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I can’t remember where I first saw the mason jar smoothie technique (if you google “mason jar smoothie” you’ll find thousands of results), but we recently decided it was something we needed to try.  I love fruit smoothies, but I hate all the mess that comes along with it.  Chopping up fruit, cleaning the blender, yadda yadda yadda, and half the time, because I don’t have time to make them daily and smoothies are best with fresh fruits in several varieties, the fruit goes bad before I have an opportunity to use it all up.  I prepped my favorite smoothie ingredients – pineapple, strawberries, basil, and ginger, in two separate jars.  Since I’d never made them this way before I put one in the freezer and left one in the fridge to see how the results would differ.  Obviously, I was counting on the frozen version since it would mean a longer shelf-life and perfectly chilled results.  Unfortunately, the frozen jar was not so simple.  You need to let it thaw much longer than the recommended “few minutes”, even with the addition of orange juice (my liquid of choice), it just wouldn’t blend.  We ended up needing to break everything apart with a butter knife and dump it all into the blender, eliminating my fantasy of a less-mess smoothie process.  The refrigerated version went much, well, smoother, but of course, the pre-packed jars won’t stay fresh as long as their freezer counterparts.  From now on, I plan to transfer the frozen jars to the fridge the night before so that hopefully the blending process will be trouble-free in the future.