Reader’s Request: Smoothies vs Juices

Hiiiii 😀 How are you? Hope you’ve had an amazing day <3

I’ve gotten a lot of questions about smoothies and juices, so I thought it would be a fun reader’s request 😀

A little video:

For the record, this combo:


doesn’t taste very good. (The grapefruit was a little bold)

But it looks pretty, right? 😉


Some FAQs that weren’t addressed:


What’s the main difference between smoothies and juices?

Smoothies are made in a blender and pulverize the fruit or veggies, keeping the fiber and all of the nutrients intact.Juices are made in a juicer, and the fruit/veggie’s juice is extracted from the pulp and skin- it removes the fiber and has *most* of the nutrients. For me, I like to think use juices as a way to get extra vitamins and nutrients that I wouldn’t be able to eat in one sitting, and smoothies as a protein boost.

Some of my favorite juice recipes would actually be more like a gazpacho or cold soup if I made them in the Vitamix.

Juice is also amazing for an energy boost from the live enzymes. I haven’t really felt the need to drink coffee lately because it’s been doing the trick 🙂 That’s not to say coffee won’t be back, but for now, it’s taken a back seat to the green juice.

How do you create juice recipes?

For juices, I like to *usually* have 3 components: something green, something sweet, and a kicker. The green can be anything (romaine, kale and spinach are lovely), for the sweet, an apple, carrots, berries (strawberries are fun), pineapple, a sprinkle of Stevia, and the kicker can be a nub of ginger, a sprinkle of cayenne, or some citrus to take the *green* flavor our.

Some of my fave combos:

-Carrot, apple, beet, ginger

-Spinach, parsley, lemon, green apple

-Green apple, romaine, cucumber, lemon

-Beet, pineapple, kale

-Orange, lime, spinach, cayenne

Tip: If your juice tastes funky, add 1/2 lemon and a little Stevia. That will usually do the trick 😉

What can I do with the pulp?

The pulp is excellent as a raw slaw (I’m pretty sure Gena has a post on what to do with pulp), and can also be used as a raw cracker base, raw dessert, or for composting.

With today’s carrot pulp, I made a raw carrot cake:

carrot cake

Carrot pulp, honey, cinnamon, nutmeg, shredded coconut, topped with coconut butter

What other juicers do you recommend?

I’m a huge fan of the Jack LaLanne model, and have used the Breville when I worked at the restaurant and went to school at 105degrees. Both are fab.

Where can I find smoothie recipes?

Check out *this post* on making a meal out of your smoothie, and *this page* for reader recipes.

If you had to choose between getting a juicer or Vitamix, what would you decide?

I LOVE my juicer, but it pretty much only has one purpose. I use the Vitamix multiple times a day for so many different things- nut flour, smoothies, soups, hummus, homemade nut butter, salsa, etc. So I’d definitely invest in the Vitamix first, and then a juicer later down the line.

Want a Vita-mix? I’ve got one already (and take it everywhere with me), but if YOU would enjoy one, we’re giving away another Vitamix this Friday through my OpenSky page. (Current followers will be entered, too!)


I hope this helped a little! Have fun with it and get creative with your smoothies and juices- you may find a new combo lurve 🙂

Do you prefer smoothies or juices? What’s your favorite combo? Any other blenders or juicers that you’d recommend?

Enjoy your night and I’ll see ya later 🙂



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  1. Liz @ Tip Top Shape on January 26, 2011 at 11:43 pm

    That raw carrot cake looks amazing!!!!!!

  2. Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table on January 26, 2011 at 11:46 pm

    I am smoothie-obsessed! My favorites involve pumpkin, butternut squash, or sweet potato. Or avocados. Ugh – so hard to choose!

    Admittedly, I do have a bit of juicer-envy. 🙂

  3. Ashlee on January 26, 2011 at 11:58 pm

    Love the post! Vita-mix is my true love, but I have been loving my juicer lately. This morning I couldn’t decide between a juice or smoothie. Smoothie won because of running late! 🙂 Love all of your ideas!!

  4. Mandy (theamazonprincess) on January 26, 2011 at 11:59 pm

    I love this post Gina! I am a smoothie queen, but am dying to try juicing. Those Jack Lalanne juicers aren’t all that expensive are they? Around $100ish? If so I might have to invest in one. 😀 I never knew they worked so well.

  5. Kirsten on January 27, 2011 at 12:14 am

    Do you have the dry blade container for your vita-mix to make the flours? or do you just do it in the standard wet blade attachment? I just got a vita-mix and I am trying to decide if it is worth investing in the dry blade container.

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2011 at 12:36 am

      i do it with the reg blade- works great 🙂

  6. Anne Marie on January 27, 2011 at 12:19 am

    Hey Fitnessista! I just realized how rude I have been. I tried your breakfast cookie dough cereal about a couple of months ago and have had it for breakfast almost everyday since. I never even said thank you! The Sun Warrior that I got from your open sky promo makes it even better! So thanks, mucho for both!

