The only advice you need to make a green smoothie your kids want!
Last year my mom got me a Blendtec. It came with one caveat though. I had to use it everyday for 30 days or else she would take it back! She and my dad had purchased a Blendtec for themselves and had been making green smoothies for a few months before this and were really excited about the way they were feeling. They wanted all of their children to join in the green smoothie madness! At the time, I must admit I was not really into smoothies. I think my hold up was that the majority of my experiences with smoothies were from places like Jamba Juice.
When I was in high school, a lot of my friends worked there and were really into smoothies. I always felt like they were packed full of calories and sugar and so I would take a few sips and then be done with it. What I didn’t realize is that smoothies are actually really healthy for you when you customize them and make them at home. It is a great way to get a lot of nutrition in one sitting. I’m always surprised at how many more fruits and vegetables we eat when we are drinking smoothies regularly. Back to the Blendtec. I decided to take the challenge and used my Blendtec every single day for 30 days! These days there is almost not a day that goes by that I don’t use it. There is a counter on the front that tells you how many blends you have. This was my blend number today:
Out of the 365 days that I have had the Blendtec, I have used it almost everyday! (Sometimes I use it twice a day, so that may have made up for the times I didn’t – ha) The great thing about a smoothie is that they are really hard to mess up. With that being said, it is also nice to use a recipe so that you know it will turn out delicious. We have made A LOT of smoothies – of every variety. In fact, Amy has made so many smoothies that she even wrote a book about it. 201 Smoothies and Juices for Kids. That is a lot of smoothies.
I decided that instead of just giving out some great recipes (which I will do that also) I would give out a template so that you can always make your own great smoothie with whatever you have on hand! What is that old saying? ‘Give a man a fish and he eats for a day; Teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime.’ We want you to be able to drink smoothies for a lifetime! This is our template that has worked for us time and time again. If you want to print it, laminate and stick in on your fridge, click to print below!
With this template you can make almost any variety of smoothie your heart can imagine and your taste buds can handle. When you follow this template, it will make enough to feed about 4 people – depending on how big or little the people are. My girls usually will drink about 4-6 ounces each and my husband and I will drink about 10-16 ounces each. These are some of our favorite recipes (green and non-green) from our site:
Green Smoothie Tips and Tricks
- If you are just starting making green smoothies, don’t worry about increasing your proportion of fruit to greens until you get used to the flavor.
- Spinach and Swiss Chard are the most mild tasting greens. Baby Kale is more mild than mature kale.
- Bananas are a natural sweetener – the more banana you add the sweeter your smoothie will be.
- Cinnamon and Ginger give your smoothie a ‘warm’ flavor
- Dark berries hide the green color if your kids have a problem with it at first
What Ingredients Should be in a Green Smoothie?
The best ingredients to turn a smoothie green is leafy green veggies such as spinach and kale. They will have the biggest impact on color, while delivering some healthy phytochemicals you can only get through leafy greens. Other greenish foods include avocado, kiwi and cucumbers, which we love to use, but the color won’t be as vibrant.
For a smoothie to be the color green, the other ingredients should be light in color, like mangoes, pineapple, apples, lemon, bananas. But without getting technically about the final color, we consider all smoothies that include leafy green veggies to be “green smoothies”, even when the final color is purple, like you’d get with dark berries.
If you want a HUGE inventory of recipes, make sure you check out our book: