As you know, I did my first juice cleanse earlier this year with Suja Juice and I absolutely loved it. So when I had an opportunity to review Skinny Juices by Danielle Omar, MS, RD, I was excited at the opportunity to design my own juice cleanse and make my own juices.
I have to warn you that I am in no way an advocate of using juice cleanses as a way to drop a quick amount of weight. While that is typically an outcome, I like to use a cleanse to detox my body and re-set and re-calibrate my appetite. I find that it also helps me build self-confidence: if I can live on nothing but juice for 5 days then I can certainly say no to the office candy bowl.
I started by first reading through Skinny Juices; there are excellent tips on choosing a juicer and juicing versus blending, as well as a sample detox plan. I decided to create my own cleansing plan using my previous juice cleanse as a template. I read through each of the 101 recipes and came up with a menu of 6 different juices for each day: breakfast, morning snack, lunch, afternoon snack, dinner, and dessert. My strategy was to pick more filling juices for my main meals, energizing juices for my snacks, and something to satisfy my sweet tooth for dessert.
I intended to cleanse for 5 days and I need variety in my diet so I designed 2 different menus with 6 different juices for a total of 12 recipes to try. In the end, my plan looked like this:
Days 1, 3, 5:
- Breakfast: Mornin’ Glory
- Morning Snack: O2 Builder
- Lunch: Minty Mojito
- Afternoon Snack: Cleansing Lemonade
- Dinner: The Feast
- Dessert: Radiance
Days 2, 4:
- Breakfast: Kiwi Cleanse
- Morning Snack: Cosmic Love
- Lunch: Red Fresca
- Afternoon Snack: Citrus Delight
- Dinner: Greek Goodness
- Dessert: Kiwi Cooler
For the juicing, I decided to use a combination of my juicer and my new Ninja Nutri Blender Duo. Those fruits or vegetables that have a lot of pulp, such as carrots, beets, apples and cucumbers, went through the juicer. However green veggies like kale, spinach and lettuce as well as soft fruits like strawberries, pineapple and mango went through the blender. I found this gave the juices a little more heft while my Ninja Nutri blended everything so fine that I didn’t have the gritty texture that so often comes with blending greens.
The recipes in Skinny Juices are incredibly easy to follow, it’s simply a matter of combining the listed ingredients in either the blender or juicer, or a combination of the two as I did. In fact, most recipes have only one cooking instruction: Juice.
I found that the juices are also easy to prep ahead of time and keep well overnight. In fact, for recipes that use chia seeds, like Red Fresca, I actually preferred this as it allowed the chia seeds to expand in the liquid and become more digestible.
Every night before I went to bed I would prepare the juices for the next day rather than using valuable morning time to make them before work. I found they were very easy to store and transport in pint-sized mason jars. If a recipe didn’t quite fill the jar, I added a little unsweetened coconut water to make it more substantial.
My favorite juice of those that I tried was definitely the O2 Builder. There is something about the combination of beets, carrots, strawberries, and apples that was absolutely divine. It was sweet and creamy and absolutely filling. I also really enjoyed the Mornin’ Glory, Cosmic Love, Red Fresca, and Radiance. Heck, I liked all of the recipes I tried.
My least favorite of those that I tried was The Feast. I wound up halving the recipe because it makes such a large portion, but I also didn’t care for the garlic and ginger in the recipe, it was just a bit too powerful for my palate. After making the juice as written on the first day, on the following days I left the garlic and ginger out and added a bit of fresh basil for extra flavor. I loved that!
I noticed a difference in myself after the first day of cleansing. I wasn’t hungry, I had a ton of energy, and my mood was very positive. By the time I finished my 5 day cleanse I had not only lost 12 pounds, but I had gained a renewed perspective into myself. I so enjoyed making my own juices and the way the cleanse made me feel that I’ve decided to change my morning breakfast routine from steel-cut oats with berries, hemp hearts, chia seeds, and flax seeds to a filling juice. I think that cutting down on the grains and increasing the raw fruits and vegetables in my diet will not only help my digestion but will also elevate my mood and energy levels. Below is the juice that I make, in my Ninja Nutri Blender, every morning.
If you’re interested in trying a cleanse yourself, I highly recommend snagging a copy of Skinny Juices and making your own juices. You won’t regret it.
*Important Note: This cookbook was provided to me at no cost to review. The opinions in this post are completely my own, other than the cookbook being provided at no cost, I was not compensated for this review in any way.
Rise and Shine!
Author: Colleen Fields
- Serving size: 12 oz.
- Calories: 181.3
- Fat: 1.2
- Saturated fat: 0.1
- Polyunsaturated fat: 0.3
- Carbohydrates: 59.6
- Sugar: 22.8
- Sodium: 37.5
- Fiber: 8.0
- Protein: 2.7
- Cholesterol: 0.0
- 3 small leaves fresh kale, roughly chopped
- 1 medium honecrisp apple, cored and roughly chopped
- 2 persian cucumbers, roughly chopped
- juice of 1 lemon
- ½" piece of fresh ginger root
- ¼ cup unsweetened coconut water
- dash of cayenne pepper
- Put all ingredients into the blender and puree until fine and the consistency of a smoothie.