This is one of my almost daily shakes that functions as an incredible ‘meal-replacement’.
I say replacement because it’s not like I’m having a true meal-replacement product loaded with sugars and other products that I may or may not want. This is as close to real food as I can get while getting a high-dose of lean protein (the whey protein) and taking in some of my daily health supplements (fish oil and creatine) as well as some gut-friendly foods like ginger for digestion (which apparently also helps with muscle soreness recovery) and a full-fat, organic yogurt.
The addition of spinach adds a multitude of health benefits and I get a serving of vegetables. Note that even though my shake looks green (which usually irks some people), you can’t even taste the spinach. It’s hard to believe, I know, but raw spinach takes on the taste of whatever it’s mixed with, in this case, the vanilla protein and ginger come through as the dominant flavours. It’s the cooking of spinach, which can give it that bitter, dark and mineral taste.
I’m not a fan of fat-free or reduced fat milk products of any kind. I have found that I react allergically to processed or fat-reduced milk products. It’s as if taking something away from the milk negates its original makeup.
I don’t drink milk as part of my diet and eat very little hard cheese (sometimes none for weeks). I do eat full-fat yogurt in my shakes and sometimes ½ to ¾ cup with organic muesli about 2x/week. I will also eat 2% or preferably 4% cottage cheese. It’s an easy food that’s very high in protein and great for a snack with a few nuts and a fruit, or my favourite, avocado or guacamole and salsa. So even though this is a saturated fat, I consume it in very small quantities in the week.
Know that what you eat is relative to your health, you level of activity and your goals. What I can eat might not work for you, because I have an extremely high level of physical activity in my day. I also eat high amounts of protein and healthy fats to stimulate muscle growth and to help me keep the weight and muscle weight that I have, since I tend to lose weight quickly if I under-eat.
OK so maybe I got off track a bit, but I think it’s useful to give some background and detail about why I would drink such a shake. So here’s the recipe:
Put the ice cubes and fruit into the blender. Add everything else, adding the water last. Cover the blender and blend on highest setting for 30+ seconds depending on the strength of your blender. For a thicker shake add a few more ice cubes and reduce the water slightly.
This should just fit in a large blender bottle. I use one that’s about 700 ml. You can blend up your shake hours in advance and keep it in the fridge until you need it.
I find shakes very useful for all the above reasons, but I also need quick food to eat when I’m at work with my clients. I need to eat every 3 hours and if a meal falls at a time that I have a client, a shake is something I can eat while working.
Give this recipe a try and reply in the comments box below to let me know your thoughts.
© 2012 Darren Stehle. All Rights Reserved.