How to Make a Smoothie

Two Parts:Following a General FormulaTrying Sample Recipes

Smoothies can be a nutritious and convenient meal replacement or refreshing snack. Luckily, they're very easy to make, as well. Just a few basic ingredients blended together will render you a delicious smoothie in no time. Or, you can stir in some unique foods to create a truly one-of-a-kind treat.


Each makes 1 serving

General Formula

  • 1/2 cup to 2 cups (125 ml) fruit
  • 1-1/2 cups (375 ml) liquid
  • 3 to 4 ice cubes
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) greens or herbs (optional)
  • 2 to 4 Tbsp (30 to 60 ml) protein powder (optional)
  • Sweetener, to taste (optional)
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) extract of choice (optional)
  • Spices, to taste (optional)

Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie

  • 1 banana
  • 1/8 cup (30 ml) peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) soy milk (or regular milk)
  • 2 Tbsp (30 ml) honey

Basic Fruit Smoothie

  • 2 cups (500 ml) strawberries
  • 1/2 banana
  • 1 peach
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) orange juice
  • 1 cup (250 ml) ice

Power Berry Smoothie

  • 1 cup (250 ml) frozen berries
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) water
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) low-fat yogurt
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) honey
  • 1 Tbsp (15 ml) soy protein powder

Part 1
Following a General Formula

  1. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 1 preview
    Take out your blender or food processor. A blender works best since blenders generally achieve smoother consistency, but a food processor can still work if you don't have a blender. If using a food processor, you may want to add a little less liquid than normal to prevent potential leaks.[1]
    • You can also use an immersion blender instead of a standard version. Immersion blenders allow you to blend smaller portions in a single serving glass, making them ideal if you want to experiment with small batches.
  2. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 2 preview
    Start with fruit if making a fruit smoothie. Fresh or frozen fruit will make up the base of your smoothie but note that you can make a delicious smoothie with canned or even reconstituted dried fruit. You can focus on one fruit, or add several. (Figuring out a fruit combination you like is part of the fun of making smoothies!) Here are some options to consider:
    • Peaches, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, bananas, apples, kiwis, mangoes, avocados and pomegranates are popular choices.
    • "Juicy" fruits that contain a lot of water can also work well, such as oranges, watermelon and pineapple. Just be aware that they'll make your smoothie more watery, and make up for it accordingly with a thickener (such as protein powder).
    • If you're looking for a good starter combination, try strawberry-banana or raspberry-peach.
    • For a single serving, you'll usually want to add a total of 1/2 cup to 2 cups (125 to 500 ml) of fruit. Use less when sticking with heartier fruits, like bananas, and more when relying on berries.[2]
  3. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 3 preview
    Add the liquid. The other main part of your smoothie is the liquid you choose to add to it. Here are some possibilities:
    • Milk (skim or whole) is a popular choice.
    • Soy milk works for people who are lactose intolerant, as well as adding some protein.
    • Greek yogurt (sweetened or plain) will result in a thicker smoothie.
    • Nut milk (such as almond or coconut) can make the taste of your smoothie different.
    • Tea (black, herbal or chai) adds antioxidants and can tone down the sweetness.
    • Fruit juice or concentrate (any flavor) can help make your smoothie more complex if you only have one or two fruits to work with. (Be careful, though - if you're drinking smoothies as part of a diet, sugar-packed fruit juices aren't a good idea.)
    • Ice cream, sherbet or frozen yogurt. (If you add these items, you probably won't need ice cubes at the end.)
    • Sparkling water will result in a lighter smoothie (try lime or lemon-flavored).
    • Water, if you have nothing else on-hand, works great.
    • Use 1-1/2 cups (375 ml) of any liquid for a single smoothie, or less liquid if you prefer thicker smoothies or need to use a food processor.[3]
  4. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 4 preview
    Add protein (optional). If you want to make your smoothie resemble an actual meal, add some protein powder to it. Whey and soy are popular choices, but you can also use sprouted brown rice.
    • Use 2 to 4 Tbsp (30 to 60 ml) of protein powder.[4]
    • If you want natural sources of protein, you could also use up to 1 cup (250 ml) cottage cheese or 2 oz (57 g) of tofu.[5]
  5. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 5 preview
    Add some green (optional). Make your smoothie a little healthier by sneaking in some barely noticeable greens. Kale and spinach blend well, and you won't even be able to taste them. You can also try Swiss chard, celery, beetroot, the greens of vegetables (of radishes, beet, carrots, celery or kohlrabi, for example), or fresh herbs like parsley or dandelion leaves. Or, if greens aren't in season, purchase a green plant powder (available at most health food stores) and add that to your smoothie.
    • The amount of veggies used should not exceed the amount of fruit if you want to maintain a sweet flavor. The total amount of fruit and vegetables should be 1 to 2 cups (250 to 500 ml).[6]
  6. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 6 preview
    Add a sweetener (optional). If you're worried that your smoothie won't taste sweet enough, you can give it a little help. Of course you can always put some plain sugar in the blender, but here are some healthier choices:
    • Ripe bananas
    • Honey (used in a lot of "commercial" smoothies)
    • Agave nectar
    • Stevia (natural sugar substitute)
    • Splenda (artificial sweetener)
    • Add sweeteners to taste. Start with 1 tsp to 1 Tbsp (5 ml to 15 ml) and add additional sweetener as needed in small increments.
  7. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 7 preview
    Give your smoothie some more flavor (optional). Here are some other items you can add to your smoothie to change its taste. Again, experiment and see what you like:
    • Vanilla extract (1 teaspoon)
    • Cinnamon (aids digestion)
    • Cayenne pepper
    • Nutmeg (only a pinch)
    • Oreos
    • Almond extract
    • Coconut shavings
    • Peanut butter
    • Banana
    • Or any of a myriad of extracts available.
  8. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 8 preview
    Add ice cubes (optional). Once everything's in the blender, put some ice cubes on top. For a single-serving smoothie, 3 or 4 should be plenty.
    • If you're worried about thinning the drink too much, only add 1 or 2 cubes. You can always add more later.
    • Frozen fruit can be substituted for some or all of the ice, making for a brighter flavor. You can freeze your own, or buy them pre-frozen.
  9. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 9 preview
    Blend it. Put the lid on the blender, and turn it on no higher than medium. Once the blender starts to "digest" the fruit, turn it up one notch at a time. If there isn't a "smoothie" or "shake" function, "puree" works as well. Start slow. Let the blender chew about 1 minute.
  10. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 10 preview
    Turn off the blender once the ice cubes are done blending and let it set for a minute. If you like the way it looks, pour your cool concoction into a large glass.
    • It's a good idea to taste the smoothie before serving it. Add additional flavors and ingredients as desired to improve the taste or consistency.
  11. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 11 preview
    Garnish your smoothie. Loose berries, a wheel of lemon or lime, a sprig of mint, or flat-leaf parsley can add a fun touch to the final beverage. If you're feeling tropical, add a little umbrella.

