When to Add More Fruit to Your Green Smoothie

By Jennifer Thompson

Fruit is an important ingredient in a green smoothie recipe because the sweet taste of fruit helps to balance the bitter taste of greens. Fruit also adds more water content, enzymes, and fiber, all of which make the smoothie easier to digest and absorb.

Ripe fruit has a sweeter taste than unripe fruit. Think of the difference in taste between a green, unripe banana and a brown, overripe banana. Unripe fruit is starchy, tough, and sometimes bitter. As fruits ripen, the amount of starch decreases and the sugar content increases.

Overripe fruit can start to oxidize, developing brown spots where the fruit is going bad, and occasionally mold even starts to appear on the outer skin. You don’t want to eat that!

Ideally, you should use fruit that is perfectly ripe — not too soft and without any large brown spots. If a fruit is bruised, simply cut away the brown parts and use only the ripe portion.

If your smoothie doesn’t taste sweet because you added unripe fruit, adding more unripe fruit won’t sweeten it. In that case, you can add a tablespoon of raw honey, a teaspoon of stevia powder, or one medjool date to sweeten up the taste.

If you’ve taste-tested your smoothie and find it’s not sweet enough, double-check your recipe and make sure you added the fruit initially called for before you start trying to adjust the taste. Believe it or not, you can easily make a green smoothie and actually forget to add the fruit!

Fruits such as banana, mango, pineapple, papaya, watermelon, and melon are very sweet and are good choices to help hide the bitter taste of greens. Sweet fruits are also great for hiding the strong taste of certain superfoods, such as spirulina and chlorella powder. Lower glycemic index (GI) fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, and grapefruit tend to be less sweet.

Add an additional half cup of sweet fruit such as banana, apple, or pineapple to balance the taste if your smoothie is too bitter. Add the fruit, blend again, and then have a taste. You can add one or two medjool dates or a tablespoon of raw honey to heighten the sweet flavor if your smoothie tastes sour or even bland.

Add more fruit to your smoothie if you

  • Enjoy sweet flavor more than bitter

  • Are transitioning off refined sugar and/or wheat

  • Want to hide the algae taste of spirulina powder

  • Feel hungry between meals

  • Suffer from a sluggish colon or constipation