Collard Green Smoothies Are My New Kale!

collard green smoothie

Ok, to not throw out the classics, I can really never give up kale.  But, collard greens have always been somewhat mysterious and not something I have longed to integrate into my smoothie rotation… until they were all that I had on hand.  That’s when the love affair began!

You (or at least I) can not really taste bitterness in collard greens unlike some other greens. They  blend up when raw to be very smooth and have a bit of a creamy flavor in a veggie kind of way…and they have a unique nutritional profile, too !

According to The World’s Heathiest Foods (great title!) collard greens are on the list for great reason: 

“The cholesterol-lowering ability of collard greens may be the greatest of all commonly eaten cruciferous vegetables. In a recent study, steamed collard greens outshined steamed kale, mustard greens, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cabbage in terms of its ability to bind bile acids in the digestive tract. When this bile acid binding takes place, it is easier for the bile acids to be excreted from the body. Since bile acids are made from cholesterol, the net impact of this bile acid binding is a lowering of the body’s cholesterol level. It’s worth noting that steamed collards show much greater bile acid binding ability than raw collards.
We get unique health benefits from collard greens in the form of cancer protection. The cancer-preventive properties of collard greens may be largely related to 4 specific glucosinolates found in this cruciferous vegetable: glucoraphanin, sinigrin, gluconasturtiian, and glucotropaeolin. Each of these glucosinolates can be converted into an isothiocyanate (ITC) that helps lower our cancer risk by supporting our detox and anti-inflammatory systems.”

While I have been playing around with some of my favorite smoothies (like this apple pie spinach smoothie) this simple smoothie uses all of what I have on hand on a daily basis:

Simple Collard Green Breakfast Smoothie

4 or 5 giant collard leaves with the center removed (if you have a vitamix or other high-speed blender, the rib is fine to blend)

2 tbs of almond butter (mine is raw, use what you have)

a shake of sea salt if its unsalted

2 really ripe bananas

lots of cinnamon

and about 2 cups of water.

Blend up in a blender. Add a little honey if it needs sweet. And you are all set!

xoxo Dana

Flora May 25, 2014 at 5:23 pm

Love it! Collards also make great bread! Think tortilla wrap! If you triangle cut out the thick end of the stem, put yummies in the middle and fold well, then it holds super well burrito style! my little girl takes “collard wraps” to school all the time…then whatever is leftover from the collard bunch, we steam. Steamed collards are so yum. I try to add a little fat, usually coconut or olive oil, and a little acid, usually lemon, to them…because I have come to understand that these things help with absorption of all the nutrients. Sometimes I add sweet citrus too and some herbs…

danaclaudat May 26, 2014 at 12:56 am

ohhh i have to try all these ideas. starting with the sweet citrus and herbs! thank you Flora!!!! xoxo

Erika May 26, 2014 at 2:19 am

Thanks for the insight! Have been wondering about these leafy little wonders.

Flora May 27, 2014 at 3:25 am

My pleasure!
Love your blog, read it lots and get SO MUCH out of what you share.
ps. you may know this but cucumber really smooths out a lot of green smoothies.
really takes the edge off of them, adds a mellowness and a creaminess…
i find i can use really…really hardcore greens, in joy, as long as I add cucumber too.

Flora May 27, 2014 at 3:29 am

oh, and one thing i forgot to mention: when I cut collards to steam, i cut them really fine. there’s a name for this type of cutting, but i forget what its called. What I do is I roll the leaf, sometimes several leaves at once, rolled up into itself. Then I angle my knife and cut really thin across. this creates, almost fettucini- like strips (although not quite that thin). then I steam it.
I am not sure what it is about this shape but it makes it soooo good!

danaclaudat May 27, 2014 at 11:52 pm

Flora— you should do a post on this! I want to know every way to use a collard green- I have failed on the wraps and unsure how much to steam…and you are an expert! (PS- I am serious :))

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