This blueberry kale smoothie is only slightly sweet, creamy, and, most importantly – packed with nutrient-dense foods. The recipe is vegan (dairy-free, egg-free), grain-free (gluten-free), soy-free, and refined sugar-free.

blueberry kale smoothie

Smoothies are a great way to incorporate more fruits and vegetables into one’s diet. However, new research published in the Royal Society of Chemistry’s journal Food and Function in August 2023 suggests that blending certain ingredients may not be ideal. The research points to a popular flavor combination – banana and berries – as its main example. (1)

According to the study, the level of flavanols* in smoothies decreases when flavonol-rich foods are blended with food high in polyphenol oxidase (PPO).

*Flavanols are nutrient-rich compounds naturally found in plants. They act as antioxidants and support the health and function of the cardiovascular system.

Javier Ottaviani, Ph.D., the lead author for the study and an adjunct researcher at UC Davis, said, “If consumers want to increase their flavanol intake via smoothies, it’s best to avoid combining flavanol-containing foods, like berries, with fruits and vegetables that contain a high level of polyphenol oxidase, like bananas (…) Consider preparing smoothies by combining flavanol-rich fruits with ingredients that have a low PPO activity.”

Foods low in PPO activity include spirulina, kale, pineapple, and oranges. Foods high in PPO activity include bananas, beet greens, apples, pears, beets, and peaches. (1)

That said, a smoothie made with bananas and berries is still a great source of nutrients. However, if you’re consuming smoothies specifically for their antioxidants, this blueberry kale smoothie might be a better option.

kale blueberry smoothie

Tips for Making Blueberry Kale Smoothie

Ingredients

The key to a great smoothie with hearty leafy greens, such as kale, is choosing the right ingredients in the correct quantities. Proportions are everything, for both texture and flavor. The ingredients you will need for this blueberry kale smoothie are:

  • Blueberries: I love using berries in my smoothies because they are so high in antioxidants! Blueberries are the only ingredients that provide sweetness in this smoothie, so I don’t recommend substituting them for strawberries or raspberries, which are typically more tart. I use wild blueberries because they are more flavorful than regular blueberries, but you can use any blueberries you like. Also, frozen blueberries will make the smoothie thick and frosty, so I prefer frozen to fresh.
  • Kale: raw kale has a pretty strong, earthy flavor, but the blueberries mellow it down. Baby kale, which is milder in flavor and softer in texture, is my go-to for smoothies. If you’re just easing into the flavor of kale, try using it in combination with spinach to start.
  • Avocado: similar to a banana, avocado makes this smoothie super creamy. It also adds healthy fats, which is great if you want to make this smoothie a meal.
  • Almond milk: any plant milk works in this recipe. If you don’t have almond milk on hand, use your favorite plant-based milk, such as cashew milk or coconut milk.
  • Vanilla extract: I often use vanilla extract in my smoothies. The sweet aroma deepens the flavor and enhances the sweet taste.
  • Medjool dates (optional): depending on the sweetness of your blueberries and how sweet you like your smoothies, you might want to add a date or two. I have grown to like not-so-sweet smoothies, so I don’t add any, but if I am making this smoothie for my kids, I always do.

How to Make Blueberry Kale Smoothie

Take out a high-speed blender, toss in all the ingredients, and blend away!

Over the years, kale has slowly evolved into the go-to ingredient for green smoothies. But unless you have a strong enough blender at home, mature kale is not always the easiest of ingredients to blend into a creamy smoothie. The stems are quite tough, and the leaves are fibrous.

If you’re planning on making smoothies with kale frequently, I recommend investing in a high-powered blender like the Vitamix. I use the A3500. The Vitamix has a powerful motor and a blade strong enough to cut through tough and fibrous ingredients.

If investing in a high-speed blender is not an option, you can always swap the mature kale for baby kale or spinach to avoid a smoothie with a chunky texture.

Blueberry Kale Smoothie Variations

  • Vegetables: not a fan of kale? Spinach, Romaine, Swiss chard, or even celery are all great options. A cucumber would be a great addition too.
  • Fruit: I appreciate the sweetness of blueberries, but you can substitute any other berries. Just keep in mind that blueberries are typically sweeter than strawberries or raspberries. For the avocado, feel free to substitute almond butter or any other nut or seed butter. Alternatively, you can bulk up the smoothie with some frozen zucchini.
  • Liquid: I like to keep the sugar content of my smoothies to a minimum, so rather than using fruit juice, I prefer plant milk. If you don’t have any plant milk, you can use water with a few cashews or a spoonful of hemp hearts – they will break down as the smoothie is blending.
  • Add-ins: blend in a scoop of protein powder for a boost of protein or hemp hearts for protein and omega 3s.

How to Store Berry Smoothie

  • Refrigerating: transfer the smoothie to an airtight container and refrigerate it for an hour or two. Any longer, and the smoothie will lose its thickness (as the frozen blueberries thaw).
  • Freezing: transfer the smoothie to an airtight shallow container and freeze it for up to 1 month. Re-blend before serving.
blueberry smoothie

More Berry Smoothie Recipes

  • Strawberry avocado smoothie: this strawberry avocado smoothie is fresh, creamy, and rich. It’s another banana-free smoothie but doesn’t lack sweetness and creaminess.
  • Acai smoothie: a spin on the famous acai bowl! This acai smoothie has the same tropical flavor and creamy texture as an acai bowl and is just as easy to make.

If you’d like to learn more about smoothies – how to make a custom smoothie, fix a not-so-good smoothie, build a better (healthier) smoothie, etc. – you can refer to this smoothie guide.

Did you make this recipe? I would love to know how it turned out! Please let me know by leaving a review and rating below.

blueberry kale smoothie recipe

Blueberry Kale Smoothie

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Yield: 1
This blueberry kale smoothie is only slightly sweet, creamy, and, most importantly – packed with nutrient-dense foods.

Ingredients
 

Instructions
 

  • Blend. Add the blueberries, kale, avocado, almond milk, vanilla extract, and dates (if using) to a high-speed blender and blend on high until completely smooth.
  • Serve immediately.
  • Store. Leftover smoothie keeps well in an airtight container in the refrigerator for a few hours, though best when fresh. For longer-term storage, freeze in an airtight container for up to 1 month.

Notes

*Nutrition information is approximate and may contain errors. Please feel free to make your own calculations.
*Nutrition information is calculated without optional ingredients.

Nutrition

Serving: 1of 1, Calories: 305kcal, Carbohydrates: 31g, Protein: 7g, Fat: 18g, Fiber: 16g, Sugar: 15g
Course: Breakfast, Drinks
Cuisine: American
Keywords: blueberry kale smoothie