Smoothie joints can pack 400 calories in a 20-ounce cup. Here's how to downsize while getting lots of fresh fruit and flavor. By Sidney Fry, MS, RD
Healthy Low-Calorie Smoothies
Bingo: Press a button and serve up most of your family's daily fruit intake. The recommended goal is 2 cups of fruit a day, and these 12-ounce blends go a long way toward that; some have a few veggies, too. If someone's a picky eater, well, he or she doesn't need to know you mixed beets in with the berries—until after they serve up a big smile.
First up, Berries and Beets.
1 cup fresh blueberries + 1/2 cup fresh or frozen raspberries + 1/3 cup sliced, cooked beets + 1/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt + 1/4 cup fresh orange juice + 1 teaspoon light agave nectar
Ginger, Berries & Oats1/4 cup prepared oatmeal + 1/4 cup 1% low-fat milk + 1/2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger + 1 cup fresh blackberries + 1/2 cup sliced strawberries + 1 teaspoon honey + 1/2 cup ice
Peanut Butter Berry1/4 cup 1% low-fat milk + 1/2 medium ripe banana + 1 tablespoon creamy peanut butter + 1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries + 1/2 cup crushed ice
Watermelon with a Hint of Mint2 cups seedless watermelon + 2 tablespoons fresh mint + 1/3 cup 2% plain Greek yogurt
Peaches & Cream
1 1/2 cups sliced fresh peaches + 1/2 cup nonfat buttermilk + 1/2 medium banana + 2 teaspoons honey + 1/2 cup crushed ice
Pineapple Piña Colada1/2 medium banana + 1/4 cup light coconut milk + 1 cup chopped fresh pineapple + 1/4 cup chilled pineapple juice + 1/2 cup crushed ice
Creamy Mango, Avocado & Lime1/4 cup sliced avocado + 1 cup sliced Champagne mango + 1 tablespoon lime juice + 1 tablespoon fresh mint + 1 teaspoon honey + 2 cups crushed ice
Green Machine1 cup fresh baby spinach leaves + 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh honeydew + 1/3 cup nonfat vanilla Greek yogurt
- ADD ICE LAST: Adding ice first may cause you to overblend, leaving you with a watery drink.
- IF YOU USE FROZEN FRUIT: You may not need as much ice. Frozen fruit is as nutrient-packed as fresh—just choose those with no added sugars.
- NOT A FAN OF DAIRY? Most milk alternatives (soy, rice) have roughly the same calories as 1% milk—about 100 per cup.