How to Build a Perfect Smoothie (+ a Chocolate Mint Green Smoothie Recipe!)

Chocolate Mint Green Smoothie Photos by Rikki Snyder

Hi there everyone and Happy New Year! My name is McKel–some of you may know me from Nutrition Stripped, my plant-based, gluten-free food and nutrition blog. I’m a Registered Dietitian, Health & Wellness Coach and food blogger who absolutely loves green smoothies; in fact I drink my Stripped Green Smoothie daily without fail! Today I’m going to share some of my personal tips and tricks on how to build a perfect green smoothie–either as a snack or as a meal.

Chocolate Mint Green Smoothie
Green smoothies are getting a lot of hype for good reason! Here’s my breakdown of why they’re a great addition to your day:

  1. Green smoothies are easy to digest! Because the fruits and greens have been blended, the cell walls where nutrients are encased are broken, making the nutrients more readily available for use by the body. Think of it as being “pre-digested.”
  2. They’re packed full of vitamins, minerals, fiber, antioxidants, polyphenols, fiber, water, and oh did I mention fiber?
  3. They’re perfect first thing in the morning before your usual breakfast, as a snack, OR increase the serving to take place of your breakfast (up to 32 ounces or until you’re satisfied!).
  4. Green smoothies are quick and easy. If you’re someone who is always on the go, this is a great way to ensure you’re getting a substantial amount of greens into your diet (which are oh so important!).
  5. If you’re someone who doesn’t enjoy eating green leafy vegetables, this is a perfect way to sneak them into your diet.
  6. Not to mention, green smoothies are VERY kid friendly!
  7. Green smoothies are versatile. You can always add or remove ingredients to your liking. That’s why they are so easy to incorporate into your lifestyle.
  8. They’re filling.
  9. They’re energizing.
  10. And of course, they’re DELICIOUS!

How to Build a Perfect Smoothie
If you want to enjoy a green smoothie as a snack, you’ll want to use this formula: Greens + Carbohydrate + Protein. For a meal smoothie, the formula is: Greens + Healthy Fat + Carbohydrate + Protein. Add optional superfoods to any type of smoothie for a nutritional boost. Here are some of my favorite ingredients:

  • Greens and Other Veggies – the king green kale, spinach, romaine, celery, swiss chard, mustard greens, dandelion greens, cucumber, wheatgrass, herbs such as mint, cilantro, parsley, and basil, etc.
  • Fruit – bananas, apples, green apples, pears, kiwi, pineapple, peaches, mango, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, papaya, lemons, limes, grapefruit, orange, blood orange, figs, dates, plums, acai, etc.
  • Proteins – plant-based protein powders (brown rice, pea, Sunwarrior, Vega, etc.), hemp seeds, chia seeds, nut butters, etc.
  • Healthy Fats – chia seeds, avocados, coconut oil, hemp seeds, nuts/seeds
  • Superfoods (Optional) – bee pollen, maca powder, lucuma, cocoa nibs, spirulina, chlorella, cinnamon, cayenne, young coconut meat, unsweetened shredded coconut, coconut water, avocado, chia seeds, hemp seeds, matcha tea powder, nut milks, sprouted buckwheat groats, raw gluten free oats, etc.

Chocolate Mint Green Smoothie
You’ll find lots of healthy green smoothie recipes on my blog and today I’m going to share one of my favorites–a Chocolate Mint Green Smoothie. With healthy fats from avocado, protein powder, and spinach leaves, this smoothie definitely makes a filling meal!

Chocolate Mint Green Smoothie

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Yield: 1 smoothie

Chocolate Mint Green Smoothie

A meal-worthy green smoothie that tastes like a dessert!

Ingredients

  • 2 heaping cups organic spinach
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk (or your milk of choice)
  • 1 cup filtered water (more or less, for desired thickness)
  • ½ avocado, pit and skin removed
  • 1 scoop chocolate protein powder of choice (I used Vega Sport)
  • ¼ cup fresh mint or 1 drop of mint extract
  • 1 tablespoon dark chocolate chips or cacao nibs
  • Stevia to taste (for sweetness)
  • Ice (optional)

Instructions

  1. Add all of the ingredients to a high-speed blender and blend until thick and smooth.
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McKel Hill

About McKel

McKel is a Registered Dietitian/Health & Wellness Coach and the blogger behind Nutrition Stripped. A self-proclaimed green smoothie connoisseur, foodie, and nutrition science nerd, she has an affinity for plants and avocados.   Read more from McKel →

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Comments

  1. Julia Mueller says

    It’s so green and lovely!!! I love chocolate and mint together..this thing looks so tasty and healthful! People definitely tend to have an aversion to green smoothies when they’re new to them, and don’t realize just how tasty they can be. This guide is definitely helpful and is getting me excited about trying new ingredients and flavor combos in my smoothies! :)

  2. says

    This looks fantastic! Love that it’s fruit-free (except the avocado) as I’m avoiding sweet fruits at the moment.
    Great smoothie guide too.

  3. Stephanie says

    I just love this blog! Not only the content which is very inspiring, also the aesthetics! Oh, and with this smoothie I don’t have any cravings for bad food! Whoohoo!

  4. says

    I’ve been drinking green smoothies for breakfast for about two years now and recently also branched out into orange and red smoothies (with sweet potato! and beets!). I put together a little booklet of original recipes with my own photography in my Etsy shop: http://www.etsy.com/shop/Pidoodle. All of the recipes are gluten free, dairy free, mostly vegan, mostly raw, no processed sugars and no ice. This chocolate mint one looks delicious! I’m not crazy about protein powders–do you have any suggested substitutes?

  5. Kare RayeKare Troughton says

    What a perfect excuse to have chocolate for breakfast! This looks so incredible. Loved this post; so informative and gave me so many new smoothie ideas.

  6. says

    I must admit I’m a tad addicted to smoothies of late, this one sounds fab! Love the addition of avocado – something I’m still getting used to using in sweets.

  7. says

    Thank you for this amazing post! I just tried my first smoothie today and it was *bliss* – I was full for hours afterwards. It’s good to know the structure of a smoothie to ensure one gets the balance right – you’ve given me some great ideas :D

  8. Sean Huncherick says

    I made this one today. Not bad at all. The chocolate flavour greatly varies based off what brand of chocolate protein powder. Mine was pretty weak. Next time I’ll try adding half dark chocolate almond milk and half regular unsweetened. Creative idea and wonderful photos.

  9. says

    I can’t wait to try this! I actually have “chocolate mint” growing in the garden. I will swap dark chocolate for raw cacao powder. Thank you for the great recipe & info graphics. :o)

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