Mixing up the breakfast routine with a favorite smoothie can be a truly satisfying and nourishing way to begin the day. But like anything, ruts can happen easily and the time may come when you find yourself reaching for the same bag of frozen berries and soy milk. Day after day after day. Here are a few ways to break through the boredom and amp up your smoothies with flavor (and nutrition).
I find that the key to better smoothies is variety. If smoothies are something that you're going to work into your usual routine, you want to make sure you're using ingredients you're excited about — but that also satiate you until the next meal. For me, this means the right amount of nutrition and protein so I'm not hungry again in 2 hours, but it also means creating something delicious. After all, there's certainly more prep with smoothies than there is with, say, a cup of yogurt and a handful of granola in the morning. There's often the hulling and slicing of fruits, washing the blender — you get the idea.
So here are a few of my tips for flavorful, filling smoothies:
5 Tips for More Satisfying Smoothies
- For a more substantial (and nutritious) smoothie, add rolled oats!
I'll often give them a quick buzz in the blender first to break them into smaller bits. But then I find they integrate themselves really well into the smoothie, making for a thicker, more substantial drink.
- Switch up your liquids.
If you always use soy milk, think about trying almond milk or coconut water instead. Yogurt is a nice, nutritious thickener. Goat yogurt has an interesting, more pungent flavor that I find a bit aggressive on its own, but is just the right amount of tart and creamy when paired with sweet berries.
- Add an avocado!
Avocados contain all 18 essential amino acids and healthy fats that are said to boost your HDL (or "good" cholesterol). Plus, they add a really satisfying creaminess.
- Chia seeds, rich in omega-3 fatty acids, and ground flax seeds, high in fiber, are both mini nutritional powerhouses to fold into your morning smoothie.
- Try topping your smoothies with popped amaranth or ground nuts for a little visual interest and texture.
What kinds of things do you add to your smoothies to make them more filling and satisfying?
This post was requested by katvetrano for Reader Request Week 2013!
(Image: Bryan Gardner for Whole Living)