From indulgent chocolate concoctions to refreshing fruity numbers – smoothies make for delicious ways to meet your weight loss goals. Grab your trusty blender – we’ve curated a list of protein-packed recipes that will rev up your metabolism and keep you full for hours.
The advent of Instagrammable smoothie bowls may have compelled millions to stock up on frozen fruits, but it’s the health benefits that keeps them hooked. An easy way to get your fill of everyday macros and micros – these call for a quick grocery run and a well-functioning blender. Best part? They’re as delicious as they are nutritious. It’s no surprise why they’re a common feature across most weight-loss diet programs. That said, these can go from being healthy to no better than a can of soda if you commit a few cardinal smoothie-making sins.
These include using juices, skipping greens and healthy fats, and missing out on a good source of protein. The golden formula is to combine dairy or non-dairy milk with whole fruits and vegetables, protein powder or plant-based protein sources, and nut butters or avocado. Once you’ve gotten the ratios for this down pat, the world’s your oyster. Besides standing in for a meal at lower calorie counts, smoothies can fire up your metabolism for faster fat burn while also fuelling your gym sessions. And whether you’re looking to switch things up from your usual recipes or have only begun on your fitness journey, our list of weight-loss friendly smoothie recipes won’t disappoint.
We’re starting this list out with an indulgent, dessert-like smoothie that heroes chocolate! A crowd-pleaser of a drink, this recipe calls for frozen bananas, chocolate protein powder, cinnamon, almond butter, and almond milk. The addition of frozen cauliflower gives the smoothie a velvet-like consistency, while baby spinach packs on the nutrition. The flavour is nutty, sweet, and addictive. Best part? This is quite balanced – with healthy fats, protein, and plant-based, slow-burning carbohydrates that will keep you satiated for hours. You could switch out the greens for whatever you have on hand. That aside, this is the perfect treat to dig into when you’re craving cake for breakfast.
No smoothie roundup is complete without a classic green smoothie recipe. This particular one is brimming with healthy fats, plant-based sources of protein, and a host of vitamins and minerals. The recipe calls for cucumber, avocado, spirulina and spinach – which make up the ‘green’ component of the equation. Oats, chia seeds, and almond butter provide healthy protein and fat. Mango and bananas add that quintessential touch of creaminess to the smoothie. This is topped off with coconut water for a refreshing touch. Have it pre-workout or first thing in the morning for an energy boost. This one is vegan and gluten free as well.
A recipe straight from the kitchens of Martha Stewart herself, this mango and yoghurt smoothie might not have the same nutritional profile as others on this list. However, it’s quite healthy – with the ingredients list calling for cinnamon, mango, yoghurt, honey, and lime. While honey offers micronutrients, cinnamon has been found to kickstart metabolism. The yoghurt, meanwhile, brings on the protein. You could perhaps substitute it for a Green variant for more nutrition. Lime, meanwhile, adds a refreshing hit to the drink. If you’re craving dessert, whip this up instead. Your body will thank you.
Who better than the Bollywood queen of fitness to turn to for advice on weight loss? Shilpa Shetty’s refreshing berry smoothie is a classic fruity number – with the recipe calling for strawberries, blueberries, yoghurt, milk, and ice. The berries provide you with a good dose of fiber, vitamin C, and antioxidants. The yoghurt and milk, meanwhile, add creaminess to the mix while raising the protein quotient of the smoothie. There’s also a good dose of healthy fats (read, Omega 3) coming in from the sabja seeds. Shetty flavours her drink with a touch of honey. If this doesn’t spell health, we don’t know what does.
Few dieticians are as experimental with their smoothies as Sadia Badiei. For instance, her take on a green smoothie pours a red – thanks to the addition of raw beetroot, which is a good source of vitamin C, potassium, iron, manganese, folate, and fiber. The spinach packs on the iron and micronutrients while the soy milk and hemp seeds bring the protein quotient to the mix. Healthy carbs, vitamins, and minerals from bananas and orange seal the deal. If there’s one smoothie you should have post a difficult day at the gym – this one’s for you. The recipe is open to modifications and is a must-try.
Tofu might not be the first ingredient on your grocery list when you’re out shopping for smoothies. However, its high protein and fiber content makes it a great addition, especially as a replacement for bananas, avocado, and protein powder. The recipe calls for soft tofu, blueberries, milk, and sweetener of choice. Blend it all together and you’ve got yourself a creamy drink that will keep you satiated for hours. Naturally, it’s the perfect breakfast for people on the go. Don’t knock this one until you try it! Its creamy flavour, ease of making, and nutritional profile make it one of the best smoothies for weight loss.
Feature image: Courtesy Sara Julie/Unsplash; Hero image: Toni Cuenca/Pexels
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