Top 10 Veggies for Juicing

by Melissa West on May 23, 2013

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Fruits and Veggies that are Good to Juice

… and ones that are best left for your high speed blender!

Top-veggies-to-juiceIt has been amazing to watch all of you get turned on to the world of juicing over the last few weeks. As I’ve watched you acquire your juicers and try them out I’ve been observing your learning curve as you discover which fruits and veggies work well in your juicers and which ones are best left to your high speed blenders. I’ve also had a lot of questions about the best fruits and veggies for juicing so I thought I would spend some time this week sharing my favourites for the juicer. I like to focus on fruits and veggies that give a high yield – that is the most juice and that taste good too! 🙂 Hard fruits and veggies like pears, apples, carrots, beets, and fennel work great in the juicer. Fruits and veggies with a high water content give you lots of juice like cucumbers, celery, and citrus fruits. As for leafy greens, I like to stick with heartier firm leafy greens like kale, collards, beet and kohlrabi tops for juicing as they seem to produce a better yield in my juicer. Spinach and micro greens for example just seem to do better in smoothies.

Here are my top Veggie picks for juicing:
beets (including the stems and greens)
kohlrabi greens
collard greens
swiss chard (I like the taste of it in juice but not in smoothies)
leaf lettuce (again, I like the taste of it in juice, but not in smoothies)
celery
cucumber
fennel
radishes (including leaves)
carrots
cabbage
broccoli
sweet potato
herbs (ginger, mint, parsley, cilantro, etc.)
wheatgrass

Here are my top Fruit picks for juicing:
apples
pears
oranges, grapefruits, limes, lemons
pineapple (with rind)
watermelon (with rind)

Fruits and Veggies Best Left for the Blender
bananas
mangoes
papaya
berries (just not high enough juice yield in my opinion for their nutritional density)
avocado
spinach
micro greens/baby leaf lettuce greens

Juicing Recipe : Lime Mint Refresher
2 apples
1 lime with skin left on if organic
ginger according to taste
Greens according to taste
Mint 1/4 cup

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  • JennAshton

    YUM – I have tons of mint but keep forgetting to juice it!!  A hint if you make your juice too strong with anything, don’t water it down, I just add a bit of zucchini and it really mellows it out –

    • JennAshton Great tip on mellowing out your juice with a zucchini! 🙂 Thanks Jenn! With gratitude, Melissa

  • jpcooper

    I’m a 56 year old man who does not take very good care of himself (but I’m trying…).  As part of a weight loss program, I’m using a protien powder from Costco.  Lately, I’ve been freezing fruit and making my smoothies with the powder, frozen fruit and orange juice.  Tonight I thought to add some veggies to it and put in some frozen spinach.  It was pretty good, and I sure more beneficial that fruit, only.  I’ve heard that kale was a very good vegatable to use.  When I read up on it, I discovered that steamed kale was better that raw kale.  How would it be if I steamed the kale and then froze it for later use in my smoothies?

    • jpcooper It sounds like you are doing a great job. Good nutrition is a journey and I always think about just putting one foot in front of the other on that journey, there is always one more step I could take to improve my nutrition. The key is to just take that next step. 
      Your smoothies sound yummy. Spinach is great in smoothies because it has a nice mild taste. You are right that it is going to boost your nutrition giving you tones of chlorophyll. Yes, kale is a great vegetable to use too. 🙂 I like your idea of steaming the kale and using it later. I have an idea of steaming it, blending it, putting it in ice cube trays, then it is all ready for your smoothies! 🙂 I think I will do a video blog post on this so thank you for the idea and question. Do you have the links you found about how steaming your kale just a little bit is better than raw kale? I would love it if you could share that information with me, then I will include it in my upcoming video blog. Thank you!!! 🙂 Keep up the great work, Melissa

  • AngieHollande

    Hi, I am vegan for almost a year now and have just bought a good juicer. Your tips are great. I never thought about what is best left to the blender and what is best in a juicer. I plan to mainly juice vegetables and rely less on fruit in order to reduce the sugar I consume. Obviously fruit is great but I was eating far too much and not enough vegetables so I think I need to address the balance. What about green peas? Would you consider these good to use in a juicer? I love green peas.

  • AngieHollande Hi Angie, I’ve never tried green peas in my juicer! I’d try snap peas and sweet peas in the shells! Give it a try and let me know! 🙂 Cheers! Melissa

  • geez431

    i personally love to use mint cilantro garlic carrots kale celery and an apple (not granny smith)  and a small piece of ginger. i drink this 3 times a day with 2 snacks inbetween. since ive started doing this, maybe 2-3 months ive lost 22 pounds and i can see my skin is so much better and my energy in the morning is amazing. this and stop drinking alcohol is probably the best decision ive made in a long time.

