Who doesn’t love smoothies? They’re one of the best parts of summer. Sweet, cool, refreshing, filling…and super pretty in a glass! None of this beige-colored iced coffee business. Don’t get me wrong – I’ll never turn down an iced vanilla latte. But smoothies are somehow extra special.
To express my undying adoration for one of my favorite beverages, I even have a Pinterest page collecting my favorite recipes (and, let’s face it, pictures. Look at that cover shot. It’s gorgeous).
However, as much as I squee with glee when I see a smoothie on a menu, I have a lot of trouble making them at home. Sure, they’re fruity and fresh and all those other things…but they just don’t taste quite the same to me. Something is always off – too bland, too yogurty, too something.
This is likely because restaurants and coffee shops don’t use actual fruit, like I do – most of them use flavored syrups, plus a lot of sweeteners.
BUT – smoothies are a lot healthier if you use that actual fruit. You get the fiber from the original food, which is lacking in juice (the fiber comes from the skin and/or the pulpy sectionals in citruses). I once heard a dietitian say that juice is nature’s way of making us eat fruit. And it also makes the beverage heftier, and thus it is harder for the body to digest. This means it takes longer, and the sugar doesn’t hit your bloodstream quite so fast. If you lose the real fruit, you lose some of those benefits.
The digestion thing is also why it’s good to add yogurt, milk, peanut butter, what have you. The extra nutrients delay processing by the body.
So, there I was, a lonely heroine with a blender, some fruit, some yogurt, and a series of sub-par smoothies.
Until I stumbled upon Chocolate Covered Katie and her healthy desserts blog.
Thank you, Pinterest.
Katie found a way to make smoothies that not only taste like professional ones, but are INCREDIBLY FUN.
How did she accomplish this, you ask?
I’ll say it again: she based them on fairy tales.
Is this woman a genius, or what?
She has a basic recipe for the smoothies, and then uses certain alterations to make the different flavors, such as the Pink Princess (raspberries and milk) and the Purple Dragon (blueberries and orange juice).
Blueberries have long vexed me in the smoothie making process. They’re so bland. Adding OJ is brilliant. Why didn’t I think of that??
And, yes, I realize that this is geared for children. But since I am someone who still has her Disney princess Barbies in storage, who watches Once Upon a Time and Galavant, and who adores the Duchess of Cambridge, this is 100% in my wheelhouse.
Finally (this has nothing to do with taste, but everything to do with awesomeness): she suggests sprinkling “fairy dust” on the tops, by which she means sprinkles or a healthier alternative like acai powder. Fairy dust! What a fun way to punch up a Monday morning, right?
I’ve already tried the two flavors I mentioned…I’m thinking that tomorrow I’ll do the Ugly Duckling, since I have a ton of little bits of different frozen fruits in my freezer, plus some spinach. Check out Katie’s post and let me know – which would you most like to try?