If you’re a breastfeeding mom, chances are you’ve wondered if your milk supply is enough at least once. As your baby’s only food source, you sure feel the pressure!
Luckily, maintaining a good breastmilk supply is not impossibly difficult. You need to:
- feed baby regularly (on demand usually works best)
- drink plenty of water (it takes liquid to make milk)
- eat healthy food (easier said than done with a new baby, though, right?)
The other thing you might find is that all this breastmilk making makes you ravenous. I’ve never been hungrier than those newborn days. I went through batches of delicious lactation cookies and drank smoothies ALL THE TIME.
One of the easiest and tastiest ways to make sure you’re keeping your fluids up and your nutrition on point is with the humble smoothie. I love smoothies for breakfast… but they make a quick and easy lunch, dinner, or snack too. Because let’s face it, when you’ve got a newborn, you’re exploring all 24 hours in a day and you’re likely to be left needing something at 2am.
These lactation smoothie recipes are packed full of goodness including lots of milk boosting ingredients (galactagogues). Or, if you’re not a fan of smoothies, try our lactation cookie recipes.
Some of these ingredients can be a little hard to find in your local grocery store (I’ve never bothered – online shopping for the win!), so I’ve included links to where you can find them on Amazon.
- Brewer’s yeast – this is one of the most popular lactation foods out there. Most lactation smoothie recipes include at least a teaspoon of brewer’s yeast. Warning: it doesn’t taste nice… so make sure you add plenty of dates, honey, or maple syrup to cover it or just buy the debittered version (linked here!) for a milder flavor. Get it here on Amazon.
- Oatmeal – this is another super popular lactation booster… if you can’t handle the taste of the brewer’s yeast you might find you have decent results just with oatmeal.
- Dates – dates are packed full of healthy fibre and natural sugar that will give you an energy boost and make your smoothie taste so much sweeter.
Related: Tips to Increase Your Milk Supply
You’ll also need a high-powered blender like a Vitamix or a Nutribullet to whip up these smoothies. If you don’t already have one, you can grab one on Amazon for a great price (and speedy delivery!) – click here to check out the Vitamix or the Nutribullet. I personally use my Thermomix… so if you’ve got one of those you’re sorted!
My Go-To Basic Smoothie Formula
The best thing about smoothies is you don’t need to follow a recipe exactly. Once you’ve gotten the hang of making them, you’ll get an idea for how much liquid you need to add and how much sweetener suits your taste.
Here’s how I do mine:
- Make it cold: 1 cup of icecubes or use frozen fruit or cold liquid.
- Make it thick: 1-2 tablespoons of chia seeds or flax meal, avocado, oatmeal, and/or use less liquid
- Make it liquid: fill the cup you intend to drink your smoothie from with a little over half with milk, non-dairy milk, or water.
- Make it sweet: add frozen berries or banana or dates or a tablespoon of maple syrup/honey/other sweetener.
- Add some healthy fats: coconut oil or avocado or nuts.
- Make it tasty: add cocoa/cacao, add a pear and ginger, add apple and cinnamon, add vanilla… sky’s the limit here.
Here’s one of my favorite smoothies:
Thick Chocolate Smoothie Recipe
- 1 frozen banana
- 1/2 my favorite cup of water
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- 1 tablespoon cocoa
- 6 dried dates (pitted)
- 1 generous handful of cashews
Blend until smooth. Enjoy!
You can make it more lactation-friendly by adding oatmeal and a touch of brewer’s yeast.
Feel free to experiment! One of my recent smoothies was a crazy invention that tasted fantastic:
Buttered Popcorn Smoothie
- 1 handful of popcorn
- 1 handful of cashews
- 1/2 my favorite cup of water 😉
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 6 dried dates
- 1 tbsp salted butter (yep, butter!)
Blend til smooth. So good! This one came about because I ran out of fruit. It was pretty amazing 🙂
The Best Smoothie Add ins For Flavor and Nutrition
- Chia Seeds – chia seeds make a great addition to any smoothie and will help to thicken it up. If you’re like me and love a thick smoothie (or smoothie bowl) you need chia. Chia seeds also contain Omega 3, protein, calcium, fiber and antioxidants.
