What exactly is green juice?

Green juice has become increasingly popular in recent years as more people look to incorporate healthy, natural foods into their diets. But what exactly is green juice? In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore everything you need to know about green juice including the benefits, downsides, how to make it, and recipe ideas.

What is Green Juice?

Green juice is made by juicing a variety of green vegetables, herbs, and fruits. The resulting beverage is full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and plant compounds that can provide a major health boost. Some of the most common ingredients used in green juices include:

  • Leafy greens like kale, spinach, chard, romaine
  • Herbs like parsley, cilantro, basil
  • Fruits like apple, lemon, lime, grapefruit
  • Cucumbers
  • Celery
  • Ginger
  • Wheatgrass

By juicing the produce, you are able to consume a very high concentration of nutrients. For example, to get the same amount of vitamins and minerals found in one 16 oz green juice, you’d have to eat 2-3 pounds of produce!

Benefits of Green Juice

Drinking green juice regularly provides a wide range of health benefits. Here are some of the top reasons you may want to add green juicing into your routine:

Nutrient Dense

Green juices pack a nutritional punch that would be difficult to achieve by eating whole fruits and vegetables. Because the produce is juiced, your body can easily absorb and utilize all the nutrients. You’ll get a mega dose of vitamins A, C, E, K, B-complex, iron, calcium, magnesium, and potassium.


Most people tend to have a diet high in acidic foods like meat, dairy, processed grains, and sugar. This can throw off your body’s pH balance. Consuming green juice made with lots of alkalizing greens helps restore proper pH, which can improve energy levels and overall health.

Aids Digestion

If you struggle with digestive issues, sipping on green juice can help provide relief. The nutrients and enzymes found in produce aid digestion. Plus, green juice gives your digestive system a break from having to break down fiber.


Chlorophyll from leafy greens acts as a natural detoxifier, helping to rid your body of heavy metals and toxins. The antioxidants in green juice also support liver function.


The produce used in green juices contains anti-inflammatory compounds like flavonoids and carotenoids. This can help reduce inflammation throughout the body which is the root of most diseases.

Boosts Immunity

Nourishing your body with vitamin-rich green juice supplies nutrients that may help fend off illness. The vitamin C, beta carotene, and other antioxidants act to strengthen your immune defenses.

Aids Weight Loss

Replacing a meal with low-calorie, nutrient-dense green juice can support weight loss efforts. The fiber keeps you feeling full while the vitamins give you energy without a lot of calories.

Improves Skin Health

Many of the nutrients, enzymes, and phytonutrients in green juice benefit skin health. Consuming greens internally while also applying them topically can help reduce acne, improve skin tone, and give your complexion a healthy glow.

Downsides of Green Juice

While green juice has some excellent nutrition and health benefits, there are a few potential downsides to consider:

  • Without the fiber, nutrients may be absorbed too quickly leading to a blood sugar spike and crash.
  • Juices do not contain much protein needed to feel full and satisfied.
  • The nutritious greens are concentrated, so drinking too much can lead to an excess of certain vitamins.
  • Juices oxidize quickly, losing nutrients rapidly after being exposed to air.
  • The juicing process removes the beneficial insoluble fiber contained in whole fruits and vegetables.
  • Fresh juices are perishable and need to be consumed within a day or two.
  • Juicers are expensive appliances, adding to the cost of making homemade juice.

The key is moderation. Enjoy green juice as part of an overall healthy diet with plenty of fiber from whole fruits, veggies, grains, and legumes. Keep portions around 8-16 oz per day.

How to Make Green Juice

Now that you know the pros and cons of green juicing, let’s look at how to make your own. Here are some step-by-step instructions:

1. Gather ingredients

Look for produce that is fresh and at peak ripeness for max nutrition. Some good greens to include are kale, spinach, romaine, cucumber, parsley, celery, ginger, lemon, and green apple.

2. Wash produce

Give the fruits and vegetables a good wash, especially those with skins you’ll be consuming like apples and cucumbers.

3. Prep ingredients

Chop veggies and fruits into pieces small enough to fit through your juicer’s feed tube. You can leave ingredients like cucumber, celery, and carrots whole if they fit.

4. Juice ingredients

Turn on your juicer and begin feeding the ingredients through, alternating greens and fruits. Juice greens first, then fruits. Catch the fresh juice in a glass.

5. Stir and enjoy

Give the green juice a good stir to incorporate any settling pulp. Drink immediately for the most nutrition and flavor.

