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Cooking with kids: fruit smoothies

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Fruits smoothies can be an easy way to nourish your body with essential nutrients. The best way to know the exact ingredients in your smoothie is to make them yourself. All you need is a blender, fruit and a base, such as water, milk or yogurt.

When trying to lose or maintain a healthy weight, smoothies could be used as a meal replacement, not an addition. For instance, drink a dairy-based smoothie for breakfast or drink a water-based smoothie as a snack. Fruit smoothies can be a healthy addition to any meal plan as long as you maintain portion control.

Teaching your children the benefits of fruit smoothies while they are still young would be a good thing. You can begin by using this recipe for fruit smoothies which are both tasty and easy to make.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup fat-free plain yogurt
  • 1 frozen banana*
  • 1 ¾ teaspoons EQUAL FOR RECIPES™ or 6 packets EQUAL® sweetener or ¼ cup EQUAL SPOONFUL™

*Peel and cut banana into large chunks. Place in plastic freezer bag, seal and freeze at least 5 – 6 hours, or overnight.

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Place all ingredients in blender or food processor.
  2. Blend until smooth.

Makes 2 servings

Fat-free, plain yogurt
Fat-free, plain yogurt fotosearch

Fat-free, plain yogurt

When making smoothies, you can decide what you want to use for the base. You can also decide which fruits and vegetables you want to combine. If you decide to use smoothies as a replacement meal, you should consult your doctor first.

bananas
bananas fotosearch

bananas

 Peel and cut banana in chunks. Place the chunks into a freezer bag. Freeze for 5 - 6 hours or for overnight. When ready to make your smoothie, add the frozen banana and the rest of the ingredients in the blender. Bananas are full of potassium, which is good for you.

Orange juice
Orange juice fotosearch

Orange juice

In this particular recipe, orange juice serves as the "base" - that which all other ingredients are added to so you can have a delicious smoothie. One thing about making your own smoothie is that you have complete control about what goes into it.

milk
milk fotosearch

milk

Although milk is not an ingredient required in this particular recipe, it can be the base for some smoothie recipes. For the healthiest smoothies, you should use low-fat (skim) milk. This will reduce the number of overall calories consumed, also.

Blender
Blender fotosearch

Blender

Once you have all the ingredients prepared, you may use either a food processor or a blender in order to mix this delicious fruit smoothie. Be sure to only blend until you have a smooth texture; otherwise you will not obtain the consistency that is needed to enjoy this at its best.

Strawberry Smoothie
Strawberry Smoothie fotosearch

Strawberry Smoothie

One of my favorite flavors - for most anything - is strawberry. They will soon be fresh on the vines so this recipe should come in handy. Perhaps I will be able to make some of these after my granddaughter and I pick strawberries - if any of them make it out of the field without being eaten first.

Spinach-Apple Smoothie
Spinach-Apple Smoothie fotsearch

Spinach-Apple Smoothie

I've been told that not only are spinach and apple smoothies good for you, but they also taste great. To be honest, I would have never considered mixing spinach with apples. Who came up with this recipe, anyway? Popeye? Give it a try if you can find a recipe for it.

Blueberry Smoothie
Blueberry Smoothie fotosearch

Blueberry Smoothie

Just today I was checking my blueberry bushes to try to get an idea as to when those pretty little blooms might be turning into big, tasty blueberries. Lucky enough to have bushes, I can hardly wait until my granddaughter and I are able to pick these delightful berries which are full of antioxidants.

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