  • geez431 That sounds yummy! Congratulations on the positive changes you are making in your life including your weight loss, improvements in your skin and better energy in the morning. No alcohol is such a great thing for our bodies too! 🙂 Cheers to juicing! Melissa

  • old coal miner 307

    Hello I have recently been told by my Dr that my intestines are completely full of stool and I just started juicing and feel hungry all of the time I would appreciate any help you can offer both on hungry and to get intestines clear

  • old coal miner 307  Thank you so much for your question! We love answering your questions on our daily video blog at http://www.melissawest.com . Turn-around time for answering your question is about 4-6 weeks. Make sure you receive your answer by being signed up for our newsletter. You can do that at http://www.melissawest.com
    If you are a member, please post your question in the Ask Melissa section of the membership site and Melissa will answer your question within 24-48 hours
    http://www.drwest.ca/forumdisplay.php?8-Ask-Melissa
    If you are not already a member and are interested in becoming a member here is more information on our membership site:
    http://www.melissawest.com/membership/membership-sign-up/
    If your question is about a medical issue, remember Melissa is a Ph.D and not a medical doctor and so in the mean time, it would be really helpful for you to work with a medical professional (such as a medical doctor, ayurvedic doctor, or traditional chinese medicine doctor). Here are some important questions to ask:

    What will make my condition better?
    What will make my condition worse?
    Are there more details about my medical condition that are important for me to know if I am going to start juicing?
    If your question is super specific and might not apply to a lot of people it may be better to consider having a personalized practice designed for you by Melissa.
    http://www.melissawest.com/yoga/40-day-yoga-practice/
    Thank you so much again for your question and we look forward to answering it on our daily video blog at http://www.melissawest.com within the next four to six weeks.
    Namaste, Melissa

  • RichardFitzpatrick1

    Dr. West,

    First, I really enjoyed your lively presentation. Here is a question:  Even though I have never had this problem before, the last time I juiced some vegetables, i.e. beets, carrots. broccoli, spinach, cucumber, etc. the juice upset my stomach. I did wash everything carefully so I was a bit surprised. Is this at all commonplace & what might you suggest in order to avoid any such gastrointestinal issues? Thank you for your attention. Sincerely,
    Richard Fitzpatrick

  • RichardFitzpatrick1  Hi Richard, Did you juice on an empty stomach or had you just eaten a meal? It is best to juice on an empty stomach and then wait at least 20 minutes before you eat. 🙂 Cheers, Melissa

  • Scanzy64

    Hello Dr.Melissa…. On the jpcooper comment about steaming the Kale I believe steaming a lot of the greens is because it mellows the goitrogens that are in Kale, Broccoli, Bok Choy ,Collards to mention a few…especially if you have thyroid issue.

    • Yes! 🙂 Thank you 🙂 I love that and so true if you have a thyroid issue. Thanks for stopping by to comment. 🙂 Cheers, Melissa

  • Steve Pesick

    Hi Dr. Melissa, Found your site through a google search on juicing and enjoyed your intro. I am 55 yr. old male, former athlete (decades ago) and up to 230 lbs. Seems every 3-5 years my metabolism changes and weight just keeps going up. Started Yoga at home with an emphasis on stretching and flexibility to start. Started juicing as well. Looking forward to other healthy helpful hints, Thank you, Steve

    • Hi Steve, Welcome and welcome to yoga and juicing. Please let me know how I can support you on your journey. Namaste, Melissa

  • Joan Andersen

    MY NAME IS JOAN ANDERSEN. PLEASE EXCUSE THE BOLD PRINT CAPS, MY EYE SIGHT IS NOT GOOD.

    YOUR VIDEO WAS CLEAR AND EASY TO LISTEN TO AND I’M ONLY TRYING TO LEARN MORE ABOUT JUICING,

    BECAUSE OF MY HEALTH. I HAVE A SERIOUS CONDITION THAT MAKES ANY SOLIDS I TRY TO EAT, CAUSE SHARP PAINS IN GALLBLADDER N STOMACH AND NOT DIGEST PROPERLY. I’VE SEEN MANY SPECIALIST IN LAST FEW YRS. I NOW KNOW WHATS WRONG. MY DOC. SUGGEST I CHANGE MY FOOD DIET TO SMOOTHIES N JUICING, OR I COULD END UP ON A FEEDING TUBE. SO ANY ADVICE IN JUICING FOR GOOD NUTRITION AND EASY CONSUMING IS WHAT MY BELOVED AND I ARE LOOKING FOR. YOUR VIDEO WAS INSIGHTFUL AND LOOKS PRETTY EASY IN HOW TO JUICE. I LIKE HOW YOU USE WHAT IS LEFT IN JUICER TO WATER YOUR HERB GARDEN. RIGHT NOW ALL I’VE BEEN ABLE TO DO, IS GET PUREED FOOD, BY USING OUR NINJA SMOOTHIES MAKER.

