Classic Green Monster

299 comments

greenmonster   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:

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

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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.

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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.

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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.

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

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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.

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

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Blend away until smooth!

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

Pour into a glass and enjoy!

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I love my Glass Dharma straw.

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

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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.

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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!

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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?

Previous Posts

{ 299 comments… read them below or add one }

Liz O October 16, 2012

You finally convinced me to try a green monster! After feeling sluggish and bloated after a weekend full of beer, pizza, and tempura fried sushi with spicy mayo I needed to help my body recover. After reading your post and all of the comments I decided to give it a whirl (har har). I was more than a little apprehensive when my finished product looked like Nickelodeon slime, but it tastes wonderful! I kept it simple: spinach, light soy milk, chia seeds and a frozen banana. Delicious! And I was even able to skip my morning cup(s) of coffee. I can see a new routine starting. Thank you so much!

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Natalie October 20, 2012

this was my first try making a green smoothie and it turned out PERFECT! (I’m sipping it right now) I used my homemade hazelnut milk and it gave it a creamy nutty flavor.

My husband looked at me like I was crazy trying it and said that it sounds like a weird combination. After seeing how much I enjoyed it he wanted to have some and was quite surprised that he liked it too! =) He couldn’t taste the spinach at all.

Thanks for sharing this!

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kara November 19, 2012

Hi Angela!
I love this version of the green monster. Do you know how many calories is in this one? And is the almond butter a good source of protein? Thank you!

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Tahesha December 6, 2012

This looks sooooo yummy!

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Kat December 6, 2012

Any suggestions for replacing the banana? My daughter is allergic to them.

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Sarah December 8, 2012

Made this for the first time, delicious!!!

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Liza December 19, 2012

I made and drank my first Green Monster this morning. I’m echoing so many others out there, but WOW. I had no idea that blending such simple things (nut butter, banana, almond milk) with so much spinach would actually taste that good! I’m absolutely amazed, and sold. Sold sold sold.
I am approaching 40 and I want to change. I eat too much meat, too much dairy. Never any vegetables. It’s time I grew up and gave my body something healthy- and this is it!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) December 19, 2012

I’m so glad you enjoyed it Liza!

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cassie January 2, 2013

Hi! Stumbled apon your blog and greenmonstermovement.com today! Aaaand went to the store right after work! I got lucky with a .99 cent bag full of ripe organic bananas and organic spinach was on sale! I came home with the thought that these smoothies would be just for me because my boyfriend would be repulsed by the spinach addition! What another wonderful surprise I got, he was actually willing to try it with no complaints at all! Except I’m not allowed to put coconut milk in his! Lol. He also thought it had monster energy drink in it…men. Anyway, I cannot wait to try these in the morning! Hoping I get the same great results and effects as everyone else, and maybe it can help kickstart me to eat better!

Thanks!

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Michelle January 5, 2013

When you make your smoothies you usually get about 2-3 cups of it. Do you drink it all or you leave it for later ? Or Eric drinks it ? :)

I’m curious because when I make my smoothies it’s often too much and I end up drinking all of it which is way too much for my stomach…. I don’t want to leave it for later becase they turn brown (from the banana) and dont look so delicious anymore….

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 5, 2013

Yup I drink it all :)

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Adrienne January 7, 2013

Hi Angela,

I absolutely love this green monster smoothie, and your blog. I actually used the smoothie for my blog, I just made some minor changes. Of course, I added a link back to the original. I find this smoothie to be very refreshing compared to drinking coffee in the morning. Well, I wish you luck with your upcoming cookbook. I am looking to seeing it, and all the new recipes you have come up with.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 7, 2013

Thank you Adrienne!

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sharon January 10, 2013

I have not tried this yet. But I am going to this week. maybe tomorrow..Is there a fav to break me in? you should have a vote! Best green monster :)

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sharon January 10, 2013

one last question do you need a fancy blender to make these good?

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ashley allen January 11, 2013

Thank you for this recipe!! My husband and I just committed to a vegan diet for 2013 and your green machines have saved my mornings!!! Thank you!!

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Stacy January 17, 2013

What are your favorite pro powders?

What is your opinion of garden of life raw pro?

And do u get any gi issues from combining protein powder, fats, and fruit?

Thanks!

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Tami Ernst January 19, 2013

Hi Angela and Everyone,

My name is Tami, I live in Houston, Texas and I am thrilled to announce that I just made (and devoured every last drop) of my 1st Green Monster! Like many of us, I don’t have much time between work etc., to make healthful eating a reality everyday so I am excited to incorporate the GM & Angela’s other recipes into my diet.

I used a few ingredients I’m familiar with:
Spinach
Banana
Ice

And a few that are brand new to me…
English Cucumber (Delish, so light and crispy)
Almond Milk (Carrageenan free thanks to Angela’s post on this harmful ingredient)
Almond Butter (Yum!! Who know this stuff existed? It’s amazing!)
Chai Seeds (Also yum)
Kefir (Again, also yum)

I was really impressed at how tasty it was, and now I have a very happy tummy.

