As tasty and healthy as smoothies can be, it is time consuming to gather and cut up a bunch of fresh fruits and vegetables every time you want one, especially if you are in a hurry. One way to drastically reduce or completely eliminate the daily prep of smoothies is by preparing and freezing large batches of smoothie ingredients or blended smoothies ahead of time. Choose from a number of different smoothie freezing methods, based on what would work best for you.
Frozen Smoothie Kits
Create ready-to-blend smoothie kits, eliminating the time it takes to prepare to make a smoothie. For example, if you were making a banana and spinach smoothie, dice up the bananas and freeze them in a single layer on a baking tray in the freezer. Portion the bananas into separate resealable freezer bags. Wash and dry the spinach, then divide it among the bags of bananas, squeezing out as much air as possible, and seal. Store these smoothie kits in the freezer for six to 12 months. When you want to prepare a smoothie, grab a bag, pour the contents into a blender, and add a little water, milk or yogurt, then blend until smooth.
Muffin Tin Smoothies
Prepare and blend a large batch of your favorite smoothie, or several types of smoothies. Pour the liquid smoothies into the cups of a muffin tin, about three-fourths of the way up, and place in the freezer until frozen. Silicone muffin pans work best for this option, making it easy for the frozen smoothie to pop out. Remove the frozen smoothie cups from the muffin forms and store in large, resealable freezer bags in the freezer. When you want a smoothie, grab a handful of them to toss into the blender with the liquid of your choice. Blend the smoothie cups with the liquid until it has reached your desired consistency.
Frozen Smoothie Containers
Purchase a bunch of individual-sized, freezer-safe containers with lids. Make a giant batch of smoothie and divide it up among all of your freezer containers. Leave at least an inch or so of space at the top, as the smoothies will expand slightly in the freezer. Seal each one tightly with a lid and place in the freezer. To enjoy a smoothie the next day, place one frozen cup of smoothie in the refrigerator to thaw the day before. It can take up to 10 to 12 hours for the smoothie to fully thaw, so plan accordingly. Shake and mix up the smoothie well before consuming in case some ingredients have settled to the bottom.
Purchase a high-quality, powerful blender that chops ice easily. You will need a blender with a strong blade for blending frozen ingredients and frozen cups of smoothie. To save space in your freezer, pour blended smoothies into resealable freezer bags and lay them flat to freeze. You can also add in healthy booster ingredients such as powdered protein, ground flax seed and ground chia seeds to your smoothie kits or to blended smoothies before freezing. If you plan to use yogurt or milk in your smoothie, you can freeze the liquid in ice cube trays and add the frozen cubes to the smoothie packs, if that is your preference.
Based in Los Angeles, Zora Hughes has been writing travel, parenting, cooking and relationship articles since 2010. Her work includes writing city profiles for Groupon. She also writes screenplays and won the S. Randolph Playwriting Award in 2004. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in television writing/producing and a Master of Arts Management in entertainment media management, both from Columbia College.