Healthy Vegetable Smoothie Recipe – Spinach Up the Beet
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We are finally heading into September. Doesn’t it feel like the year has flown by? With autumn slowly creeping upon us, I think it is high time to share one of my all-time favorite smoothie recipes ever. This is a healthy vegetable smoothie recipe that will absolutely surprise you! And it always reminds me of the fall.
This smoothie has a little bit of everything: beet, carrot, spinach, mango, cherry, lemon, apple, pecans, coconut oil, and even some spirulina for good measure. This is a combination of fruits and veggies that most people wouldn’t think could go so well together. If you are a little skeptical, you’ll just have to trust me and give it a try. You don’t want to miss out on this! Besides, when have I let you down yet?
Why does this remind me of September? Maybe it’s the color. It comes out this beautiful earthy red color that is just amazing. Maybe it’s the root veggies and leafy greens from a late summer harvest. Maybe it’s the pecans. In Texas, pecan season starts around this time. You can walk into any grocery store and find a huge bin of pecans on sale and the smell of pecan pies from the bakeries. It’s times like this I start to miss Austin.
Which speaking of stories, it was in Austin, TX. that this recipe came into existence. I have to admit that I didn’t completely come up with this recipe on my own. This is a recipe that was inspired by a smoothie I was introduced to from a local juice bar. It was one of the few veggie heavy smoothies they had there and I was looking for a way to incorporate more vegetables into my diet. A smoothie with mango, cherry, apple juice, lemon, carrot, beet, and spinach didn’t sound all that appealing to me but I gave it a try all the same. And wow! I was instantly in love with it so I took it upon myself to try to make it at home. It took a bit of work and tweaking to figure it out and improve upon it. I found the flavor of their version to be a bit too heavy with the beets and just a little too sugary.
How do you correct for that when beet is such a strong flavor and apple juice is – well – apple juice? It was a Eureka in the bathtub accident that solved the flavor problem for me. One would think you just cut down on the beet, right? There isn’t much in it to begin with. But instead of lowering the amount of beet I put in it, it was the coconut oil.
How did I come up with coconut oil of all things? I wanted to make a well-rounded smoothie and what was missing from this drink was fat and protein. So I decided to add some coconut oil because coconut oil goes great in every smoothie. Well funny enough, coconut oil solved my problem! The oil somehow toned down the powerful earthy flavor of the drink and gave me a dose of healthy fats along with it. And then I wanted to add some protein. My go-to for protein has always been some variety of nut as they are vegan and work well with any smoothie you can dream up. I tried almonds first and I was underwhelmed. It wasn’t bad but it wasn’t great either.
Then it dawned on me, pecans. Pecans are such a great nut for earthy and sweet flavors as it has a slightly buttery unique taste all its own. I remember this salad that had pecans and beets on it at a burger bar I used to work. I loved that salad! More than the burgers to be honest. The beets and pecans worked so well together. With the salad in mind, I added pecans to that smoothie. And boy did it work! I was so stoked by my discovery that I told everyone who would give me 5 minutes all about it. I even barraged them to try it if they stuck around long enough. And anyone adventurous enough was as surprised as me.
A Few Remarks On How to Blend This Recipe
The two downsides to this recipe? You have got to have a high-performance blender to make this. The raw beet and carrot will not blend properly otherwise. If you aren’t sure of where to begin looking for a good blender, I recommend the Vitamix 5200 blender. I use that might help you. I love this blender! And it makes all my smoothies among other things.
Also, this smoothie recipe is a little tricky to make. It’s not as simple as throwing everything in the blender and turning it on. Although you could do that. I just won’t promise that it will come out silky smooth that way. If you are new to making smoothies, especially ones with frozen fruit, I have a Smoothie 101 post that could help you out with the nuances of making a smoothie as velvety as a milkshake.
And one last thing to mention about working with raw root vegetables. Keep the size of the piece of carrot and beet you use no bigger than 1 or 2 inches. Much more than that and you’ll get a grainy drink. If you want to add more, I highly recommend juicing them instead. You can peel the beet and carrot but I don’t. Just give it a good scrub and wash, cut off the piece you need, and pop it in the blender. Easy peasy!
So with that said, here’s the recipe!
Looking to try something different? This is a delicious vegetable and fruit smoothie recipe that will surprise you. It has raw beet, carrot, and spinach along with frozen mango and cherries in apple juice.
- 1 cup frozen mango
- 1/4 cup frozen cherries approx. 5 cherries
- 1 chunk raw beet 1 1/2 inch piece
- 1 chunk raw carrot 1 1/2 inch piece
- 1/4 cup packed fresh spinach
- 1 oz. lemon juice
- 1/2 tsp. spirulina (optional)
- 1 tbsp. pecans
- 1 tsp. coconut oil
- 1 cup apple juice
Place the spinach, beet, carrot, pecans, lemon, and spirulina in the blender first.
Add the fruits and then the apple juice until it covers the greens.
Turn on blender at the lowest setting and let it run until everything is starting to blend together. Add more juice if needed to reach desired thickness.
Slowly turn the setting to high.
Once the smoothie is thoroughly blended (and you are getting the vortex at the top) add the oil while the blender is still on and blend for another 5 seconds.
You must have a high-performance blender to properly blend raw beets and carrots. If you do not, use cooked beet and carrot instead.
It's easier to use coconut oil in liquid form instead of solid but either will work.
If you want less fat, take out the pecans and coconut oil.
There you go! I’m super excited to hear how this recipe works for you! If you try it out please leave me a comment on how you liked it. Likewise, if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask and I will try to help you out. And as always thanks for visiting!