In my last cookbook, I vowed to never drink a green smoothie. I also thought any child of mine would happily snack on spinach, broccoli, and every other vegetable under the sun. (I also thought I could contain all my daughter’s toys to her room. Are all new moms as delusional???)
Then my daughter went through a phase where the only vegetable she would eat for a month was salsa. Yup, I became that mom. The mom I never thought I would be, lamenting how my daughter’s picky eating. Granted, she ate at least a half cup of salsa a day, but I did have some major mama guilt. Add on to that my pregnancy and aversion to cooked vegetables, and I realized that I need to create a green smoothie that would appeal to us both.
Thank goodness for chocolate.
This smoothie tastes like a chocolate shake but is packed with superfoods: dates, chia seeds, ground flax, blueberries, bananas, and a generous handful of spinach.
Before you scoff at my chocolate concoction, let’s take a look at the ingredients:
Dates: Dates are a natural sweetener and great for the digestion system. They also contain Vitamin A and K, and are a good source for potassium.
Chia Seeds: Chia seeds help you stay full longer which is the main reason I included them in the shake. They are also packed with antioxidants and omega-3 fatty acids. Unlike flax seeds, they can be digested whole.
Ground Flax: This is another great source for omega-3 fatty acids. They are also a good source of manganese and Vitamain B1. Like dates, they aid in digestion.
Blueberries– The real reason I added (frozen) blueberries is that it makes the chocolate taste chocolatey-er. They are also a great source of Vitamin C.
Bananas– Like the blueberries, I added bananas for taste: frozen bananas give the shake an ice cream like quality that can’t be beat. They are also a good source of potassium and for Baby G, they can counteract all these “aid in digestion” ingredients. Let’s just say she has never had that problem.
Spinach: Spinach is packed with Vitamin A and K. It also contains some folate, iron, and calcium. And let’s be honest, I feel a little better as a mom (and a pregnant woman) knowing that all of my babies are getting some spinach each day in addition to the copious amounts of salsa.
To make mornings run smoother, I have started creating shake packs that I keep in the freezer.
After my morning run, my daughter and I dump our pack in the blender, add spinach and almond milk, and voila! Breakfast of champions.
I am going to give you the recipe below per pack. In a perfect world, I would make up to 2 weeks worth at time, but in reality, I am usually short on at least one ingredient, so I just make as many as I can.
These shakes are a great way to start your day. I mean, how many people can say they had spinach for breakfast?
Add on to that, how many toddlers can say they had spinach for breakfast? Okay, even G can’t say that. How many moms can say their toddler had spinach for breakfast?
And the best part? When I do ask G about what she had for breakfast, she tells me “Chocolate.”
I can live with that.
Green Smoothies: Yay or Nay? Do you have any favorite sneaky veggie smoothies?
Disclaimer: Thought I talk about ‘hiding’ and ‘sneaking’ veggies in this smoothie, I am very open with G about the ingredients and repeatedly tell her how it’s the spinach (not the chocolate) that makes the smoothie taste good. I even have her help me put the spinach in the blender. I would never condone being sneaky about putting vegetables in any dish. I do condone getting veggies into any and all dishes that we can as moms, and as people who want to lead healthy lives.