Saturday, January 16, 2016

Freaking Awesome Protein Shake

Sometimes I have a hard time eating my veggies. And my fruit. 

Actually, sometimes I am too lazy to pull together a salad for lunch, or chop up fruit as a snack, so I just make a smoothie instead.

My first job was at Zuka Juice. It was the best job a 15-year-old could ask for. Busy, noisy, full of teenagers, new music playing on the Muzak, smoothie samples, an extra-long shower head hose in the sink to make washing blenders and soaking your unsuspecting friends with water easy- what more could you want? The uniform was just a t-shirt with jeans and a baseball cap. And because I was one of the youngest kids there, I simultaneously felt older- like when I got to pull an all-nighter and watch a boot-leg copy of Titanic after work, and I got the benefits of having older "sisters" who took me out to Rain Forest Cafe for my 16th birthday and introduced me to the "Starburst" smoothie. I even drank the wheatgrass. Freaking awesome. 

Today making a smoothie is a bit less glamorous. I've got a 90's playlist on Spotify, I'm usually still wearing my gym clothes, and there are multiple mini-me's waiting impatiently for a "moooothie." I love giving my kids smoothies though, especially my Little because she doesn't want to eat anything green. But she'll drink it! So I put, like, 3-5 cups of fresh spinach in every smoothie I make! Luckily, with all the orange juice, greek yogurt, and frozen fruit, she can't taste it. (Neither can I, so really this is a win all around.)

This week I picked up some vanilla Quest protein powder to beef up our healthy habit. I've never bought it before, but it is pretty good. I was surprised at how it thickened up my smoothie. I used a frozen blend of pineapple, strawberries, papaya, and mango that I bought at Costco. The combination initially made me think of that Jell-O salad you make with Cool Whip. What? Weird. But then, as I sucked intently on my straw, I decided I liked it. And so did the kids, despite the extra protein! Definitely needs to be cold though, so frozen fruit is a must. 

Is this the only way to make a protein drink? Is it the very best way for optimal performance and muscle development? Probably not. But, it tastes good and it is pretty good for you. My smoothies are not an exact science, so feel free to play around with the recipe!

Freaking Awesome Protein Shake

Makes 24 oz smoothie
  • 4 oz cold water
  • 4oz orange juice
  • 1 banana
  • 3 cups fresh spinach
  • 1/2 scoop vanilla Quest protein powder
  • 1/4 cup greek yogurt
  • 1/2-1 cup frozen fruit, any kind
  1. Pour juice and water into blender. Add banana, yogurt, spinach, and protein powder. Blend until smooth.
  2. Add frozen fruit and blend until smooth. Drink with a straw and enjoy!

Bake the bread. Share the slices. 

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