Classic Green Monster


It is hard to believe that the 2-year anniversary of the Green Monster is coming up on January 20th!

In January 2009, I felt a huge void in my life. I was unhappy with my career and I was often up late at night until 3 or 4 in the morning worrying about work. I dragged all day long and I was turning into someone I didn’t recognize anymore. I started blending green vegetables in my blender after reading about Kris Carr’s green juices. While I didn’t have a juicer, I did have a blender, and I was excited to blend my green ‘juice’ any way that I could.

In my Story of the Green Monster post, I explained:

Determined to feel alive once again, I crammed the healthiest foods into my blender and I blended my little heart out. Of course, the first few attempts looked horrific and they tasted no better. But, I didn’t care. I drank every last drop of those green monsters before I made the long commute to work each morning. The green monster not only gave me energy, but it represented something much deeper than that- inner peace and self-love. I knew that the stress I had put myself through over the past few years was nothing short of damaging to every cell in my body. I created the Green Monsters as a way to take time out for my health. Even if I knew it was going to be a hellish day, drinking my Green Monster in the morning provided me with a sense of calm in my life.

This was one of my first concoctions:


No almond milk, just kale, an English cucumber, and baby carrots. lol. It was scary to say the least!


Thankfully, my Green Monsters have improved greatly since those initial days.

On January 26, 2009, I gave my two weeks notice at my job. It was a very, very bad week for me and I was at an all-time low in my life. I drank those green monsters every single morning despite everything going on. I imagined that I was Popeye with superhuman strength. And boy did I need it.

I still receive a lot of emails and tweets from people who have just tried their first green monster. Many people have challenged themselves to drink Green Monsters in 2011 and I’m always excited to hear about other’s experiences! The most frequent message I receive is, ‘I thought they looked so gross, but they actually taste so delicious! Now I am hooked.’

I am also asked a lot what my classic go-to recipe is so I thought it would be fun to do a post on my most frequently enjoyed Green Monster recipe.

This is a recipe that I keep coming back to again and again and it never fails me.



Classic Green Monster Smoothie

Vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, no bake/raw, oil-free, refined sugar-free, soy-free



To this day, Green Monsters are one of my favorite drinks for glowing skin and increased energy. If you are newbie, feel free to start off with baby spinach since its taste is undetectable, but I encourage you to experiment with kale, romaine lettuce, or other leafy greens as well. Just be sure to use a sturdy high-speed blender that can handle the task of blending thick greens.  If your blender is on the weaker side, stick with spinach as it blends much easier.

1 (2 cups)
Prep Time
Cook time
0 Minutes
Total Time


  • 1 cup almond milk or other non-dairy milk
  • 1 cup destemmed kale leaves or baby spinach
  • 1 large ripe frozen banana, chopped into chunks
  • 1 tablespoon almond butter or peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon chia seeds or ground flaxseed
  • Pinch of ground cinnamon
  • 2 to 3 ice cubes


  1. Add all ingredients into a high-speed blender and blend until smooth.


When I am feeling a little frisky, I love to add in some powders too! I keep Navitas Maca powder, Vega Shake & Go, and Amazing Grass Wheat Grass on hand whenever the budget allows.


Yesterday I added into the classic mix: 1 tsp Maca, 1 tbsp Vanilla Almond Shake & Go, and 1/2 scoop wheatgrass powder. It was my first time trying Vega Vanilla Almond and I thought it was pretty good, but I greatly prefer the Choc-O-lot flavour. I love making a Chocolate-Mint GM using Vega’s Choc-O-Lot and some fresh mint leaves.

Add your liquid in first. This just helps the blender do its job better.


Next add in your powders, chia seeds or ground flax, and your nut butter:


Now add the greens. I use two handfuls of whatever green I have on hand. I most often use spinach, but I also like to use red or green kale now that my Vita-Mix can handle it.


Finally, add the banana. The weight helps pack all the ingredients down!


Blend away until smooth!


I added in 2 large ice cubes and blended some more.

Pour into a glass and enjoy!


I love my Glass Dharma straw.

Mmm, this one is absolutely delicious. Creamy, sweet, smooth, and loaded with nutrients!


I’m always asked how I can drink smoothies during the cold winter months and my answer is easy:

I often drink Green Monsters following my workout when I am often craving something liquid and cold.


I’m also always asked if you can taste the spinach and the answer is no. =) Kale, on the other hand…YES (unless you make it super sweet to overpower the bitter quality of the kale).

