Category Archives: Vita Mix

How about a super breakfast smoothie?

This is a redo of a post I wrote 10 years ago when the blog first started. I thought it was worth revisiting as it is full of useful information and people love smoothies.

I wake up slowly. As a result, one of the problems I have had in maintaining my weight was meal management. I don’t feel like eating in the morning. For years, I started the day on coffee and a donut or something equally tasty and nutritionally inadequate. I drank coffee all morning at work and then found myself starving by lunchtime. If I had a busy workday and was only able to get a small lunch, I would be uncomfortable all afternoon. If I had time for lunch there was a good chance I would eat too much which of course cut into my productivity that afternoon. There’s no way a bad start worked out well for me.

Your first meal should be your biggest. What could be more logical? You are fueling up for the day. Fill your tank early and spend the rest of the day burning it off. You will be healthier, happier and more productive. If you wait and load up at lunch, or worse, at dinner, you are adding a lot of calories that you might not have time to burn. This is a sure recipe for weight gain.

I have replaced my original blender with a Vita Mix machine.

I have replaced my original blender with a Vitamix machine.

How do you solve it if, like me, you start out kind of foggy and don’t feel like eating first thing?

My solution was a happy accident. I bought a Vitamix machine at Costco. With my new toy, I found myself looking forward to mixing up stuff in the morning to drink. For some reason it was easier for me to drink a smoothie than to think about preparing and eating a breakfast. Go figure. As a result, I now have a morning smoothie that I call my rocket fuel because it fuels my morning bike rides. I include a banana, strawberries, blueberries and salad greens. Also, green tea for all its nutritional value and apple cider vinegar for the same. Another benefit of the smoothie is that I can put in my vitamin and mineral supplement pills. That way, I don’t have to swallow a bunch of pills every morning – one by one. I don’t take any drugs. I have been doing this for around 15 years and continue to tweak the ingredients.

The latest version has 400 calories 2 grams of fat, 14 grams of carbs 7 grams of fiber and 23 grams of protein not to mention all of my vitamin and mineral supplements.

2020 addition: After reading about and writing up raw cacao and turmeric, I have begun including a spoonful of each in my morning smoothie, too. The slight tartness in the cacao is softened by the sweetness of the berries.

Tony

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Filed under breakfast, healthy breakfast, smoothie, smoothies, Vita Mix

How about a reduced calorie version of Jamba Juice’s Orange Dream Machine?

I have to confess that the taste of the Jamba Juice Orange Dream Machine takes me all the way back to the joy of my childhood instantaneously. Even though I know that I now have far fewer taste buds functioning in my mouth than I did when I was a child, the Jamba Juice flavor is identical to what I remember the original Orange Dreamsicle starburst of flavor tasted like in my mouth as a child. I know I had one before I was a teenager, so it was many years ago.

Whenever I pass a Jamba Juice I will stop in and order an Orange Dream Machine and savor it for the next quarter of an hour or so. I think it costs around $5.00. I wondered if it would be possible to duplicate that flavor at home on my Vita-Mix machine.

It seems simple enough. There is the taste of orange and the mellowing flavor of milk. This is the kind of ingredient list made to order for Mr. Lazy Cook.

After a number of ‘close calls’ I have come up with the following recipe:

1/2 cup of vanilla soymilk
1/2 cup of orange juice
1/2 cup of vanilla non-fat yogurt
2/3 cup of orange sherbet
1/2 cup of ice cubes

Place it all in the Vita-Mix container and close the lid. Begin on the lowest speed and build to the top. I did not shift into the top speed as I did not want to make it solid. Blend just till smooth.

By my taste buds this is an exact match as far as taste goes to the Jamba Juice product. I specified taste because nutrition-wise, Mr. Lazy Cook’s is far superior.
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Filed under calories, lazy cook, Uncategorized, Vita Mix, Vita-Mix, Weight, weight control

Vita-Mix – Lemon Ice – Italian Lemonade?

What about Italian lemonade? First, a bit of clarification. In Chicago, we have a high caloric delicacy called Italian Beef. John wrote about it in his piece on food extremes. In Chicago, there are Italian beef stands that sell wonderful sandwiches of very thin sliced beef which has been marinating in spicy beef gravy. The gravy is integral to the sandwich. One option when ordering is whether you want the bun ‘dipped’ in the gravy or not. Most folks think it tastes better dipped. It’s just a little sloppier to handle and eat.

