From a green goddess salad on Monday we jump right to the next green recipe. It’s January after all, and I just re-committed to eating (and drinking) better and healthier.
For the past week or so I tried to have a green smoothie once a day. Either for lunch or as a pick-me-up snack mid-morning or in the afternoon. (It’s perfect anytime is what I am trying to say).
Only breakfast and supper are meals a green smoothie just can’t replace for me. I need some coffee in the morning (usually accompanied by oats in some form or other). And I can only imagine the look on Konrad’s face, were I to serve a green smoothie at dinner time (wide eye emoji).
Anyway, smoothies, especially the green kind, are in my life right now some time between 10:30 am and 4:30 pm.
Spinach or kale have been my greens of choice as of recent. I can handle quite a bit of spinach, since it has a very mild (if any) flavor and the added benefit of packing a big punch of iron. And I don’t have to feel so bad for forgetting to take my iron supplement again.
Kale on the other hand, is better enjoyed in moderation. I’ve made the mistake of adding too much kale to a smoothie before. It turned out super dark green and just too grassy and bitter in taste. Now I know to use only about 1 stalk of kale (stem removed) per serving; which happens to also loosely fill about 1 cup.
Sometimes I also add a piece of cucumber to the blender (about 2-inches).
So now we have the green part of our smoothie covered. After reading the title you might be wondering when to add the piece of pie to the blender?
I am sorry, if this is disappointing, but no actual pies were harmed in the making of this smoothie. Instead I am using a large apple, all natural apple cider, vanilla and apple pie spice to create the apple pie flavor.
The idea for an apple pie flavored smoothie came up, when I realized how many of the apples my parents had picked for us in the fall were starting to shrivel already due to my inability to store them properly. At my parents’ house they stay crisp and firm all winter long and even into the spring. Alas, apartment living doesn’t allow for these luxuries.
So I have been putting apples into smoothies together with other fruit – like mad. Then I figured, maybe I didn’t need any other fruit. However, apples alone don’t make a very pretty smoothie. So the greens were added not just for all their healthy properties, but also for the intense color boost.
A word about the apple cider. Use the all natural, nothing-but-apples kind here. In my grocery store it can be found right in the produce cooler.
My apple variety is fairly sweet, so I didn’t need any sweetener aside from 1/2 of a frozen banana. Feel free to add 1 tablespoon (or more) of maple syrup or honey though, if needed.
Blend everything through with a cup of ice and enjoy!!
- 1 apple (any kind you like), cored and sliced
- ½ frozen banana
- 1 cup spinach or kale leaves (stem removed)
- 1 cup all natural apple cider
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon apple pie spice
- 1 cup ice
- Blend all ingredients until smooth.
- Garnish with apple slices and enjoy!