12 super-smoothies to get you glowing

Smoothies – we can't get enough of them. From a great way to get your five-a-day to a powerhouse of antioxidants, nutrients and protein, they're the ideal post-workout snack, speedy breakfast or anytime treat. Part of their beauty is that they're so quick and easy to make; all you need is a blender and a few of your favourite ingredients and you're good to go! They're fun too; you can add whatever you like to your smoothie and play around until you find your favourite flavour combinations. Plus you can add fruit, vegetables, seeds and yogurt, milk or juice to taste, sweetening them with dates, honey or just more fruit.

We're a bit obsessed with hunting down new smoothie recipes, and there's nothing like an afternoon smoothie break to help you fight that 3pm slump. Even now the weather is turning colder, the Expertrain team can still be found enjoying a post-run smoothie or slurping on a green smoothie before a workout at the gym. We've rounded up 12 of our favourite smoothie recipes for you to try at home, and there's something here for all tastes. Let us know which one is your favourite!

#1. Blueberry muffin smoothie

It might not sound like the healthiest option, but believe us when we say that this will satisfy your cravings for something sweet whilst packing a nutritional punch too! It's a blueberry muffin in a glass, but without any of the unhealthy carbs and refined sugar. Packed with antioxidant-rich blueberries, a great source of vitamin C, Greek yogurt, almond milk and uncooked oats, this makes a delicious breakfast or post-workout snack. This recipe uses frozen blueberries for a super-frosty, thick smoothie, but you could use fresh ones if you have them to hand.

#2. Strawberry fields smoothie

Did someone say strawberries? We can't get enough of their summery flavour, even now autumn is here. With goji berries (a super food if ever we saw one), spinach for iron and its anti-inflammatory properties, healthy hemp seed and medjool dates for natural sweetness, this potassium, magnesium and vitamin K packed smoothie ensures healthy bones, and it's delicious too.

#3. Beautiful beetroot smoothie

If you're not a fan of beetroots, don't automatically overlook this beautiful red smoothie. Beetroot is really good for you. It helps to clean your liver and blood, it's high in natural sugars, so it boosts your energy level and is gradually released into your system, so this makes a great pre or post-workout drink. Beets are also packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. This colourful smoothie also has ginger, which is good for your immune system and can help to prevent muscle ache after a workout, iron-rich spinach, mandarin and lemons, banana, apples and chia seeds, a great source of protein. This might just be one of the healthiest smoothies around!

#4. Killer kale smoothie

Kale is one of the world's healthiest foods. It can help lower your cholesterol, reduce your cancer risk and help you detox. Kale provides essential vitamins A, C and K, and it's packed with calcium and iron. It also supports a healthy heart and the vitamin A is great for your skin and hair. This super-healthy smoothie is perfect to protect against that 3pm slump – it's packed with protein from the almond butter and nutrients from the rice brain and hemp seeds. Rice bran is a natural source of CoQ10, an antioxidant which can improve cardiovascular health.

#5. Strawberry banana chia smoothie

Make your classic strawberry and banana smoothie a healthier option – avoid store bought varieties which are often packed with sugary fruit juice and use almond milk instead. The addition of chia seeds adds protein, fibre and plenty of energy. This has to be one of our favourite smoothies ever, and it's great to take with you to the gym.

#6. Cherry berry tea smoothie

Fancy something a bit different? This smoothie has protein-packed tofu, naturally caffeine-free, antioxidant rich Rooibos tea and sweet cherries, grapes and blueberries for vitamin C to boost your way towards five-a-day. You'll need to steep the teabags first and allow the tea time to cool, but it's well worth it for the refreshing end result. You can keep the cold tea in the fridge for a few days, so you'll have some to hand for your next smoothie!

#7. Avocado pear smoothie

Avocados are a source of healthy monounsaturated fats – the Expertrain team love adding avocado to smoothies, dips, desserts, salads – anything! Avocados contain 26% of your RDA of vitamin K and 17% of your RDA of vitamin C, plus 15g of health fats. Did you know they also contain more potassium than bananas? 100 grams of avocado contains 14% of your RDA whilst bananas contain just 10%. Potassium can lower your blood pressure and reduce your risk of suffering a heart attack or stroke.

Avocados are also rich in fibre and contain zeaxanthin and lutein, two nutrients which can help to protect your eyes, reducing your risk of macular degeneration and cataracts in old age. This recipe is sweetened with honey and the silken tofu adds protein. We love the combination of pear, vanilla and honey with the creaminess of the avocado.

#8. Blackberry basil smoothie

Fresh basil is amazing – grow your own and add it to salads, pesto, sauces and soups. This smoothie is sweet and summery; the perfect way to wave goodbye to the summer season – yes, autumn is well and truly here. This is a great smoothie to whip up with just a few ingredients – blackberries are one of your five-a-day and rich in vitamin C, almond milk, vanilla for sweetness, frozen banana and fresh basil leaves. Basil oil can help reduce breakouts, leaving your skin looking clear and healthy!

#9. Savoury smoothie

If you don't have a sweet tooth, this savoury smoothie is perfect after a workout. Ginger can help to reduce muscle pain, making this the ideal smoothie to make after a run. The capsaicin found in cayenne pepper can boost metabolism briefly, and it's packed with vitamin A and heart-healthy fats from the avocado. A fresh, spicy, savoury hit.

#10. Peach oatmeal smoothie

Sort of like a healthier version of peaches and cream, this sweet treat is delicious – but make sure you use an over-ripe banana or it won't be sweet enough. You can add different flavours of yogurt to suit your tastes – we love mango or strawberry. The recipe calls for frozen peaches, but you can use fresh and just add extra ice, if you like. The addition of oats means this smoothie makes a perfect mid-afternoon snack; it will leave you feeling satisfied and less likely to reach for sugary snacks.

#11. Java banana smoothie

If you can't give up your morning coffee, add it to your smoothie instead. Add coffee to cocoa powder – the natural, unsweetened kind, then blend with bananas, milk and ice. Packed with potassium from bananas. If you're avoiding dairy, try almond milk instead.

#12. Kale, lime and coconut smoothie

This tropical-flavoured smoothie is not only a vibrant green colour, it's packed with super-healthy kale, ginger for those sore muscles, spinach, apple, cucumber and lime, with coconut water. Coconut water is really nutrient-dense – it's the perfect hangover cure for the morning after the night before, so if you've indulged in too much alcohol, whip up this smoothie, which also boosts hydration and can help your digestion. This smoothie is also the ideal way to hydrate after the gym or a dance class.

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Author By Paula Beaton
Date On 6th Oct 2014 at 16:58

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