No excuses for skipping breakfast! This healthy, homemade Easy Banana Spinach Protein Smoothie recipe takes minutes to make and will keep you full until lunch. It’s a great option to refuel post-workout, too!
Not only is it the best green protein shake recipe (in my opinion), it couldn’t be easier to make and can even be frozen ahead of time to make healthy eating a snap.
What do you put in a spinach smoothie?
This Banana Spinach Protein Smoothie is filled with a combination of protein, carbs and fiber – a delicious mix of ingredients to tide you over until lunch time:
- Almond Butter
- Greek yogurt
- Protein Powder
Why put Protein Powder in Smoothies?
Adding protein powder to smoothies is an easy way to increase your protein intake during the day. I always feel fuller longer when I add more protein to my diet.
This Easy Banana Spinach Protein Smoothie recipe includes protein powder PLUS protein-rich Greek yogurt AND almond butter for a triple punch of protein goodness.
(Can you feel those muscles growing already?)
Can Green Smoothies Taste Good?
Absolutely! Even my kids love this spinach and protein smoothie recipe. Why? Because you can’t taste the spinach! Seriously.
Personally I love spinach in any form, but the flavors of banana, yogurt and almond butter are what shine in this simple protein smoothie.
So feel free to be generous with your handful of nutrient-rich spinach in this gorgeous green smoothie.
Feel free to play around with this one. My kids prefer vanilla flavored Greek yogurt because it’s sweeter (duh!). But my husband and I will often use plain Greek yogurt.
Or you can also try substituting whole milk yogurt. The higher fat content will give it a slightly richer flavor.
Not a dairy fan or have a milk allergy or sensitivity? There are a number of different dairy-free yogurts on the market – made with almonds, soy or coconut milk, to name a few – that will keep this smoothie rich and creamy, too.
Do I have to use almond butter in this green smoothie recipe?
Of course not! You can swap in whatever nut butter you like – or whatever you have on hand.
We have a peanut-free house because of my daughter has a severe peanut allergy, so almond butter is our go-to nut butter. We alternate between Barney Butter and Kirkland Almond Butter. Neither have added sugars, which we prefer.
But peanut butter would be delicious here (think peanut butter and bananas together – yum!!).
Cashew butter would also be tasty, as would any number of the seed butters. Experiment to find the flavor combination that tastes perfect for you.
How to make smoothies in advance and freeze them
I love smoothies but pulling one together on a hectic morning can sometimes be too much to think about.
Don’t have an extra time in the morning to whip up this Easy Banana Spinach Protein Smoothie? No worries. I have two options for making this smoothie in advance:
- Make a quadruple batch of this spinach protein smoothie and freeze it in individual portions. Simply pop one container in the fridge the day before so it defrosts overnight. (Note: If you enjoy large smoothies, you may also need to pop it in the microwave to defrost it a bit.)
- You can actually freeze individual portions of ingredients for this Easy Banana Spinach Protein Smoothie in zip top bags.
- Portion out your Greek yogurt in ice cube trays and freeze. You can do the same with almond butter if you don’t keep it on hand normally.
- Add a couple cubes of frozen yogurt to a zip top bag along with your banana, almond butter (if frozen) and spinach (YES, you can freeze spinach for smoothies!).
- When you’re ready to make your smoothie, grab a pre-made bag from the freezer and dump it in the blender along with your remaining ingredients and enjoy a freshly made smoothie in no time flat!
Tip: Trying to pulverize a frozen banana in the blender can be challenging. I suggest semi-defrosting any rock solid ingredients in the microwave before adding to the blender. They don’t need to be completely defrosted. Even thirty seconds will help ensure they more evenly distribute in the smoothie.
Put the right ingredients to your blender first (so you have a smooth smoothie)
The order in which you add ingredients to the blender can make a bit difference in how smooth your smoothie actually is (as well as avoid getting ingredients stuck in the blender’s blades).
