We all love sipping on a smoothie in the morning. It’s nutritious and ideal to take on-the-go, but the cost of all those ingredients can add up. If your smoothie addiction is putting a slight strain on your wallet, never fear! With a few tweaks, you can make sure your breakfast bevvy is still packed with nutrition, while being a little more budget-friendly. It just takes a little creativity…
Know when to go organic
Throwing fruits and veggies into your smoothie is the easiest – and sneakiest – way to get a nutrient hit. While you can swap some fresh produce (like berries) for frozen varieties, the truth is, it doesn’t come cheap. To cut down on your smoothie spending, try to be discerning when it comes to buying organic. Some fruits and veggies aren’t sprayed as heavily with pesticides, so it’s fine to skip the organic section and buy the ordinary versions. As a general rule, the thinner the skin, the more it’s sprayed. So, definitely choose organic for apples, cucumbers, spinach, strawberries, blueberries and kale. On the flipside, you can relax the rules with avocado, pineapple, mango, kiwi and watermelon.
Buy a blend
The health world has cottoned on to the fact that convenience is king. One of our favourite brands, Wholey Foods, has made smoothie-making ridiculously easy thanks to their Breakfast Smoothie Blends. With wholesome ground oats, nuts, seeds, coconut flour and high-quality whey protein, it’s never been quicker to whip up a balanced smoothie. There are yummy cocoa and banana flavours on offer – all you need to do is add milk and fresh/frozen fruit, then blend. Alternatively, for a snack, mix the Breakfast Smoothie Blend with milk and simply shake to combine.
Swap milk for water
Do you add milk to your smoothies? It’s creamy and delicious, but over time, that cup-a-day habit can break the bank – especially if you’re opting for nondairy milk like almond and rice milk. There’s a simple solution: use more water! If your smoothie recipe calls for a cup of almond milk, pour ½ cup and then fill the rest with water. The result will be a lighter concoction, which you may find you prefer. If not, bulk up the texture of your smoothie with banana, oats or nut butter. You won’t even notice the difference! Another option is using coconut water – its taste pairs well with berry-based smoothies.
Forget the ‘it’ foods
It seems new superfoods are in the spotlight every week. A few months ago, kale and cacao were killing it, and now, moringa and chlorella are dominating the market. But we’ll let you in on a secret: superfoods are superfoods. They’re nutrient powerhouses, and that’s not going to change. So when you’re trying to save for that tropical holiday, avoid the trendy ingredients and go for the oldies-but-goodies, like goji berries, maca powder, chia seeds and blueberries. They may be less ‘sexy’ right this second, but they’ll boost your health and wellbeing. If you’re really pinching your pennies, forget superfoods altogether and pick regular fruits and veggies that are bursting with antioxidants and phytonutrients, like spinach, oranges and kiwis.
Make your own mix
Every balanced smoothie needs a dose of good fats, such as nuts, chia and flax seeds. These contain omega-3 fatty acids, which not only support our nervous system, immunity, heart health and hormone levels, but also keep inflammation in check. While it’s easy to pick up a prepackaged nut and seed mix at the supermarket, this gets expensive. Save some dosh by buying them separately. If you have the time and inclination, grind your flax and chia seeds with the help of a coffee grinder. This will aid digestion, and make your smoothie, well, smoother. Remember, a little fat goes a long way, so cap your serving of nuts/seeds at 1-2 tablespoons.
Are smoothies your go-to breakfast? Do you have any budget-friendly smoothie tips?