Layers of delicious

Breakfast Smoothie Extraordinaire

(Update July 4, 2013. I removed “a la Whole30” from the title of this post because I keep finding it on Pinterest, with comments from Whole30-ers cautioning against consuming smoothies during a Whole30. Is this still a good recipe? I think so, yes. Is it “Whole30”? Not quite. If you’re doing a Whole30, consider this as an occasional treat rather than as a key nutritional go-to.)

(Update March 27, 2012. In a recent conversation with Melissa Hartwig, co-founder of the Whole30, I learned that smoothies are less than ideal for the Whole30 program for a few reasons: 1) the spotlight tends to be on the fruit rather than the veggies or protein; 2) almond butter is classified as a fat that should be consumed occasionally, not a protein that should be consumed daily; 3) flax seeds are on the “limit” list for fats; and 4) liquid foods are easier to overeat than solid foods. That being said, make the adjustments you need to for your Whole30 and enjoy!)

In the 21 days since I started my (first) Whole30, I’ve become increasingly competent in the art of the breakfast smoothie.

The smoothie that I blogged about week before last has evolved past the alpha stage into a more complex, flavorful, and healthy version. Each morning, I look forward to my smoothie with greater anticipation.

I start with coconut milk
I start with coconut milk
Then I add some almond butter
Then I add some almond butter
A cut-up banana is next
A cut-up banana is next
...followed by a handful of spinach
…followed by a handful of spinach
...some flax seed
…some ground flax seed
And, to make it pretty and round out the flavour, frozen blueberries
And, to make it pretty and round out the flavour, frozen blueberries

I know I have not reached the level of Smoothie Expert yet, but I am sufficiently satisfied with this stage to submit it to you for beta testing.

Please give it a go and let me know what you think my next step should be.

Sarah’s Whole30 Paleo Smoothie, Beta Version

  • 1/3 cup high-fat coconut milk (read the labels and choose one that uses only guar gum as a “stabilizer”, and has about a 30% fat content. Good fat, remember!)
  • 1-2 Tablespoons almond butter
  • 1 banana, cut into 1/4 to 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup (or as much as you think you would enjoy) organic spinach or kale (you might want to blend the kale first before adding the other ingredients: I chewed each mouthful of this morning’s smoothie!)
  • 1 Tablespoon flax seeds (I use a version that is already pre-ground) (flax is a great source of Omega fatty acids)
  • 1/4 cup frozen blueberries
  • A couple splashes of orange juice (sweetener and consistency regulator: my coconut milk tends to be thick, and adding OJ makes it pourable)

26 thoughts on “Breakfast Smoothie Extraordinaire

    • Thanks, Marcie! It’s pretty yummy.

      You’re right, flax seeds are frowned upon during the Whole30. In fact, smoothies in general are! If you read the update at the top of the post, you’ll see why. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize it at the time.

  1. oh ok! it will be something i will reintroduce later then :)i’m on day 2 this is much easier than eating for body building!!! i am really excited about it.

    • Good question, Tonya! I’m actually not sure about the Hartwigs’ take on chia seeds. Maybe we’ll get another commenter who knows!

  2. That looks very yummy…unfortunately, smoothies as a whole are not whole30 approved. I will definitely try when my 30 days are done, though!

    • I always use Thai Kitchen. It’s the best brand generally available in my area. I’ve heard that there are one or two other brands that are good but I couldn’t tell you which they are.

  3. I have found that frozen kale/ spinach blends much better in a smoothie. I put a bag of fresh pre-washed kale straight into the freezer, and it lasts longer this way, too.

  4. I saw where kale/spinach can be blasted with water in the blender and then placed in ice trays. Couple of sections are easily added to the bottom of the smoothie, is easy, saves time and adds coldness to the smoothie.

  5. How did you do on your whole 30 when using smoothies? I LOVE smoothies. They are my go to breakfast. While I want to be whole 30 compliant, I don’t think I want to go without my smoothies 🙂

    • Hi Kae and thanks for your message. And sorry it’s taken me a while to respond.

      I drank these smoothies almost religiously during my first Whole30, not realizing that they were not quite kosher.

      If you want to be serious and stick to the book on your Whole30, I think smoothies are out. If you MUST have them, I’d save them for a special snack every now and then. 🙂

  6. I made this for breakfast and it was very yummy but have you done the calorie count on it? I’m getting 500 calories when I add it all up!!!

    • That would depend on the ingredients, but definitely try it! You may need to add water, depending on the thickness of the yogurt.

    • Carl! I apologize for being more than a year late with this comment – I somehow missed it! The bananas serve 2 functions: creaminess and sweetness. There are lots of other smoothie recipes that use different kinds of fruit for sweetness, and if you’re using coconut milk or another kind of milk, you’ve already got creaminess. Maybe try apple or pear for another dimension of sweetness!

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