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Sneak cold-brew coffee, papaya and more into your smoothies

Addie Broyles
Olympic swimmer Natalie Coughlin has a new cookbook out that includes a recipe for these strawberry oat smoothies. [Contributed by Erin Kunke]

Maybe your morning routine already includes a go-to smoothie.

Maybe you are already putting parsley in your green drink or you have a freezer full of diced fruit just waiting for the blender, or you have already mastered the cold-brew coffee that doubles as breakfast.

But in case you don't have a smoothie shop in your kitchen, here are four smoothie recipes to reinvigorate your Vitamix.

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How to make a healthy smoothie, not a calorie-packed milkshake

You can prep the ingredients for many smoothies in bulk ahead of time and then freeze the ingredients together in individual bags. Don't add the liquid until you're ready to blend the drink, but you can freeze fruit, greens, oats, chia seeds and even peanut butter. The frozen ingredients make thicker smoothies, which travel well, especially in the hotter months, but you also can thin the smoothie by adding extra almond (or soy or oat or other nut) milk.

Mommy and Me Green Smoothies

Everyone needs a good recipe for a green drink. My goal was to find one that my husband and son would enjoy as much as I do. Smoothies are versatile. If you want to substitute baby kale for spinach, go ahead. If you prefer coconut water to almond milk, make the change. I just wanted to give my version, which I find utterly delicious and unbelievably healthy. This is our morning “go” juice.

— Aurora Satler

2 cups spinach, washed thoroughly

1/2 cup roughly chopped English or Persian cucumber

1 cup parsley

1 cup diced yellow mango (from 1 mango)

2 frozen bananas

2 cups almond milk, unsweetened

2 tablespoons peanut butter

In a strong blender, blend the spinach, cucumber, parsley, mango, bananas, almond milk and peanut butter together. Makes 5 cups. 

— From "The Ultimate New Mom's Cookbook: A Complete Food and Nutrition Resource for Expectant Mothers, Babies and Toddlers" by Aurora Satler (Page Street Publishing, $22.99)

Belly Feel Good Smoothie

Papaya and pineapple possess enzymes and compounds such as bromelain that are fantastic for promoting excellent digestion. Ginger is also a great digestive aid, and aloe is soothing for your GI system. When we feel stressed and our stomach turns a bit, this is a great smoothie to help rebalance and feel good, starting in our bellies — because we know our bellies need to feel good for us to truly feel good!

— Kimberly Snyder

2 cups diced fresh pineapple

2 cups peeled and diced fresh papaya

1 medium ripe banana

1 1/2 cups coconut water

1 tablespoon fresh lime

1/2 teaspoon peeled and minced fresh ginger

1 teaspoon aloe juice

Pinch of sea salt

Combine all the ingredients in a blender. Starting on low speed, slowly increase the speed to high and blend the ingredients together until smooth, around 45 seconds.

— From "Recipes for Your Perfectly Imperfect Life: Everyday Ways to Live and Eat for Health, Healing and Happiness" by Kimberly Snyder (Harmony Books, $19.99)

Strawberry Oat Smoothie

You can use a vanilla-flavored kefir in this recipe, if you like or have it on hand.

2 cups plain kefir

2 cups frozen strawberries

1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats

2 tablespoons ground flaxseed

1 very ripe fresh or frozen banana

2 teaspoons honey (optional)

In a blender, combine the kefir and strawberries and blend on high speed until the strawberries are fully pureed and blended. If the mixture is having a hard time getting started, add a splash of water. Add the oats, flaxseed and banana. Blend on high speed until the oats are fully blended into the smoothie, about 30 seconds. Taste the smoothie, and if it needs more sweetness, add the honey. Blend briefly to combine and serve.

— From "Cook to Thrive: Recipes to Fuel Body and Soul" by Natalie Coughlin (Clarkson Potter, $25)

Frothy Banana Coffee

This frothy morning drink is part smoothie, part cold-brew coffee.

1 banana

3 tablespoons cold-brew coffee (see below)

1 1/4 cups almond milk

2 teaspoons maple syrup, or to taste

1/2 teaspoon cacao nibs

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon chia seeds

Peel the banana and cut into 4 equal pieces. Freeze for at least 3 hours.

Place the banana, cold-brew base and almond milk in a food processor or high-speed blender and process until smooth.

Divide between two glasses, sweeten with maple syrup and top with the cacao nibs, cinnamon and chia seeds. Serve immediately. Serves 2.

Cold-Brew Coffee Base

9 ounces freshly ground coffee

Combine the ground coffee with 6 cups cold water in a pitcher. Mix well, cover and let rest in the fridge for 24 hours. With a French press or a nut bag, strain the ground coffee out of the base, pressing down hard on the coffee grounds. The base will keep for about a week, refrigerated, in an airtight container. Add water and ice to base for desired taste. Makes about 4 cups.

— From "The Ultimate Vegan Breakfast Book: 80 Mouthwatering Plant-Based Recipes You'll Want to Wake Up For" by Nadine Horn and Jörg Mayer (The Experiment, $19.95)