Recipes For Grown Ups

A Berry Good Breakfast Smoothie — Food for Thought

Inventing the aircraft ejector seat would not have made much sense before somebody developed the parachute. Likewise, the ability to prepare smoothies at home had to wait until the 1930s after the electric blender became widely available. However, the term smoothie didn’t become part of the culinary vocabulary until the 1980s.

The best feature of this delicious drink is that you don’t require the cooking skills of Julia Child to whip up a tasty breakfast. They can provide a nutritious start to your day by just tossing all the ingredients into a blender and, well, blending. Even I can do that.

There are hundreds of smoothie recipes online, often incorporating enough ice to reverse global warming. I omit the ice cubes during the blending process because I will contend with brain freeze most of the day, so why start the morning with my head already frozen numb?

Many popular recipes contain quantities of leafy greens that would send Popeye into a chlorophyll coma. Nope. I’ll eat my rabbit food as nature intended – in a salad accompanying my lunchtime pizza.

So I’ve concocted a blend I like preparing several mornings a week. Is it the healthiest smoothie out there? No, but it is probably more nutritious than waffles drowned in melted butter and syrup, jelly-oozing donuts, or most breakfast cereals loaded with enough sugar to burn a cavity into cement.

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Fresh fruit make great smoothies

My creation is a mixture of fresh berries, including strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, and blueberries, together with a banana, peaches, and fresh orange juice, all blended with milk, cream, coconut water, vanilla, honey, brown sugar, chocolate protein powder, yogurt, and some avocado.

Yes, avocado, but you won’t see or taste it (and if you must, you can still add handfuls of kale if you’re determined to create a bilious green smoothie).

I like to first strain out the tiny berry seeds by blending them with some of the milk and passing them through a sieve, pushing with the back of a spoon to extract all the fiber and flavor, then returning to the blender with the other ingredients. It takes a few extra minutes, but you won’t excavate seeds from your teeth for the rest of the day!

I also include a little protein powder to provide a hint of grittiness to the texture. But not too much. I’ve had smoothies with so much protein powder they feel like you’re drinking a suspension of sand. Remember, it’s supposed to be a smoothie!

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Non-dairy milk alternatives

The milk can be any type, including almond milk, but I prefer full cream milk. You can adjust the quantity of milk to make the smoothie more thick or thin. The whipping cream and yogurt are decadent but impart a richer consistency to the final product. And if you like your smoothies sweeter, add more honey.

And finally, yes, smoothies should be cold. So, add some ice cubes to the glass at the end. You can blend them in if you like. It might (just) stretch out to two servings.

Check out the ingredient list below. Remember, you can adjust each ingredient to your taste. While the predominant flavor is berries, the other ingredients blend well for a delicious and filling breakfast to see you through until it’s time for that pizza at lunch.

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  • ½ cup strawberries
  • ½ cup raspberries
  • ¼ cup blackberries
  • ¼ cup blueberries
  • ½ small banana
  • ½ cup fresh peaches
  • ½ small avocado
  • Juice of small orange
  • ½ – ¾ cup milk
  • ¼ cup whipping cream
  • ¼ cup coconut water
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1-2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 scoop of chocolate protein powder
  • ½ cup yogurt (vanilla or berry flavored)

Seeds or No Seeds

Before adding the fruit to the blender—

If you want to have your smoothie free of the tiny seeds, put the berries in some milk and pass them through a sieve by pushing the back of a spoon on the berries to extract all the fiber and flavor. Add the mashed fruit to the blender with the other ingredients and follow the instructions below.


  • Add the ingredients into the blender all at once or gradually and blend until the taste, i.e., sweetness, texture, and thickness, are to your liking.

Nick Thomas

Nick Thomas teaches at Auburn University in Montgomery, Alabama, and has written features, columns, and interviews for numerous newspapers and magazines. See

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