Good to the last drop!


Other Mentionables:

1) Need more encouragement to eat your veggies? Check out this article: ‘Want a Golden Glow? Don’t Bother with a Suntan- Eat Your Greens Instead.

2) My Winter 2011 training plan is now up on my Races page. I will be talking about this in more detail soon!

3) Check out these 30 new Green Monster reader recipes on GMM.

Are you a smoothie or ‘Green Monster’ fan? What’s your favourite go-to recipe?

Let's get social! Follow Angela on Instagram (@ohsheglows + @theglowspot), Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Google+

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{ 305 comments… read them below or add one }

Namaste Gurl January 14, 2011

Random question, where do you get your glass straws– glass dharma? What size and diameter are they? I think I’m going to order me some, as I HATE using those plastic straws!


Angela (Oh She Glows) January 15, 2011

Yes they are Glass Dharma :) I think it is the largest straw they have :)


andrea January 15, 2011

i just had my first green monster today and i loved it! i have to admit i was skeptical, but i took my first sip and i am hooked. i emailed my sister the virgin monster recipe and i’m hoping she will like it just as much! i had one for breakfast and not only did it give me great energy to start my day with, it was really satisfying. starting the day off with something so healthy sets you up to make healthy choices the rest of the day. thanks so much for sharing and inspiring!


Angela (Oh She Glows) January 15, 2011

So glad to hear this!


Heidi January 15, 2011

Hi Angela, have you ever tried using frozen spinach (those blocks you find in the freezer section) in a Green Monster, and if so, does it work as well? I tend to buy fresh greens less frequently in the winter and the idea of having a stock of frozen bananas & spinach on hand is appealing.


TE Willans January 15, 2011

Second day of monsters. Yum. I am using coconut milk and adding a few raw almonds which does make for a slightly crunchy rather than a smoothie!!! Oh and as I dont have a blender and am using my food processor I find adding the liquid last means less all over the bench top!!


Jeannette January 17, 2011

I did it, I tried one! I did the classic version (though minus the chia seeds) and it is fabulous! You can’t taste the spinach at all. Much, much yummier than the spirulina in OJ I used to force down.


Kelsey January 17, 2011

I made this today, minus the flax, and it was delicious!


Melanie Robinson January 17, 2011

Angela! I am hooked! I have vowed to myself to do my own little ’30 Day GM Challenge’….
Have you ever used bunches of spinach (adult spinach vs. baby spinach that is bagged)?


Angela (Oh She Glows) January 17, 2011

that is great!

yes I have used bunched…I find the flavour is a bit stronger so I tend to use a bit less


Melanie Robinson January 19, 2011

I am not going to lie, I think I am a green monster addict. Two days in a row I have indulged in TWO! Loving the Chia Seeds, by the way!


Mandy January 19, 2011

I made the Classic this morning for breakfast, and I loved it! I’ve been attempting green smoothies of my own but have never been quite able to get the mix right. This was wonderful. Thanks for sharing the recipe with those of us who are new to the blog!


Sara January 19, 2011

Hey Angela!
Some questions for you, please?:
Which Vitamix model did you get?
Do you know where it’s sold in Canada? (i looked online but i couldn’t find anyplaces besides Ontario.)
What food processor do you use? or do you just use the Vitamix?
If you can help, it’s much appreciated, I’m looking for a good blender and food processor and I trust and value your opinion.


Michelle January 22, 2011

I have a question! Can I make a big batch of a green monster and keep it in my fridge? Will it stay good thru out the week?


Angela (Oh She Glows) January 25, 2011

You can make it the night beforehand, but it doesnt keep longer than about 1 day. Hope this helps!


Sherry January 25, 2011

Hey there, I tried my first Green Monster this morning. I had Kale in the fridge so I used that. My twin 3 yr olds helped me make it and instantly made themselves green mustaches and were asking for more. I am going to have to make double batches of this so that I can have some and they can too. What a great way to get myself back on track to a healthy ME.


Angela (Oh She Glows) January 25, 2011

Im happy to hear this! :)


Gemma January 25, 2011

drinking my first! love it! :)


Frisbee January 29, 2011

I was wasting away on twitter trying to find something to cure my boredom – and ZANG – someone I follow tweeted this post. Now, I am not quite as bored. Thanks for posting nice material. – Frisbee


shirley January 30, 2011

Do you know what the nutritional information is for this shake? Looks delicious–can’t wait to try!