- Add liquids first. Always. It doesn’t matter if your recipe calls for cow’s milk, almond milk, coconut milk or just plain old water, you should always add your liquid(s) to the blender first. Why? The blender uses the liquids to create that cool tornado inside the jar and helps it pull down the other ingredients into the blade action more easily.
- Next up are protein powders. Add these directly to the liquid in the blender jar to avoid any chance of a chalky aftertaste that could result from it not being fully incorporated into the smoothie during the blend time.
- Get those greens in! Who knew that greens in smoothies are so tasty? There are a variety of greens that you can add to smoothies. Spinach seems to blend the easiest because its leaves are so tender, but heartier greens like kale or collard greens can be tougher to incorporate easily. I suggest removing the tough ribs and any woody stems from these greens before adding to the jar.
- Layer in the solids next starting with the softest ingredients first. This can include yogurts and nut butters if you’re using them as well as seeds and raw nuts.
- Fresh fruit and veggies (that are not greens) can now be added. This mostly includes softer fruits like berries and melons as well as avocados.
- The final add to any smoothie should always be your frozen ingredients, including ice. These guys can be rock hard and you want them on top so the sheer weight of them pushes everything else down into the blade action.
More tips for making the best smoothies at home
- Smoothie too thick? Add more liquid and give it a good stir to incorporate the liquid before blending again. You’re trying to get that liquid as close to the base as possible to help with the blending action.
- Smoothie not sweet enough? Add any number of sweeteners to the jar, including honey, maple syrup, stevia or even a whole pitted date. Start with a small amount, blend and then taste and adjust as needed.
- Smoothie not blending well? Start the blender on low and then gradually increase it to higher speeds to fully blend everything together. You can also try adding a bit of additional liquid to see if that will help smooth out the texture during blending.
- Smoothie not cold enough? Use frozen fruit. This keeps the smoothie chilled instead of adding ice. Bonus: frozen fruit also makes smoothies thicker.
To make this Easy Banana Spinach Protein Smoothie recipe, you’ll need:
- A good blender. Now I know not everyone can splurge on a top-tier blender, but I highly suggest you save up your birthday gift cards because they make a huge difference in how quickly you can pull together one of these green smoothie beauties.
Note: I own Blendtec and love it, but many people are also thrilled with their Vitamix blenders.These high-powered blenders do a much better job of tackling rock hard items like ice and frozen yogurt cubes and are able to decimate that spinach into microscopic pieces (which is key when you’re trying to convince a non-green smoothie person to try a green smoothie).
To be clear, a powerful blender is not a “must have” to enjoy this protein smoothie recipe. But if you’re someone who is a smoothie junkie, you’ll appreciate not having to reblend your ingredients repeatedly just to get rid of the big frozen chunks of fruit.
- These measuring cups are awesome because they are magnetic and stick together. No more lost measuring cups!
- This vanilla protein powder is our current favorite. We’ve tried a number of them but keep coming back to this one. It’s organic, too!
If you like this protein smoothie recipe, here are more delicious ways to get your smoothie fix:
Hosting a group for brunch? Serve a round of these adorable Cherry Almond Smoothie Shooters.
Add a shot of caffeine to your morning smoothie with this Easy Coffee Smoothie Recipe.
Spring berries are coming! Enjoy them in this Strawberry Mango Protein Smoothie.
Fiber-rich oatmeal is a fantastic add-in to this tasty Blueberry Oatmeal Smoothie.
Dessert for breakfast? Yes you can with this Pumpkin Pie Protein Smoothie recipe!
Click HERE for more tasty breakfast and brunch recipe ideas!
- 1 tablespoon almond butter
- 2/3 cup Greek yogurt
- 1/2 banana
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 scoop vanilla protein powder
- 1 huge handful spinach
- Add all ingredients to blender and puree to desired consistency.
Want to make a batch of smoothies? Check the post for tips on how to make these smoothies in advance!
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 365Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 1gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 13mgSodium: 153mgCarbohydrates: 26gFiber: 6gSugar: 13gProtein: 46g