I’ve been on a little smoothie kick lately, and love to blend my favorite fruits along with some plain, nonfat yogurt for a quick breakfast or afternoon snack. You still will retain the fiber in the fruits and get some satiety and staying power with the protein in the yogurt. Add a little honey or agave nectar to the smoothie if you’re working with fruits that are a little on the sour side, but if they ain’t broke, don’t fix ‘em! For this Pina Colada smoothie, instead of adding coconut milk, which is high in saturated fat, I just added in a few drops of coconut extract. It does the trick and tastes almost like an umbrella drink!
Having trouble incorporating more fruits into your day? Here are some tips to increase your quota (more is better with produce – aim for more than 5 to 9 servings of fruits and veggies daily!)
- Pre-cut fruits that will last you a few days. It’s going to be easier on you when you want to make a quick smoothie or if you’re starting to feel the mid-afternoon munchies. This week, I cut some pineapple and strawberries and stored it in a large container in the fridge. You’ll find it easier to improvise with your meals (without the extra effort), such as tossing in some pineapple chunks for sweet-and-sour stir-fries or plopping strawberries into your morning cereal.
- If you’re a road warrior and always on the go, freeze grapes or blueberries and stash them in your lunch sack. That way, you won’t have any excuses that your fruit will be too warm by lunchtime!
- If your typical breakfast is some toast with peanut butter, slice some bananas on top to add some potassium and vitamin B6 into your day (sprinkle with cinnamon for a sweet kick!).
- Snack on freeze-dried or dried fruits (within portion limits) with a handful of nuts if you’re starting to feel hunger urges mid-morning.
And those are just a few ideas. What do you do to incorporate more produce into your day?
Pina Colada Smoothie
1 banana, sliced (or two small baby bananas)
1 cup fresh diced pineapple
1 cup plain, nonfat yogurt
1/2 tsp coconut extract
If needed: Honey or agave nectar, to taste
Crushed ice, to desired consistency
1. Blend all items together (in a food processor or blender) and serve.