Danielle February 2, 2011

I *finally* made my first green monster last week and OMG, it was delicious! I’m sad that I waited this long, but now I can’t stop making them. Thank you so much for all of the delicious vegan recipes – you’re one of my main sources for vegan ideas!


Courtney February 12, 2011

I make similar green monsters. Thank you for the inspiration to eat healthier foods and becoming a healthier person. I check your site everyday to see whats new. Although I have much more work to do to improve my diet, this always gives me great inspiration to try and stay on track. Your amazing!


quinn April 19, 2012

Can’t go wrong with such tasty ingredients! I am a die-hard smoothie girl thanks to the vitamix, but for some reason no matter how tasty green smoothies might be, I have to force myself to choke them down because I am repulsed by the colour. I never end up finishing one. You inspire me to keep trying though! Maybe all I need is an opaque cup with a lid.


Angela (Oh She Glows) April 20, 2012

haha Ive heard from readers who have to drink it from an opaque cup! worth a shot :)


Kristin April 27, 2012

I love this smoothie so much! I have been having it for the past few months since I saw it, I swear I am becoming addicted, haha :)


Darlene May 2, 2012

I’ve tried my Green Monster Smoothie using spinach, peanut butter, mango, skim milk and banana. It is GREAT! My family loves them. Now I’m going to try adding flax or wheat germ to it.


Tricia May 4, 2012

I make this in the morning I just didnt know they were called green monsters!!! lol I have recently gone on a vegan diet. And I have to tell you, I feel great. I have never had this much energy. I have been on it for 18 days, and I havent had one headache (usually get at least 3-4 a week) or a hot flash (menopause) since I started plus my fibromyalgia feels better. I have also started an exercise program of walking (at least 1-2 miles) per day, 3 sets of sit ups and push ups per day and weight lifting 2x a week. Words can not express how good I feel. I have done alot of research on vegan diets and recipes and I havent fixed anything that I havent liked. I even made my own “cheese”, it even shredded. :-)


Angela (Oh She Glows) May 4, 2012

Hey Tricia, that is awesome to hear! Congrats on all your wonderful changes.


ErinC May 26, 2012

Just made this for late breakfast with one handful curly kale and one handful spinach, almond milk, almond butter, flax & banana- it was DELICIOUS. Couldn’t taste the kale at all, almost tasted like a decadent dessert without meaning to.


Molly Philbin May 28, 2012

So good! I couldn’t even taste the spinach. I didn’t have any seeds or powders, but I did put in a tsp of coconut oil, which was great.


Rena May 30, 2012

This was my first time ever trying the Green Monster and while my husband thinks I’m crazy I think it is insanely delicious :))


Angela (Oh She Glows) May 30, 2012

Glad to hear that Rena!


Char June 8, 2012

I finally tried this today and it was delicious! Thank you so much for inspiring me to keep active, healthy, and plant-based :)


Laura June 16, 2012

Do you recommend waiting a certain amount of time after adding the chia seeds, to allow the shake to thicken?


Linsey Huffman June 28, 2012

I am thrilled to see you using a glass straw!!!!


Jenn June 29, 2012

Where did you find the glass straw? Random but I hate to waste and use the plastic ones. btw- just tried this smoothie and I LOVE IT!


Angela (Oh She Glows) June 29, 2012

Hey Jenn,

Its’ from a company called Glass D’harma. They have a website here: I like the really thick straw for smoothies.


Sara July 7, 2012

I just made my first Green Monster and, while it was delicious, I couldn’t get mine to be smooth like in the pictures. I used kale and no mattered how long I had it in my blender it came out with specks of kale instead of the green smooth color I see. Its more like a yellow green speckled monster haha. Am I using the wrong blender? How can I get it to be non-speckly and smooth? Help! Thank you :-)


Sejad July 12, 2012

Hello, I had a question for you or anyone on here who makes Green monsters, do you need Vitamix or can I use let’s say a Ninja blender? Also I was thinking for getting a Vitamix and would like to know which brand is the best for the buck, I live in Ontario so I do not know where to shop for one.


Angela (Oh She Glows) July 12, 2012

Ive heard from other readers who love their Ninja, so I cant see why it wouldnt work! Worth a shot. I bought my vitamix from their website, but I hear that Costco does vitamix tours for a lower price. worth checking out.


