Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Make Your Own Healthy Smoothie Station ~ Printable Labels


"I can recollect nothing more to say at present;
perhaps breakfast may assist my ideas..."
~ Jane Austen {in a Letter}

If you haven't realized this yet, everything becomes a celebration in the home when you enjoy being a keeper of the home. Things like making a simple breakfast is taken to the next level by one simple change. For instance, when my mother gifted us with a wonderful Nutribullet blender, our whole family had a renewed excitement toward our morning smoothies. The next thing you know, our extra jars were brought out, a special area was created and a smoothie station was born! My husband walked by laughing and said he was surprised I didn't label the jars. I just smiled as I was proud that he understood me, but also because he didn't give me enough credit. They were sitting in the printer tray.


The reasons we like smoothies for breakfast is, less mess in the morning, less thinking on what to make (and we are able to begin our homeschool schedule on time), they are a simple way to include all those nutrients (and raw foods) that we may be lacking in our "normal" meals (more on this later) and finally, they are just plain tasty!


Here is a quick summary for those that are new to healthy, morning smoothies:

~ Start with a liquid "base" of choice such as raw milk, coconut milk, coconut water, yogurt or kefir.

~ Add in some frozen fruit such as strawberries, blueberries, pineapple, raspberries, peaches, bananas, etc. (basically any fruit that your family enjoys). We flash freeze these fruits individually on cookie sheets and dump them into containers when they are in season but you can also purchase them frozen for convenience year round. I would encourage you to make it a point to freeze a tray of banana chunks each week. They are really helpful to improve favor and keep you full. They also give a real creamy consistency to the smoothie.

~ Add in some vegetables if you like! This is a great way to get down those greens such as a collard greens, kale, spinach and swiss chard!

~ Add in a natural sweetener (if you choose to) like raw honey, maple syrup or half of a banana (which is what we do).


~ And lastly, add in some "boosters"! This is the fun (and ultra health punch) part and where our labels come in! I will share some benefits for each of these ingredients and you can use what would be helpful for your family members. We end up putting in approx. 1/4 of a cup worth of "boosters" in one tall 16 oz. glass. Some options are:



  • almonds ~ rich in monounsaturated fats (reduces risk of heart disease), magnesium and potassium.
  • cocoa nibs ~ (this is the raw cocoa bean, unprocessed and without sugar) rich in magnesium, antioxidants, brain stimulating chemicals, helps body absorb calcium, fight disease, stabilize moods. Cacoa is high in magnesium (I once read that 80% of children are magnesium deficient. What is interesting is that a lack of it can hinder concentration and focus (think "ADD" here...). Once I began supplementing magnesium in our diets many moons ago, I noticed the attention span in our homeschool increased!) Also helpful for restless legs, and much, much more!
  • cocoa powder ~ (this is the real cocoa bean powered, unprocessed and without sugar) same as above.
  • cashews ~ rich in monounsaturated fats (reduces risk of heart disease). Contains 31% of the daily recommended value for copper, along with 23% for manganese, 20% for magnesium and 17% for phosphorus, add to that 12% of the daily recommended value for vitamin K (source).
  • chia seeds ~ high in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, good source of iron, calcium, zinc, high fiber content which helps stabilize blood sugar levels. Think of chia and flax as brain food. Many children are not getting these important omega's because of the unhealthy fast food lifestyle and this can affect brain development! Adding a few teaspoons in your children's (and your) smoothies will be such a blessing! 
  • flax seeds ~ omega-3 fatty acids, dietary fiber, lowers cholesterol and strengthens the bones.
  • goji berries ~ contains 21 trace minerals, 18 amino acids and richest known food source of carotenoids, rich source of vitamin C, is said to slow the aging process (not sure how that works though!), boosts brain cell counts, vitamin A which boosts immune response and eye health, prevents heart disease. 
  • green powder ~ (food supplements made from a combination of vegetable "greens") rich in vitamins, high in antioxidants, minerals including potassium, calcium and magnesium and other plant nutrients that can help promote overall good health and prevent cancer (source).
  • maca powder ~ contains 8 of the 9 essential amino acids, fiber, vitamins E and C, calcium, potassium, iron, immune boosting compounds, energy boosting and libido enhancing. Used for “tired blood” (anemia); chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS); and enhancing energy, stamina, athletic performance, memory, and fertility. Women use maca for female hormone imbalance, menstrual problems, and symptoms of menopause (source).
  • oatmeal ~ high in fiber (makes you feel full so good addition for those who desire weight loss), lowers heart disease risk and LDL cholesterol.
  • pumpkin seeds ~ lowers LDL cholesterol, strengthens bones and immune system, decreases the risk of certain cancers, high zinc content (great for men as it helps prevent prostate cancer), great source of protein and iron.
  • sesame seeds ~ lowers LDL cholesterol,  prevents high blood pressure, protects body from liver damage, good source of calcium, anti-inflammatory properties.
  • sunflower seeds ~ lowers LDL cholesterol, contains vitamin E (which prevents heart disease, relieves arthritis and asthma symptons), selenium which activates the DNA repair in damaged cells, kills cancer cells and detoxifies the liver.