- Protein Powder – make your smoothie even better for you by including extra protein. If you get a flavored protein, like Vanilla, it will help sweeten your smoothie. This is not my favorite option though as I find the smoothie gets a gritty, powdery texture. Try the Vega brand for a vegan variety – this is especially good if you or your little one has a dairy intolerance (because dairy in your diet can affect them). Check it out on Amazon.
- Frozen Berries – a natural sweetener, frozen berries are a great option if you’re out of fresh fruit or need something to cool your smoothie. I find when I process my smoothie it sometimes gets warm… which isn’t nice. Frozen berries cool things down and make a nice frosty smoothie packed full of antioxidants and Vitamin C.
- Nut Butters (or whole nuts) – lots of lactation smoothie recipes call for nut butter or almond milk. This is very good if you think your baby might be reacting to dairy in your diet. I usually just throw in a handful (or two) of nuts in my smoothies and it works out great. The milder flavored nuts are usually the best: almond, cashew and macadamia. I find pecan, walnut, and hazelnut to be a little strong (though adding one or two won’t be overpowering and will make your smoothie even better for you).
- Avocado – this is a great source of healthy fat and will help your smoothie fill you up for longer. You won’t taste it in a smoothie either, but you’ll notice it becomes extra creamy and delicious!
- Cacao Powder – who doesn’t love a chocolate smoothie? It’s my favorite. You can make it even healthier by using the slightly more expensive Cacao powder rather than ordinary Cocoa powder. Cacao is full of antioxidants and adds a rich, delicious flavor. Check it out on Amazon.
- Flax Seeds – known for their Omega 3 content and their fiber, flax seeds make a great addition to any smoothie. They add a nutritional boost without altering the flavor, and also work like a thickener. You can use ground flax seeds, LSA mix, or whole flax seeds.
Ingredient Substitutions for Lactation Smoothies
There’s nothing worse than finding a recipe that has rave reviews and sounds Uh-MAzing and then you realize you can’t have it because you’re allergic/intolerant of one of the ingredients. Loads of smoothies have similar ingredients… but especially bananas… so here’s some common substitutions.
- Bananas – for fresh bananas try substituting apple sauce or another soft fresh fruit like mango. For frozen bananas, you can substitute frozen mango or fresh fruit and add ice cubes to the mix, or frozen avocado and fresh fruit for sweetener.
- Milk – you can easily make a vegan smoothie, simply use almond milk, coconut milk or your favorite non-dairy milk.
- Nuts – use coconut, seeds, tahini, avocado or greek yogurt.
What to do if you’re still worried about low supply?
If you’re truly worried about your milk supply and if it’s sufficient for your baby, please see your doctor and/or a lactation consultant. The reality is that if you have a medical condition that impacts on your milk production, lactation smoothies and cookies will not be enough. Please get the expert support you need 🙂
Lactation Smoothies – Recipes for Breastfeeding Moms to Boost Milk Supply
Click on the links below to get the recipes!
Banana Oatmeal Smoothie – from Fab Haute Mama
Coconut Banana Oat Lactation Smoothie – from Healthy Mummy
Peanut Butter and Jelly Smoothie – Parents.com
Mango Lassie Smoothie – Parents.com
Quick Results Lactation Smoothie – Swaddles n’ Bottles
Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Lactation Milkshake (looks divine!) – We’re Parents
Strawberry Banana Lactation Smoothie – Lauren McBride Blog
Milk Boosting Lactation Smoothie – Diary of a First Time Mom
Very Berry Lactation Smoothie – Fresh Milk Mama
Chocolate and Banana Boobie Smoothie – Stay At Home Mum
Boobie Smoothie – Mommy My Way
The Best Lactation Smoothie for Pumping Moms – The Breast Pump Expert
Green Lactation Smoothie – Fresh Milk Mama
Protein Punch Pregnancy Smoothie – Mother Rising Birth
Ultimate Superfood Pregnancy Smoothie – Tastes Lovely
Peanut Butter Apple Pie Smoothie – We’re Parents
Minty Green Protein Shake – Joyful Messes
Blueberry Banana Oatmeal Smoothie – A Daily Smoothie