens – our wills are our gardeners.”  ~William Shakespeare
December Green Smoothie Challenge

The winter holiday season is right around the corner and so are many unhealthy food temptations. Last year was a challenge for me and I did not like the way I felt after indulging in too many sodium and sugar laden treats. This year I plan to jump start my healthy intentions for the New Year by challenging myself to start each day off in December with a nutrient rich green smoothie. Would you like to join me?

The goal of this challenge is to have one green smoothie a day (either for breakfast or another time during the day). We will be incorporating more nutrients into our diet and together we will stay accountable and share recipes and ideas. This is not a fast but a way to increase your intake of greens and fruit. All you need is a blender (I used a regular blender for three years before I invested in a Vitamix) and the desire to try new recipes.

If you are new to green smoothies I can help get you started with recipes, tips, nutritional information and suggested shopping lists. There are many health benefits to green smoothies, including: chlorophyll and nutrients are easily assimilated into the body since the blender breaks down the cell walls of the greens, glowing skin, increased energy levels, and reduction of salty and carbohydrate food cravings.

This challenge is a great opportunity to kick start our 2014 health routines and will turn our kitchens into a beacon of nutrition. Join me and let the transformation begin!

UPDATE:
Click here for Week #1 printable green smoothie recipes and shopping list.

Click here for Week #2 printable green smoothie recipes and shopping list.

Click here for Week #3 printable green smoothie recipes and shopping list.

Click here for Week #4 printable green smoothie recipes and shopping list.

If you want to read more about green smoothies click here to read a blog that I wrote in June about how I was first introduced to green smoothies.

Also, check out my green smoothie recipes here.

Pin this challenge here.

Please feel free to share this challenge with your friends and family. The more people involved the more ideas, tips, recipes, and inspiration we will all receive. In December I will be posting a daily thread on my Produce with Amy Facebook page. Please like my page so you can join the conversation. Cheers to health and thriving in 2014!
December Green Smoothie ChallengeDecember Green Smoothie Challenge