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2011 at 12:36 am

      so awesome! thank YOU for reading 🙂

  7. mi-an dela cruz on January 27, 2011 at 1:31 am

    i love smooothies! i have an old skool juicer and hate cleaning it! so i always make smoothies (regular blender though, still awaiting to win that vitamix from ur opensky!) 🙂
    my fave post workout smoothie: frozen mango, banana, almond milk, soy protein powder w/ spirulina, almond butter; another one i like kale, coconut water, and mango.
    p.s. i made that fennel, onion and green apple salad for lunch and IT’S AMAZING!!! thanks!
    also i finished my 30 day yoga challenge today!! yahoo!!

  8. Madeleine @ Stepping to the Bright Side on January 27, 2011 at 1:56 am

    my FAV juice is one bunch of kale, one cucumber, one green apple, one lemon with peel removed. SO TANGY!

  9. Jenn on January 27, 2011 at 2:01 am

    I’m all about smoothies…although I’ve never used a juicer. I just love a really thick smoothie. YUM!

  10. Julie on January 27, 2011 at 2:03 am

    My Vitamix arrived yesterday – so excited to use it! In the recipe book they sent with it, it gives juice recipes. So you can use a Vitamix for juice as well. I have yet to try some of their recipes but they say the motor is powerful enough to blend the pulp as well. A juicer was going to be my next purchase but it looks as if I won’t need one now.

    • Sabine @ thefruitpursuit on January 27, 2011 at 2:35 am

      it’s not exactly the same though… a vita won’t extract the juices! just blend it all together 🙂

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2011 at 10:18 am

      juices are a little different because the skin and pulp is removed, along with the fiber. so technically the vitamix will make it into a raw soup, but not a juice

      • kelli on January 27, 2011 at 2:50 pm

        I was thinking maybe using a nut milk bag to strain the fibers/pulp might work!

  11. Sabine @ thefruitpursuit on January 27, 2011 at 2:17 am

    Great tuturial! I still don’t see the great advantage of juicing over blending though, except that maybe the nutrients enter your bloodstream Faster…. but making a smoothie keeps all the nutrients AND fibers 🙂

  12. Lindsay on January 27, 2011 at 2:39 am

    I think you are so sweet to put up a post like this 🙂 I’m a juice person. Thanks to your help with the pulp, I think i’m gonna try it tomorrow. Thanks, dear!!

  13. Gill (snaxandthecity) on January 27, 2011 at 3:56 am

    thanks Gina! I’ve been wondering about a few of these questions, so really enjoyed this post! I juiced a little while ago, but always thought I was getting too much sugar from it….it definitely gives you an energy boost tho!

  14. Whitney on January 27, 2011 at 5:16 am

    Carrot Apple Lemon. I wish I had a juicer!

  15. Katie on January 27, 2011 at 6:27 am

    Love my Juicer too! I love apple + beet + Ginger + Carrot + little lemon

    Sometimes my juicer gets angry when I try to put bigger pieces then Im supposed to in it : p that is a no do , I learned my lesson!

  16. Kara on January 27, 2011 at 6:43 am

    Of your juice recipes, which do you think is the most kid friendly? Also, does the juice keep in the fridge for a day, or do you have to drink it as soon as you make it?

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2011 at 10:17 am

      i think that it would be fun to start with a carrot apple juice- it’s mild and sweet
      if you aren’t going to drink it within 20 minutes, just freeze it and drink later

  17. Jena on January 27, 2011 at 7:33 am

    What’s the difference between a Vita-Mix and a regular blender?
    I have an Oster blender that I use to make my smoothies, but the blog world seems to be so in love with the Vita-Mix. What makes it better than a blender?

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2011 at 10:16 am

      a vitamix can grind ANYTHING- it has crazy awesome horsepower. so it’s great for smoothies with spinach (no spinach chunks) and stuff like homemade almond butter that you wouldn’t be able to make in a reg blender

  18. Caroline on January 27, 2011 at 7:34 am

    I’d love to try juicing sometime, but I wouldn’t be able to afford all the produce required at the moment. Silly student budget 🙂

    • Amy @ purewellnessamy on January 27, 2011 at 7:09 pm

      Hi Caroline – If you don’t already, check out Trader Joe’s (if you have one local). I find their prices on organic produce to be extremely reasonable. For instance, a 2 lb bag of (small) organic apples costs just $2.49 and a 1 lb bag of organic carrots costs $.89!

      Good luck!

  19. Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin on January 27, 2011 at 7:46 am

    I’ve never really wanted to get a juicer because I didn’t like the idea of losing all the fibre. That’s a great idea to make something else with it though! That raw carrot cake looks yum. 😀

  20. Liz on January 27, 2011 at 8:18 am

    Great post! I’ve been reading all about juicing in the Crazy Sexy Diet book and really appreciate this helpful post. I actually just bought a juicer and really hope I’ll learn to like the taste of green juices!

