Maybe you want to try to fit more fruits into your diet, or you've gotten envious of all the perfectly Instagrammable smoothies your favorite influencers seem to be drinking.
Maybe you've even tried to make those kinds of smoothies—but they always seem to turn out badly. Never fear: These are some sure-fire tips you can use to make sure your smoothies are not only good, but absolutely amazing.
1. Use frozen bananas
This is absolutely the most important part of making a good smoothie. One or, ideally, two frozen bananas can make all the difference in your smoothie's texture. (Make sure you don't freeze the bananas in their skins, though!) Frozen fruit is always a good bet in general (though be careful with pineapples or other strongly flavored fruits).
2. Be very cautious with protein powders
Yes, protein powders are important and nutritious and good, but they can also seriously mess with the flavor of what you're making. A tip: Match the flavor of the powder to the fruits you're using, and always test out the flavor before you dump in a bunch.
3. Use ample amounts of almond, soy, or oat milk...but avoid coconut
Make sure you use plenty of your liquid base of choice, lest your smoothie become too chunky. But try avoiding coconut milk, which can seriously alter the flavor of your beverage, especially if you're using greens (coconut milk works great with berries, though!) Definitely avoid regular milk, unless you want your smoothie to taste, well, milky. (A dollop or two of Greek yogurt goes a long way, too, though don't use it as a substitute for your liquid base).
4. Use a bit of honey or agave to add flavor
A smoothie will always be improved by a little burst of sweetness. When you add honey, do it sparingly, but don't forget this important step. Sometimes peanut butter can also add a welcome kick, though make sure you're not mixing it with too many other strong flavors.
5. Use ice
When it comes to smoothies, the colder, the better. Sometimes ice can be replaced by frozen fruit, but a little ice goes a long way, especially if you're using a lot of non-frozen ingredients.
6. Don't mix red fruits with greens
A kale smoothie won't look too hot if you mix it with a ton of cherries. When you're using greens like kale, be sure to use only a little bit, and mix it with light fruits like mangoes, apples, and bananas. If you're going to use berries, stay away from the lettuce.
7. Blend well
Make sure you blend every smoothie extremely well, especially if you're using greens. You don't want to be chewing on your smoothie. When you think you're done blending, blend more.
8. Use jars and embellishments
A smoothie's presentation always has a strangely significant impact on how it tastes. Putting a smoothie in a mason jar always gives it a little burst of visual appeal, and trust us, the taste will follow. Bonus: Sprinkle some honey or coconut flakes and arrange some berries on top of the concoction (or even try out some edible flowers), find some great lighting, and snapshot away.
9. Drink it immediately after you make it
A smoothie that's been sitting around is always lacking. You'll want to take advantage of the smoothie right away, when it's just been made and is all light and foamy, not after it's been stewing away in the fridge or, god forbid, left out in its blender. If you do have to reinvigorate an old blend, make sure you add a handful of ice and re-blend before drinking.