Time Saver Tip: How to Make and Freeze Smoothies Ahead of Time
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Ever thought about how to make a smoothie ahead of time? Try this easy smoothie hack!
Love homemade smoothies for breakfast or an afternoon snack?
If you said yes, but you don’t always have time to create them, then you’re gonna love this post! I’ve got the best way to make your favorite custom smoothies in batches and then freeze them for a quick and healthy meal or snack.
Although smoothies tend to separate and spoil quite quickly in the fridge, they do freeze wonderfully!
Make a smoothie with the fruit and veggies your family enjoys and then pour the mixture into ice cube trays (or silicone muffin trays work great, too!) and freeze overnight. I am currently enjoying my no-spill ice cube tray, as it has a silicone cover that folds over to prevent messes in the freezer.
Once your smoothie ice cubes are frozen, transfer them to a freezer bag, or reusable Stasher bag, to store in the freezer for up to 3 months. Whenever you’re in the mood for a smoothie, place a few frozen cubes in a cup on the counter, and in about an hour or so, you’ll have a delicious defrosted smoothie (you won’t even need to put it in the blender again)!
This prep-ahead method can be a lifesaver too if you’re an early riser and don’t want to wake up the household in the morning with a blender!
Plus I love the money-saving aspect of making smoothies at home more often rather than opting for pricey ones at the gym or smoothie places. My teens often think they can buy smoothies at our gym whenever, and I sometimes have to reign that in. 😂
Tips for freezing smoothies:
- I usually opt for using frozen fruit in my smoothies. Instead of adding ice, this method yields a super creamy “smooth” texture that we love. Buying frozen fruit in bulk is smart and economical to just store in the freezer to always have on hand. Of course, if you are intending to freeze ahead a smoothie, fresh fruit is perfect too!
- Also if I see fruit getting too ripe, it’s easy to store and freeze berries and bananas in the freezer. Check out the silicone Stasher bags our Hip2Save team loves for storing produce and more!
- You can also blend and then freeze smoothies in small mason jars so no ice cube trays are needed. Just thaw it on the counter or in a gym bag and it can be ready for after work out or when you are ready for a snack.
- Get creative with the smoothie add-ins! I will sometimes add in some chia seeds or ground flaxseed for extra nutrition. I have also added almond butter before, which is yummy with banana. I know many like to add a favorite protein powder as well.
- Eating keto? Here’s a yummy keto smoothie recipe to consider making from our sister site Hip2Keto.com!
Need some smoothie inspo? Here’s what’s in my smoothie!
Everyone makes smoothies differently and adds things according to taste and dietary needs. In my house, we enjoy trying out all various smoothies of ingredients already found in the fridge or pantry.
We do tend to use this frozen banana and berry combination the most, and I try to sneak in some greens like kale or spinach that’s not even really detectable once blended. I usually add Greek yogurt to make it creamy, and some juice to sweeten and thin it out a bit.
Spinach and Berry Smoothie
yield: 1 SERVINGS
prep time: 10 MINUTES
total time: 10 MINUTES
Refreshing smoothie filled with berries, spinach, and yogurt!
- 3/4 cup mixed berries such as strawberry, blueberry, and raspberries
- 1/2 a banana
- 1 large handful of spinach
- 1/4 cup pineapple juice
- 1/4 cup vanilla almond milk or Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
- 1/4 ice per your preference if desired
Blend all ingredients and serve.
Or pour into ice trays and freeze for another day. Store ice cubes in a covered container or baggie for up to 3 months.
Yum! This recipe is so berry cool and refreshing!
All puns intended, this is a great idea for kiddos, too, and makes a refreshing drink on warm days as well. Try it for yourself and see what you think! I think you’re going to really enjoy this easy-to-make recipe.
Think it’s a pain to clean the blender after smoothies? Here’s a tip!
This may be old news to some, but the best way to clean your blender afterward is to pour in warm soapy water and give it a whirl with the lid on so it will basically clean itself. Then rinse it out and it’s clean! Of course, I picked up on this after watching a ton of the Vitamix blender demos at Costco, and finally buying a refurbished one on Amazon years ago!
Here’s what a couple of my Hip2Save sidekicks like to add to their smoothies:
“My kids love smoothies. I typically do Greek yogurt, milk, frozen fruit, raw honey, and that’s basically it! Coconut water or coconut milk are both also a great addition if you’re dairy-free instead of yogurt.” – Hip2Save teammate Sara
“I love adding kefir to my smoothies instead of yogurt, as flavored kefir is delish, and a good source of probiotics for gut health!” – Hip2Save teammate Emily
“For lower carbs and extra nutrition in smoothies, I like to use berries, unsweetened almond milk and add in collagen powder, protein powder, and MCT oil.” – Hip2Keto nutritionist Emily S.