    WE ARE WANTING ME TO GO WITH JUICING AND WE PLAN TO PLANT AN HERB GARDEN THIS SPRING N SUMMER. SO I HAVE FRESH HERBS TO USE ALONG WITH FRUIT AND VEGETABLE SMOOTHIES AND JUICE/FOR JUICING. I CAN GIVE YOU MY EMAIL TO GET AHOLD OF ME MORE PRIVATE THAN ON COMMENTS OTHERS CAN SEE. MY HUSBAND AND I ARE VERY PRIVATE ABOUT PERSONAL N MEDICAL THINGS.

    THANK YOU.

    SINCERELY, MRS. DOUG ANDERSEN

    • Dear Joan, I’m so glad you found the video clear and easy to understand, congratulations on learning more about juicing. That is fantastic that you are working with your doctor to change your diet. I’m glad you are following your doctors recommendations. Enjoy your herb garden this summer, that will be lovely. 🙂 Warmly, Melissa

  • Joan Andersen

    DR. MELISSA WEST, I HAVE A Q. CAN PEACHES N PLUMS BE USED IN A JUICER ? OR ARE THEY BETTER OFF IN A HIGH SPEED BLENDER OR NINJA. THANK YOU. SINCERELY JOAN

    • Hi Joan, great to hear from you. You can use peaches and plums in a juicer, especially when they are juicy! Experiment yourself and see which you prefer them in – your juicer or your high speed blender 🙂 Cheers, Melissa

      • Joan Andersen

        DR. MELISSA WEST, I SINCERELY THANK YOU FOR YOU REPLY/ANSWER SO QUICKLY. I HAVE BEEN ILL OR I WOULD HAVE REPLYED SOONER. AND YES, MY BELOVED HUSBAND AND I DO EXPERIMENT WITH DIFF. WAY’S. SINCERELY JOAN

        • Dear Joan, You are very welcome! I’m sorry you haven’t been feeling well. I hope you are feeling better. Have fun and enjoy being creating with your juicing and smoothies! Warmly, Melissa

  • Ryan

    Hi Dr. Melissa West,
    I have been diagnosed with diabetes 6 months ago. I got my A1c down to 6.6 in that short of time but have been unsuccessful in loosing weight. I want to loose 85 lbs and was wanting to do it with juicing, but I am concerned about my blood glucose fluctuating out of range. I want to get to my IBW and hopefully get off most of my medications with the guidance of my primary physician. Do you have any guidance for me on what will keep my blood sugars in check?
    Thank you,
    Ryan

    • Dear Ryan, I am not a medical doctor, I would talk to your medical doctor about this. Your medical doctor can probably refer you to a dietitian who can help you. Or you could go to a naturopath who could help you oversee your blood sugar levels in a safe way. Namaste, Melissa

    • Haig Caesar

      Hello Ryan,
      I am not a doctor, I am a mechanic, I would like to make a recommendation. I personally am in excellent health, and I think it is mostly because I use Black seed Oil everyday. This is a true story: at one time I felt I was having some issues with my health, just wasn’t feeling right, I was tired all the time, had heart palpitations, and other issues. I went to my doctor and had blood work done, found out I had low white blood count and low vitamin D, my friend told me about Black Seed Oil, I did some intense checking, that stuff is awesome!! It cures and or will fix almost anything, and I couldn’t find one negative thing from any research that has ever been done on Black Seed Oil, why doctors don’t at least suggest using is beyond me. Anyway, after I started using it I went for a follow up three times since then and Wow! Everything is normal or excellent!!!!.
      For the last two years I have not had even a cold, and that’s real life. My sister has a history of high blood pressure she started using it now she is normal. Again, I am NOT a doctor, I am a mechanic. However, it is worth looking into, do your research you will be impressed and surprised. If you ask your doctor about it he will probably say more research need to be done or there is no prof when in fact there is and they have been researching Black Seed Oil since the 60’s or so.
      This is my story, don’t take my word, research it for yourself.

  • Koko John

    here’s something I wouldn’t miss in my juice and it carries a cancer-fighting power punch: an inch of fresh turmeric root and a dash of black pepper (they work synergistically). Finally, I add a teaspoon or so of oil (avocado, olive or any other healthy oil) for the benefit of absorbing all the nutrients that are fat soluble.

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