I'm sure I'm not alone in saying that when I'm sick, all I want to do is curl up in bed and watch Netflix. However, as a busy university student, that's generally not an option. Instead, I concocted a ginger and orange smoothie as an alternative—even the colour of it makes me happy! 

The tartness of the oranges and lemons is perfectly contrasted by the maple syrup and cinnamon. The cayenne pepper works wonders on your sinuses and adds a much-needed zing, and the ginger is there for flavour as well as to boost your immune system. 

For reasons why citrus fruits and spicy foods specifically help you get rid of a cold faster, check out the best foods to eat when you're sick. She explains everything and even gives you some other options for how to best get rid of your cold through what you eat.

Sick-Day Smoothie

  • Prep Time:5 mins
  • Cook Time:0
  • Total Time:5 mins
  • Servings:1
  • Easy


  • 2 large seedless navel oranges
  • 1/2 lemon juiced
  • 1 cm knob ginger peeled
  • 2-4 ice cubes
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper optional
orange, lemon, citrus, juice
Emily Marshall
  • Step 1

    Peel and roughly chop the navel oranges; don't worry about removing the white membrane.

    #SpoonTip: You can save the peel and make candied oranges or even simmer it in hot water with some cinnamon and ginger for a delicious tea.

    citrus, sweet
    Emily Marshall
  • Step 2

    Place all the ingredients in a high-speed blender, and blend on high until smooth. Add as many ice cubes as you need to get the consistency that you want. Serve immediately.

    beer, tea, espresso, coffee
    Emily Marshall
  • Step 3


    cocktail, juice, sweet
    Emily Marshall

This is also very good as a warming hot drink! Just leave out the ice and heat the mixture for 20-second intervals in the microwave until you get the desired temperature. Also, this smoothie is very pulpy, so if that bothers you then feel free to strain it until you get to the consistency that you want. 

This recipe is inspired by one in Angela Liddon's Oh She Glows cookbook, one of the best sources for easy (and yummy) vegan food.