I’m continuing my 5 Minute Vegan Breakfast series today with Warm Vegetable Smoothies!
As I’ve talked about before on my blog, for many years I worked in touring children’s theatre. I absolutely loved the job, but one of the down sides was that I had to wake up at ungodly early hours and sit in traffic to get to schools that were sometimes hours away. When the alarm went off at 4:30 am, I needed everything to go on autopilot with clothes arranged the night before, a lunch already made and waiting in the refrigerator, and a breakfast that I could easily eat in the car.
For those mornings, I kept a stockpile of tomato soups that came packaged in their own heatable mugs with a hole for sipping, which I’d buy in singles at Target. This was before I went vegan; although, out of curiosity I looked it up to see if they’re still for sale (they are) and if they are vegan (yep, that too). However, the ingredients include high fructose corn syrup, which I have avoided for years now, and I can only imagine what was inside the lining of that encased mug that I was heating. Even so, at the time I thought I was grabbing a fairly healthy breakfast.
Despite the fact that I wouldn’t be inclined to get one of those prepackaged sippy soups now, the idea of drinking my vegetables while on the road is still an attractive one. And while I could make a cold fruit smoothie before I head out the door, in the chilly winter months it’s more appealing to have a warm option for breakfast. I like having something that will heat the bones while I brave the cold.
So lately I’ve been making five minute breakfasts that I call Warm Vegetable Smoothies. I throw half of a ripe bell pepper, a carrot, a tomato, chia seeds, water, and a leaf of kale with the rib removed into my Vitamix.
With the exception of cutting the bell pepper in half and removing any stems, I don’t chop any of the vegetables. I simply wash them, throw them in the blender, turn it to high, and let it blend until smooth and warm, which takes 2-3 minutes. If I’m having the smoothie at home, I drink it out of a mug, and if I am taking it to go, I put it into my sippy coffee cup. The produce-rich drink is mild and velvety with slightly earthy undertones from the carrot.
Now, a person could totally make a case for this being called soup, but the experience doesn’t hit me that way. Since it has chia seeds in it, it has that thicker, whippy viscosity that I associate with smoothies. Also tomatoes and ripe bell peppers are technically fruits and, along with carrots, are all quite sweet. So the smoothie still has a sweetness to it. (And if you’re not a kale fan or just don’t want any of the associated bitterness in the morning, simply omit it.)
I like starting the day knowing that I’ve already gotten several servings of produce into my system. It makes me feel like I’m ahead of the game. However, I do find that whenever I start with a liquid breakfast, I get hungry faster and usually need to eat again within a couple of hours, and so I plan my mid-morning snack accordingly.