What happens when you’re expecting 20lbs of delicious grass-fed beef delivered to your door from Home Grown Cow and you only have one freezer that is currently full of stuff?
For me, I went through my freezer, threw out some things that have been sitting in there for way too long and found that I had an embarrassing amount of frozen fruit bags EVERYWHERE. Either I have a weird semi-obsession with buying frozen fruit and not using them or I’m really unorganized.
It could possibly be a little bit of both…
The idea of smoothies sound great but to actually make one? And on a semi-daily basis? Pppsshhh… It’s just not something that I think of doing in the midst of my busy day. Plus, who wants to dig in a cold freezer and get borderline freezer burn trying to find all the right ingredients? Not me.
So as I was standing in front of my freezer debacle, it dawned on me… why not make smoothie packs?
Smoothie Pack 101
Smoothie packs are basically cut and prepared fruits and veggies that are put into a freezer-safe ziplock (no liquids). You write the name of the smoothie, it’s contents (if you want), and what type of liquid needs to be added at the time of blending and then you place them in the freezer. The idea is you make a bunch of these and then you don’t have to worry about creating smoothies in the rush of the morning or if you need something quick, easy, and healthy for a snack.
Now, smoothie packs are definitely not new so by no way am I claiming that this is my original idea. You’ve probably seen them floating around Pinterest and Facebook a time or two — so have I. But for some reason, I was never motivated to actually do it and I thought I’d have to buy the ingredients for it. It never occurred to me that I could actually use the frozen fruit in my freezer to make the smoothie packs.
The Answer to My Problem
So, with a mess in front of me that needed to be quickly organized and somehow compacted, I realized smoothie packs were the perfect solution for three reasons:
- I can make space in my freezer by seeing exactly what I had, how I could use it, and consolidating
- Using what I have instead of spending money on unnecessary ingredients
- I would actually make smoothies — and Scott could easily make a smoothie in the morning before work, too
I mean, do you see that craziness above???
3 bags of frozen pineapple, 2 bags of opened and halfway used mango, 3 different bags of blueberries, 2 bags of strawberries, avocado, 2 bags of frozen spinach, and 2 bags of peaches. I also 10 whole peel-on bananas that I bought a year ago when I found a crate full of bananas for $5. #Disaster
Although I love experimenting with food, I wanted recipes that I didn’t have to think about so I decided to do a couple quick searches for smoothie packs and found recipes that called for the ingredients I had the most of.
Here are the recipes I chose for my smoothie packs:
- Banana Berry, Tropical Twist, Berry Blast, and Strawberry Banana from The Earthy Mama
- Tropical Delight smoothie from my archives
- Mango Berry from Live Simply
Plan of Action & The Results
For the bananas, I got a big bowl of warm water and placed the whole banana in there until they were defrosted enough so I could peel them. It was sticky and messy but it was using my resources — and ultimately making space in my freezer.
For the peaches, I placed 1 cup of peaches with 2/3 cup strawberries and wrote on the ziplock to add 1 cup of coconut milk.
For a few of the recipes that included spinach, I added 1 teaspoon of gelatinized maca powder since I have a bag sitting in my pantry that I’m not doing anything with. Maca powder is great for balancing hormones, increasing libido, increasing energy, and a lot of other good stuff you may be wanting/needing.
I did end up running out of freezer ziplock bags halfway through. Instead of feeling defeated, I took regular sandwich baggies, filled them with smoothie material, and then place those bags into a gallon freezer bag. Whala! Problem solved.
Out of all those bags of fruit, I ended up making 11 smoothie packs! I was able to downsize drastically, use what I had, and prepare 11 healthy snacks/quick breakfasts.
I call that a win, don’t you?