Everyone loves a good smoothie. They’re easy, healthy, and the possibilities for variety are pretty much endless.
The great thing about getting creative with smoothies is that it’s so easy: just follow a basic formula, then switch it up to suit your tastes or what’s in your fridge. A few mere handfuls of ingredients can deliver a thick and delicious drink that’s perfect for the whole family throughout the summer months.
Here are our essential ingredients for a perfect smoothie:
Whether it’s fresh fruit that you’ve stored yourself or shop-bought bags of pre-frozen berries, ice-cold fruit will chill your smoothie and help make it thick and full of flavour. Try chopping up bananas when they’re past their prime, putting them into freezer bags, and storing them in the freezer ready for your next round of smoothies.
The next step is the fresh stuff, and it’s here you can get creative with flavours. Go for things that are in season whenever possible, and don’t be afraid to experiment.
For a rich and creamy drink, add a good dollop of low-fat yoghurt. It’ll help make your smoothie that little bit more nutritious, as well as filling, and thicken it up wonderfully.
Adding a handful of oats to the blender is a trick that everybody should know – nothing will bulk out your smoothies quite as well. They will also blend down to create a lovely, satisfying texture, and will turn a good glassful into a decent breakfast.
Nuts & seeds
This is a great way to add protein and good fats, as well as some great extra texture in with the oats. You can experiment with different nuts and seeds, and see how each variety pairs with the fruits you choose.
A cup of milk will loosen all the solid ingredients once they’ve blended down, and help make the final drink nice and silky. You can swap in any number of alternative milks, such as soy or almond, or even replace it with a glass of apple juice.
The last trick is to include something acidic to take the edge off the flavour. A squeeze of lime or lemon will cut through the naturally rich goodness of your smoothie, and pair beautifully with the sweetness of the fruits.
The wonderful thing about smoothies is that they’re perfect for kids, whether you serve them in glasses straight away or freeze them into lovely, healthy ice lollies. You can see how to do this with Jools, as she makes her summer fruit smoothie recipe on Family Food Tube below.
So, get experimenting! There are so many ways to make a great smoothie, and we’d love to hear how you do it – leave a comment below, or tweet us at @JamieOliverCom!