Stick with the tried-and-true recipes at first.

Don’t start making up your own recipes until you’ve sampled a wide variety of green smoothies; this affords you the opportunity to get a good idea of what you like and dislike in smoothies before you take the leap into creating your own recipes. This also allows you to develop a taste for certain ingredients you might not be used to.

Start with mild greens.

Certain vegetables like kale and parsley have a strong taste that can overpower everything else in a smoothie, so you should start off by using mild greens like spinach. Then you can start mixing mild greens with stronger vegies, gradually increasing the amounts of the stronger ones.

Use at least one sweet fruit.

To counteract the bitterness or strong flavors of vegetables like kale, you’ll need to add at least one sweet fruit, such as apples, oranges, peaches, mangos, dates, raisins, berries, etc. If you concoct a smoothie that doesn’t taste right, adding a sweet fruit will often fix the problem. Sweet fruits can also provide an energy boost on an active day. However, sweet fruits normally have quite a few calories, and they can spike your blood sugar levels.

Watch your ratios.

When making up a recipe, you should try to stay as close as possible to the proper ratio of fruit/greens/liquid, at least at first. What is the proper ratio? That’s open to debate, but a general rule of thumb is to include one cup of green vegetables, one-and-a-half cups of fruit and one cup of base liquid per recipe. This basically yields one serving. You can use less fruit and more greens if the fruit or the liquid base is sweet. If you’re using strong-flavored greens, you’ll need to include more sweet fruit or some type of added sweetener. As you get more used to green smoothies, your tastes might change, perhaps allowing you to cut back on the amount of sweets.

Try a carrot juice base.

If you want to maximize your vegetables and minimize your fruit, you can use a carrot juice base, which is fairly sweet and quite nutritious.

Try including something creamy.

Including creamy fruits like bananas, avocados, pears and peaches will render a nice, creamy texture to a smoothie. Peanut butter, almond butter and other nut butters are terrific for this, too, though you’ll want to use them in small amounts because of their calories.

For aesthetics, use light-colored ingredients.

If you’re making a smoothie for guests, you might want to avoid using many dark-colored ingredients like blueberries that might turn your green smoothie into something that resembles brown sludge.