Individual frozen portions for the win

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individual smoothie freezer tip
Credit: Photo by Dorling Kindersley via Getty Images

So you're trying to stop shelling out the big bucks at the juice shop for your daily smoothie. As a fellow smoothie lover, I support your decision. I also understand that while this sounds like a great plan (and it is… for your wallet,) it’s not exactly going to save you loads of time when you’re trying to get out the door in the morning. Luckily, there’s a trick to making an at-home smoothie take just as much time as waiting in line at the shop: store ingredients for single-serving smoothies in baggies in the freezer. Then, come morning, you just pour, dump, and let the smoothie blend while tying your shoes. Throw it into your travel cup and head out into the world. Boom—just as easy as in the store. You are still going to have to clean the blender though. Life could be worse.

To make individual smoothie bags for weekday mornings, gather 5 zip-top plastic baggies (or better yet, washable silicone sandwich bags or freezer-safe containers.) Fill each bag with ½ a banana and ¾ cup of chopped fruit or vegetables of your choice. Stash the bags in the freezer.

In the morning, dump the contents of 1 bag into the blender, then pour in 1 cup milk, water, or coconut water. For a little more protein, use ½ cup liquid and ½ cup plain yogurt of your choice. If you’d like, toss in 2 tablespoons of protein powder, chia seeds, ground flaxseed, nut butter, or flaked coconut—though I do understand if that’s just too much extra work.

Looking for some smoothie inspiration? Here are some rad flavor combinations:

Banana + kale + blueberries + almond milk

Banana + pineapple + mango + coconut yogurt + coconut water

Banana + spinach + avocado + blackberries + whole milk

Banana + strawberries + raspberries + Greek yogurt + 2% milk

Blend your smoothie then pour it into your cup. Give the bag and the blender a quick rinse, and head out the door. You did good.