Brilliantly Beet Smoothie

[EL-LENd Me a Hand campaign update: Ellen listed my humble little self-published cookbook on her “Books Ellen Reads” page!  I couldn’t be more thrilled–and I know it only came about because of all of you–so thank you, thank you!  This quest also seems to have developed a life of its own. . . seems a few  other  bloggers/tweetershave started their own campaigns, too–wowzah!  But I haven’t given up hope of being on the show! Today’s installment is my first ever video on YouTube. . . hope you (and Ellen) enjoy it! 😉 ]

[Your morning essentials. . . ]

A couple of nights ago I went out to dinner to Live Organic Food Bar, a fabulous café that was the first all-raw restaurant in Toronto (it has since introduced some cooked foods to the menu–and wine).  Since my office mate at the college is retiring, I took her out to celebrate (or mourn–sniff! boo hoo!  Where will I acquire my gossip from now on?).

I’ve always loved the food at Live.  My dinner that night: a “Green Kick” juice (pear, kale, ginger, dandelion, lemon); raw pecan “tempura” sushi appetizer; “The Manwich” sandwich (Reubenesque, in a rice wrap instead of Ezekiel bread), and an individual pot of Japanese green tea.  Sounds delish, no?

The restaurant’s story is an inspiring one: almost a decade ago, Jennifer Italiano, a self-taught chef, opened the first location of Live in the hip and grungy student haven of Dupont Street near George Brown College. The space she could afford was tiny, no larger than a phone booth (for those of you too young to remember phone booths, that’s about 100 times smaller than Kanye West’s ego).  I had the honor of attending a cooking demo put on by Jennifer when she had just started out, and was blown away by how innovative and tantalizing her recipes were (sort of like my baked goods will be if I get on The Ellen Show!).  In fact, that demo was the first time I tasted what is my still favorite way to serve dandelion greens: Bittersweet Salad.

In the same spirit, I thought I’d stretch my own culinary creativity a bit and try out something new with beets, the star player in the  SOS Kitchen Challenge (which I’m co-hosting with the uber-cool and culinarily prolific Kim from Affairs of Living). Since the event focuses on either sweet or savory dishes, I thought I’d post a second recipe using this month’s ingredient, beets.  And since my first submission was for savory beet burgers, today’s is for a sweet and refreshing beet-based smoothie.

This smoothie was fabulous. The leafy greens and deep magenta of the final product both herald spring, something of which we’re in dire need today (what?? April 17 and it snowed this morning???).  And the gentle nudge of lime here creates a really light yet refreshing flavor, perfect for a quick breakfast. Unlike my typical smoothies, this one isn’t extremely thick; more like a light sunshower than a downpour (which, considering it’s still not snow, doesn’t even sound all that bad at the moment).

It’s not too late to enter the challenge!  If you have a beet-based recipe that you’d like us to include, you can send it along until April 20th.  Check all the details here.

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Last Year at this Time: Anti-Candida Desserts: What Do You Eat?

Two Years Ago: Flash in the Pan: Kale and Hearty Salad

© 2010 Ricki Heller

[Disclaimer: this post may contain affiliate links. If you buy using these links, at no cost to you, I will earn a small commission from the sale.]



  1. A BEET smoothie?? Now that is definitely intriguing… I trust you, Ricki, haha 😉

  2. That is wonderful news Ricki! Congratulations! (The smoothie looks great too..)

    So excited for you! 🙂

  3. Kelly Michelle says

    congrats on the Ellen listing!!

  4. Congrats, that’s awesome!!! i’m not a big fan of beets– but they sure do make for a pretty smoothie 😉

  5. Ahem. The smoothie LOOKS beautiful, and I’m sure if you say it’s good it really is good. But, beets and I are just not that into each other … yet. Maybe some day. I enjoy them in soup and salad, but smoothies may have to wait.:)

  6. Congratulations on the blog listing. Good for you! Your smoothie sounds great.


  7. Congratulations on your book and on the celebrity approbation!

    That smoothie just has to be the most beautiful color I’ve ever seen. Thanks for the recipe.

  8. I like beets in juice, so why not smoothies? I’ve never gotten very creative with beets before…mostly just put them in salads. Thanks for giving me some new ideas!

  9. Kale in a smoothie! Purple kale! Wow! sounds amazing and look fantastic. That restaurant sounds fantastic and the smoothie sounds great though the cucumber is a bit challenging for me but beet and berries and kale sounds delicious!

