Non-Scary Green Smoothies

by Rebekahcooked up on March 24, 2013

Ever since I’ve begun to widen my culinary horizons – I’d put the start date somewhere in high school – I’ve had one rule for myself: eat everything – even if I think I won’t or don’t like it (the only exception: insects/worms/slugs will be decided on a case-by-case basis).

I’ve found that usually if I don’t like something the first time I try it, it’s because it was low quality, out of season or prepared in a not great way. And some things are acquired tastes – my favorite example is beer. Once when I was a kid, I took a drink of my dad’s beer thinking it was Pepsi. Let’s just say that it was an unpleasant surprise for single-digit-age me, and hilarious for everyone else. But now, beer is one of my very favorite things.

Which leads me to this: the green smoothie.

Green Smoothie

Pretty and non-sinister-looking, isn’t it? But it’s not green because of limes, kiwis, or any other green fruit. It is green because one of the main ingredients is actual greens. The name isn’t just talking about the color. That did not sound very appealing to me when I first learned about these things. I get the health benefit part, but it sounded like drinking a salad. No thank you.

BUT – I have a rule about these things, as I mentioned. And just like we tried the cauliflower crust thing and the breakfast cookie thing, I decided to investigate. And I’m happy to report that though the color is green, it’s possible to drink a spinach smoothie and enjoy it, because instead of spinach it tastes like fruit.

Here’s what you need for two large smoothies:

  • 2 cups spinach, washed well
  • 1/2 a fresh pineapple, cubed (about 1 1/2 cups)
  • 2 cups vanilla soy milk (non vanilla would also work, probably also almond. I’m not sure how dairy milk would taste in this, honestly)
  • 1 apple, roughly chopped, I recommend honeycrisp
  • 3-4 tbsp. lime juice, to taste
  • handful of ice

I recommend putting the pineapple in first, then the apple and spinach, followed by the liquids. Make sure to blend this very, very well on the highest setting you’ve got – the texture will be a little more fibrous than your average fruit smoothie, and to get it even to that point you have blend longer than normal.


  1. Your kitchen looks so bright and sunny! Has spring finally come to Portland?

    The green smoothie trend has always seemed pretty gross to me. I tried a kale-based recipe once and couldn’t make myself finish the glass. This sounds much Twitter, I’ll have to give it a try.

    Comment by Mary K — March 25, 2013 at 7:06 am

  2. Yes, it is bright and sunny here, and about 60 degrees. We are holding our breath that it stays this way at least part of the time 🙂

    I did not like the sound of a kale smoothie, either. It’s much more strongly flavored and probably harder to puree as well. The pineapple and lime juice are what really makes it good.

    Comment by bekky — March 25, 2013 at 1:45 pm

  3. Looks delish! It never occurred to me to use pineapple. Duh.

    Comment by Brandie — March 26, 2013 at 9:44 pm

  4. So you touch here on something that really bums me out about smoothies: what order do you add things? I like a smoothie that still has a little texture/pulp instead of that Naked Juice thickness but I end up with mush half the time.

    Do you have a rule of thumb for how to blend fruit + ice smoothies?

    Comment by Elle — April 8, 2013 at 3:15 pm

  5. I tend to put the softest stuff in the bottom and scale up to the harder stuff on the top (so ice last), and then pour plenty of liquid over the whole thing – I also mostly pulse, so I blend in short bursts. That might be a good way to stop before it gets too homogenous. Great question!

    Comment by bekky — April 8, 2013 at 5:09 pm

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