So, I have recently started juicing. Almost every morning I wake up, and make juice for my household. It is pretty delicious. I am writing a few things I have learned here:
1. Ripe fruits make the most juice. When you have fruit that is not quite ripe it doesn't make the same amount of juice as a soft, fruit does. So, while bananas may taste better when they aren't over ripe, they juice better when they are over ripe.
2. Don't put nuts into your $350 juicer. Seems obvious right? Well I tried this just to see. The motor shut off. It was scary but no damage accrued (thank god!).
3. Get a masticating juicer! I know masticating juicers cost much more than centrifugal juicers but they make 45% more juice. If you have juice everyday, or even 3 times a week, it will be worth the added expenditure up front. Also, Omega and Hurom are made in THE SAME FACTORY but Omega is much cheaper and it comes with a 10 year warranty. I have an Omega, I LOVE it.
4. Dandelion Greens. Okay, so I started using these daily because they are good for you, detoxify your liver, etc. They are not as kind as kale is. If you use them, make sure you use a strong fruit flavor with them, like oranges (or any citrus), berries (I like strawberries), etc. Otherwise, your juice will be very bitter :( And it will make you sad.
5. Kale. You cannot use too much kale in juice. I swear it! I use SO MUCH kale everyday and it doesn't make my juice taste like kale. It is GREAT. Also, use organic kale only! Non-organic kale has VERY HIGH pesticide residues. Just sayin.'
6. Celery. If you get am Omega juicer, PLEASE use celery in MODERATION. Otherwise it will overpower your juice and you will be so disappointed. I only use 1/2 of a stalk and can STILL barely stand it.
7. Recipes. You don't need them. Seriously, I have only ever once made a juice that wasn't amazing and it was DUE TO USING A RECIPE. I used too much celery (see #6). Recipes are dumb because everyone's juicer is different and thus the juice will taste different. Veggies & fruit generally mix well. Even adding garlic and things that you may think are gross are not noticed if you add fruit too. I use carrots in my juice often and you can't even taste them. Throw recipes out the window and experiment!
8. Bosc pears. I have tried many kinds of apples, pears, oranges, etc. For the most part Bosc pears are the BEST way to go. They make your juice the most pear-like. I love pears. They go well with strawberries too, I drink this often.
9. Granny Smith Apples. These are the only apples that actually have a distinct flavor. Otherwise, just purchase the cheapest, organic, apples you can find. Granny Smith Apples make for delicious juice but other good apples like Honeycrisp don't juice any differently from the not as good Red delicious. Keep this in mind as Honeycrisp apples cost much more per pound.
10. Spinach. Spinach is good in juice but it does make your juice a bit chunky. I am okay with that but just a warning, if you don't like chewing down your morning juice, don't use spinach.
11. Citrus Fruits. The only thing that isn't so great about masticating juicers is that they don't juice citrus as well as centrifugal juicers do. We still juice with oranges, but, you can tell that not all of the juice comes out. Sad, but true.
12. Compost! With all of your leftover fruit debris, you should compost! We don't have a yard or we would. Don't waste valuable compost if you have a means to use it!
13. Tomatoes. If you want tomato juice use a lot of tomatoes. Their flavor is easily washed out if you add too many other veggies/fruit.
14. Don't overdo it! Juicing is very good for you but, it is high in natural sugars (and therefore calories) so if you are like me, and trying to be healthier (and lose weight) don't drink a lot of juice everyday. I stick to approximately 12 oz. and that alone is around 200 calories. If you are active, need the calories, etc. by all means drink up, BUT, if you are trying to lose a bit of fat-don't drink too much juice!
15. Prevent Hunger. One thing I notice is that on days I don't juice I am hungrier all day. This is because I didn't get my daily nutrient filler in the morning. Juicing decreases my hunger. It could decrease yours too!
16. Ginger. I don't usually add this to my juice but I do add it to my roommates' juice frequently. A little ginger goes A LONG WAY. Just a warning.
17. Cost. Now that we never buy store made juice, we buy a ton of fruits and veggies. But, with 3 people juicing in our house we never spend over $25 a week in fresh fruit/veggies and we all get juice everyday now. It doesn't cost all that much. For example: 12 oz. of kale, pear, strawberry, & dandelion green juice only has 1 pear, 5 strawberries, 5 kale leaves, & 8 dandelion green leaves. The costs really isn't a big deal.
18. Looks can be deceiving. The juice I drink is a very dark green color. People usually think it looks pretty gross. Often juice does look pretty gross. But, it is still FUCKING DELICIOUS. So, keep that in mind when juicing!
19. Try not to store juice. When you make juice for a few days in a row, it oxidizes and the amount of nutrients in it decreases. So, while planning in advance may save you some time, it isn't as good for you! Juice, then drink up!
20. Rejuice! Citrus & berries can often be rejuiced. Take the pulp out of the container and run it through again. You will be surprised!