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Have you fallen in love with smoothies yet? I tried making smoothies several years ago when I just had a ‘regular’ blender, and they never quite turned out right. Now that we have a high-powered Ninja blender we’re making smoothies practically every day! We have so much fun heading the farmer’s market every week to stock up on produce and seeing how many fruits and veggies we can pack into one smoothie! This week we have leftover cranberry sauce that my husband’s been using in smoothies, but you don’t have to use leftovers for this cranberry apple smoothie. I originally made it with unsweetened oven-roasted cranberries, instead.
Homemade cranberry sauce works just as well, though! If you’re using roast cranberries, a sweet apple works very well. If you’re using cranberry sauce, you may want to choose a tart apple, instead. Either way, make sure to pick a nice, crisp apple.
Never roasted cranberries before? It’s super easy – you just put them on a rimmed baking sheet and roast them at 400º F until they’re splitting open, only about 8-10 minutes. If you roast a whole bag of them, you’ll have enough to use in several smoothies! For more detailed instructions and photos, just check out my roast cranberry edamame salad recipe.
You don’t have to use protein powder in this smoothie, but I like to add a half scoop of unflavored protein powder. I know most protein powders are not Paleo, so if that’s important to you make sure you find a Paleo power or omit it! I like unflavored whey protein for several reasons, but the biggest one is that it doesn’t have all sorts of funky ingredients and sweeteners. There are a couple great options, and I’ve found them to be much more affordable on Amazon than in-store. Even the GNC “member’s price” is significantly more than what I pay on Amazon for NOW Foods Whey Protein (under $20 vs $34 with a membership at our local GNC). Nature’s Best Isopure costs even less per pound, but comes in a larger container.
- ½ cup roasted cranberries or cranberry sauce
- ½ - 1 cup ice
- 1 crisp apple, cored and cut into several large chunks
- 6 baby carrots
- 3 strawberries
- ½ scoop unflavored protein powder (optional)
- ½ cup water
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- Layer the cranberries, ice, carrots, strawberries, and protein powder in your blender cup then pour in the water and lemon juice.
- Blend until the ingredients are mostly pureed, check the texture, and add more liquid or ice, if necessary.
I view any smoothie recipe as a set of inspirational guidelines. I like mine very thick and icy, so I tend to use a lot more ice than my husband does. I recommend starting with only about 1/2 a cup of ice and then adding more, as needed, once you’ve pureed the produce down a little. As with any smoothie recipe, feel free to make changes or additions to suit your tastes and the contents of your fridge!
What’s your favorite type of smoothie – one that’s fruit-based or one that’s vegetable-based?