Thank you Angela!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 21, 2013

Hey Tami, Im so glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for sharing

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Katherine January 26, 2013

I realize I’m late to the game, but I was flipping through your blog and was so inspired by your Green Monster post! Thank you for sharing your experiences. I’ve been blending all sorts of green smoothies since reading your blog — it’s my treat that I look forward to each day. Thank you Angela!

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Zac Bakke January 28, 2013

I have been hearing that you shouldn’t eat raw maca aka maca flour. Instead it should be cooked or gelatinized. Your thoughts?

Love the green monster btw!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) January 29, 2013

Ive never heard of that before, but I will have to look into it more!

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Mary February 22, 2013

I just adore your blog and found the Monster Green Smoothie. I make one every day using spinach and my favorite protein powder, Plant Fusion. I just found Cookies and Cream but the Chocolate is lovely. I use the almond milk and frozen fruit or banana and tons of ice cubes to make it really thick and creamy. My trick is to pour into a To-Go container and then put that container into a wine cooler thingie someone gave me that i never used. My cup fits into it and while i am driving to work, my smoothie gets even smoothier and then I need to use a spoon to scoop, eat and drink it. My co-workers all ask me – WHat are you eating? Does it taste good? I tell them, you better keep your hands to yourself, that is how good it is.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) February 22, 2013

Hi Mary! Thanks for your feedback…so glad you are enjoying it!! I share your enthusiasm :)

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Jody February 28, 2013

OMG This is THE BEST recipe EVER!!! I am sipping on one right now! I am SOOO glad I found your website and have been raving about it to everyone I know, haha!! Can’t wait to try all of your recipes!!

Have a great day!! :)

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Angela (Oh She Glows) February 28, 2013

Hi Jody, So glad you like the smoothie! Thanks for trying it out.

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Kathy March 3, 2013

I am relatively new to your blog – discovered it recently when I was looking around for some new vegan recipes. I got hooked immediately! I have tried several of your recipes, and they were all delicious and manageable to make! I love how your personality shines through in your posts, and I love how beautiful the site looks. The photography is amazing! I had to comment today because I just made my first Green Monster. I have to admit, even though I love veggies, I have never found green drinks particularly appealing. But I decided to try this morning, and I am so glad I did – YUMMM!!!! Thank you!!!!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) March 3, 2013

Hi Kathy, Thanks for your lovely comment! So glad you tried it out :)

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Kathy March 5, 2013

Is it wrong to have multiple Green Monsters in a day??

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nicole March 12, 2013

Do you need a high-quality blender or can you use a $20 or $30 target blender?

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Samantha March 16, 2013

I recently discovered your blog and now I am hooked! This week, I just started making green monsters. I cantt believe how much more energetic I feel each morning. I don’t think I will go back to my cereal with milk roots. Thank you for all of the tasty recipes. I recently tried your easy GF and vegan crackers and they were amazing (& easy). Your story is very inspiring and I am very grateful for your how-to vegan posts. I am only a vegetarian now (& just as of recently), but I can’t help but feel that vegan is the way to go for me. Your posts helped me sort some of my thoughts out. They also got rid of some of the negativity I’ve been feeling from other people in my life about the vegan decision. You prove that you can eat deliciously satisfying food even without the meat, eggs, butter, and cheese. THANK YOU!

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Emily March 26, 2013

Just tried one for the very first time and I love it! Thank you so much.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) March 26, 2013

Glad to hear that Emily!!

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Christine March 28, 2013

I enjoy these green monsters, especially with a splash of orange juice! I love flax, especially when added with soy protein powder.

Thanks for being such an inspiration with these recipes! I’m definitely going for a more organic regimen.

– C xx

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Mariam March 28, 2013

Yummy! After the curiosity was just about to kill be every time I saw it on a blog or Instagram, a few months ago, I threw a bunch of baby spinach into my fave berry banana smoothie, I was pleasantly surprised when I tasted the same as usual!
I’ve experimented heaps ,more since and my new favourite combo is banana/kale/cinnamon/almond milk (I tried regular milk when I ran out of almond… it was the worst thing i’ve ever tried!) But with almond milk I actually couldn’t taste kale!

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Josie April 5, 2013

I’m going through a smoothie fad right now! I’ve been making them every afternoon to give snacking at bay from lunch until dinner and it works:) Plus it makes me eat less at dinner… bonus! :)

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Hillary April 26, 2013

Are there any good substitutions for banana? The smell of them makes me sick.

