The Best Immune-Boosting Ingredients to Add to Your Smoothies

Including three delicious recipes that taste like dessert!

By: Lauren Manaker MS, RDN, LD, CLEC

Sipping on a nutrient-rich smoothie is one of the best things you can do to support your overall health. Why? Because smoothies are an easy and delicious way to jam-pack a variety of nutrients into one meal. You can fill them with colorful fruits and veggies, healthy fats, satiating protein, and any superfoods of choice! Plus, if you’re strategic with your ingredients, that delicious smoothie of yours can be an incredible immune-booster, too. And let’s face it, we want all the immune-supporting hacks we can get!

Simple Tips to Blend up an Immune-Boosting Smoothie 

Whipping up an immune-boosting smoothie is simple! With the right ingredients and flavor combos, you’ll be one sip closer to building your defenses. To help you get started, here are some tips you can follow to help you craft the best blend:

Choose a healthy base: Include nutritious liquids like coconut water, kefir, homemade nut or seed milk, or plain water.

Avoid added sugars: Steer clear of liquids that contain added sugars, like fruit drinks or juice, pre-made smoothie mixes that contain added sugar and artificial ingredients, or any other ingredients that are processed or refined.

Make it nutrient-dense: Fill your smoothie with nutrient-dense ingredients that contain immune-supporting vitamins, like citrus, nuts, berries, leafy greens, and superfoods. 

Keep it protein-packed: To balance your blood sugar and keep you satiated, make sure your smoothie contains protein! Stick to whole foods like nuts and seeds or add a scoop of protein powder.

6 Immune-Boosting Smoothie Ingredients

The possibilities are endless when it comes to selecting immune-boosting smoothie ingredients. But among the choices out there, some options are worthy of a “best of” title.  


When building your smoothie, consider loading up on citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, limes, and grapefruit. These whole food ingredients are packed with vitamin C, an immune-supporting nutrient. They’re also loaded with carotenoids, flavonoids, polyphenols, and antioxidants that protect the body from free radical damage and bolster your natural defenses.

As for citrus smoothie combos, there are lots to choose from! 

Orange + Vanilla Yogurt: A creamsicle-like treat that is as delicious as it is healthy. 

Lemon + Vanilla Greek Yogurt + Almond Milk + Ginger + Raw Honey: Liquid sunshine in a cup!

Grapefruit + Pineapple + Coconut Water + Mint: Simple, refreshing, and hydrating.


Fermented dairy drinks like kefir contain live and active cultures, which can help support a healthy gut microbiome. And since 70% of your immune system is located in your gut, it makes sense to try and keep your gut health in check when trying to keep your body in fighting shape. 

You can lean on kefir as a liquid for your smoothie and combine it with some fruit and veggies for a probiotic-rich and protein-containing combo. 

Try this combo: 1 cup of frozen berries, ½ cup of kefir, 1 tablespoon of nut or seed butter, ½ – 1 cup of spinach, ½ tbsp of chia seeds, and ice.

Nut or Seed Butter

A protein deficiency can weaken the immune system and leave you more susceptible to illness. So when it comes to immune-boosting smoothies, incorporating protein-rich ingredients is key! Adding a tablespoon of nut or seed butter is one of the simplest ways to boost your protein intake. Plus, nut and seed butters make your smoothies taste extra creamy while providing you with a serving of healthy fat and fiber! 

From peanut to cashew to almond, your choices are abundant. Just make sure your nut butter of choice is low in sodium and free from added sugar. 


Fresh ginger can give your smoothie a surprising zing along with a boost of immune support. With anti-inflammatory and antioxidant benefits, this root is a simple way to supercharge your smoothie. 

Try a tropical ginger smoothie made with mango, ginger, coconut water, and kale.


As little as 8 strawberries can fuel your body with almost 100% of the recommended vitamin C needed in a day. No matter whether they are fresh or frozen, strawberries provide key nutrients to build your defenses and keep your body in fighting shape. Between their natural sweetness and loads of nutrients, tossing a handful into your blender is one of the most delicious ways to whip up an immune-boosting smoothie. 


Curcumin is the active anti-inflammatory compound found in turmeric, making this root a perfect addition to an immune-supporting smoothie. According to research, turmeric has a strong immune-modulating effect. Sprinkle some of this spice in your smoothie for a unique-tasting drink that can put some zing in your health and wellness. 

Our favorite combo? Fresh turmeric blended with carrot juice, honey, pineapple, ginger, oranges, and vanilla greek yogurt!

3 Delicious Immune-Supporting Smoothies That Taste Like Dessert

We’ve created three delicious smoothie recipes, using some of the immune-boosting smoothie ingredients. Give these smoothies a try and give your body the nutrients it needs to keep your immune system strong, all while sipping on something that tastes just like dessert.

Brownie Batter Manuka Honey Smoothie 

Craving a chocolate shake? We have you covered with the most creamy and delicious smoothie recipe you can get your hands on. Made with raw cacao, nut butter, and manuka honey, this smoothie is bursting with natural antimicrobial properties, flavor, and plant-based protein! 

Here’s how to make it. 


  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk 
  • 1 frozen banana 
  • 1 Tbsp. raw unsweetened cacao powder
  • 1 Tbsp. almond butter
  • 1 Tbsp. raw cacao nibs 
  • 1 Tbsp. manuka honey 
  • 1 Tbsp. hemp seeds

Step #1: Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. 

Step #2: Enjoy! 

Super Berry Immune-Boosting Smoothie

Strawberries are rich in antioxidants and vitamin C, so blending up this super berry smoothie is a great idea when you are trying to support your immune system. The addition of kefir also gives this smoothie an added gut-supporting boost!


  • 1/2 cup unsweetened oat milk 
  • 1/2 cup kefir 
  • 1 frozen banana 
  • 1 cup frozen strawberries
  • 1 Tbsp. honey  
  • 1 scoop of protein powder

Step #1: Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. 

Step #2: Enjoy! 

Orange Creamsicle Immunity Shake 

Thanks to their rich vitamin C content, citrus fruits, like oranges make a great addition to an immune-supporting smoothie. Here’s how to make a healthy creamsicle shake that tastes so good you’d think it was dessert! 


  • 1 cup oat milk 
  • 1 orange, peeled and sliced 
  • ½ cup kefir 
  • 1 Tbsp. honey 
  • 1 Tbsp. flaxseeds 

Step #1: Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. 

Step #2: Enjoy! 

Delicious Smoothies For A Healthy Immune System

Sipping on a smoothie made with immune-supporting ingredients is a great way to give your diet a boost, whether you’re in the midst of the germiest seasons of the year or you’re just looking for ways to optimize your daily shakes. Between vitamin C-rich strawberries, probiotic-rich kefir, and protein-rich nut butter, the good-for-you ingredient options are plenty. So pull out your blender and get ready to start creating smoothies in your own kitchen. It is certainly one of the simplest ways to ensure your body is getting the key nutrients it needs to stay healthy throughout the year.