Adding protein to your green smoothie

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Most people are aware of the benefits of eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables… yet not everyone knows just how important protein is for your body. Protein is one of the four macronutrients that your body needs on a day-to-day basis (the other three are fats, carbs, and water). Protein is essential for our bodies to work properly.


Why is protein so important?

Because your body burns protein slower than carbs, protein is important to prevent blood sugar spikes that can not only make you feel weak and dizzy, but can also lead to serious health issues down the road.

Also, when your body has enough protein it doesn’t have to resort to burning muscle for the energy it needs, so your muscles stay strong and toned. That’s why drinking a protein-rich smoothie after a workout is an excellent way of replenishing your body!


Here’s our favorite forms of protein:

Nuts and Seeds: You may be surprised to know that tiny seeds—like chia seeds and flaxseed—pack an amazing protein punch. For instance, one ounce of chia seeds contains an impressive 4.4 grams of protein, and they boast a wonderfully nutty taste! Speaking of nutty, nuts are also a great source of protein. Just 1/4 cup of almonds or 2 tablespoons of almond butter will give you 8 grams of protein. Flaxseed is another great alternative, with 8 grams of protein per 1/4 cup. When you choose to add nuts to your green smoothie don’t forget that they’re also higher in fat, so don’t be overly generous!

Protein Powders: If you are looking for a plant-based protein that is free of animal products, your best option is hemp protein or raw vegan protein powder. Feel free to add 2-4 tablespoons to your morning green smoothies! You can buy hemp protein at Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods or even online at Sunwarrior.com.

Spirulina (blue-green algae): This plant-based ingredient is an excellent source of protein that can be added to your green smoothies. Be careful, though! The taste is strong, so start off light (by using about a teaspoon) to get used to the flavor, then add more as you can.

Additional protein options include chocolate and vanilla protein powders, whey protein powder, silken tofu, soymilk, non-fat Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, and natural, no- sugar added peanut butter. We prefer to avoid soy and animal products, but that’s just our personal preference; if you enjoy these foods, feel free to use them in your green smoothie creations.

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Drinking green smoothies as a meal replacement?

If you decide to drink a green smoothie as a meal replacement, it’s recommended that you add a protein source to your blender, or have a high-protein snack—such as a hardboiled egg or a handful of nuts on the side. If you work out regularly, your protein requirement will be higher, so we recommend that you adjust accordingly.

84 Responses to “Adding protein to your green smoothie”

  1. Caroline 9.16.2014 at 7:20 pm #

    I’m curious about how much protein we should aim for in our smoothies… If i have a smoothie in teh morning, what should i try and get if I am hoping to use it as a meal replacement to get me through till lunch or at least till i can get a snack a few hours later!

  2. Paula 9.14.2014 at 8:26 pm #

    Hi girls, great site. Just wondering why you would add a hard boiled egg for protein and not a raw egg? Thanks.

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie 9.15.2014 at 6:12 am #

      Hey Paula,

      Great Question: Eggs are a good source of protein and an enjoyable food, but raw eggs, if not pasteurized, can be dangerous. They can be a source of food borne illness caused by salmonella bacteria. There are certain eggs that are pasteurized that are safe to eat, but we prefer hard boiled. Does that help?

  3. Iben 9.8.2014 at 10:58 am #

    Why do you avoid soy?

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie 9.9.2014 at 5:28 am #

      Hey Iben!

      Great question. We recommend staying away from highly-processed soy products which can interfere with nutrient absorption and leach nutrients from your body. Small amounts of organic, non-GMO soy are fine. Hope that helps.

  4. Diamond 8.11.2014 at 9:38 am #

    I’m so happy that I stumbled across this website. I go back to University in a few weeks and I’m desperately trying to change my relationship with food and be a much healthier person. I’m really excited to try adding more protein to my diet!

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie 8.12.2014 at 7:21 am #

      Wonderful to hear, Diamond. Wishing you all the best!

  5. Emma S 7.15.2014 at 11:59 am #

    Hi! I am unfortunately allergic to almonds. What other really good protein sources would you recommend?

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie 8.11.2014 at 7:07 am #

      Hey Emma.

      Are you allergic to all tree nuts?

  6. Allison 7.6.2014 at 3:30 pm #

    Even though I’ve been sick I’ve been keeping up with it. Trying different recipes. Learned things I don’t like…(ex: just kale for a green. Kale and spinach aren’t bad…but just kale..weird after taste). Experimenting with different liquids…so far just water and almond milk (which doesn’t have as much protein as you’d think…” This week gonna go buy some plant based/hemp protein. Since I don’t eat protein much…it’s gonna be key…. I LOVE THIS…and I am determined to find a way to make it more filling by adding yummy protein….Question…if I add almonds…how much should I add?

    (I still haven’t kicked processed sugar..I think if I can manage that…I’ll find the smoothies much more filling…)

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie 7.15.2014 at 5:16 am #

      Hey Allison!

      Thanks for the comment. I think you are on the right track! Finding what works best for you! :) 1/4 cup of almonds is about 8 grams of protein.

  7. helen 7.2.2014 at 6:21 am #

    What about adding natural joghurt or cottage cheese before mixing- is that a source of protien?
    Thx
    Helen

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie 7.2.2014 at 7:44 am #

      Hey Helen!

      We are not big fans of cow based proteins and fans of nut and seed based proteins. We prefer to avoid soy and animal products, but that’s just our personal preference.Hope that helps. :)

  8. Jae 7.2.2014 at 1:31 am #

    Hi guys, I’ve been adding some soy protein to my smoothies (and absolutely loving the taste) – but i just wanted to check the reasons you avoid it – is it just because of taste, or is it healthier to have a hemp protein?

    Thanks for your help, I adore this site!

    • SGS Rawkstar Jessie 7.2.2014 at 8:38 am #

      Hey Jae!

      We prefer to avoid soy and animal products, but that’s just our personal preference; if you enjoy these foods, feel free to use them in your green smoothie creations.

  9. P 6.23.2014 at 5:46 pm #

    I want to add almond milk for the extra kick of protein in my smoothies as I will be replacing two meals with the smoothies. How much almond milk should I add?

    • SGS Rawkstar Dan 6.24.2014 at 9:57 am #

      Use almond milk as the liquid base. If it’s a one serving smoothie, then use one cup. If it’s a two serving smoothie use two cups!

  10. Patty 6.23.2014 at 5:35 pm #

    first smoothie tonight; it’s not green though! i used rainbow swiss chard, half a banana, a cup of frozen peaches, and a cup of frozen mixed berries. it’s kind of, um, dark gray? like when you mix all the paint colors together? tastes pretty good tho!

  11. Perla 5.28.2014 at 7:33 am #

    Jadah and Jen. Thank you so much for these awesome information. I love smoothies. I have been making smoothies for years but never occurred to me to make green smoothies until my daughter told me about the 30 day challenge( She started making them after she was diagnosed with breast cancer) Now I am on W2D1 from the FreshStart21Cleanse Program and love all the recipes. Thank you again. by the way since I started the cleansing program I lost 5 pounds. God bless you!

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