Thursday, June 5, 2014

Orange-Cream Smoothie

I typically start each morning by going over my mental checklist for the day. Waking and cuddling the toddler (check), playing legos with the preschooler (check), gulping the mandatory cup of strong coffee (one of two) to get me going (check check check). The usual. The days seem jam-packed with school, doctor's appointments, errands, and activities. Often times, in the effort of getting everybody ready and out the door, mama doesn't get to eat a real breakfast. Just as with the kids, I'm always trying to find something that is easy to make, nutritious, and delicious for me to eat. Smoothies fit that bill.

No, we aren't talking about a sugar-laden sherbet-filled mall concoctions (yummy, yummy!), but a healthy smoothie filled with greens, protein packed greek yogurt, and a splash of juice. My Orange-Cream Smoothie gets me through the morning and tastes so good, my preschooler fights me for my cup!

Bright orange juice is combined with lowfat vanilla-flavored greek yogurt, baby kale (or spinach), ice, and a sprinkle of hemp seeds (yes, hemp. No, it's not the fun kind). Icy, sweet, and healthy for you, this smoothie tastes like an orange cream bar! The kale adds a very slight "fresh greens" note, that really accentuates the orange flavor. Try it the next time you're on the go!

Orange-Cream Smoothie
makes about 12 ounces

1 cup of crushed ice
1 cup of orange juice (either the fresh-squeezed or the not-from-concentrate variety)
1 cup of baby kale or baby spinach
1/4 cup lowfat or 0% fat vanilla greek yogurt
1 tablespoon hemp seeds (or flax seeds if you prefer. Flax gives a more nutty taste)
stevia if needed (I don't end up using it)

Using a blender, add the following in this order for best results... baby kale, ice, yogurt, orange juice, and hemp seeds. Blend on high for 2 minutes or until completely mixed. I like to have a smooth texture, without any bits of kale floating around. Adjust the sweetness with stevia or your preferred sweetener.

Sip & enjoy!

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