Low carb smoothie recipes are an easy but delicious option for breakfast and snacks when you are on a low carb diet. With a few simple ingredients and a blender, you can create many different smoothie flavors.
Low Carb Fruits
By definition, a smoothie is a "creamy beverage made of fruit blended with juice, milk or yogurt." For low carb options, first let's examine which fruits qualify as low carb. Take note, however, that if you are on Phase One of the Atkins Diet or the South Beach Diet, you are advised to avoid fruits, but low carb fruits are perfectly acceptable for later phases. Check the guidelines for your specific low carb diet.
Here are a several fruits that work well in smoothies and are also low in carbs:
- Honeydew Melon
- Passion Fruit
- Lemons and Limes
High carb fruits to avoid or use in moderation in smoothies:
Other Low Carb Smoothie Ingredients
Along with fruit, as mentioned above, smoothies often include juice, milk or yogurt. Once you have selected a combination of low carb fruits, you must find low carb options for the other ingredients as well.
Low Carb Juices
Juices are typically high in sugar and carbs. Orange juice is the most common juice mixer in smoothies, and an easy low carb substitute is Orange Crystal Light. There are also diet versions made by popular orange juice manufacturers that are low in carbs.
Low Carb Milk
Milk contains lactose, which is milk sugar, so it is usually not approved for low carb diets. However, there are low carb milk options that replace the lactose with Splenda or another artificial sweetener. Soy milk is much lower than cow milk in carbs, making it a good option for use in smoothies.
Low Carb Yogurt
Yogurt creates a rich texture in smoothies, but it can sometimes be high in carbs. Plain yogurt is the lowest in carbs, but if you must have a flavor such as vanilla, avoid products containing milk powder (lactose) and added sugar. Many yogurt manufacturers offer low carb options that contain artificial sweeteners. Greek yogurt is also a fairly low carb option that adds tang and more texture to smoothies.
Examples of Low Carb Smoothie Recipes
The most basic low carb recipe involves mixing a few pieces of fruit with milk and yogurt and then blending with a few ice cubes, but there are many variations.
Strawberry Low Carb Smoothie
A simple, basic recipe from smoothie-recipes.com:
- 4 strawberries
- 1 cup soy milk
- 6 ice cubes
- 1/2 cup low fat yogurt
For a refreshing smoothie reminiscent of a margarita, try this recipe from smoothieweb.com:
- 1/2 cup sliced lime
- 3/4 cup low fat milk
- 1 cup light or low carb lime sherbet or key lime yogurt
- 1/2 cup raspberries
- 2 cups ice
Energizing Breakfast Smoothie
Take your smoothie up a notch by adding extra protein and healthy omega-3 acids so you'll have plenty of energy all day long. This recipe is also from smoothieweb.com:
- 1 cup of frozen berries
- 1 scoop of whey powder
- 1 tablespoon flaxseed oil
- 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon unsweetened cranberry juice
- 1 pack of Stevia or Splenda
- 8 ice cubes
- 1 cup water
Adapted from a recipe from Good Housekeeping, this smoothie utilizes uncommon ingredients:
- 2 cups diced honeydew melon
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1 pack of Stevia or Splenda
- 3 ice cubes
- 1/2 cup frozen diced kiwi
There are several books packed full of low carb smoothie recipes:
- Low-Carb Smoothies: More than 135 Recipes to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth Without Guilt
- Low-Carb Juices and Smoothies: 50 Healthy, Delicious Recipes
- Low-Carb Smoothies: More Than 50 Fabulous Recipes the Whole Family Will Love
- Slim Smoothies: Over 130 Healthy and Energizing Recipes Without All the Calories
Once you have mastered the basics of making a smoothie the low carb way, you can invent your own concoctions to satisfy your cravings for sweets without ruining your diet.