Learn how to prevent your smoothies from separating with my helpful tips and tricks. Say goodbye to unappetizing layers in your smoothies and enjoy a perfectly blended drink every time.
Smoothies are a fabulous way to start a day, and I often have them when I want to have a quick but healthy breakfast.
I usually make the smoothie and drink it straight away. I have noticed that if I don’t drink it immediately, the smoothie sometimes separates and doesn’t look as great as when it’s first made.
A quick stir with a spoon usually brings the whole smoothie back together.
I think this simple solution only works if you have a fairly thick smoothie with high fibre and fat content. If your smoothie is mainly fruit or vegetables, you might find that it separates a lot more.
What causes smoothie separation?
Generally speaking, mixing ingredients with different consistency, amount of fibre, and fat causes the smoothies to separate with time.
The longer you leave your smoothie, the more of a chance you have of, the heavier ingredients dropping down to the bottom of the smoothie glass and the water, juice or milk staying on the top.
Which types of smoothies separate most?
If you make your smoothie mainly from fruit, vegetables and juice or water, you’ll most likely end up with a separation in your smoothie. It’s nothing to worry about, just mix the smoothie with a spoon and drink it before it separates again.
Pure vegetable smoothies might sometimes go brown if left for too long, but you can slow down this process by adding lemon or lime juice to your smoothie.
Types of smoothies which are prone to separating:
- Smoothies with high-fat ingredients: Smoothies containing high-fat ingredients such as avocado, nut butters, or coconut milk are more likely to separate. The fat content can cause separation, especially if the smoothie is not blended properly.
- Smoothies with citrus fruits: Smoothies containing citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, or limes can also separate. The acid in the citrus can curdle the milk or yogurt in the smoothie.
- Smoothies with chia seeds: Smoothies with chia seeds can also separate. Chia seeds absorb liquid and can cause the smoothie to thicken and separate over time.
- Smoothies with protein powder: Smoothies containing protein powder can separate if the powder is not mixed in properly. The powder can clump and cause separation.
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So, here are few tips on how to stop smoothies from separating.
Choose the right ingredients
Ingredients causing separation
- oranges, raspberries, blueberries, apples, celery, beets, leafy greens
- too much water
- cucumber, carrots
Ingredients preventing separation
- bananas, mangoes, peaches pears, avocado
- yoghurt, tofu, cream cheese, cottage cheese
- oats, rice or rice flakes
- milk – dairy or plant based, dairy free milk
- Ground flaxseeds, ground mixed seeds
- Peanut, almond or cashew nut butter
- Honey, agave, date, syrup
- Dark chocolate
- Eggs – you can use egg yolks in smoothies to make them more creamy
MORE SMOOTHIE RECIPES
Drink your smoothie straight away
This is probably the easiest solution to smoothies separating, but it’s not always the most practical. You might like to prepare your smoothie for the journey to work or keep it for later.
Although making a smoothie sounds like a quick job, it actually takes a surprisingly long time, especially if you are already running late in the morning. I try to prepare as much as I can the night before to make the smoothie making a bit quicker in the morning.
If you can’t drink your smoothie straight away, keep it in a securely tight container (like a beaker or coffee flask). Shake the container vigorously before you want to drink your smoothie to bring all the ingredients back together.
SMOOTHIE BOWL RECIPES
Get the consistency right
Depending on the type of smoothie you want to create, make sure that you add enough ingredients to end up with a thicker smoothie.
Too much water or fruit juice will make the smoothie separate.
On most days, my smoothie includes something like:
- Plant-based yoghurt
- Almond Butter
- Milled flaxseed
- Agave syrup
- Pinch of salt
The almond butter, oats, flaxseed, agave syrup and yoghurt all help to keep the smoothie nice and thick.
Make sure you blend your smoothie well
Ideally, you want to use a high-speed blender, juicer or food mixer. I tend to use just a regular stick blender that submerges into a plastic beaker or large measuring jug.
The smoother and finer your ingredients are, the better they stick together and keep together without separating.
Blend in extra ice cubes
Another way to make sure that your smoothies will come back together in terms of consistency is to blend in extra ice ice cubes.
I often use my frozen almond milk cubes that are slightly thicker than regular ice cubes and they always bring the smoothie nicely back together.
What are some common mistakes people make when blending smoothies that can lead to separation?
There are several common mistakes people make when blending smoothies that can lead to separation, including:
- Over-blending or under-blending the smoothie.
- Adding too many ingredients, which can cause the smoothie to become too thick and difficult to blend evenly.
- Adding ingredients in the wrong order, which can cause clumps to form and lead to separation.
- Using the wrong type of blender or blending at the wrong speed.
- Not using enough liquid to properly blend all of the ingredients together.
- Using ingredients that are too cold or too warm, which can cause separation.
- Using fruits that are overripe or vegetables that are too fibrous.
- Not properly measuring ingredients, which can result in an unbalanced smoothie.
Does the temperature of the smoothie affect whether it will separate or not?
Yes, the temperature of the smoothie can affect whether it will separate or not. If the smoothie is too cold, it can cause separation.
On the other hand, if the blender’s heat causes the fats in the smoothie to melt and separate from the liquid, it can also cause separation. Additionally, using room temperature or warm ingredients can contribute to a warm smoothie and cause separation.
Can the blending process affect whether a smoothie separates or not?
Yes, the blending process can affect whether a smoothie separates or not. Over-blending or under-blending the smoothie can lead to separation. Over-blending can cause the fats in the smoothie to melt and separate from the liquid, while under-blending can result in clumps forming and causing separation.
Blending at the wrong speed or using the wrong type of blender can also contribute to separation. Using a high-speed blender can help ensure that the ingredients are blended evenly and prevent separation.
Can you fix a smoothie that has already separated?
Yes, you can fix a smoothie that has already separated. Here are a few methods:
- Stir or shake the smoothie: If the separation is minor, you can try stirring or shaking the smoothie to mix the layers back together.
- Blend the smoothie again: If the separation is more significant, you can try blending the smoothie again for a few seconds. This can help remix the ingredients and smooth out any clumps that may have formed.
- Add a thickener: If the smoothie is too thin and has separated, you can try adding a thickener such as Greek yogurt, banana, or chia seeds. This can help bind the ingredients together and prevent further separation.
This blog post was originally written on 7 June 2021 and last updated on 14 August 2023