One way to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day is with (artificially) green-colored food and drinks: green beer, green eggs, green cupcakes, green milk…and the list goes on and on. This makes for some fun-colored eggs in the morning, which probably contain chemicals, and I’m pretty sure I don’t want to eat green gravy.
Instead, how about making food green by injecting green healthy foods into the dish? I definitely want to wear and eat something green on St. Patrick’s Day, so I looked around for some fresh, green-injected recipes. The most surprising one? This Piña Colada Green Smoothie above, made green by adding a cup of fresh spinach, along with other typical ingredients you find in a healthy smoothie. Chopped kale works too, and it has the most nutrients per calorie of any vegetable.
I tried it out at home ahead of time (I certainly don’t want to disappoint green beer lovers with veggie-tasting smoothies) and was most pleasantly surprised. The smoothie tasted fresh, light and fruity-coconutty just like a piña colada should. There was not even a hint of that secret healthy ingredient that turned it such a gorgeous shade of green: spinach. I used freshly squeezed orange juice, fat-free yogurt and no-sugar-added Carnation Instant Breakfast (or Aloha protein powder, it’s my fave). With all the nutrients from this as well as the banana and pineapple, I could drink this green delight for breakfast every day.
Piña Colada Green Smoothie
- 1 packet No Sugar Added French Vanilla Flavor Nutrition or protein powder
- 1/2 cup pineapple or orange juice
- 1/2 cup frozen pineapple cubes
- 1 cup fresh spinach leaves
- 1/4 cup vanilla fat free yogurt
- 1/4 banana
- 1 tablespoon unsweetened shredded coconut
- 1/2 cup ice cubes
PLACE Carnation Breakfast Essentials Drink, pineapple juice, pineapple, spinach, yogurt, banana, coconut and ice in blender; cover. Blend until smooth.
I also tried this Tropical Avocado Smoothie, shown above, using avocado, lime and fat free evaporated milk. Now I love avocado so much I can find a place for it at every meal of the day, but I’ve never had avocado for dessert (combined with sugar and served as a sweet). This would be interesting.
Well, I loved this smoothie even more! I couldn’t believe how rich and creamy it was, almost like ice cream, and so pretty. I didn’t know sweetened avocado was so good – and I used less sugar than called for in the recipe. In my opinion, this smoothie is just another delicious way to work more avocado into my diet.
So I’m set for fresh green drinks throughout the day tomorrow. And I even found this green-food-injected Green Eggs & Ham recipe, so I can still get my eggs “green” at breakfast.
Tropical Avocado Smoothie
- Pulp of 1 medium avocado
- 2 cans (12 fl. oz. each) Evaporated Lowfat 2% Milk, chilled
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar or to taste
- 1 teaspoon grated lime zest (optional)
- Crushed ice (optional)
PLACE avocado, evaporated milk, sugar and lime zest in blender container; cover. Blend for 30 to 45 seconds until smooth.
SERVE in tall glasses. Top with crushed ice, if desired.
NOTE: If a thinner drink is desired, blend in 1 cup ice cubes with drink ingredients.