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Best Smoothie Recipe: “Perfect Life Hack”

3O8A1266 copyIt’s spring and the sun’s out! Now that I’m more consistent with  cycling workouts and eating healthy, that only means one thing: I’m making smoothies!

Here’s my favorite: the insanely yummy “Perfect Life Hack” (recipe below). It packs a punch of 9 different fruits and 11 vegetables? Yeah …

Warning: Your friends won’t rave about how pretty it is. In fact, it’s a fugly purple-mauve. (Ladies, go here for dainty, lavender-lace smoothies that you wanna bathe in).

Cramming fruit into the blender is the perfect life hack.

This smoothie is function over form. It’s a meal-replacement energy kick that’s better than drugs. And knowing I’m getting a week’s worth of fruits and veggies is peace of mind. Not to mention that it makes my evening burger and beer relatively guilt-free.

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I’ve been making smoothies for about a year. I first got inspired by my old friend Lucy, who made a zesty carrot and lemon special at her Dorset home, summer 2012. But it wasn’t until I got wind of Dr. Oz’s 3-day detox that I bought a $99 Ninja and went to town. They were easy, healthy, and tasted great! Trifecta!

I’ve been experimenting ever since. I like to meal-replace for lunch. When I’m traveling for work, I tend not to eat as healthy as I’d like (like Afghanistan, Lebanon, or Brazil). When I’m back in the US, I usually work from my home studio, so I have the flexibility to eat when and what I want!

3O8A1286 copyI mess around with the recipe, depending on my mood. I’ve stopped using kale; too much of a chore to chew (I substitute spinach). If I want my smoothie creamier, I’ll add more bananas. If I want it sweeter, I’ll add more mango or mixed berries. If I’m especially hungry or I know I need more calories because I did a long ride, I’ll double or triple the avocado.

This smoothie [is] a meal-replacement energy kick that’s better than drugs.

Last Christmas, my brother and his wife splurged on a Vitamix. If the Ninja is a Honda Accord, the Vitamix is a Tesla. That same week, I read this article in Bloomberg BusinessWeek.

That’s when I realized I’m not making smoothies because I’m some evolved foodie. It’s because I’m a dude!

I don’t love to cook. I love to eat. I prefer to eat healthy, but not if I regularly have to work too hard at it. Getting 20 fruits and vegetables delivered to my door (Peapod or Safeway) and then taking 15 minutes to Ninja the hell out of them to make meal-replacements for 2-3 days — now, that’s good times!

3O8A1288 copyOr as Bloomberg author Joshua Green wrote: “Cramming fruit into a blender . . .  [is] the perfect life hack. . . a whole universe has sprung up to support the hapless male user. The Web abounds with recipes and video clips demonstrating all sorts of easy concoctions. . . . A Vitamix is essentially failproof; with a banana or a splash of apple cider, even an old shoe could be made delicious. The seductive ease of liquefied foods eventually makes ordinary methods of food preparation seem as burdensome and archaic as churning your own butter.”

Hmmm, guilty as charged! But “hapless?” Come on, Joshua!

“Perfect Life Hack” smoothie. That’s a good name! Better than “Ryan Secrest’s Brazilian Thunder Green Smoothie,” right?!

Hope you enjoy it.


RECIPE: Perfect Life Hack Smoothie

makes four 16-oz servings



8 oz mango juice

8 oz coconut juice

8 oz lemonade

banana, 2

organic green apple, 1

mixed berries, 2 cups (strawberries, blackberries, blueberries, raspberries)



organic spinach, 5 oz bag

organic cucumber, 1/4

ginger, 1 thumb

tomato, 1

avocado, 1/2

broccoli, 3-4 heads

cauliflower, 1/4 head

corn, frozen, 1/3 cup

peas, frozen, 1/3 cup

garlic, 1 clove

onion, 1/4 large


Flax seed, 1 Tbs



Mix in a ninja or other mixer. Organic items noted because of measured pesticides in these. Mix half, add rest, mix (half spinach at beginning and half at end). Top-notch smoothie-ready mango juice available here. Mix with granola.

Updated, January 2017: To reduce sugars and calories, substitute unsweetened almond milk for juices. Simplify as desired to make it easier. Another version I like is for the days you don’t want veggies: 1 cup almond milk, 1/2 banana, 1/2 cup blueberries, scoop of egg-based protein powder. This is a simple, fast energy boost before your exercise; has about 40g carbs and 40g protein, and low on the sugars and fats. As always, don’t go too crazy with the smoothies, because it’s easy to drink more calories and sugars than you want to.

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