Homemade V8

Make your own organic, sodium free vegetable juice at home. Three good reasons:

  1. You know exactly what you’re putting into it. You are in control of everything – the ratios, the source of your food, the amount of washing, etc.
  2. No sodium (except for the naturally occurring sodium contained in your carrots)
  3. No additives

Grocery List

This is what I buy. Feel free to substitute or skip ingredients. One of the best things about doing this is there is no ‘wrong’ way. If you used only one or two of the items on this list, you’ll benefit greatly.

My general goal is to streamline the procedure as much as possible; the less time it takes to make it, the more frequently I’ll be able to do it. I make about a quart at a time and store the extra in the fridge so my family & I can drink it throughout the day.

If you forget your shopping list, simply grab a can of V8 at the store & use the printed ingredients as your list.

Homemade V8 Shopping List

Campbells V8 Ingredients

 

Homemade Version

Get organic if you can

Variations

Tomatoes* Tomatoes Cucumber (My husband prefers this instead of tomato; less acidic)
Carrots* Carrots, with greens if available
Celery* Celery
Beets* Beets, with greens
Parsley* Fresh Curly Parsley
Lettuce* LettucePrewashed, organic
Watercress* Watercress (if you can find it) Wheat grass
Spinach* Spinach (prewashed, organic)
Citric Acid (flavoring & neutralizing agent) Lemon
Ascorbic Acid (maintains color and flavor)
Natural Flavoring†
* Reconstituted
† Natural flavoring may include onion or garlic derivatives, as well as flavor derived from fruits, vegetables and their juices, or edible parts of plants. Other sources may include meat, seafood, poultry or dairy products, whose significant function in the food is flavoring rather than nutrition.

Materials You’ll Need

  • A cutting board and a knife. Sounds obvious, but sometimes I get lazy and cut my vegetables over the open container. It’s dangerous and the lip of my blender container is dinged up from all the downward knife slips that bounced off the rim…hopefully you will choose to do it on a cutting board.
  • Blender powerful enough to break down leaves, beets and fibrous vegetables.
  • Storage Container for refrigerating the extra juice. I use a repurposed Prego spaghetti sauce jar. It’s good to get into the habit of emptying and rinsing out your blender container as soon as you’re done with – they are tougher to clean if you let the contents dry out on the inner walls…

Make it!

Washing. Aside from the fact that there is sometimes naturally occurring soil on your organic produce, it’s a good idea to get into the habit of washing everything thoroughly before you juice it; this stuff isn’t getting cooked.

  • Cut off the beet greens of 1 beet and set them aside for washing
  • Cut off carrot greens (if you have them) of two carrots and set them aside for washing. Gather up the other greens (lettuce, spinach, parsley, watercress)  you have.
  • Wash your greens thoroughly with cold water and set them aside.
  • Wash your beet root and trim off whatever parts of the beet you don’t want to blend. (I blend everything.)
  • Wash your carrots and tomato / cucumber

You only need to cut the larger vegetables to a size that they can fall below the level of the blades. For example, if you were to drop a whole apple in the blender bin and turn it on, it would probably just sit on top of the blade axle while the blades spun uselessly below.

  • Quarter your tomato (or chop your cucumber into big chunks) and throw it in the bin first. You want your softer, juicier ingredients towards the bottom so the blades can get up to speed faster.
  • Halve your lemon.
  • Place your leafy greens in the bin
  • Cut your beet and carrot into large chunks and put them in last.
  • Pour in 1 cup of water. We use filtered tap water.
  • Squeeze in the juice from 1/2 of the lemon. Be careful to catch the seeds as they get squeezed out and set them aside; they will add a bit of bitter flavor if you blend them.
  • Start the blender on a slow cycle to get it started. Gradually increase the speed of the blades as the mix starts to get broken up.
  • Once you get up to full speed, run it for a full minute to get the tougher root vegetables broken down into drinkable particles.
  • If you want – de-bubble your smoothie before pouring your drink. I wrote a short post describing how to do it.

Enjoy! 

I tweak the flavor and  thickness of my smoothies a bit more in each glass as needed with additional drops of lemon juice or by adding water to thin the juice.

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