Adding Protein To Green Smoothies

by Vinnie

Q: Is it ok to use whey protein in my green smoothies, or should I be using something vegan, like pea protein?

A: Hi Vinnie! Absolutely, its perfectly fine to use whey or pea protein in green smoothies. Mixing in a tablespoon or two should be enough and undetectable in the flavor.

It's a matter of preference on which one you use. I prefer raw vegan versions, but there are good arguments that whey protein can be beneficial. The reason why I like vegan or no-animal-product smoothies is because I think it's better for us, for many reasons. But whey is the best choice, if you are going dairy. I also really like raw hemp protein as an alternative if you want a powdered version.

Other options include adding nuts and seeds to your smoothie, as they can be blended in easily. Try adding cashews, sunflower seeds or tahini instead.

I'm a fan of using raw foods to get the protein we need. Some of the protein powders have synthetic ingredients and are unabsorbable by our bodies- that will never be the case with raw foods because they are food substances that are made for our body. So if you do get one of the proteins, be sure to check the ingredients and get a good, trusted brand.

You might be suprised to know that you don't really need to add protein to your smoothies. If you are using greens, they already have protein! Greens have more then you might think! For example, did you know that one pound of kale has more protein then the daily allowance recommended by the USDA? Really!! So I think you probably could save yourself some money and effort by including a good amount of rich green veggies in your recipes.

If you want to know a bit more about green smoothies and the protein in greens, I recommend the book "Green For Life" by Victoria Boutenko. She devotes a good portion to amazing facts about protein in raw greens :)

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Jun 23, 2013
New to juicing and curious
by: Jen G.

I have 2 girl's, ages 5 and 10. While my 5 yr old LOVES most fruit and veggies and is pretty experimental with new foods, my 10 yr old is extremely picky and leery of new things. I used to make them smoothies at least several times a week, but they were always similar-vanilla bean yogurt, fresh blueberries, bananas I'd frozen, some orange or orange pineapple juice, a little cinnamon, and sometimes a few white choc chips thrown in. This was mostly successful with only minor fruit variations. I have recently gotten a juicer but have had mixed results from the lil ones with it (however being brand new to it and kind of throwing together whatever fruits we have handy could be the culprit for that lol). So, I've been wanting to try the green smoothies with them, I'm hoping to get a better reception. My question is, to start them off with a similar consistency to the old smoothies, would yogurt be ok or recommended to add to these recipes?

A: Jen, You can do either. Many people do like yogurt with their smoothies and many of these recipes will tolerate it well. I tend to stay away from all dairy because it is mucus forming.

I would recommend starting off with a green smoothie made with frozen bananas as you will probably get the best results from something like this. Freeze bananas in chunks. Toss about 2 cups in your blender with a handful of spinach, almond milk and some honey (optional). A teaspoon of vanilla is also nice. Blend this together until smooth. You'll be surprised how milkshake-y it tastes.

Coconut milk is also a goo substitute for yogurt in smoothies.

Awesome that you are making this for the kids! So good for them.

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