So you look at all those fancy bottled juices at the grocery stores. They claim “cold-pressed,” “organic,” and lay down a hefty price tag. However, all it takes is a juicer at home, or getting a little fancy with a blender to recreate such nutritious goodness, without breaking the bank.

So what exactly does a juicer do to your fruit? Basically, it applies razor-sharp knives to the fleshy goodness to extract all of the juice and nutrients from the dry fiber. When a grocery store claims “cold-pressed”, they are referring to the extraction technique, one of the highest quality, involving high pressure processing, that is able to preserve the juice with all of its nutrients, unpasteurized, for up to 30 days. This is different from the standard store-bought juice in that there is heat processing involved, so all the nutrients are in pure form.

The term "cold-press" refers to a particular extraction technique, one of the highest quality that involves high pressure processing, that is able to preserve the juice with all of its nutrients, unpasteurized, for up to 30 days. (This is different from the standard store-bought juice in that there is heat processing involved, so all the nutrients are in pure form.)

To recreate your own juice at home for a quarter of the price, turn away from the refrigerated juices and take a stroll through the produce aisles. Now, it can be a bit overwhelming to know which fruits and vegetables to pick out. Here is a simple outline to start you off on your way.

1. Pick out a base vegetable or fruit, preferably something watery to give it substance. For a vegetable-based juice, I normally go for cucumber or celery, while if you are going for a fruit-based juice, almost any type of fruit will work. Alternatively, you can go for the “tuber”-based juice, that is, with beets, carrots, or sweet potatoes as a base.

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2. Pick a second layer, and in most often cases, fruit. This will be to sweeten your juice up a tad, unless you are feeling a bit hardcore and want to take on a veggie-filled delight. Grapefruit and apples are some of the favorites, but mango and pineapple make for some delicious juices as well if you are feeling tropical! 

Pick out a base vegetable or fruit, preferably something watery to give it substance. For a vegetable-based juice, I normally go for cucumber or celery, while if you are going for a fruit-based juice, almost any type of fruit will work.

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Alternatively, you can go for the “tuber”-based juice, that is, with beets, carrots, or sweet potatoes as a base.

3. This last layer is what I consider the nutritional boost. Pick out a leafy green and throw those bad boys in. Popular choices are kale, spinach, or collard greens. Romaine is a good choice if you want to avoid any bitter tastes.

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4. Enhance the flavor with some additives! I’ve tried everything from ginger, lemon, to mint and other herbs, and I must say that done, correctly, this will make or break the juice. Even jalapeño can be worked in cleverly with some nice kale undertones! Or go with a tropical theme and sprinkle some coconut flakes into the mix. 

Pick a second layer, which is in most cases fruit. This will be to sweeten your juice up a tad, unless you are feeling a bit hardcore and want to take on a veggie-filled delight.

A photo posted by Breville USA (@breville) on

Grapefruit and apples are some of the favorites, but mango and pineapple make for some delicious juices as well if you are feeling tropical! 

5. Feel free to enhance the typical juice by throwing in some chia seed and flaxseed for a hefty dose of fiber and omega 3's. Protein powder is another great option to add some substance, such as in the Spiced Apple Pie Protein drink below!

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The ratios are very much up to you, and how strongly you want to enunciate each flavor. Just as an example, one medium-sized cucumber or 4-5 stalks of celery, one apple, and 1 cup of Kale makes for a standard 12 oz glass of juice. However, feel free to through in as many leafy greens as you desire, as these normally don't add too much volume to the total juice.

This last layer is what I consider the nutritional boost. Pick out a leafy green and throw those bad boys in. Popular choices are kale, spinach, and collard greens.

Romaine is a good choice if you want to avoid any bitter tastes.

A photo posted by Breville USA (@breville) on

Don't be afraid to go crazy with the combos, and get your daily dose of vitamin-filled goodness that will most certainly, keep the doctors away. 

Enhance the flavor with some added produce. I’ve tried everything from ginger, lemon, to mint and other herbs, and I must say that—done correctly, mind you—they can make or break a juice.

Even jalapeño can be worked in cleverly with some nice kale undertones! Or go with a tropical theme and sprinkle some coconut flakes into the mix. 

Feel free to enhance your typical juice by throwing in some chia seed and flaxseed for a hefty dose of fiber and omega 3's. Protein powder is another great option to add some substance, such as in the spiced apple pie protein drink below.

Spiced Apple Pie Protein Drink

Now that you know how to select your ingredients, all you need is a juicing machine. Traditionally, juicers run to be $50-$200, with solid options coming in around the $100 price range. It’s hard to go wrong with a brand name, as most juicers accomplish the same job, although some people swear that their Breville or Magic Bullet extracts more nutrients.

But if you don’t want to invest such a hefty sum of money, a blender does the job quite well, with some additional straining on your part (if don’t want the fiber-filled pulp).