Part 2
Trying Sample Recipes

  1. Image titled Make a Smoothie Step 13 preview
    Try a peanut butter-banana smoothie. Blend peanut butter, banana, milk, and honey into a delicious, protein-packed smoothie. You'll need to blend all of the ingredients together for 30 to 60 seconds to combine them. For this smoothie, you'll need:
    • 1 banana
    • 1/8 cup peanut butter
    • 1/2 cup soy milk (or regular milk)
    • 2 Tablespoons honey[7]
  2. 2
    Try a basic fruit smoothie. Combine 2 cup (500 ml) hulled strawberries, 1/2 banana, and 1 peach in a blender. Blend until the fruit is pureed.
    • Afterward, add 1/2 cup (125 ml) orange juice and 1 cup (250 ml) ice to the blender. Blend until smooth.[8]
    • Pour the smoothie into glasses and enjoy.
  3. 3
    Make a power berry smoothie. If you're interested in boosting your protein intake and getting some antioxidants into your diet, this might be a good choice.[9]
    • Combine 1 cup (250 ml) frozen berries (blueberries, strawberries, etc.) with 1/2 cup (125 ml) water, 1/4 cup (60 ml) low-fat plain yogurt, 1 tsp (5 ml) honey, and 1 Tbsp (15 ml) unsweetened soy protein powder.
    • Blend all of the ingredients together at once until smooth. Serve and drink immediately for the best flavor and taste.


  • Adding milk adds flavour to your smoothie instead of just tasting fruit.
  • After you're done, put one or two cups of water in and run it on "mix" to quickly clean your blender.
  • If you plan on drinking this with a straw, peel your fruits, and make sure they are cored properly. Straining the drink through a coarse strainer can help remove pieces that are too big to fit through a straw. (Just remember they now make larger diameter straws for such things as shakes and smoothies.)
  • Adding 1/2 cup of yogurt (or Greek style yogurt) or a banana will thicken your smoothie, but don't add both unless you have another watery fruit. This is where you can add a little watermelon.
  • When lacking enough fresh fruit, or if you have none at all, using milk or yogurt - flavored or not, fruit juice and ice works well.
  • Making smoothies with other non-fruits can add an interesting taste.
  • Balance tart, sweet and savory flavors. For example, sesame seed paste makes an interesting counterpoint to kiwi, peanut butter to banana, etc.
  • There are thickeners available to improve the "mouth-feel" of the drink if it is too thin.
  • Adding a nutritional drink powder, flavored or not, can also improve the healthiness of your smoothie. (Just remember you must add additional liquid to keep the drink from getting too thick.)
  • Don't fill the blender up to the brim as having no lid will splatter it everywhere.
  • You could also put ice first, then put water, add frozen ice cream, and put many kinds of fruit and the smoothie will taste great and be healthy.
  • Add cottage cheese and some milk to your smoothies instead of yogurt to boost the protein content.
  • And if you drink smoothies many times a week, try making your own yogurt to cut costs dramatically.
  • Don't blend your smoothie too much because it will be like a milk shake.
  • Canned Pineapple juice makes a great base.
  • Always set out all your ingredients so you don't have to go the fridge with dirty hands.
  • After you blend your fruits, put the smoothie in the refrigerator to improve the taste.


  • If you are just mixing ingredients, be prepared to taste something interesting, gross, or delicious.
  • Watch out for the blender's blade. Running or not, it can give a nasty slice. Use a bottle brush to clean around the blades, even when disassembled.
  • Put the cap on the blender. Some models need the lid held down. Get used to your blender.
  • If you are not an adult, have an adult help you cut the fruit.

Things You'll Need

  • Blender or food processor
  • Spatula
  • Knife
  • Cutting board
  • Drinking glass

Article Info

Categories: Smoothies