Wild Blueberry & Blood Orange Smoothie

By posting this recipe I am entering a recipe contest sponsored by the Wild Blueberry Association of North America and I am eligible to win prizes associated with the contest. I was not compensated for my time. #WildYourSmoothie

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During the warmer months, I like to spend some of my free time hiking. Breakneck Ridge in Cold Spring, NY is, by far, my favorite place to do so. The climb is somewhat challenging (for me, at least), the view of the Hudson River and the surrounding Hudson Highlands is incredible, and to top it off – wild blueberry bushes grow along the various trails! I’ve always been (perhaps a little too) excited to find wild berries growing in the woods… it’s like receiving a little surprise gift from nature.

Wild blueberries are one of only three varieties of berries that are native to North America (along with cranberries and Concord grapes), and have been present in fields and barrens (areas in which the wild blueberry bushes are the dominant species) across the Northeast, particularly Maine and Eastern Canada, for at least 10,000 years. These “low bush” blueberries are much smaller than cultivated varieties due to lower water content, and therefore have a more concentrated, powerful flavor (and a brighter color as well).

For this smoothie recipe, I decided to pair wild blueberries with winter’s favorite citrus, the blood orange, as well as some 100% cranberry juice and fresh baby spinach. Plain Greek yogurt is added for creaminess, ground flax seed for extra fiber, and agave nectar for some natural sweetness (but you can feel free to skip it if you’d like). Since I am using IQF (individually quick-frozen) blueberries, there is no need to add any ice, which would only dilute the flavor of the smoothie.

 

Prep Time: 5-10 minutes

Active Time: 1 minute

Yield: one 8 fl oz (1 cup) serving

Ingredients

one blood orange

1/2 cup (tightly packed) fresh baby spinach leaves

1/2 cup frozen wild blueberries

1/4 cup / 2 fl oz 100% cranberry juice

2 tsp ground flax seed

1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt

2 tsp organic agave nectar

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Cut the blood orange in half, then cut & reserve one slice for garnish. Cut the peel and pith off of one half of the orange, and juice the other half.

Place baby spinach leaves in the bottom of the blender. Top with wild blueberries and all remaining ingredients. Blend for 30-60 seconds, stopping and stirring if necessary, until very smooth. Pour into your glass of choice and garnish with the reserved blood orange slice and a few wild blueberries. Enjoy!

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