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MissChievousRN May 4, 2013

I was so inspired by this article when I first read it, that I had to make a green monster immediately! It was terrible! but I didnt follow your recipe- I just threw a bunch of stuff in my blender and choked it down…
I didnt give up and kept trying different combos. I have been trying to keep my sweets to a minimum and avoiding all forms of fructose to keep my post menopause belly to a minimum- oh yeah, and I really strongly dislike bananas…
After about a week of smoothies, some good, some bad, I realized I had started to actually CRAVE my daily monsters! I was excited everyday to whip up whatever and gulp it down, even if it wasnt the greatest….
So after a few months of trial and error, I realized Ive basically come up with the same formula as the classic monster only I use an 1/2 apple for a touch of sweetness instead of the banana. And apples have important fat fighting and detoxing enzymes so I can justify the fructose. Here are some more hints:
1. I ALWAYS add a small scoop (about a tablespoon) of granulated/powdered kelp- I buy Frontier brand (quality and price excellent) from amazon- because the greens can be very goitrogenic and combined with estrogen, I really need the iodine
2. I also splurge on green powder whenever I can (also excellent prices and options from amazon and vitacost)
3. I use whole foods 365 brand organic frozen spinach and kale- first of all, its CRAZY EASY and the frozen part is an extra plus and secondly, after buying tons of fresh organic spinach all winter, frozen is WAY CHEAPER and theres no spoilage or degrading of nutrients.
Of course garden fresh is even cheaper and better now that spring is here- and remember: dark green leafys freeze GREAT! so Im over planting like crazy!!! and planting NEW ZEALAND spinach for hot summer harvesting
4. I add a 2″ chunk of daikon radish for fat melting (no icky radish taste) google it :)
5. I toss in all kinds of extra power foods depending on whats in my fridge- leftover beets, chunks of sweet potato, shelled edamame, etc-
6. For an interesting twist: try tossing PICKLES in for flavor or even SALAD DRSG

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Valerie Perdue May 10, 2013

I tried my first Green Monster today. I can’t believe my own taste buds. It was DELICIOUS! Just like you said it would be. And so WONDERFUL that I wanted to make another one and drink it right away! (I didn’t.) I used your basic recipe, but kept it simple and strictly to my taste because I was skeptical. 1 cup organic soy milk, 1 Tbsp organic fair trade chocolate chips (not the most nutrition, but I know I like chocolate and banana), 2 huge handfuls of organic baby baby spinach (about 5 oz), and a frozen banana. Whipped it up. OH MY!!! It was VERY GREEN and VERY GOOD! There is no ice cream treat that I would prefer to have. Thank you!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) May 10, 2013

yay! So happy to hear that Valerie!

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Taryn May 15, 2013

OMG!!! i just made this for the first time today and IT IS AMAZING!!!!! so smooth, creamy and delicious!!! this is def going to be an everyday thing!!! THANK YOU!!

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Nicki June 22, 2013

I just made my first green monster! It was amazing!!! Thank you!

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Emily July 23, 2013

I love this smoothie. Can I post one of your pictures with the recipe on my blog? I will credit you and link to your site of course!!

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Morgan August 1, 2013

I’ve only recently stumbled upon your site after my dad made one of your oatmeal bars. And ho-dang, are those delicious! Anyway, to the point, I’ve never made a green monster but today after my workout and grocery shopping, I was excited to try. Made this recipe exactly, didn’t add protein powder (though I probably will in the future). Results: #$%@ing delicious. This will definitely become a staple in my day, either after hopping out of bed, or post workout. Thank you thank you thank you!

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Suzy August 6, 2013

Hi Angela,
What do you think about freezing Green Monsters? I work suuuper early and blending while the house is asleep is tricky business, but I love starting the day with these! Do you think freezing would work or have any other ideas??

Thanks!

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Brittany August 13, 2013

I too an a green smoothie addict, the only difference in my recipes is that i add Source of Life to mine. It’s packed full of wonderful things and tastes AMAZING. Look it up,I bet you would love it.

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Yasmina November 6, 2013

Hello Angela!

I’ve been hooked on your blog for the past 2 days (since I discovered actually), and it is such a pleasure!

I was wondering if it was okay to use frozen spinash leaves for this green monster? :) it’s the only thing I have..

Thank you!!

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Angela (Oh She Glows) November 7, 2013

Yes I’m sure that’s fine – just add a smaller amount since they are usually more compacted. Just add to taste and you should be fine. Thanks for reading! Glad to hear you are enjoying the blog :)

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Kayla November 10, 2013

Is it possible to make this in quantity and keep in your fridge without turning? I am way too lazy to make this in the mornings but it would be nice to have it ready in the fridge and just pour some in a to go cup on the way to school or work.

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Kara December 11, 2013

Even my carnivore husband loves your green monster. I add a little coffee to mine in the morning. Omg it is too good and makes me feel ready for the day! Thank you for this delicious recipe!

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Ashley January 2, 2014

Where did you buy the glasses please?

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marfigs January 14, 2014

I know there’s a thousand other comments saying exactly the same thing but I overcame my fear of the green smoothie this morning and it is AWESOME! :D :D

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