Christmas morning can be absolutely hectic, regardless of whether you have kids or you’re just a big kid yourself. It’s an exciting day full of tradition, presents and treats, but that doesn’t mean that it has to be devoid of healthy, nourishing foods. One of my biggest pieces of advice to you and all of my clients looking to eat a clean, nourishing diet is to ensure that you make breakfast as healthy as humanly possible. That way if the day gets away from you, you can still rely on the healthy meal you had at the start of your day to carry you through. So this Christmas morning, I encourage you to take 5 minutes to whip up this delicious, easy Christmas morning smoothie.
I love to eat my fruits and veg according to what’s in season, which means I look forward to Christmas all year long just so that I can get my hands on some juicy and sweet tangerines. The sweetness of the oranges pairs wonderfully with the tartness of cranberries that are typically in season from September to November, but still make an appearance around Christmas to accompany your turkey dinner.
If you’re like most people, the holidays often increase your stress, along with it the production of free radicals in your body. That’s why this smoothie is so badass and perfect for this time of year, because it is chockablock full of antioxidants to help neutralize those free radicals, and keep inflammation in check.
And if you’re prone to the sniffles when the weather turns cold, then the citrus of the tangerines offers a dose of vitamin C to help support the immune system and keep you out of bed. The citrus can also aid in digestion, which may come in handy with all the holiday feasting that goes on this time of year!
As a kid I used to peel off all the white bits on the outside of my tangerines, however, it turns out that this white membrane is an awesome source of bioflavonoids. So if you are like many women and happen to have low iron, don’t remove the white stuff when peeling your oranges, as it can enhance your absorption of iron from plant foods!
Cranberries have a reputation for helping a girl out when she gets hit with a urinary tract infection. The tannins in the cranberries that increase urine acidity and inhibits bacteria from adhering to the bladder, can also help prevent bacteria from sticking to teeth, staving off tooth decay and preventing gingivitis.
Lastly, I recommend throwing in a hunk or two of ginger into your smoothie. I’m not usually one for smoothies and juices in the winter as I can find that they make me cold. However, you can use warming ingredients like ginger to balance out the cooling energy of the other ingredients.
Like any smoothie, you can amp up the nutritional benefits by adding some key upgraded ingredients. I personally love to add:
- MCT oil for a healthy dose of saturated fat that the body will use as a sustainable source of energy.
- Hydrolyzed collagen from grass-fed cows, as a source of protein to balance out the sugar and prevent blood-sugar crashes, plus it’s excellent for skin, nail and hair health.
- Maca powder to support the adrenals and also boost the libido – yeah yeah!
- Probiotic powder to help balance the healthy gut bacteria, keep your immune system strong, and heal the gut lining. (I will just open one of my probiotic capsules and empty it into my smoothie.)
- Chia seeds for calcium for strong healthy bones, and soluble fibre to help bulk up the stool and keep your bowel movements in check.
Tangerine Cranberry Smoothie
- 3 mandarin oranges or tangerines peeled, seeds removed
- 1 cup cranberries frozen
- 1 banana frozen
- 1 cup spinach
- hunk of peeled ginger, about the size of half your thumb
- ½ cup coconut milk or milk alternative of your choice
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds soaked in ¼ cup of warm water for 5 minutes
- pinch sea salt
- 1 tablespoon of MCT oil optional
- 1 tablespoon of hydrolyzed gelatin optional
- 1 teaspoon of raw maca powder optional
- 1 probiotic capsule optional
- ½ cup water to thin out the smoothie as desired optional
Soak the chia seeds in the water for 5 minutes.
While the chia is soaking, peel the oranges and remove any seeds you can find. Throw the spinach, oranges, cranberries, banana, ginger, coconut milk, salt and any smoothie upgrades into a high speed blender. Add the soaked chia, and blend all ingredients on high for 30 seconds, or until desired texture is reached.
If you’d like to thin out the smoothie, add water as needed.