Let us know what your favorite smoothie add-ins are in the comments so we can all get some smoothie inspiration!
Make these easy, grab-and-go gluten-free pancake bites!
I use ice cube trays to freeze homemade baby food.
That’s so smart!
I do that too; so convenient; just warm up a few cubes for lunch or dinner. no w only if my toddler will start chewing so i dont have to keep making them.
What a great idea, thank you! And as a vegan and vegetarian family, thanks for all the black bean recipes as well!
You’re welcome, glad you enjoyed that series!
I use mason jars that can be used in the freezer and pre make my green smoothies and carrot apple juices! Then I pop them in my work bag and by the time lunch rolls around my smoothie is defrosted, it just needs a shake or two!
That’s a great idea too!
Hi Ashley—did you need to buy specific mason jars to use in the freezer? Thanks:)
You just need to make sure the mason jars say freezer safe on the package. I know the ball wide mouth mason jars are safe in the freezer. Walmart carries a 12 pack of jars for around $10-$12
How long can the stay in the freezer ? If I use yogurt or almond milk?
I don’t use any dairy products in my smoothies but I only make enough to last me through the week! I imagine it may just change the texture of the smoothie
I have used mason jars before no problems ,just make sure its the real brand name . And leave a little room on top for expansion !
thank you Collin for this great tip. know I could make my smoothies ahead of time and not worry that I am going to wake any body up at 5:00 am you are a time saver. thank you for all the great tips,recipes and all of your hard word.
I ment to say all you HARD WORK.
actually, that’s Lina that’s giving us all these amazing tips & recipes 😉
1 cup vanilla yogurt, 1 cup apple juice, 2-3 strawberries, banana, and ice.
I LOVE THIS!!! Thank you so so much!!! This is going to be a COMPLETE TOTAL LIFE SAVER FOR ME!!!! Thank you thank you thank you!!! I’ve been searching for a way to pre make them to save me time! So excited to try this when I get home!! Thank you thank you!!!!
Thanks for the tip!! Does anyone have a good recipe for a green smoothie that does not require yogurt?
My favorite green smoothie only has 3 three ingredients kale, pineapple and mango. You need three or four leafs of kale a pineapple and mango cut up into cubes. Put the fruit in blender first then kale and blend away. Add ice if preferred. The fruit balances out the kale nicely I think and even my two year old twin like it:)
I agree on the spinach not having much taste. I make a smoothie every morning for myself that consists of whatever fruits and veggies I have on hand and water. Doesn’t taste delicious every time but I am doing it to ensure that I get plenty of fruits and veggies everyday. So I just blend it together then gulp, lol.
Yes I love spinach too! 😀
yes, Denise, it definitely gives it a different flavor. It tastes more “earthy” if that makes sense. It takes a little bit of getting used to, at first, but if you like kale, you will like this. I always use kale or spinach in my smoothies now and if I don’t – they just end up way too sweet.
Extra fruit-based smoothie mixture can be poured into popsicle molds to make home-made frozen fruit bars.
I was literally just saying how I want to have smoothies more often but don’t have time to make them every morning. This is perfect! Thanks for posting!
Holy cow! I just went to a class last night to learn how to start eating right and smoothies are going to be a vital part of my diet. I get up at 5:30 for work and this is going to be perfect so I don’t wake my family up! Thank you so much!
My husband bought a big container of baby spinach at Costco a while back, and it was getting hard to use up. So I started sticking it in my smoothies! My favorite is
1/2 C banana, 1/2 C strawberries, chocolate or vanilla protein powder, 1 c Almond Milk and a few ice cubes (and spinach if I have it on hand). Sometimes I add in Flax Seed and/or Wheat Germ, maybe Chia seeds.
What I like to do is flash freeze my fruit. Sometimes I get last sale banana’s at my local grocer, so when I get home, I peel and slice the bananas, put them on a cookie sheet, and freeze for a few hours. Then I just pop them off the sheet and put them in a container or baggie, back in the freezer. This keeps the slices from sticking together. I do the same with in season strawberries & blueberries. When I’m ready to make a smoothie, I just measure out 1/2 c of each fruit, then let it sit in the blender for a few minutes to thaw. Using frozen fruit, esp bananas, makes the smoothies creamy! Add the rest of the ingredients and blend away!