Although these are called Italian beef sandwiches they are only sold in Chicago. Perhaps they should be called Chicago Italian beef sandwiches. Or, maybe Chicago beef sandwiches. It just so happens that they are sold at Italian beef stands.

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Anyway, oftentimes, very near the Italian beef stands there is an Italian lemonade stand. As a Chicagoan, I am very familiar with them. However, I don’t know if they exist outside Chicago. Italian lemonade is a soft sherbet-like treat that is slightly more firm than slush, far less firm than frozen sherbet or ice cream.

I saw the recipe for lemon ice in the Vita-Mix cookbook for my old Model 5000 machine and tried it. I was very excited to think that I might be able to duplicate the lemonade that I had loved as a child from Italian lemonade stands here.

Here is the recipe from Vita-Mix:
3/4 cup (180 ml) water
1 lemon, peeled, quartered, seeded
1 teaspoon lemon peel
1/4 cup (50 g) sugar or other sweetener, to taste
2 cups (480 ml) ice cubes

1. Place all ingredients into the Vita-Mix container in the order listed and secure lid.
2. Select Variable 1.
3. Turn machine on and quickly increase speed to Variable 10, then to High.
4. Use the tamper to press ingredients into the blades.
5. In about 30-60 seconds, the sound of the motor will change and four mounds should form.
6. Stop machine. Do not over mix or melting will occur. Serve immediately.

Nutrition facts for 1/2 cup serving: 35 calories, No fat or cholesterol. 1 mg sodium, 9 grams of carbohydrate, no fiber or protein.

Bottom line on the taste: Super! Just like the Italian lemonade stands. This is an awesome hot weather low calorie treat. It tastes fantastic right out of the Vita-Mix machine. If you make more than you want to eat you can freeze it to eat later. Is that a Mr. Lazy Cook dream recipe, or what?

In case it isn’t obvious, I am thoroughly enjoying my new Vita-Mix machine.

Tony

Other Vita Mix recipe posts include:
How to Vita Mix a Low Cal Copy of the Jamba Juice Orange Dream Machine,
Vita Mix – Drinking a Watermelon
Vita Mix – Hot Chicken Soup
Vita Mix – Another Green Smoothie
A St. Patrick’s Day Green Smoothie – Vita-Mix
Vita-Mix – Cold Peach Summer Smoothie
Vita-Mix – Cold Green Soup
Vita-Mix – Green Smoothies
Vita-Mix – Watermelon Sorbet Recipe
Vita-Mix – Garden Fresh Cocktail

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Filed under healthy eating, lazy cook, men's health, recipes, Vita Mix, Vita-Mix

Vita-Mix – Garden Fresh Cocktail Smoothie

Tony’s new Vita-Mix blender came today replacing his 5-year old one. As a result, I had to make the first item in the ‘Getting Started’ booklet. It was the following Garden Fresh Cocktail:

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One cup fresh tomatoes
1/2 cup spinach
1/4 cup carrots
1 sprig parsley
1/4 cup bell pepper
1/8 teaspoon hot sauce (optional)
1/8 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce (optional)
Dash salt (optional)
1 cup ice cubes.

The Vita-Mix blender took this combo and pulverized it in a minute into a delicious hot weather drink that aptly lived up to its name. In addition it got a fresh tomato and 1/4 bell pepper into me. That is no easy trick as I don’t normally eat them. Another fine feature of this machine is that it not only extracts the juice from fruits and veggies, but is combines them with the skin so there is minimal clean up and you, the consumer, get the full benefit of the whole foods and fiber.

The 20 ounce Cocktail has the following nutrients:
50 calories, No fat or cholesterol, 31 mg of sodium, 11 grams of carbohydrate 3.5 grams fiber and 2.5 grams of protein.

Tony

 

Other Vita Mix recipe posts include:
How to Vita Mix a Low Cal Copy of the Jamba Juice Orange Dream Machine,
Vita Mix – Drinking a Watermelon
Vita Mix – Hot Chicken Soup
Vita Mix – Another Green Smoothie
A St. Patrick’s Day Green Smoothie – Vita-Mix
Vita-Mix – Cold Peach Summer Smoothie
Vita-Mix – Cold Green Soup
Vita-Mix – Green Smoothies
Vita-Mix – Watermelon Sorbet Recipe

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Filed under healthy eating, men and healthy eating, portion size, Vita Mix