Super Smoothies for Super Kids
Getting kids to eat their fruits and veggies can be a challenge for many parents. Smoothies are a great way to get picky eaters eating nutrient dense foods. With so many different flavour combinations, there is sure to be a smoothie for your most picky child! Here are some kid friendly tips to get you started:
- Get your kids involved. Let them pick out ingredients they would like to try and allow them to experiment with different combinations. Kids are more likely to try something if they help to make it.
- Start with sweeter fruits and slowly increase the veggie content. Bananas make smoothies really creamy and sweet. Berries, pineapple, oranges, mango, and cherries are also popular.
- Frozen fruit blends up thick and creamy and can even be eaten with a spoon if liquids are kept to a minimum. Great if kids prefer a smoothie bowl. Smoothie bowls can also be topped with granola, additional chopped fruit, and a drizzle of nut butter for even more variation. A high-powered blender such as vitamix or blend-tec works best here.
- When adding veggies, start with a handful of baby spinach and/or baby kale. They tend to be the most mild- tasting and least detectable. You can increase the amount used as they get used to them or try using beets, carrots, cucumbers, collard greens, and cauliflower (steam first and cool or freeze to make it easier to digest). Parsley, cilantro, and celery, are also great for your most adventurous kids.
- Add healthy fats- try hemp seeds or hemp oil, nut and seed butters, coconut oil, MCT oil, flax oil, or even avocado for a creamy treat.
- Try using coconut water, almond milk, coconut milk, hemp milk, or rice milk if you want to keep it dairy free. Vary the amount of liquid for a thinner or thicker consistency.
- Plain yogurt adds a nice tangy flavor. Unsweetened coconut yogurt works great for a dairy free option.
- To boost the protein content for kids that need it, add some protein powder.
- For kids who need something sweeter, add in a touch of raw honey, maple syrup, 1-2 dates, or a drop of stevia to naturally sweeten it. Reduce sweetener over time.
- Add in some superfoods for a nutritional boost. I like macqui powder, moringa, cinnamon, bee pollen, or a greens powder.
- Pour smoothies into a popsicle mold and freeze. Perfect for hot summer days, kids love popsicles. A watermelon-mint combo is delicious when frozen.
- Make it fun! Tell the kids you’re making green slime for breakfast with green smoothies, or mud pies with cacao based smoothies. Or let them guess what color all the blended ingredients will make.
Try this simple “neon green” smoothie: 1 Cup unsweetened almond milk, 1 Cup baby spinach, 1-2 frozen bananas, 1 scoop Vega viva vanilla protein smoothie. Blend until smooth. If the green color turns them off, use chocolate protein powder.
Experiment and have fun!
Photo by: Girls Make Food