Many people consider themselves die-hard Juicers and others swear by Smoothies…but which one is best for you?
Now, making a good Smoothie with my Vitamix was one of the things I looked forward to after a run or good workout at home. So, could juicing be as good as making smoothies?
I’ll be honest right here – heck, I don’t know! The “Smoothies” say they are better because they are blending ALL the fruits and vegetables together, fiber included, so nothing goes to waste. The “Juicers” swear by their juices because they feel you can get nearly all of the vitamins and minerals, concentrated, out of fruits and veggies and not feel bloated in the process.
For Christmas my Mom gave me a gift card for Amazon.com (thanks, Mom!!!) and I have wanted a Juicer for while. So, I did some research to find the best Juicer for around $100, cashed in my gift card and waited for it to arrive.
What I ended up getting was a Breville Juice Fountain Compact. It’s “patented juicing system extracts more juice and transfers less than 1.8°F of heat to maximize nutrients, enzyme and vitamin yield in its natural form.” What?! I don’t know…but it was rated one of the best in its price range.
So, this baby is sleek, with all sorts of parts (which are actually easy to assemble) and high-end strainer and it looks like it should be in an office building remodeled in a factory loft (sweet!). I mean…honestly…have you ever seen a more beautiful plug?!
I looked up all sorts of juice recipes on Pinterest as well as Googling them. Next, I went to Costco and bought a 10 lb. bag of baby carrots, a whole pineapple, a dozen apples, some blueberries, celery, tomatoes…
I was all set!
Making a long story short… I have a few best bets with juicing. Now, I’m sure these are just my own preferences, but nonetheless… I have some strong feelings. First, many recipes call for celery. Celery is good on its own and good with peanut butter or in soup… but juiced, it is REALLY overpowering. Same goes for fresh ginger! Where they say “1 knuckle” or 1″ ginger – honestly, one small 1/4″ slice will be more than enough!
What do I love about juicing? Carrots make an AWESOME, sweet base for whatever else you juice with it. It is great even alone. Pineapple and regular apples are good too. I’m pretty sure it is because all of those have a lot of natural sugar in them.
If you are looking to make V8 yourself, forgetaboutit! I found out that tomatoes are mostly water (obs!), but what I didn’t expect was that it would separate terribly if you didn’t drink it in the first minute.
One other drawback I found with juicing. What a waste of fruit and veggies! Sure, you get concentrated vitamins and enzymes, but I felt so guilty and like I was wasting money on produce as I threw all the pulp into the garbage can. I did save the tomato/celery pulp to put in the freezer, because I figured I could add it to pasta sauce. Although, if all the vitamins are taken out of it, is there any worth to that? Again… I don’t know!!! As my own rule, use carrots or other fruits as the base and add a little vegetables. “Cuties” are available in bulk at Costco, so that makes a great base too. Plus, they are cute! I love cuties! Ok, I may have gone a little overboard with them, but they are awesome. 😉
I do have to say that in my experiments, my son and I both liked carrot/pineapple/blueberry juice best. So, maybe I’m still looking for the right recipes. Following is one that I came up with that was really good!
Mike’s Favorite Juice:
- 3 or 4 Carrots (or about 3 cups of baby carrots)
- 2 Cara Oranges
- 1 cup blueberries
- 1 Apple
- 1/4″ chunk ginger
Now, getting on the Smoothie side, I have also had some really nasty tasting ones.. add too many greens and it will taste like @&&! This is a great smoothie recipe though!
Here are my final thoughts… there is a time for juicing and there is a time for smoothies… I will enjoy juices as a “snack drink” during the day and am glad that I got the machine. But honestly, the throwing out of the pulp and detailed cleaning of all the parts of the juicer is a pain in the butt! I would invest in a Vitamix. I feel better and more full with a good smoothie. You use the whole fruit and vegetable, it is filling and looks great in a Hulk glass!
You decide what is right for you though.