I recently started a low-carb / ketogenic diet. It’s not really something I considered until a fitness DNA test revealed that my ideal diet type was low-carb.* Upon looking into low-carb / high-fat diets, I was intrigued by claims that a ketogenic diet can increase energy and mental clarity, so I decided to give it a try.
One of my biggest concerns starting out was whether I’d still be able to have my green smoothie for breakfast. I make a green smoothie for breakfast most of the time to get the day started off on the right food. (It’s also easier for me to take all of my vitamins with a smoothie rather than with water.) I used to make my smoothies with lots of fruit and fruit juice, which aren’t allowed on a low-carb diet, so I knew I had to come up with something different.
A quick search online didn’t really deliver what I was looking for. I wanted something with spinach, avocado, and almond milk (I am eating more dairy now than I used to, but I still want to limit it). After a few days’ experimentation, I came up with this recipe. It’s less than 5 net carbs, it’s vegan, and it’s filling enough to last me until lunch. Perfect.
Vegan low-carb avocado smoothie
Carbs shown as net carbs
- 1/2 avocado (1g)
- 1 cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (1g)
- 2 cups baby spinach (0.8g)
- 1 Tbsp coconut oil (0g, plus 14g fat!)
- 1 scoop green powder (0.5g)
- 1 packet Pure Via stevia sweetener (< 1g)
- Pinch cacao nibs (< 1g)
- Water as needed
- Sprinkle some chia seeds on top (< 1g)
Total net grams: About 4.5 depending on how minimal you go with the cacao and the chia.
The result is a creamy, satisfying smoothie with a mild flavor. It’s not sweet but it also doesn’t taste very “green.” If you aren’t used to green smoothies, it might take a little getting used to, but I think the stevia sweetener helps a lot with the flavor.
If you want more protein, you could also add almond butter or protein powder.
For the greens, I use this green powder from ItWorks. (I have no relationship with the company.) It contains trace amounts of fruits but it’s still low in carbs. Catie’s Organic Greens is another great option. Powdered greens are a great way to get essential nutrients and help balance your pH, which can get out of whack if you’re eating too much meat or other acid-forming foods.
Try it and let me know what you think!
*Full disclosure: Vivaliti DNA is a client of mine, but I don’t benefit directly from any sales of their DNA test.