  21. Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat on January 27, 2011 at 8:19 am

    I’m more of a smoothies girl but haven’t had much experience with juices because i don’t have a juicer. Having said that, now I really want to try your juice recipes! Thanks for all the info Gina!

  22. Brittany on January 27, 2011 at 9:14 am

    I got a juicer right after christmas this year and I love it!! I use it almost every day- the only problem is it’s a real pain in the arse to clean.
    My favorite combo is:
    1/2 bunch spinach or 1/2 head romain
    4 stalks celery or 1 cucumber
    2 gala apples
    1 lemon

  23. Kathie @ Frugal Fit and Fabulous on January 27, 2011 at 9:31 am

    you know, i never gave much thought as to the difference between the two. this was quite an educational experience for me. thank you for sharing. 🙂

  24. LisaG on January 27, 2011 at 9:51 am

    I have an osterizer 12 speed blender that seems to work well for smoothies. I have been making almond milk, scoop of sun warrior, chia, flax, spinach, banana, & ice. I just inherited a juicer, so haven’t had much experience with juices yet.

  25. Beth @ DiningAndDishing on January 27, 2011 at 10:10 am

    I haven’t tried juices but I’m very interested! I don’t get a big energy boost from Green Monsters like so many people claim – but maybe with juice I would notice a difference!

  26. Fallon on January 27, 2011 at 10:21 am

    I’ve never really tried fresh juice before. I’m afraid it will taste too earthy for me. I love smoothies and I always had spinach to get an extra kick of green goodness!

  27. Laury @ thefitnessdish on January 27, 2011 at 10:45 am

    Aghhh…I missed this post yesterday! I have the Jack Lalanne power juicer too! And the Vitamix 🙂

    I preferred juicing in the winter, and more cooling green smoothies in the spring/ summer. Now that I am getting a little more “heated” as my pregnancy progresses I am starting to whip out the Vitamix again. I love in my juicer beets, spinach, apple, pear, celery (I think that’s it). In the Vitamix is varies. I try to rotate my greens a lot. I just come up with weird concoctions usually and hope they taste good 🙂

  28. Caree @ Fit-Mama! on January 27, 2011 at 11:09 am

    Thanks sooo much for this!!! I have been so confused and you answered all of my questions!!!

  29. Ali @ Around the VeggieTable on January 27, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    I’m definitely more of a juice person but I absolutely hate cleaning my juicer. I use a Breville (I think I have the mid-line version) and it’s fantastic but it has SO many parts! I feel like I can never get it clean enough. My favorite combo is a green lemonade with lots of kale, a little apple, a whole lemon and ginger! Do you find that your ginger gets stuck in the grates of the juicer? I always get the ginger flavor, but when I go to clean it there is usually a big hunk of it stuck on the blades!

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2011 at 12:52 pm

      yup mine does the same thing!

  30. liz on January 27, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    A kick-ass juice I made this morning:

    1 jalapeno
    1 peeled lime
    2 stalks celery
    1 stalk fennel (from the top)
    1/2 cucumber
    handful spinach
    3 stalks kale
    handful cilantro

  31. Kate on January 27, 2011 at 1:59 pm

    Every single morning of my life I was awakening by the sound of carrot being juiced. My dad had carrot juice every single morning for probably 20 years. I always thought it was gross but now I’m finding myself wanting to try it. Wish he was alive to see the day 😉 haha

    Thank for the video!

  32. Kandi on January 27, 2011 at 2:15 pm

    You are officially one of the most creative “foodies” I know. I can’t believe you made that darling with carrot pulp.

    Your silent follower,

    • Fitnessista on January 27, 2011 at 2:33 pm

      thanks girl <3

  33. Meghan on January 27, 2011 at 6:10 pm

    Awesome post!

  34. CaSaundra on January 28, 2011 at 7:07 am

    I’ve always kinda wondered what differentiates a juice from a smoothie–great vid! And I am still really lovin the bangs on you! 🙂

  35. LauraJayne on February 2, 2011 at 3:49 pm

    I’ve never heard of using the pulp for another recipe – that is such a great idea! I can’t wait to try it!

  36. Anne Marie on February 25, 2011 at 5:53 pm

    Just bought my first juicer on a whim. I mixed carrot, apple, and cuke. I’m instantly hooked! You get me addicted to all the good stuff. 🙂

  37. Ashley on August 12, 2011 at 7:53 pm

    I love my Jack Lalanne, but when I juice leafy greens, I can’t get any juice out! I understand that masticating juicers are better for leafy greens than centrifugal juicers but I was wondering if you have any tips on getting more juice out of leafy greens.

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