Shake It

If you remember not too long ago the folks at Vega sent me some of their newly launched Vega Smoothies to try. I loved the individual packets and their convenience, so when they asked if I’d be interested in trying their new Vega One French Vanilla flavor, I couldn’t resist.

It’s true that nowadays I’m a bit of a nutrient powder fiend. Since getting a bunch to try from GNC (final thoughts coming soon!), I’ve been having some type of protein powder in one form or another almost every day. This isn’t to say I am getting most of my nutrients from powders (that would be weird, and I probably wouldn’t be very healthy), but I like the ability to add to my daily intake when necessary – especially during marathon training. Since all of the powders I have are protein based, I was excited to try something that was a little more well-rounded, even if the protein count is on the lower side. These powders have 50% of your daily intake of vitamins and minerals, 15 grams of protein, 6 grams of fiber, 1.5 grams of Omega-3, and a bunch of antioxidants, probiotics, and greens.

When it comes to shake and powder flavors, chocolate and vanilla are usually the most popular (and most people I know gravitate towards chocolate). I remember when I was younger stopping at a Friendly’s with my mom and getting milkshakes; she ordered chocolate and I ordered vanilla. I’m never going to forget her commenting about how boring it was that I ordered vanilla, and if I was going to have a shake I should have gotten chocolate (since it’s apparently much less of a boring flavor). While I love chocolate, I still to this day find myself gravitating towards vanilla flavored drinks, and so I was pumped to try Vega’s French Vanilla.

I know a lot of people try different kinds of vanilla powders and say things like “Wow! That tasted like cake batter!,” well I’m here to tell you that if you’re looking for a cake batter or super sweet flavor, this powder isn’t for you. It’s plant based and is derived from ingredients like pea protein, so it tastes much more earthy than your average instant smoothie. This isn’t to say it’s bad – I just think it is much more of an acquired taste than most would be prepared for. I’ve found that mixing it with some type of milk (regular milk, or almond/coconut/soy/hemp) is much better than just using water – the powder mixes much better with a thicker milk consistency, and the flavors meld together in a way that isn’t possible with water. Also be aware – since it’s derived from plants, when mixed it does have a greenish hue. For me, I’m not looking for a dessert flavored healthy shake – if I wanted a milkshake tasting drink, well, I’d have myself a milkshake!

That being said, I like how convenient it is; mixing some into some milk gives me way more nutrients than I would get from your average smoothie, and its filling! I prefer to have it in the early afternoon just when I’m about to hit the slump, or in the morning as a part of my breakfast.

It turns out they’re having a sale and offering 15% off until 9/30/12! So if you’re interested in giving it a try, head over to and order yourself some!

Do you use any powders to enhance your daily nutrients? 

Disclaimer: Vega sent me these protein powders to try at no cost to me, and all opinions are my own. 

Smoothie Central

When I was contacted by the folks at Vega to see if I’d like to try their new line of smoothies, I jumped at the offer. I currently have a tub of their vanilla performance protein at home and enjoy that post-workout, so I was excited to see what their smoothie powders were like.

I love smoothies, but I never make them. It isn’t that I’m too lazy to make them, rather the majority of recipes I find online involve one fruit I just can’t stomach – banana. I realize banana can easily be omitted from most recipes, but most of the time they’re used for texture rather than taste, and I’m too much of a smoothie novice to know what would be a good replacement. I’ve tried packaged smoothie mixes before, and have always been left feeling like they were missing something, so I was looking forward to see what Vega had to offer.

So, when I learned about Vega’s pre-made smoothies, I couldn’t help but wonder if they would really have the same level of both nutrition and “yum” factor as a fruit-blended drink. I’d be lying if I didn’t say I was skeptical. I mean, how could something with ingredients like pea protein powder be made to taste like vanilla and almonds? Or fruit? Well, I don’t know how they did it, but the smoothies are good enough just with water! Each serving contains two servings of veggies, 10 grams of protein, 5 grams of fiber, and 1 gram of omega-3. I was impressed with those stats, considering it’s just a bunch of powder. The best part (in my opinion) is that it’s completely plant based – so when you look at the ingredient list, they’re all things that you can pronounce, and more importantly, you recognize.

Winning combo!

While the directions say to just add water and shake, I wanted to do a little more than that. Instead of using water, I decided to give their Vanilla Almondilla a try with some Cheribundi tart cherry juice. Since I typically drink some type of protein mid-afternoon at work (you know, to help me reach my buff arms goal), I swapped this out on Tuesday and was pleasantly surprised. I loved that I could just bring the individual package to work with me and make it whenever I wanted. And, the cherry and vanilla almond combination was delicious; I gave myself a little pat on the back for coming up with that one. I had my husband try the Mango Tango, and he was equally impressed with the flavors, and he’s a tough critic!

I’m looking forward to sampling the last few flavors, and I’m trying to come up with something creative for the unflavored package I received. The bottom line is that I would absolutely recommend these to someone looking for a quick, easy, and tasty way to get in some extra nutrients throughout the day.

Would you try these quick & easy smoothies?
Do you have any non-banana smoothie recipes that you like and want to share? 

Disclaimer: Vega sent me these protein powders to try at no cost to me, and all opinions are my own.