I turn to frozen Moringa Orange Julius when I am looking for an afternoon recharge or need a boost. If I'm a little dehydrated or headachy, this refreshing tropical smoothie always does the trick.
It's made with whole foods known for antioxidants, electrolytes, minerals, and more. But the proof for me that it's chock full of everything good is the energy boost I feel after drinking it. My body seems to shout one big yes when I am sipping it. Well, perhaps I should say more accurately, slurping spoonfuls of it.
Wash whole branches of moringa, shake, and let fully dry in a cool place before removing leaves from stems.
Refreshing icy consistency
Unlike gloppy smoothies, which you can probably tell I am not a fan of, this frozen pick-me-up has a light, icy consistency.
Banana makes it creamy and it’s just substantial enough to scoop with a spoon. But after that, the sweet fruit, moringa oleifera, and crushed ice melt on the tongue. It’s an excellent thirst quencher.
I named it Moringa Orange Julius because the fresh-squeezed orange juice and dash of vanilla give it a flavor like the iconic drink so popular in the 70s and 80s.
Unlike the old orange Julius, it's dairy-free, sugar-free, and of course, has no artificial additives.
How to eat moringa leaves
Fresh raw moringa leaves, also called murungai keerai and malunggay, are not only edible but highly nutritious. It's amazing how such a hefty addition of nutrient-dense moringa leaf blends right in with the tropical flavors in this smoothie.
To eat fresh moringa leaves, wash whole sprigs with a light spray nozzle or swish in a sink filled with cold water. Give the leaves a good shake and let air dry in the refrigerator. This prepares them for easy removal from stems.
Then, take the perky leaves from your refrigerator and strip them from their stems. It's ok if a few stems are included in the prepped leaves.
Now your fresh moringa is ready to be blended into smoothies, tossed in salads, mixed into spreads, or added at the end of cooking to stir-frys and soup. Murungai Keerai Minestrone is one of our family's favorites.
These are just a few suggestions and fresh moringa is so mild there truly isn't any limit to the recipes you can create with it.
It just happens to be the middle of a hot afternoon as I am typing up this post. I can honestly say my mouth is watering, and I am contemplating a pause in writing.
Recollecting how much I enjoy this moringa smoothie is posing to be a challenge. Dare I take a break from typing? Now I am wondering if I have some fresh moringa leaf in the refrigerator or freezer.
How to store and freeze
Washed and dried leaves can be stored in a refrigerator for about 2 weeks. If you won't be using them right away, leave branches intact, dry them well and store them in an airtight container or seal them in a plastic bag.
Even though they are tender, moringa leaves freeze just fine if you wash, dry, and remove them from stems before placing them in a freezer.
Any container with a tight lid works well and will protect fresh frozen leaves for up to 6 months. They will wilt slightly when they thaw, so can't be used for salads.
However, their taste and exceptional nutritional value are just the same as unfrozen leaves for blended or cooked recipes.
Measure plucked moringa leaves before packing them into freezer containers and label the container with the amount. That way it won't matter if leaves wilt upon thawing. You'll know just how much to use in your recipe.
You can substitute very mild baby spinach for the moringa leaves. Your frozen drink won't have the same superfood power or taste quite as lovely. But the upside is, spinach helps a sluggish digestive system as moringa does.
Yes. Again the flavor won't be quite as delicious, but you'll still have a healthy tropical smoothie. Substitute one tablespoon of high-quality dried moringa powder for one cup of fresh moringa oleifera leaves.
Yes. Swap a tablespoon of maple syrup, agave syrup, or vegan-friendly sugar for honey in the recipe.
More healthy beverages
I would be thrilled to know if you tried this recipe! Leave a comment, rate it, and don’t forget to tag a photo #poppyswildkitchenrecipes on Instagram. Aloha!
Frozen Moringa Orange Julius
- ½ cup fresh squeezed orange juice
- ½ cup cubed fresh pineapple
- ½ cup sliced banana
- 2 tsp. calamansi lime or lemon juice
- ¾ cup fresh moringa leaves*, removed from stems
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- 1 TB honey or vegan sweetener
- 2 - 2 ½ cups crushed ice
- 6 drops liquid stevia, optional
- Place everything in a high powered blender and blend until smooth and icy.
- Garnish with a pineapple wedge, orange slice, or twist if desired.
- Serve immediately.