To end the week off on a high note of health – I wanted to give to you my newest most favorite smoothie recipe!
A few posts ago I mentioned that I want to up my plant intake – and get rid of the bread that has been stealing room in my diet which I could be putting to better use. This smoothie has taken the place of my mid morning slice of bread, and I am loving it!
I find that the orange juice makes a super combination with the kale. Very refreshing, not too sweet, and bursting with flavor. I have been adding in coconut oil, as it gives the smoothies ‘smoothness’ and a balanced taste. It also improves the filling power of the smoothie. : )
Fun fact: I worked out that if I make this smoothie everyday, I will eat 14 large leaves of kale extra per week. That is a big bunch of kale!
Green Smoothies: Either you hate them or you love them.
Before you go ahead and make this smoothie, I just wanted to say that I think people either love green smoothies, or hate them.
Green smoothies are a great way of getting in extra green leafy vegetables into your body – without the hassle of making and eating a salad. They are also great to take places like to work or town outings, because you can easily sip your greens rich smoothie without have to sit down with a fork, or get bits of salad in your teeth!
On the other hand, and this green smoothie is a perfect example of a typical green smoothie taste.. which is green! They aren’t usually super sweet or super creamy. If you are someone who does not enjoy green smoothies all that much, I would say give this one a miss and rather make something like this pomegranate smoothie, or this papaya and coconut smoothie.
What I also find with kale is that it contains a lot of fibre! If you do not have a powerful blender or food processor then this can end in a fibrous smoothie. On the other hand, this hard-to-blend fibre is super good for you – so if you do not mind the texture, then it is all good.
Why I Put Cayenne into this Kale Smoothie
Besides kale and orange juice the other ingredient in this smoothie is a dash of cayenne! Not too much, just a trace. I find that it really peps up the taste, and hides a little of the bitterness of the kale. The cayenne pepper gives an almost ginger like taste when combined with the orange flavor. Minus the hassle of peeling and cutting any ginger.
Health Benefits of Kale
There is a reason why kale eating is on the rise and everyone is trying to get it into their diets. Kale is great source of nutrients, being high in vitamin K, C, A, manganese, copper, calcium, potassium, vitamin E, Vitamin B6, B3, B9, and phosphorus. Kale also contains good levels of omega-3 fats and protein, and is literally packed with both soluble and insoluble fibre.
The Blue Zone study done in 2005 isolated a high consumption of greens as one of the secrets of the world’s most long lived societies. No wonder, looking at the nutrient density of kale!
Greens, especially bitter greens (which are really good for you!), can be difficult to get into one’s diet, especially if you cook for other people, or have a very busy lifestyle which takes you out of the house a lot. This is where green smoothies really bring the goods. The are easy to make, easy to take with you places, can secretly sneak in extra greens into your diet, and are 100% raw. Which means that you get all of the benefits of the raw greens without having to plow through a bitter and tough salad!
So on that note, here is the smoothie: )
Vegan Kale & Orange Juice Green SmoothiePrint This
- 2 leaves of kale
- 2 large whole oranges or 1.5-2 cups of fresh orange juice
- 1/2 cup water (I also like to use water kefir if I have it for some probiotics)
- 1/2 cup coconut oil (melted)
- Dash of cayenne pepper
- De-rib the kale and chop it up roughly. Place it in your food processor (or in a bowl or jug if you are using a stick blender).
- Halve the oranges and squeeze the juice over the kale.
- Add the water or water kefir, and cayenne pepper.
- If your coconut oil is solid from low temperatures, melt it at a very low temperature in the smallest saucepan that you have.
- Once a liquid, pour the coconut oil over the kale.
- Blend on high for an extended period. You need to try and break down the fibre in the kale as much as possible to reduce ‘bitty-ness’.
- Once the smoothie is nice and smooth, either drink immediately, or pour into a sealable vessel and store in the refrigerator.
This makes a large batch for one person, or two smaller glass sized batches for two people. Remember, the longer you leave your smoothie to stand, the less live enzymes it will contain when you drink it. SO try to aim to drink your smoothie sooner rather than later.