I’m excited to share a little more about the Green Smoothie Challenge we’ve been trying out for the past few weeks. This is a free challenge put together by my friends and affiliate partners Jadah and Jen over at Simple Green Smoothies and while it officially starts for everyone July 1st, they let us try it out in June as part of a sneak peak. I’m not used to following a recipe regimen prescribed by someone else so I was very curious how it would all turn out for us!
How the Program Works
First if all, let me start by saying I was very pleased to learn the challenge is not as strict as one might think. My first concern was – What if it’s a busy day or what if we just don’t have time (or what if we just forget) to make our green smoothie? Thankfully, this program is flexible with the goal of getting you to drink a green smoothie every day or as many days in the month as possible. Also, they give you recipes to try, but you can also use your own recipes if you want. Just like I always say about avoiding processed food …the key here as well is planning ahead!
To join this free program (the next one starts July 1st) all you have to do is sign up via email. Then you’ll immediately get a “crash course” message with the general guidelines for the program followed by weekly emails that each contain a set of 5 recipes and a shopping list – the idea is you’ll repeat your favorite recipes over the last 2 days of the week. I found that part of what makes this challenge doable is that most of the ingredients can be purchased frozen so if you don’t get around to making your smoothie for the day everything will still be happily sitting in your freezer waiting for you! So for that reason I didn’t hesitate to just go for it and buy everything on the list.
What We Thought
By far my favorite thing about this challenge was being motivated to try new recipes. Sometimes you just get in a recipe rut and make the same ol’ thing over and over (or different versions of it) – because you like it, right? But how do you know you won’t like something even better until you try it? This challenge really got us to step out of the box because let me tell you what, when I saw cherries on the shopping list I was like – cherries? in a smoothie? – but they were good! The challenge also got us to try some new liquids (I usually opt for milk or water), and I was pleasantly surprised with how good coconut water was in a smoothie. Especially because I don’t really care for it by itself.
So it really got our creative juices flowing and a couple days into it my 10-year-old (pictured above) even said, “Mom, can I make up my own smoothie recipe today?” She loved deciding what to throw in the blender and since we all enjoyed the outcome she was very proud of herself! That’s another thing to mention about this program – making smoothies is such an easy job even a kid can do it. :)
I do also want to add that we did not notice any changes in our health, and I think that’s because we already eat pretty well so there wasn’t a lot of room left for something dramatic to happen. I do think if someone has really fallen off the wagon and needs to overhaul their diet they could really benefit health-wise from this challenge. I will say though I did like feeling good about the fact that I knew we definitely got our veggie count in for the day.
Our Favorite Smoothie From the Challenge
Each week I printed out the recipes and taped them to a fridge to serve as a reminder to make them. At the end of each week I put a star by our favorites for future reference. So today I want to share one we loved that also happened to be the first time I ever threw an orange in a smoothie – who would have thought? This one is so easy and good so I hope you enjoy it, too!
Tropical Crush SmoothiePrint
- 2 cups spinach
- 1 1/2 cups water
- 1 orange, peeled
- 1 cup pineapple
- 1 banana
Blend leafy greens and liquid base together first. For recipes that use a whole orange, we recommend you blend the orange in this step.
Add remaining ingredients and blend again.
We recommend organic ingredients when feasible.
–>>Update: Simple Green Smoothies now has an even easier plan – the Simple 7. This free program provides you with 7 green smoothie recipes, each with 7 ingredients. You also get a digital guidebook that will give you tips and tricks to making your smoothies, along with membership to the Simple 7 Squad, a community support group. And it’s all free! So what are you waiting for??!