- Smoothies are a great way to get fruits & veggies into your child's diet.
- Recipes from a professional dietician below!
Smoothies are a quick, easy, and refreshing treat that both kids and parents can love! No need to add protein powders or supplements to your kids smoothie (unless recommended by your physician or dietitian). You can add the staying power of protein using food sources like full-fat dairy, chia seeds, hemp seeds, nut butters or tofu. Smoothies are a great way to get all the nutrition-packed goodness out of your weekly Farmer’s Market trip too!
Tips for Easy Smoothie Making From a Pro
Adding fruits and veggies to your child’s smoothie is a great way to slip in extra nutrition. As a registered dietician, I recommend these tips for parents of choosy eaters.
- Use frozen fruit so you don’t have to add ice (this makes the smoothie thick)
- Serve with a lid and a straw if color is an issue
- Freeze unused smoothie or rejected smoothies into ice cube trays for later use or popsicle molds. Many times a rejected smoothie may be accepted as a popsicle!
- Add fruit or veggies you know that your child enjoys to their smoothie
- Too thick? Add more liquid. Too runny? Add more ice and/or frozen fruit
Use this combination for smoothies that will last:
+Protein: nut butters, chia seeds, yogurt
+Fat: nut butters, avocado, full-fat dairy, chia/flax/hemp seeds
+Carbohydrates: fresh or frozen fruit, dairy
If you are adding veggies into the smoothie, tell the kids its in there! Maybe let them try it first, tell you they love the flavor and then fill them in. If the kids are into it, let those veggies shine!
Dietician Pro-Tip: Want to add more calories, fiber and healthy fat into your child’s diet? Sprinkle milled flaxseed – we digest these better milled or ground – or chia or hemp seeds on top or blended in. You can mix these with regular sugar sprinkles to create a ‘sprinkle mix’ that’s more kid friendly.
Chia Seeds: 3 TBS = 150 calories, 13 total carbs, 5 grams of protein, good source of omega 3’s (healthy fat) 10 grams of fiber!
Hemp Hearts: 3 TBS = 180 calories, 1 total carbs, 10 grams of protein, omega 3’s, 1 gram fiber
Milled Flax Seed: 2 TBS = 80 calories, 4 total carbs, 3 grams of protein, omega 3’s, 4 grams fiber
Smoothie Recipes Kids Love
PB Banana & Spinach Smoothie
2 Cups Frozen Banana
1 Cup Frozen Spinach
1 Cup Water
¼ Cup Peanut Butter (or nut butter of choice)
1 tsp. Vanilla extract
*Blend and top with natural sprinkles or special sprinkle mix (chia/flax/hemp with sugar sprinkles)!
Creamy Mixed Berry Fizz
1 Cup Frozen Berries
¾ Cup Flavored Sparkling Water
1 Cup Plain Greek Yogurt (or dairy free alternative)
*The addition of the flavored sparkling water gives this smoothie a bubbly kick!
Nutty Cinnamon & Honey Smoothie
1 Plain Greek Yogurt
¼ Almond butter (or nut butter of choice)
1 TBS Honey
½ tsp Cinnamon
1TBS Hemp Seeds
1 Cup Ice
Minty Mango Green Smoothie
2 Cups Frozen Spinach
1 Cup Fresh Mint
1 Lime Juiced
1 Cup Coconut Water
½ Cup Frozen Mango
Mint Chocolate Chip
2 Frozen bananas
¼ Cup Fresh Mint
¼ Cup Dark Chocolate Chips
½ Cup Unsweet Almond Milk
Go dairy-Free: Use non-dairy yogurt or milk, blended banana or tofu.
Go nut-free: Use seed butter like Sunbutter or 88 Acres (seed butter brand).
Want to eat your smoothie with a spoon? Smoothie bowls are a fun twist on traditional smoothie consumption. Make most any smoothie into a smoothie bowl by adding less liquid, for a thicker consistency, easily eaten with a spoon. Add toppings like granola, chia/flax/hemp, natural sprinkles, fresh fruit, nuts/seeds, dry cereal.
The combinations are endless, but many times we get stuck in the same smoothie cycle and need to branch out. Keep it simple, and use at least one flavor profile you know your kids like.
How to BYO (Build Your Own) Smoothie!
4-8oz serving size
BASE: (pick 1 +)
Full-fat Yogurt of choice
Milk of choice
Flavored Sparkling Water
FRUIT: (Pick 2-3)
Avocado (I’m a fruit!)
Melons: Watermelon, Cantaloupe, or Honeydew
VEGGIE: (pick 1 +)
Greens (kale, spinach, romaine)
Green Beans (cooked)
Roasted Sweet Potato/butternut squash
ADD-INS: (pick 1 +)
Unsweet cocoa powder
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Rachel Brown is a foodie by heart and Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator by trade. A mother of two young children, she is always searching for fun and exciting things to eat and create as a family. Rachel moved here from Nashville, TN in 2016 and is enjoying exploring Huntsville and all the exciting things happening here. You can follow her exciting Huntsville foodie finds on her Instagram @RocketCityDietitian or on FaceBook as Rocket City Dietitian.