The One Mistake Everyone Makes With Smoothie Bowls

Smoothie bowls are all the rage nowadays. Open Instagram and you're bound to see a smoothie bowl photo, especially if you have friends who live in a California beach town where they're eaten for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or even dessert.

Known for their vibrant, photogenic colors and loved for their refreshing, fruity taste, smoothie bowls can include anything and everything you'd like. Toppings range from fresh fruit like strawberries, bananas, and blueberries to chia seeds, peanut butter, honey, and granola (via Allrecipes). For the base, liquids like juice or milk are typically added as well as frozen fruit or veggies. This is also where you could add your protein powder or other vitamin supplement powder.

If you've ever made your own smoothie bowl, you know the base is the trickiest part. Mashed spoke with Ninja Kitchen's Smoothie Bowl Sommelier, Gillean Barkyoumb, MS, RDN, to uncover the secret trick to crafting the perfect smoothie base and what not to do.

Adding too much liquid can make the base soupy.

Believe it or not, there is a wrong way to make a smoothie bowl base. "Adding in too many liquid ingredients and not enough solid or frozen ingredients can create a soupy smoothie bowl," Barkyoumb told Mashed. Instead, you're aiming to create a "thick, creamy texture." She stressed that if need be, you can always add more liquid, but you can't take it out.

Barkyoumb said a good rule of thumb is to add 1/4 cup of frozen fruits and a handful of frozen veggies with less liquid. If you aren't satisfied with the spoonable texture of the smoothie base, you can add more liquid. She personally enjoys using almond or coconut milk. Another pro tip she shared is to "keep the frozen ingredients in the freezer right until you want to add them to the blender cup so they stay as frozen as possible." Let's reiterate that: not on the counter, but in the freezer – even while prepping other ingredients.

Because smoothie bowls are totally customizable, Barkyoumb recommends going with whatever ingredients speak to you. Although, she does say frozen bananas are super popular and frozen veggies like riced cauliflower and spinach are fun additions as well.