    As for your spring, I suspect we have it – it was 27 C today – maybe you have our autumn which is yet to appear!

  10. That colour. It’s perfect!

    Congrats on having your book listed on Elen’s site. And your video is really great. I laughed a lot, you have such a great humour.

  11. Hi Ricki–Major congrats on the Ellen mention–way, way cool! Next think you’ll be on the show … I’m telling you. Have to watch your video as soon as I’m done commenting.

    This smoothie looks so pretty. I admit I’m still working my way up to beets, but I love kale in green smoothie. I just made a chia “pet” smoothie yesterday. Not suitable for the ACD diet unfortunately, but delicious with coconut, pears, Greek yogurt, green cabbage, and, of course, chia.

    Your challenge with Kim sounds great, but I have nothing in the way of beet recipes. I’l lhave to wait for the next one.

    Oh, and snow–yikes. I’ve just built a fire in the woodstove here in VA, but snow is definitely not a possibility.


  12. Hi Ricki. Love your site. I feel like we are cosmically linked or something. I had no idea you had this Ellen campaign going on until my blogging buddy Bitt e-mailed me about it yesterday.

    So, this morning, I did a post congratulating you on your success: (Congrats again, BTW). Imagine my surprise when I saw you mentioned me, too. Ha ha. I love it.

    I just had to add you to my blog list. I wish you all the luck in the world getting on the show. Could you bring a raw cupcake with you when you go? I just figured I’d ask, since I never actually considered to going on the show part (I just wanted Ellen to try a raw cupcake). If I succeed, too, I don’t know how I would do something like that with a baby in tow.

    Anyway, I need to catch up on your past blog posts. You’re amazing. Fingers crossed that I get to see you on Ellen soon 🙂

  13. Just popping back to say the video is awesome, Ricki. I don’t see how Ellen can resist having you on the show! Really. The write-up they have with your book listing is terrific. Hope you’ll get lots of traffic from it and soon be on Ellen!


  14. so awesome on Ellen having read your book and posting it on her site. i bet you’ll be on her show super soon, Ricki – i just know it! your dinner at Live sounded amazing, especially that manwich. mmmmmmm! i chuckled at your mention of Kanye West – tee hee! your brilliant beet smoothie sounds so full of so much yum (cucumbers, kale, berries = delicious!)! i never even thought to add beets to a smoothie, i do juice ’em, but i’m gonna have to try them this way now. i like the fact that the smoothie isn’t super thick, i like them a little thinner as well – makes them a little easier to enjoy!

  15. OMG, Ricki, congrats on the Ellen mention! How cool is that?! Once she has her home chef make her one of your delicious treats, you know the phone call for an appearance is bound to follow… 🙂


  16. that might be the prettiest colored smoothie ever. i’m going to have to get my hands on a beet soon to try it out!

  17. Congratulations Ricki!

  18. Congrats, Ricki! Love the video and an so amazed at your tenacity. It’s incredible!! Sending wonderful thoughts for an incredible adventure on The Ellen Show!!

  19. Ricki, you’re rocking! Can’t wait to see the video and see you in action. Nice work!

  20. VeggieGirl,
    Yes, trust me on this one–it tastes great! 😉

    Thanks so much! It was very exciting 😉

    Kelly Michelle,
    Thank you! I’m still beaming 😀

    Thanks so much! The berries contribute, too, of course 😉

    I swear it doesn’t taste like beets. Really!

    Thank you so much! 🙂

    Thanks so much! I loved the color, too. . . makes it go down much more easily. 😉

    Great way to look at it–you drink both, right? 😉

    Wow, I am totally envious of those temperatures–still pretty cold over here. The cucumber doesn’t add a very distinct flavor, but it’s a great alkaline food, and juicy!

    Thank you so much! I really appreciate it 🙂

    Thanks so much! It was very exciting 🙂 . Sorry you don’t have a beet recipe to share (you could always make one that I’ve already posted. . . ) 😉 Your smoothie recipe sounds terrific–don’t see anything I couldn’t have on the ACD! 🙂

    Wow, thank you so much for the kind comments! AND the blog post–I’m honored. 😀 To be honest, I’m keeping my fingers crossed, too–and would love to bring a raw cupcake! Now that I’ve got your cookbook, I see how amazing they all look–and can’t wait to start “un”baking some of them!

