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Beets: It’s what’s for dinner! One of my favorite new discoveries in creating healthy smoothies is the beet smoothie. Beets are the fundamental healthy base. I stumbled upon this recipe by accident and spent at least 2 months trying to perfect this recipe as much as possible because I knew it was unique and special.

Many people have requested my beet smoothie recipe so I’m sharing it here to try to allow more people to benefit.

How did I accidentally discover this delicious smoothie? A wonderful beet salad can be frequently found in Wal-mart. And loving salads, I bought it, sometimes eating it as a salad. But I wondered: what if I blended this? And the result was remarkable. I couldn’t believe how delicious (and colorful) the beet smoothies were. And the versatility was impressive, allowing for improvisation with whatever fruits, spices, nut milks, and seeds you have available. So I’m unveiling two of my favorite recipes for beet smoothies today.

Frequently when I create smoothies, I aim to blend healthy delicious ingredients but am also aiming for a specific color: purple, for example. In order to create a purple smoothie, I have had to include a large amount of blueberries. But I found in creating beet smoothies that less blueberries were required to give the smoothie its dark burgundy to purple hue. Purple because I’m a TCU alum. If it looks blue, that’s ok because I’m a Creighton Law alum too.

Could you make this smoothie with beets from the store other than the salad form? Sure. I’m just offering the beet salad alternative to save you time and trouble.

So what’s in the beet smoothie? The primary blend that I make most frequently is the banana beet blueberry kale smoothie. For this you will need: 32 ounces of almond/cashew/coconut milk blend (your choice, I’m lactose intolerant so that’s why I drink these), 1 5-ounce container of beet salad containing kale, beets, carrots, and red cabbage (I get mine from Wal-mart), 1 scoop of Juice Plus protein powder, preferably Dutch chocolate flavor (I like chocolate), otherwise French Vanilla flavor, 1/2 to 1 tablespoon coconut oil, 1 tablespoon organic chia seeds, 1 tablespoon organic quinoa, 1 tablespoon organic flaxseed, 1 banana, approximately 1 cup of frozen blueberries. On top I add cinnamon, turmeric (and black pepper to boost turmeric absorption), and ginger: my anti-inflammatory super spices. Blend well. Serve immediately. Makes approximately about 72 ounces of smoothies.

You can adjust the amount of fruit if you want more or less. Or add different fruits if you have other preferences. If we’re out of bananas and/or blueberries, sometimes we add whatever (frozen) fruits we have available. Sometimes mixed fruit bags are fun, changes the flavor and color of the smoothie a bit.

Sometimes I add Greek yogurt to this, sometimes I don’t. Just depends on how much protein I want to add to it and how much fruit we have available. Usually I add plain Greek yogurt (or flavored if we are out of plain). If you use blueberry Greek yogurt, it blends well with the frozen blueberries. Or it could replace the frozen blueberries if you find you are out of those at home.

Just so you don’t think I don’t make the smoothies with any other ingredients, I’m including the second most frequently used beet smoothie that I make, more of a strawberry mango variety (using 1 pound frozen fruit bags that I think we get from Sam’s Club). It produces a more pale color but just as delicious as the other one, more of a tropical direction with the mango blend.

Finally, to testify to how effective these are for nutrition, I did have one of these smoothies before one of my November races that produced a PR (either the 10k or the 5k, I think it was the night before the Run to Overcome 5k race). So blend of ingredients works great for fuel, is easily digestible, and serves as high-octane fuel for peak performance on race day. We all want to peak on race day, right?

The funny thing about the beets and how much I love them now is that I did not like them one bit when I was a child. I thought they tasted weird back then. That was before I became a health and running coach and learned how important nutrition was and how packed with nutritional strength beets (and the other ingredients) are. I’ve seen the light. So I share my love of beets with you and the world.

I debated calling this Beet Holiday Smoothie because it’s festive and colorful in a holiday sense. But I decided not to do that because I think this recipe is timeless for every day of the year, whether it’s time for the Christmas/New Year’s holidays or not.

Also, despite the fact I placed the ingredients in alphabetical order, the most amazing part of this smoothie in my opinion is the BEETS. How can you beat beets? You can’t!

One last request: please don’t buy all the beet salad at Wal-mart. Always save one beet salad for me. I’ll make you a beet smoothie anytime. Try ’em you’ll love them!