Choosing a Juicer

Investing in a good juicer is key to making tasty, nutritious green juices at home. Here are the pros and cons of the most common types:

Juicer Type Pros Cons
  • Fast juicing
  • Affordable price
  • Louder operation
  • Produces more foam
  • Less efficient juice extraction
Cold Press
  • Quiet operation
  • Minimal oxidation
  • Nutrient preservation
  • Slower juicing
  • Higher price
  • Efficient juice extraction
  • Versatile for juices, nut milks, etc
  • Parts can be tricky to clean
Twin Gear
  • Very high juice yield
  • Minimal oxidation
  • Long lasting machine
  • Expensive
  • Slow juicing

For most home juicers, a centrifugal or masticating model is a good choice. Prioritize ease of use and cleaning if you’ll be making juice frequently. If budget isn’t a concern, splurge on a cold press juicer for top quality green juice.

Green Juice Ingredient Ideas

One of the great things about green juice is that you can mix and match a huge variety of ingredients to create your own blends. Get inspired with these tasty ingredient combinations:

Green Goddess

  • Kale
  • Cucumber
  • Parsley
  • Ginger
  • Lemon
  • Green apple

Mint Refresher

  • Romaine
  • Celery
  • Spinach
  • Mint
  • Lime
  • Honeydew melon

Green Armor

  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Broccoli
  • Cilantro
  • Ginger
  • Green grapes

Green Popeye

  • Spinach
  • Celery
  • Parsley
  • Lemon
  • Green apple

Apple Pie Green

  • Romaine
  • Kale
  • Ginger
  • Cinnamon
  • Green apples

Green Juice Recipes

Ready to get started making your own green juice? Try out a few of these tasty recipes:

Detox Green Juice


  • 1 cucumber
  • 5 stalks celery
  • 1 lemon, peeled
  • 2 green apples
  • 1 inch ginger
  • Large handful of spinach
  • Large handful of kale


  1. Wash all produce thoroughly.
  2. Cut veggies and fruits to fit juicer feed tube.
  3. Juice cucumber and celery first.
  4. Follow with lemon, apples, and ginger.
  5. Finally juice spinach and kale.
  6. Stir juice well and enjoy!

Green Lemonade


  • 1 cucumber
  • 1 lemon, peeled
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 inch ginger
  • Handful spinach
  • Handful kale
  • 2 green apples


  1. Wash all ingredients well.
  2. Prep produce to fit through juicer feed tube.
  3. Juice cucumber and celery.
  4. Follow with lemon, ginger, greens, and apples.
  5. Stir and drink immediately.

Green Grapefruit Juice


  • 1 grapefruit, peeled
  • 1 cucumber
  • 2 stalks celery
  • Handful parsley
  • 2 kale leaves
  • 2 green apples


  1. Clean all produce well.
  2. Prep ingredients to fit through juicer.
  3. Juice grapefruit first followed by cucumber and celery.
  4. Add parsley, kale, and apples.
  5. Stir and consume juice immediately after juicing.

Tips for Making Green Juice Taste Better

When you first try green juicing, the earthy, vegetal flavors can take some getting used to. Here are some tips to make your green juice taste even better:

  • Add lemon, lime, grapefruit or orange – citrus brightens the flavor
  • Use tart green apples, pears, or grapes to balance out strong greens
  • Include fresh herbs like mint, basil, parsley to mix up flavors
  • Add a 1/2 inch knob of fresh ginger or turmeric for a spicy kick
  • Blend rather than juice greens like kale and spinach for a smoother texture
  • Sweeten with a little honey, maple syrup, pitted dates, or stevia if needed
  • Dilute with coconut water or ice to mellow the intensity
  • Mix mild greens like cucumber and romaine with smaller amounts of cruciferous greens
  • Play around with proportions and ingredients until you find combinations you love!

How to Store Green Juice

To retain the most nutrients in your green juice, it’s best to drink it immediately after making. However, here are some storage tips if you want to batch prep juice:

  • Store green juice in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 24 hours.
  • Pour into ice cube trays and freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw cubes and add to smoothies.
  • Freeze in popsicle molds for an icy green juice treat.
  • Keep juice in a thermal flask with ice to stay chilled when on-the-go.
  • Pour into ice cube trays with sticks and freeze into green juice ice pops.
  • Always consume juice as soon as possible once exposed to air.


When made properly, green juice can be an excellent way to flood your body with a variety of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. The combination of leafy greens, fruits, veggies, and herbs creates a nutrient-dense beverage that energizes you and provides an array of health benefits.

Green juicing takes some getting used to, but can easily be incorporated into your routine. Mix up ingredient combinations until you find green juices you love. Drink them fresh and store any leftovers properly. Sip your way to better health by enjoying green juice as part of a wholesome, balanced diet.

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