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

Chocolate Mint Green Smoothie Recipe

Chocolate Mint Green SmoothiePhotos 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 Recipe

Chocolate Mint Green Smoothie

A meal-worthy green smoothie that tastes like a dessert!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1 smoothie


  • 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


  • Add all of the ingredients to a high-speed blender and blend until thick and smooth.
Craving more veg-friendly recipes? Shop our collection of vegetarian and vegan cookbooks!

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  • Reply
    Dixya @ Food, Pleasure, and Health
    January 8, 2014 at 9:53 am

    i love a morning smoothie as well..but havent tried this combination yet. thanks for sharing.

  • Reply
    Julia Mueller
    January 8, 2014 at 11:27 am

    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! 🙂

    • Reply
      McKel Hill, MS, RD | Nutrition Stripped
      January 8, 2014 at 11:50 am

      Hey Julia! Yes, you’re correct- they can be intimating at first or down right unappetizing, but this one is such a great green smoothie to start out with! It’s like ice cream…only healthy 😉 Enjoy!

  • Reply
    dishing up the dirt
    January 8, 2014 at 11:48 am

    This smoothie is stunning! I love the addition of the avocado. Sounds fantastic.

  • Reply
    January 8, 2014 at 11:56 am

    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.

  • Reply
    January 8, 2014 at 12:23 pm

    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!

  • Reply
    elle | nutritionella
    January 8, 2014 at 3:00 pm

    Love this post, and your blog McKel! Gorgeous photos. Glad to see you on OMV!

  • Reply
    January 8, 2014 at 6:23 pm

    I definitely need this smoothie tutorial! And I’m super enamored with that green. Plus chocolate and mint are SO my thing!

    • Reply
      McKel Hill, MS, RD | Nutrition Stripped
      January 9, 2014 at 9:19 am

      Hi Joanna, I love the graphics here as well, it makes it super simple to understand! I also have a post called Green Smoothies 101 on my blog Nutrition Stripped as well as recipes I think you’ll love 🙂

  • Reply
    January 8, 2014 at 6:42 pm

    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: 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?

    • Reply
      McKel Hill, MS, RD | Nutrition Stripped
      January 9, 2014 at 9:20 am

      No biggie, if you’re not a fan of protein powders simply use any other of the proteins in that category such as nuts, seeds, spirulina, etc. Enjoy!

  • Reply
    Nicole @ Foodie Loves Fitness
    January 9, 2014 at 12:28 am

    I absolutely love all of the graphics in this post — beautiful! I too love green juices and smoothies, and I think I need to try this recipe out!

    • Reply
      McKel Hill, MS, RD | Nutrition Stripped
      January 9, 2014 at 9:21 am

      Hi Nicole, so glad you love the post! I have another post on my blog called Green Smoothie 101 which gives even more detail about the goodness of greens 😉

  • Reply
    Marta @ What should I eat for breakfast today
    January 9, 2014 at 6:29 am

    Oh I love Rikki’s pictures. And this shake is on my list to do.

  • Reply
    January 9, 2014 at 7:11 am

    Do you know of any recipes good for someone with Lyme Disease ?

  • Reply
    January 9, 2014 at 9:12 am

    The one thing that I never put in my smoothie is a nut butter. I really need to start doing this!

    • Reply
      McKel Hill, MS, RD | Nutrition Stripped
      January 9, 2014 at 9:22 am

      Samantha, you won’t regret it! It’s super filling and delicious to try out 😉 Hope you love it! I have a tahini smoothie on my blog Nutrition Stripped that would be awesome to try out too.

  • Reply
    Kare Troughton
    January 9, 2014 at 9:17 am

    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.

    • Reply
      McKel Hill, MS, RD | Nutrition Stripped
      January 9, 2014 at 9:23 am

      Haha you figured me out Kara! That’s what I’m always trying to do- sneak in more chocolate 😉 I have another post called Green Smoothies 101 on my blog where I share more health benefits.

  • Reply
    Cailee @
    January 12, 2014 at 10:29 pm

    What a lovely idea!! I love love LOVE green smoothies!! I hope that you have a great week! 🙂

  • Reply
    January 13, 2014 at 6:34 am

    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.

  • Reply
    January 14, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    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 😀

  • Reply
    Sean Huncherick
    May 28, 2014 at 12:59 pm

    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.

  • Reply
    July 24, 2014 at 11:27 am

    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)

  • Reply
    Randi Graves
    September 4, 2014 at 1:26 am

    Could coconut oil be used in place of the avocado? I’m out of avocado but want to try this recipe!

  • Reply
    August 4, 2015 at 1:42 pm

    This is great. Tastes healthy but only in the best possible way. I used 1 small avacodo, 3 cups spinach, 1c unsweetened almond milk and about 3/4c dark chocolate almond milk, Orgain chocolate protein powder (plant), 1tbs cacao nibs, and a few ice cubes. I put in 1 drop of mint extract but couldn’t really taste it and don’t think it was necessary for good taste anyway. No Stevia needed and didn’t add water. Thanks for the idea!

  • Reply
    December 9, 2015 at 3:08 pm

    Wow! I’ve never succeeded in making a chocolate peppermint green drink until now. Using what I had, this was awesome! I didn’t think I had any avocado so I left it out at first. It was more of a green drink instead of smoothie. I found less than a half avocado in the fridge and added that with a little coconut oil and coconut butter to make up for the tiny avacado. It was good but I think I preferred the less smooth version. I love getting all that good fat though. Oh, and I used Wicked Dark (95%) chocolate by Taza, romaine lettuce, and coconut milk. So all of my ingredients were slightly different but the amounts were the same. Thank you so much for the inspiration! I think even my 77 yo mother will drink this!

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