There are so many options with these nutritional ingredients. I encourage you to be creative at your smoothie station! If you are interested in using our "booster" labels, you will find the printable HERE. I have found it helpful to cover the label with a piece of packing tape or clear contact paper to keep them in nice condition. There are also some blank labels for you to fill in your own foods.


"The kitchen (that is, your stomach) being out of order, the garret (the head) cannot be right, and every room in the house becomes affected. Remedy the evil in the kitchen, and all will be right in parlor and chamber. If you put improper food into the stomach, you play the mischief with it, and with the whole machine besides."
~ John Abernethy (1764-1831)

We have attempted to "jump start" the new year with a few health inspired posts this month. I hope they were helpful for those of you whose desire is to apply the golden concept of "prevention" in their lives. 

For Further Reading:

This post may be shared with some or all of the following link-ups: The Art of Home-Making MondaysModest Mom Monday'sMonday's MusingsMake Your Home Sing MondayGood Morning Mondays,  The ScoopTitus 2sdaysTitus 2 TuesdaysRoses of InspirationTuesdays with a TwistRaising HomemakersWise Woman Link UpHomestead Blog Hop Wow Us Wednesdays,  Coffee and ConversationHomemaking ThursdaysHome Sweet HomeOur Simple HomesteadFrom the Farm Blog HopFront Porch Friday Blog HopAwesome Life Friday Link UpFive Star Frou Frou FridaySimply Natural Saturdays and Clever Chicks Blog Hop. Thank you lovely ladies for hosting these. Note: Some of the nutritional information was gleaned from the Nutribullet pocket guide.

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor. While I do seek scientific confirmation of the safety and effectiveness of the herbs and remedies I use, remember that using remedies is a personal decision. Nothing I say on this blog is approved by the FDA or intended to diagnose, treat or prevent disease. All things on this blog are my opinion or the opinion of others. Also, if you have a medical condition, are taking pharmaceutical drugs, or are pregnant, please consult your physician prior to taking herbs.

37 comments:

  1. We love a good smoothie, and the chocolatey-er, the better. Having everything in jars is a great idea that I hadn't done completely. Love the labels and will definitely use them.
    Have a lovely day!
    Toni

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    1. Yes, the chocolatey-er, the better indeed! :)

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  2. What a wonderful idea! I drink smoothies often....this will make them much tastier and more fun to make:)

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    1. YES it will! Even my hubby enjoys the variety! :)

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  3. Dear JES, This is great! I usually have a smoothie for lunch when my husband is at work, and you have given me some new ideas about what to add (especially the chocolate :). Thank you for including the nutritional information as well, as this is very helpful. I wanted to tell you, too, that my orange tree is currently loaded and ready for me to start harvesting. I am so excited about trying several of your recipes in your citrus series! I think I will be able to give many of the products as gifts. Have a lovely day! Love, Kelsey

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    1. So glad this is helpful and excited you will get to do some kitchen crafting with the oranges! It is thrilling to make so many products for pennies! :)

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  4. I love the way you put in order and keep your pantry, my dearest friend, you teach me so many thing, every time I come and visist you here !
    God bless you !
    Sending so much dear love to you
    Dany

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    1. Sending warm regards back to you my friend! :)

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  5. I love your smoothie station & jars! We have a mini smoothie station (also inspired by our new blender ;) with our protein powder & chia seeds - the rest of our boosters are in the fridge. We just don't have enough counter space to keep everything out.

    Any tips for liking goji berries? I have some because I know how great they are, but I just haven't acquired the taste!

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    1. Yes, counter space can be a challenge! I had to put ours on a little shelf in the kitchen. As far as the goji berries go, I just put a tablespoon in my smoothie every morning and don't even taste them with all the fruit in there! :)

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  6. I love your suggestions - esp. the chocolate and goji berries! I would like to try those. I also will sometimes add leftover cooked quinoa for some fiber/protein and coconut oil. Thanks for the helpful post!

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    1. Great ideas with the leftover quinoa! Thank you for taking the time to share here today! :)

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  7. Mmm... I love smoothies. You have some great ideas for add-ins to get an extra nutritious boost - thanks!

