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08.02.15

10 Super Greens to Add to Smoothies & Juices

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By: Candice Kumai

These delicious greens deliver fresh flavors, mega nutrients, and a gorgeous hue to any drink! Enjoy!  xx ck

1. Arugula – My favorite salad and flatbread topping, arugula is simple to juice and blend. Containing iron, calcium, fiber, protein, and vitamins A, C, E, and K, as well as phytochemicals such as beta-carotene, this supergreen can be used in place of spinach in any drink.

2. Bok Choy – With a substantial amount of calcium, potassium, and vitamins A, B6, C, and E, this favorite in Asia is high in water content, which makes it ideal for juicing. Don’t limit it to stir-fries anymore.

3. Dandelion Greens – Need more iron, calcium, fiber, protein, and vitamins A, B6, C, E, and K? Try dandelion greens! These bitter greens are certainly an acquired taste, so be sure to test them out prior to serving at your next brunch. Despite their bitterness, they are packed with nutrients and work well when juiced with sweet fruits or blended with bananas.

4. Kale – A super-mega-green, kale might be the most-talked-about green on the market. Loaded with cancer-fighting nutrients like iron, calcium, protein, potassium, vitamins A, B6, and C, carotenoids, lutein, and phytochemicals, it’s no wonder this once-overlooked green has become the star of the show! I love blending lacinato kale (or dinosaur kale) into my smoothies and juicing with this supergreen in the a.m. You’ll just radiate from an inner “kale glow.”

5. Mizuna – Full of iron, calcium, fiber, protein, and vitamins A, B6, and C, this Japanese mustard green is one of my favorites to wake up a boring old salad. Try mizuna whipped up in a smoothie or juice.

6. Red Leaf Lettuce – My mom’s favorite green contains calcium, protein, and vitamins A, B6, C, and E. This lettuce is a favorite of mine, and its water content makes it perfect for juicing.

7. Romaine – Not just for Caesar salads anymore, romaine boasts iron, calcium, potassium, and vitamins A, B6, and C. Romaine is also packed with fiber to make for a happy tummy, not to mention it doesn’t make a huge mess while juicing either.

8. Spinach – The most utilized ingredient in my book Clean Green Drinks, spinach is inexpensive, “neat” when juicing, and it’s also easy to measure, with no chopping needed! (My rule of thumb: One handful of baby spinach or arugula = approximately one cup). Bonus if you have kids: They’ll barely taste it when mixed into smoothies or juices! Spinach is packed with iron; calcium; protein; vitamins A, B6, C, and E; fiber; and phytochemicals like beta-carotene, lutein, and folate. Combine this green with citrus like lemon or orange to boost its nutritional absorption.

9. Swiss Chard – Packed with iron, calcium, fiber, and vitamins A, B6, C, E, and K, Swiss chard is easy to juice and blend. A study by the Institute of Food Technology in Germany found Swiss chard to be loaded with glutamine, an amino acid that boosts the immune system and aids the healing of wounds.

10. Wheat Grass – Full of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, enzymes, and chlorophyll, wheat grass is a total superfood that can be found at your local health food store and at most farmer’s markets. Just trim with a pair of clean kitchen shears, and juice with apple or pear and a little cucumber. You can even share a little with your pets (mee-ow!).

Tips for storing your greens!

  1. Immediately pick through your greens and rid the bunch of any bad leaves.
  2. Keep your greens as dry as possible after rinsing. You can wrap greens in a dry paper towel and keep them in a plastic bag or container in the fridge. Alternatively—and here’s a tip I borrowed from Jamie Oliver—turn your bottom fridge drawer into a greens basket by lining it with a clean dish towel.
  3. To revive wilted greens, try shocking them in ice water. A quick dip should perk them up right away. Drain the leaves on paper towels, or give them a quick whirl through a salad spinner.
  4. Store your fruits and veggies separately, as many fruits contain ethylene, which causes fruits to ripen and greens to wilt.

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