Elle bakes July 13, 2012

Wow, I never thought to try spinach in a shake, mmm it was delicious! I made my own recipe based off your one and shared it on my blog that I just created today, I’ve referenced your recipe, the link is here if your interested, would love for you to check it out :)
I love your blog and can’t wait to try more recipes from it!!


Lisa August 4, 2012

Here’s another to add to your list of GM’s:
1 C. Milk of you choice, I use almond unsweetened
2 handfuls spinach
1/2 C. Strawberries
1/4 C. Blackberries (I use frozen, due to non availability)
Scoop protein powder
1/2 lemon, juiced
Flaxseed (how ever much you like)


Laura E August 8, 2012


I have been visiting your site for a few weeks now and finally got around to making my first Classic Green Monster! So delicious!!

I also wanted to bring up that I use a Ninja and it blended up just as nice as in your picture.

Thank you so much for this site hun.

Take Care,



Angela (Oh She Glows) August 8, 2012

Glad to hear that Laura! I’ve heard great things about the Ninja :)


Jen August 28, 2012


I am new to the Vegan world. It is something I have been thinking about for awhile and finially jumped in with both feet….and my husband too. Your story and blog have given me motivation to really want to do this. I have a new appreciation for food and am sooooo excited about our new lifestyle.

I have been eyeing up your green monster recipe for a year and finially gave it a try this week. What have I been waiting for you ask? Good question and I am kicking myself in the booty for not trying it sooner. It is the the most deliousious smoothie I have ever had….hands down! I find myself thinking about them throughout the day and am excited to get up in the morning to make one.

Thank you so much for your wonderfully amazing recipes!



Angela (Oh She Glows) August 28, 2012

Hey Jen, Im so happy you enjoyed it! Thanks for sharing.


marg james August 29, 2012

why not just eat the food whole?


Angela (Oh She Glows) August 30, 2012

You certainly can eat it whole. What I’ve found for me is that I consume a lot more veggies if I blend them. Its so fast to prepare and drink down, I can easily cram 4 servings of veggies into one blended juice or smoothie without even blinking an eye. Do whatever works for you though!


Mike September 1, 2012

I’m glad you found something that works for you. I tell my friends all the time take care of yourself and your problems will resolve themselves. They don’t seem to understand this. If your health everything else will work out. That is what I believe.


Stephanie September 4, 2012

I use to make a lot of green smooties until it started to give me really bad soar troat and cough. I would stop for a few days, the soar troat and cough would eventually go away. As soon as I made another of those drinks it came back. So much for trying to be healthy!!
After some researched I found out that kale is better eaten cooked than raw!


Stephanie October 13, 2012

Actually found out it was not the Kale but raw cashew that were responsible for the soar troat and cough. Never eating those raw again. Just putting it out there in case anyone ever gets the same problem. As it turns out cashew nuts would be in the same family as poison ivy. I am happy I can get back to my green monsters now!!


Jes September 7, 2012

i tried the green monster today for a recovery drink after spin and lifting! LOVED IT! new favorite post workout drink!!


Northwoods Mama September 13, 2012

So I think I owe you an apology…I totally did not believe you that this would taste good! I’ve tried a few of your other recipes over the past 6 months or so and really enjoyed them (especially Detox Salad and Vegan Shepard’s pie!) but I just couldn’t wrap my head around drinking something that green! I thought it was one of those things that “doesn’t taste too bad considering how healthy it is” Well, I got a new Magic Bullet for my birthday so I decided to try it. I thought “If it’s gross I can always dump it out!” Wow! I am so glad I did! I love it!
Thank you!


Jacks September 19, 2012

These are great! I wanted everyone to know I made a batch and it was way too much and I was going out of town. Didn’t want to waste it, so I put it in the freezer and drank it when I got back and it was still the same creamy green as when it went it.

So, the moral of this story is you can make them in huge batches and freeze them. Try freezing them in the little yogurt cups for a nice bit of green monster ice cream. Let sit for 5 to 10 minutes and they are perfect.


Jessica October 6, 2012

First of all I love your blog, it has really inspired me and helped me out.
This may be a silly question but…..
With this great Green Monster recipe can I make a batch the night before so it will be ready in the morning for on the go? should I freeze it? will it still taste fine the next morning?


Angela (Oh She Glows) October 7, 2012

Hey Jessica, Yes you can make it the night before. Just be sure to put it in a sealed container in the fridge and stir it well before consuming in the AM. ENjoy!


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