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    1. And thank you for the nice visit! Have a lovely week Vickie :)

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  8. Breakfast is one area I definitely struggle in. Like you, we don't eat store bought breakfast food and I like something fast in the morning. This is not always the case when making breakfast from scratch. And then there's the dishes! Smoothies sound like a way to fix this problem! I'll leave the lengthier breakfasts for the weekends when there's no school! Yay! On a side note: Have you ever written a post on grocery shopping? If you did I'd like to read it. You're such an organized and frugal keeper of the home I know I could learn something from you in that area. Thanks!

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    1. Hi there friend! Yes, besides oatmeal, this is what we have in the morning. Honestly, it is just too much work to do (and think of) 3 from-scratch meals a day amongst everything else. The nice thing about this is that I also know it is healthy and you can change up the taste with different combinations which helps to avoid burn out... Hope this blesses your mornings! And do keep the lengthier stuff on the weekends to make it special! :)

      And a post on grocery shopping... I will have to put my thinking cap on! Thank you for the suggestion and kind visit!

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    2. Also, if the children get "hungry" too early with the smoothies, add a few tbsp. of oatmeal to keep them fuller longer :)

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    3. Thank you for the extra tips! We enjoyed a smoothie this morning! What an easy breakfast for during the week. Yes, breakfast burn out is something we experience often;). I think smoothies are the answer!

      I would love to know your grocery shopping tips!

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  9. Hi JES! This was an awesome post, and I appreciate you supplying all the additional information about each herb/seed/powder that can be added. I currently make a smoothie every morning. I start with a huge handful of kale (it is awesome frozen!) or spinach, then add in a selection of berries which I keep in the freezer, and then add in flax seed, chia seeds, almonds and always a banana, and water. You are so right about the banana making the smoothie, better! They really do make it taste great! Yogurt can also be added, along with choice of milk. Almond milk is awesome too. It is a great start to the day, and I agree really makes breakfast a breeze! You did a great job sharing all that you can do with a smoothie, and I love your idea of a smoothie station too! :)

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    1. Thank you for sharing! I like the idea of adding frozen kale so it is always on hand and ready!

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  10. I love smoothies. I add flaxseed oil and LSA and berries etc. My doctor said to me HOW did I get my good cholesterol up so fast? This was how! Also if I have a smoothy I am not hungry in the afternoons which is my danger time! Lovely ideas and I will be adding some to my list! xxx

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    1. That is really great to hear! The power of food in your diet! But I do have a question, what is LSA? Thanks!

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  11. JES, your kind of organising sings to me! We are indeed kindred spirits I think. Love, Mimi xxx

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    1. Thanks Mimi! I take that as quite the compliment :)

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    2. And thanks for sharing this one at Five Star Frou-Frou too! Love, Mimi xxx

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  12. Oh, smoothies are a firm favourite in our home! I especially like them with frozen strawberries, banana and either paw paw or mago...the more forzen the smoothie, the better! And of course homemade yoghurt makes it ever so tasy and rich!
    I love your smoothie station, dear JES! And I will be referring to your list of extra ingredients!
    Blessings and love...
    Kelly-Anne

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    1. I do so agree... the homemade yogurt is the icing on the cake! :) I mean "smoothie"...

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  13. Oh yummy! I like all the different varieties you listed. I do the greens smoothie everyday and I love it. My boys love them to, but they would rather create their own flavor combination. I think I need to pull my jars out and get them filled with easy to do smoothies as you did. And hopefully less messy for my boys to do too!
    I've got to try oatmeal in mine tomorrow, that sounds great!
    You have the best ideas, Jes! Thanks for sharing. :)
    Hugs, Amy

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    1. My family likes to make up their own creations too! And the reason I like the oatmeal is it gives you a fuller feeling :) Thanks for stopping by!

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  14. What a marvelous idea! My daughter forgets to have breakfast sometimes but I'll bet this would encourage her to get something good into her system to start the day. Thanks! Pinned.

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    1. I hope it helps! I used to be the same way and it cured me :)

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  15. Hello sweet Jess
    What a beautifully written and illustrated post!
    You take household management to a whole new level - Mrs Beeton would be so proud of you!
    I've resisted buying the Nutribullit for months, because of the price - they are expensive here and I will be the only one using it.
    However, I have decided I will buy one the next time I see them on special (catalogues in the mail grr).
    You've won me over!
    Shane x

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    1. Thank you for the sweet visit and comment (especially since Mrs. Beeton is a favorite over here!)! And I can't lie, I love the Nutribullet! Also, it is SO easy to clean that even my hubby started making smoothies every day because it is so convenient. Have a lovely weekend Shane! :)

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  16. We love smoothies. Thanks for linking up to Simply Natural Saturdays.

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  17. This is really informative. What a terrific way to start the day. You've given me something to think about today....

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  18. This looks very nutritious. I really like the way you presented it. It is very appreciable. Thank you so much for sharing this post. I enjoyed to visit this blog.

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