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The Green Juice Taste Test

BY: Mae Rice | Dec 23, 2013
The Green Juice Taste TestAfter health coach Katarina Arneric filled me in on the health benefits of green juice, I still wondered if it was as tasty as it was healthy, so I taste-tested three recipes myself. I don’t own a juicer, so two are really green smoothies and one is Katarina’s current favorite store-bought juice. Overall, Katarina says these three range from a starter juice to a “hardcore” one, i.e. one that’s not sweet. Beginner: The Classic Green Monster, from Oh She Glows This milk-based smoothie contains banana, spinach, ground flax, and, in my version, peanut butter. See the full recipe here. Smoothie-relevant life lesson: Katarina notes that flax seeds and chia seeds are both superfoods: “really dense food that’s high in nutrients” like phytonutrients and amino acids. “[They’re] the healthy version of sprinkles—the little extra on top that gives you more nutrients.” Flaxseed is a lot less expensive than chia seed, though. Get flax unless your horoscope says you’ll find a treasure map inside your next chia seed packet. Flavor grade: A+. Tastes mostly like peanut butter. This might be because I used Skippy peanut butter, which totally violates the whole all-natural ethos at play here but also tastes great. Intermediate: The Green Tropics Smoothie, from Katarina’s blog Ingredients * Fistful of spinach * 1 banana * 1 cup of pineapple * 1/3 cup of coconut water Directions Blend it up. For added thickness, Katarina recommends freezing the banana or the pineapple beforehand. Smoothie-relevant life lesson: This smoothie has less liquid in it than the previous one, which makes it more challenging to blend. I recommend stopping every once in a while to tamp down the solid ingredients. Flavor grade: A-. It tasted very tropical and not at all like vegetables. Unfortunately, I think pineapple tastes … annoying? It sits weirdly with me. Hence the minus. Advanced: Evolution’s Essential Greens with Lime Juice I got this one at Whole Foods (you can find the Evolution retailer closest to you here), but I’ll still list out some ingredients. This juice includes: * 8 stalks of celery * 1/4 of a cucumber * 3 spinach leaves * 1 romaine lettuce leaf * 2/3 kale leaf * 1/6 lime * Snips of clover sprout and parsley * 49 blades of wheatgrass Juice-relevant life lesson: At first, I was scared of this juice. The ingredients sounded so savory, and I couldn’t imagine drinking vegetables. Except people drink vegetables all the time. It’s called soup. Don’t worry. Flavor grade: B-. Tastes like cold, limey soup, so not something I would seek out if it didn’t have health benefits—but not awful, either. And it requires less mental energy to drink this than to eat a salad. Just sip. Photo: Andrew Nawrocki, Groupon Back to Favin the Maven