The other day, my friend Tracy and I were talking about ways to satisfy a sweet tooth while trying to lose weight, and it reminded me of an easy, delicious smoothie I often turn to when I’m counting calories. It can be a 220-calorie breakfast or lunch (or part of the meal, anyway) or a 110-calorie snack to get you through the afternoon doldrums. It can even be frozen in molds for a refreshing, healthy dessert. I’ve always thought it was too simple to feature on the blog, but after I shared the “recipe” (I use that word lightly because the instructions are so simple!) with Tracy, she urged me to share it. So, here I am!
I got this recipe from another friend, who got it from one of the Skinny Bitch cookbooks. Out of curiosity, I’d borrowed the first Skinny Bitch book from her and concluded that if I were to follow the eating plan outlined in the book, I would indeed be a skinny bitch, emphasis on the latter. 😉 I like eating healthy, but totally vegan, 100% organic, gluten-, sugar- and white-flour-free is not for me, not on a long-term basis, anyway (but kudos to those of you who do eat like that!). But, some of the recipes did sound tasty, and the smoothie one my friend sent me is my favorite. It’s a cup of organic, sugar-free soy milk blended with fruit. I had never considered making a smoothie with soy milk before, but if you use the sugar-free kind, soy milk is only 70 or 80 calories for 8 ounces, and it adds a great creaminess to the smoothie. The fruit lends the sweetness, so you end up with a low-calorie, rich-tasting smoothie with plenty of protein. It really is very filling, more so than Jamba Juice smoothies. And, you don’t taste the soy — I suppose, if you’re really looking for it, you can detect a slight nutty flavor, but I think the fruit flavor is what shines through. I guess you could use lowfat milk, but when I’ve tried that, I found the overwhelming dairy flavor to be off-putting. As with most smoothies, you can use whatever fruits you like, but I think frozen strawberries and a banana work best in terms of flavor. If you want, you can also add wheat germ, flaxseed meal or other supplements to your smoothie.
Strawberry-Banana Smoothie With Soy Milk
Makes one 16-oz smoothie
- One cup (8 oz) of unsweetened, plain soy milk (make sure the carton says “unsweetened” or “no sugar added.” Even plain soy milk is often sweetened; check the ingredients to be sure)
- One cup of frozen or fresh strawberries (I prefer frozen, but if you use fresh, just add some ice so that the smoothie isn’t too liquidy)
- One small banana
Put all the ingredients in the blender and blend until smooth. Pour into a glass and enjoy!
I often have all 16 ounces for a light lunch, accompanied by something small (a piece of whole-grain toast with two teaspoons of peanut butter, or some whole-wheat crackers with thin slices of cheese). I’m serious — it does keep you full for a while. Or, you could have eight ounces for a snack, and serve the rest to your kids (the boys love it!), or pour the excess into ice pop molds for a dessert some other time.
A note about frozen strawberries — I stock up when my grocery store has bags of frozen berries on sale, but I also like to buy fresh strawberries in bulk when the price is right. Then I just rinse them, let them dry on the counter, hull them, put them in gallon-size freezer bags, and freeze them.