I too make a smoothie every morning and love them. I use two good handfuls of spinach, a little cut up cucumber, and usually strawberries, blueberries, grapes and pineapple and some water. I freeze some of my fruit and use that in it so that it’s cold. I can’t drink a smoothie without it being cold.
We use spinach instead of kale. I try to do all the low flavor veggies with a few potent fruits. Spinach, carrot, cucumber, and sometimes tomato with banana and other berries. We use green tea, coconut milk, almond milk, or fresh juice for the liquid. I also freeze almond milk and coconut milk cubes for smoothies so I don’t “water it down” with the ice. When I want a pick me up my favorite is pineapple, banana, cocoa powder, instant coffee, and almond milk… YUMMY. My son gets chocolate “shakes” with spinach, banana, cocoa powder and almond milk(both frozen and just chilled).
Dear Sweet, Wonderful, Hard-Workin’ Collin: I need a good hip deal on a blender. One of my sweet kiddos broke the thingie off the side while unloading it from the dishwasher, and now we have to……literally put a cork in it. It works, for now, but boy do you have to work fast, or your smoothie starts leaking out from around the poor ol’ cork. Thanks for the tips here, my sister started eating clean and incorporating smoothies into her diet, walking 2 x day and has lost over 50 #. If I didn’t love her so much, and know how hard she’s worked, I’d be pea green. 🙂
If I get a bunch of bananas cheap ,I peel throw them in a zipper bag and freeze ,they come apart very easy ,good for about a month in freezer then they start to get a little black ! but I still use them but quicker (:
I highly recommend a Ninja blender. Look for the one that has the full pitcher, large smoothie cup and smaller smoothie cup (they work interchangeably on the base). They aren’t cheap but also aren’t ridiculously expensive. We have had ours for 5-6 years now and it is still going strong. My only complaint is that it is loud but it makes perfect smoothies in about 30 seconds!
I love the Bullet ,lasts forever
Thanks for the tip! I used to make a “green monster” smoothie every morning but I just don’t have time now. I knew you could freeze smoothies, but I wasn’t sure about ones with spinach. I will definitely give this a try now!
My usual recipe is: about 3 cups (loosely packed!) fresh spinach, 1 frozen banana, 1 Tbsp peanut butter, 1/2 cup nonfat Greek yogurt, and 6 oz unsweetened vanilla almond milk. (Tried it with regular milk once, ick.) Or sometimes instead of the banana and p.b. I’ll substitute 1 cup frozen strawberries and 1/4 cup Carnation No Sugar Added Chocolate Instant Breakfast. I am NOT a veggie lover, but I don’t even taste the spinach 🙂 Thanks again for the tip, Lina!
Yes! Carnation instant breakfast no sugar,add p.b., frozen banana, and flax seed tastes like a drinkable chocolate p.b. cup!
You can also use unsweetened cocoa powder instead of the Carnation Instant – so good with peanut butter!
How many cubes to make like a 12oz smoothie?
I’ve been freezing smoothies now for awhile, and it’s amazing! I live in an apartment building, and the neighbors don’t like it much when I use my blender at 3 a.m.! I also don’t use a recipe anymore and just throw in whatever fruits, veggies, liquid, and protein source I have on hand (kale, spinach, chard, plain Greek yogurt, protein powder [my fave is the FitMiss brand], pineapple, coconut milk, berries, mango, peaches, bananas, carrots, Clementines, and green beans are some favorites).
We freeze our organic kale after buying it and washing it. Once placed in a smoothie with fruit, oj, protein powder, the taste of the kale is nonexistent thanks to freezing it. My husband and I have been doing smoothies for the last 5 months EVERY morning, and well…..we don’t get as sick, stay regular, and feel AMAZING starting our days with some kale leaves. Woo hoo!
It’s not good to eat the same greens every day. You should rotate the greens you buy and eat to prevent a buildup in your system that could potentially cause you problems.
Buildup in your system? Of what exactly?
Oops just saw this is from 2014…
Apparently, alkaloids can build up. Gets an article that explains it. https://www.blenderbabes.com/articles/food/green-smoothies-alkaloid-buildup-why-its-important-to-rotate-your-greens/
Hi Collin & Lina….