    Thanks so much! And yes, the manwich was yummmm. And if you also like thinner smoothies, you’ll enjoy this one, I’m sure. 🙂

    Oooh! I hadn’t thought of that, but of course she can taste the macaroons now! 😀

    I loved the color, too. It certainly brightens up the morning! 😉

    Thank you so much! 😀

    Thank you! I hadn’t realized I was this tenacious, either, to be honest! All the positive energy certainly helps, though! 🙂

    Thanks so much! It’s been a lot of fun so far. 🙂

  21. Congrats once again on getting your book onto Ellen’s reading list! Your video is great, too! Good luck on reaching your ultimate goal in that quest. 🙂
    As for the beet smoothie? It is gorgeous, and sounds really refreshing. Yum!

  22. Wow. I made this earlier today and I had to come back and tell you how good it was. I was a tad skeptical because I had never put beets or cuc into a smoothie but hot DANG this was delicious! I think the lime is key. It ties together the sweet taste and the veggies. Mmm.

  23. Hey Ricki,

    I love how beautiful this recipe looks and can’t wait to try it! I actually linked to it for my humble little weekly top ten recipe review! 🙂

    ~Aubree Cherie

  24. So awesome! The smoothie … the video … love it! You are a nut 🙂

  25. Congrats are in order!!!
    I usually juice raw beets but I could totally do this smoothie in the morning. yum!

  26. Whooo! That’s beyond awesome, Ricki! It’s only a matter of time now! C’mon Ellen!!

    Your video is PERFECT! Your dancing moves are so similar to Ellen’s moves! The table feat was very impressive, indeed! 😛

    Aww, the girls are so sweet! They even managed to take a nap on que! I have to admit though that their voice and the voice that I had imagined for them are completely different.

    I will embed your video in my next post, if you don’t mind! 🙂

  27. Wait, where’s this video? I have to go back and check the link. So cool though – video is so fun! And I think your smoothie looks just fantastic – bright and fresh 🙂

  28. The color of this makes me want to try it so badly. I just don’t like beets! I try and try again, but maybe this time will be different. 🙂 Kale and all the other goodies though – yum!

  29. I think it’s just a matter of time- but Ellen will come around! I’m just sure of it!!!
    Beet smoothie? I do love the colour. I may have to give it a try.

  30. I’ve been having smoothies most mornings with spinach and berries and what not and the addition of beet sounds amazing!! I can’t get enough beets.

  31. It’s SOOOO pretty! I’m going to have to try it with a raw beet!

  32. Hi Ricki – big congrats on the recent successes — and with good reason! You have convinced me to try the Beet Smoothie – looks yummie — like all your food! Ellen – pay attention — you need Ricki!

  33. Ok, so this smoothie is completely awesome. I am 34 and haven’t eaten a beet since I was about 10, and that was only by force from my food police mother. Recently I decided I would like to start trying eating “new”/”different” foods than I typically eat, and I thought this smoothie might be the way to start…..well, I am sooo glad I tried it because it will definitely be mixed up in my Blendtec time and time again! I didn’t even use any vanilla protein powder (used plain hempseeds instead)or stevia (used one date—I think next time I’ll try 1/2 of a date) and it was still really delish. Thanks for expanding my culinary horizons, Ricki!

  34. Yum! My husband and I just made this smoothie, with a few changes. We used a raw beet (since we have a vitamix) and 1/2 a lime (instead of just the juice) and subbed in homemade kefir for the rice milk. It was very good! Even our toddler liked it. Next time I will add a touch more kefir and either more frozen berries or a few ice cubes to make it colder. I wonder how a frozen banana would do in there, too?

    • Thanks, Lisa! So glad you liked it. 🙂 I’m sure banana would be spectacular. I didn’t include it in this (or any recipe since March 2009) because I’m not allowed to have banana on the ACD right now. . . hoping it will make a reappearance in my diet some day! 🙂

  35. Great recipe! Tried it and added some Chia seed as well. Terrific.

  36. Fun! A new way to eat beets! I used raw beets and since it was organic, kept on the skin. Due to that, or my brand protein powder, it was a little grainy, and of course had an earthy flavor, but I enjoyed it! How can I not…that color shows I am eating pure nutrients! The key was getting the right combo of lime juice to stevia (my lime was a bit dry); a nice combo of beet/berry flavor.

    • Thanks so much, Vienna, and thanks for letting me know! This smoothie is still one of my favorites (though I’ve never left the skin on the beets, I must admit!) 🙂

  37. me love beets!!!

  38. You’re a girl after my own heart!


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