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What is good to add to orange juice?

Orange juice is a breakfast staple for many people. On its own, it’s tasty and nutritious, providing a dose of vitamin C, potassium, and other nutrients. However, sometimes plain orange juice can get a bit boring. Fortunately, there are lots of simple ways to jazz up a glass of OJ and make it more exciting.

Fruits and Vegetables

Adding fruits and veggies to orange juice is an easy way to liven things up. Blending produce into orange juice can create fun new flavors and provide extra vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Here are some healthy, delicious options:

  • Strawberries – Sweet, tart strawberries complement the tanginess of orange juice. Blend in a few hulled strawberries for a bright, summery drink.
  • Banana – Banana adds natural sweetness and thickness to orange juice. It also provides potassium and magnesium.
  • Pineapple – Pineapple juice combines perfectly with orange juice. The two have similar bright, tropical flavors.
  • Mango – Blend fresh or frozen mango into your OJ for a tropical juice full of vitamin C.
  • Peach – Fresh or frozen peach chunks add pleasant stone fruit flavors and vitamin A.
  • Kiwi – Kiwi adds tanginess and a fun color. Blend in a whole peeled kiwi.
  • Spinach – You can’t taste the spinach, but it adds nutrients like vitamin K, folate, and lutein.
  • Carrot – For a nutrient boost, blend some carrot juice into your orange juice.
  • Tomato – Tomato juice has savory umami flavors that complement citrusy OJ surprisingly well.

Dairy and Dairy Alternatives

Dairy products pair nicely with orange juice too. They add protein, calcium, and creamy richness. Some tasty choices include:

  • Greek yogurt – Stir in a dollop of thick, tangy Greek yogurt.
  • Cottage cheese – Blend cottage cheese into orange juice in a blender for a savory smoothie.
  • Ice cream – For an instant creamsicle, mix a scoop of vanilla ice cream into your glass of OJ.
  • Almond milk – Non-dairy almond milk maintains the light feel of orange juice.
  • Coconut milk – Coconut milk makes orange juice taste like a piña colada!

Seeds and Nuts

Seeds and nuts add healthy fats, protein, and texture when blended into orange juice. Consider mixing in:

  • Chia seeds – Tiny chia seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. They plump up in liquid.
  • Flax seeds – Nutty, fiber-filled flaxseeds add nutrition without altering the flavor.
  • Hemp seeds – Hemp seeds provide protein and minerals like iron, zinc, and magnesium.
  • Almonds – Blend a handful of almonds into orange juice for a nutty crunch.
  • Cashews – Buttery cashews complement the slight bitterness of orange juice
  • Pecans – Add a couple crunchy pecans for flavor and antioxidants.
  • Walnuts – Toasty walnuts pair nicely with citrusy orange juice.
  • Peanuts – Try a few unsalted peanuts for a peanut butter and jelly flavor.

Spices and Herbs

Traditional breakfast spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger taste great in orange juice and add intriguing flavor dimensions. You can also experiment with small amounts of fresh herbs like mint or basil.

Protein Powders

Mixing a scoop of protein powder into your orange juice is an easy way to boost the nutrition. The tart citrus flavor masks the chalkiness. Try these protein sources:

  • Whey protein – Whey protein blends smoothly into the juice.
  • Plant protein – Choose a vanilla or unflavored plant-based protein.
  • Collagen peptides – Collagen peptides mix in clearly without altering the texture.

Other Flavorings

You can get creative with mix-ins like cocoa powder, espresso powder, vanilla extract, maple syrup, honey, lemon juice, and more. Here are some tasty combinations to try:

  • Cocoa powder and maple syrup for a chocolate orange flavor
  • Espresso powder for mocha orange juice
  • Vanilla and honey for sweet cream orange juice
  • Lemon juice and mint leaves for a refreshing Arnold Palmer vibe

Benefits of Fortified Orange Juice

Many orange juice brands on the market are fortified with extras like calcium, vitamin D, and fiber. This makes them even more nutritious. Fortified OJ can provide close to a full day’s worth of vitamin C plus:

  • 10-15% daily calcium
  • 15-25% daily vitamin D
  • 2-5 grams fiber

The fiber and added nutrients are beneficial if you struggle to get enough calcium and vitamin D from your diet. Otherwise, it’s easy enough to get these from food sources like dairy, leafy greens, fatty fish, and whole grains.

