Celery juice is in the spotlight, in the limelight, and stealing the show from myriads of other natural products on the market. While creating a sea of controversy regarding its proposed healing properties and assets, there is no doubt about it: Celery juice hype has captivated the beverage industry, and more importantly for foodservice providers, it has caught the attention of consumers.
The Green Juice Phenomenon
Open up Instagram or any other social media site today and you will be inundated with pictures of leafy green stalks, a bright-green liquid, and over 40,000 posts with the hashtag #CeleryJuice. Add to this an overflowing plate of testimonials from celebs like Gwyneth Paltrow, Naomi Campbell, Pharell, and Robert DeNiro claiming the supremacy of celery juice, gushing reviews from members of ‘the celery movement,’ a list of health benefits by movement founder and New York Times bestselling author Anthony William – and what you have is a recipe for an ingredient with untapped potential to add to your menus and recipes.
Celery Juice: Dominating the Market
If you work in a restaurant, catering company, bakery or bar, or if you are a food supplier or manufacturer, the question likely burning a hole in your digestive track is: What is it about celery juice that has caused the recent blowup; that has sent the concoction to the top of consumers’ popularity charts; and that has created a surge in global celery juice sales?
And here is some more food for thought: William is neither a licensed doctor or a health care practitioner, yet he has amassed a huge following for his holistic approach to medicine and his books about natural food cures. And while many health practitioners are voicing their skepticism regarding the purported benefits of the new superfood, the industry itself recently joined the love fest when Evolution Fresh, the official juice supplier for Starbucks, announced the debut of the first nationally available bottled celery juice: Organic Celery Glow.
The Celery ‘Elixir’ According to William
Preaching the gospel of celery juice on his website and in all of his books, William advocates drinking a full 16 ounces of the pure liquid – no pulp, no ice, or any other additions – on an empty stomach first thing in the morning (30 minutes prior to breakfast). What can consumers can look forward to when they down the elixir? In William’s own words:
“It’s a miracle turnaround for all kinds of conditions. Sixteen ounces of straight celery juice can change somebody’s life.”
“I’ve used it for so many problems. It helps digestion problems, constipation, gas, bloating, acid reflux, acne, UTIs, sinus problems, Lyme disease, even ADHD…. It’s miracle tonic that is changing the shape in alternative medicine like never before.”
It has “potent healing properties” and an “incredible ability to create sweeping improvements for all kinds of health issues…”
For more info, you can go straight to the source by checking out William’s bestselling book Celery Juice: The Most Powerful Medicine of Our Time Healing Millions Worldwide, where he shares details about the healing properties of celery juice and how you can make the most of it.
The Nutritionist Perspective
From a purely nutritional outlook, here are some of the known benefits of celery and its liquid extraction:
- Contains 23% of the recommended daily intake of Vitamin K
- Good source of potassium
- Low in calories
- Low in sugar
- Boasts a high antioxidant content, including flavonoids and polyphenol which research has linked to lowering blood glucose and lipid levels, reducing inflammation, and reducing risk for cancer and diabetes
Does Celery Juice Live Up to its Promises?
The question of the day is: Does celery juice live up to its numerous claims to fame? According to health practitioners and nutritionists, not necessarily.
In the words of functional medicine doctor Jill Baron, M.D., the miraculous healing powers of celery juice have yet to be substantiated by science: “We don’t have the research in humans at this time to verify all the claims.” Backing her words is registered dietitian Rachel Goodman, who is skeptical of the hype since: “It hasn’t been studied as well as other fruits and vegetables that show benefits to our health, such as beets, blueberries, and avocado.” Goodman further proposes that the digestive benefits and energizing properties of celery juice may simply be due to its hydration effect, making it no different than consuming water.
Adding Celery Juice to Your Restaurant Menu
So should you be adding celery juice to your restaurant’s menus? According to nutritionist Cynthia Sass, RD, CSSD, while the potential benefits of celery juice …”aren’t well established, nor are the optimal portion or frequency of consumption,” there is no harm in consuming it daily. “But don’t rely on celery juice as a panacea,” she adds. “Consume celery or celery juice along with a wide array of other veggies as part of a clean, balanced, whole foods diet.”
Registered dietitian and nutritionist Lori Welstead at the University of Chicago goes one step further, suggesting that instead of drinking celery juice, people should simply consume a few stalks of celery itself, allowing them to reap the benefits of the plant’s high fiber and leave them feeling satisfied and full. At the end of the day, however, she gives celery juice a …”thumbs-up, but be wary that it’s not a cure-all.”
Organic Celery Glow
In recent industry news, cold-pressed juice leader Evolution Fresh announced the launch of Organic Celery Glow: “We are excited to introduce Evolution Fresh Organic Celery Glow nationwide and offer consumers a convenient celery juice without the fuss of juicing at home,” says Vice-President of Marketing Michelle Chin. “Evolution Fresh Organic Celery Glow is a delicious, functional, ready-to-drink beverage that offers an easy way to get more nutrients from green vegetables as part of your daily diet.”
The beverage is comprised of nothing more than cold-pressed celery juice and a twist of lemon. It contains 2 grams of naturally occurring sugars per cup, is a good source of potassium, is gluten-free, non-GMO, Kosher, and certified USDA Organic.
If you are purchasing celery juice for your catering service, bar, or restaurant, it is available at the current retail price of $4.99 per 15.2 fluid ounce bottle. However, your chefs bartenders can also learn how to make inexpensive celery juice from scratch.
How to Make Celery Juice
Using a blender or a juicer, the beverage is easy to prepare and instantly ready to enjoy. Here is how:
- Cut off the base and tops of 2-3 stalks of celery
- Rinse in a colander
- Cut stalks into thirds and place them in the base of a high-speed blender/juicer
- Add 1/4 cup of water and blend until smooth
- To remove pulp, place a sieve/cloth over the mouth of a glass or pitcher and pour the liquid through the sieve/cloth
- Serve immediately, saving leftovers in a tightly sealed jar in the fridge
Celery Juice Blend Recipe
If you and your customers are not ‘hardcore,’ you can liven up the juice with a blended celery juice recipe, where you blend one cup of water with: 3 stalks of celery, a handful of kale, a fistful of spinach, a few sprigs of parsley, 1/2 cucumber, and the freshly squeezed juice of 1/2 lemon.
How to Add Celery Juice to Recipes
Here are some suggestions on ways to add celery juice to familiar recipes, but feel free to get creative and create your own concoctions.
- Add to summer soups
- Add to smoothies and shakes
- Mix with cucumber and lemon
- Add to avocado salad
- Use as a lemon juice substitute in baking and cooking recipes
Finally, here is one more tantalizing recipe that is sure to tingle the taste buds and please the palates of your thirsty customers.
Carrot, Apple, Carrot, and Celery Juice
1 apple, 3 carrots, 2 celery stalks, 1/2 cucumber
- Peel and thoroughly wash all fruits and vegetables
- Cut off carrot and celery stalk ends
- Combine ingredients and run through a juicer or high-speed blender
- Drink immediately and enjoy!