I am perpetually delighted by the fact that citrus comes into season at the very moment when we could use an extra boost of sunshine and vitamin C. And though citrus fruits aren't the most common of smoothie ingredients, I really think they should be. Here's a bright and fresh smoothie filled with clementines, coconut, and turmeric. Like a healthified Orange Julius, it makes a fabulous, filling breakfast or replenishing post-workout meal.
This vegan-friendly and banana-free smoothie is made with naturally sweet, potassium-filled coconut water and a bit of coconut milk for creamy flavor. Rolled oats help thicken the smoothie, plus I find that the extra protein and fiber hold me over until the next meal. (If you add the optional maca powder you'll get even more protein and fiber. Maca is an acquired taste for some, but I like the malty flavor it adds.)
Now for the sunshine. This smoothie contains two clementines for a delicious dose of vitamin C. Frozen orange segments provide the best texture (I peel and freeze them the night before) but fresh ones are fine if you want your drink a little less cold. Turmeric brings another shot of color, and along with ginger, it warms up the smoothie (perfect for winter) and has anti-inflammatory benefits. You can use fresh turmeric root or ground powder — start with a small amount if you're new to this spice and increase it as desired.
Sunshine Smoothie with Coconut, Clementine and Turmeric
1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1 cup chilled unsweetened coconut water
2 tablespoons unsweetened coconut milk
Fresh or frozen segments from 2 clementines (about 1 1/2 cups)
1/2-inch fresh turmeric, peeled and roughly chopped (or 1/2 teaspoon ground), more if desired
1/2-inch fresh ginger, peeled and roughly chopped
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon honey or agave nectar (optional)
1 tablespoon maca powder (optional)
Place the oatmeal in a blender and process until finely ground. Add the remaining ingredients to the blender and process until smooth. For a thicker smoothie, let it stand for about 5 minutes before serving.
(Image credits: Emily Ho)