Nutrition Information

Here is the nutrition information for an 8 ounce glass of plain orange juice versus orange juice with potential mix-in ingredients:

Nutrition Facts 8 oz Orange Juice 8 oz Orange Juice with Mix-Ins
Calories 112 120-250
Total Fat 0g 2-15g
Protein 2g 2-15g
Carbs 25g 25-40g
Sugars 21g 21-35g
Fiber 0g 0-5g
Vitamin C 124% DV 100-150% DV
Calcium 2% DV 2-20% DV
Iron 2% DV 2-10% DV
Potassium 8% DV 8-15% DV

As you can see, adding healthy mix-ins like fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, spices, and herbs boosts the nutritional value of orange juice. The calories, fat, protein, fiber, vitamins, and minerals all increase.

Most Nutritious Combinations

Here are some of the most nutritious combinations to mix into your orange juice:

  • Orange juice, spinach, banana, ginger – This smoothie provides fiber, potassium, vitamin K, folate, and antioxidants.
  • Orange juice, Greek yogurt, mango – Yogurt adds protein and calcium while mango provides vitamins A and C.
  • Orange juice, carrot juice, flax seeds – Carrots boost vitamin A while flaxseeds provide omega-3s and fiber.
  • Orange juice, strawberries, almond milk – Strawberries increase vitamin C and manganese. Almond milk offers calcium and vitamin E.
  • Orange juice, vanilla protein powder, pecan – Protein powder boosts protein. Pecans provide healthy fats, fiber, and antioxidants.

Most Flavorful Combinations

These combos pack big, bold flavor into your orange juice:

  • Orange juice, pineapple juice, coconut milk – Tastes like a piña colada!
  • Orange juice, cinnamon, maple syrup – Sweet and spicy like cinnamon buns.
  • Orange juice, strawberries, balsamic glaze – Savory, syrupy, and delicious.
  • Orange juice, espresso powder, cocoa powder – A morning mocha in a glass.
  • Orange juice, basil, lemon juice, sparkling water – Bright and refreshing. Tastes like an Italian soda.

Smoothie Suggestions

Orange juice makes a stellar base for nutrient-packed smoothies. Just blend it up with your favorite fruits, veggies, proteins, nuts, and seeds. Here are some amazing smoothie recipes to try:

  • Sunrise Smoothie – orange juice, mango, banana, Greek yogurt, cinnamon
  • Green Orange Julius – orange juice, spinach, banana, vanilla protein powder
  • Carrot Cake Smoothie – orange juice, carrots, banana, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg
  • Chocolate Peanut Butter Smoothie – orange juice, banana, peanut butter, cocoa powder, milk
  • Almond Joy Smoothie – orange juice, banana, almond butter, almond milk, coconut flakes

Precautions

Orange juice is very acidic, so consuming too much could lead to:

  • Heartburn
  • Digestive issues
  • Tooth enamel erosion

To prevent this, limit intake to one glass daily and avoid sipping OJ throughout the day. Always drink orange juice with a straw to minimize contact with teeth.

Orange juice also contains a good amount of natural sugar. Someone with diabetes or weight concerns may want to avoid adding sugary mix-ins like ice cream or maple syrup.

Additionally, the vitamin C in orange juice can interact with some medicines like antibiotics and statins. Check with your doctor about possible interactions.

The Bottom Line

Jazzing up a glass of orange juice is an effortless way make a mundane morning drink more delicious and nutritious. The possibilities are truly endless! Fruits, veggies, spices, herbs, dairy, plant-based milks, proteins, seeds, and nuts can all blend perfectly into OJ.

Some of the tastiest, most nutrient-packed combinations include berries, bananas, mangos, pineapples, carrots, spinach, Greek yogurt, almond milk, chia seeds, flax seeds, cocoa powder, and cinnamon. But feel free to get creative and come up with your own recipes!

Just be mindful of limiting added sugars for health reasons and avoiding excessive consumption to prevent tooth damage or digestive issues. Sipped in moderation, creatively-spiked orange juice can be a delightful, healthy addition to your morning routine.