I’d love to see a column about blenders/juicers and see what all the Hip2Savers are using to make their smoothies. Would love to hear everyone’s opinions of their blender/juicer, ie. how easy to clean, how easy it blends, storage size, etc. etc.
I use a baby bella bullet I got at Macys on last black friday. It does really well and was cheap but is small.
I make a smoothie every morning for my 4 teenagers. I just use a regular Oster blender. It works great with spinach, kale, and any frozen fruit chunks. I got a spare at a yard sale, just in case. Easy cleanup, either hand wash or dishwasher. Have found that with the greek yogurt if dries out needs a little scrubbing before going in the dishwasher.
My kids love frozen yougurt, thinking its ice cream. I think of coming summer, sure will want more ice cream, this will be much healthier.
My favorite low sugar, high protein smoothie: 1 cup water, 2 ice cubes, 2 handfuls of kale or spinach (or both), 1 cup Fage 0% yogurt, 2 frozen strawberries, 1 scoop chocolate protein powder, 1 spoonful chocolate PB2 (powdered chocolate peanut butter)
I’m of the rare varierty that just doesn’t like smoothies. They’re just not good!
Maybe I should have you over to try one of mine!
Haha, I have tried tons and tons, just not a fan. And I’m near raw Vegan! Lol
This may have been mentioned but I love to freeze bananas after they have browned and we didn’t get them all used. Once you thaw them they are almost liquid and I refreeze in ice cube trays for our smoothies. Great for any fruit that is getting past its prime.
If you peel them before freezing, they don’t have to be thawed and can be used in place of ice cubes in a smoothie. We peel them, lay them out on a parchment-lined cookie sheet, and place them in the freezer overnight. Then the next day when they are individually frozen, we transfer them to a large freezer bag for longer storage. It’s easy to pull one banana out when we need it and add it to a smoothie.
I want a vitamix! All of this smoothie talk make a me want one more. Any deals or finds on theses lately?
I want a Vitamix, too! My local Costco has them, but I just can’t spend $500 on a blender. It hurts to even think about. I know they go for more outside of Costco, but still…I’d love to be a part of a Vitamix test group and get to keep the blender 😉
I recommend a Ninja blender. I have a Ninja Pulse. You can spend about $99 on a Ninja blender and you get a blender that is almost as good as a Vitamix. Certainly, if all you are making is smoothies, you will be very happy with a Ninja. It has a very powerful motor. It makes “snow” out of ice cubes. The only thing I don’t like to use it for is to make nut butters from nuts. I prefer my food processor for that.
I second this! Have had my Ninja for 5-6 years now. It is loud but makes perfect smoothies in about 30 seconds. I have the $150ish one that has the smoothie cups as well as the pitcher. I make my smoothies right in the cup, drink and wash right away – easy clean up!
I love my Vitamix!! Smoothies come out perfect each time no chunks left behind. I also use it to make purée baby food for my kids reusable pouches. It’s very easy to clean just add soap and water then start it up (smoothie function) then rinse. Well worth the investment!
Yes, or a BlendTec. They slide under the countertop and that’s what Starbucks uses.
What’s the best advice for vegetable smoothies? I’ve never made a smoothie in my life but just bought a Ninja because the time prep for eating healthy is killing me (all that time washing/chopping veggies for salad, etc.) and I needed some help. By my question I mean, if you are making primarily a vegetable smoothie, I’m assuming vegetables and ice blended alone would taste nasty. What do folks typically add to make it taste better without adding a bunch of calories and sugar? Thanks!
If you love smoothies for breakfast or an afternoon snack, but you don’t always have the time to prepare them, then you’re gonna love this pos
I like Premier Protein products – I use the liquid kind so I don’t have to also use any sort of milk product. Good flavor and extra protein without adding a lot of sugar or calories. Also, plain unsweetened cocoa for a chocolate flavor with 0 added sugar and low calories. If I am splurging, I add a little peanut butter which tastes amazing. That does add calories although the peanut butter powders don’t add as much and taste great. Frozen cauliflower and/or frozen/fresh avocado make smoothies very creamy without adding junk! You can’t taste either one. You can also use a little bit of more potent fruits like mango and pineapple – they have a strong flavor so you can use less of them. 1/2 of a green banana is a great smoothie addition – green bananas have more resistant starch and less sugar than ripe bananas. Blueberries give a nice flavor punch and add a lot of antioxidants without adding too much sugar or calories. Hope this helps!
Throw one of those frozen whipped creams on top that you posted about! Yumm
Seems like a lot of work and clean up just for a drink. LOL