Swapping Sodas for Smoothie
Kids tend to love their sodas but let’s face it, they’re not the healthiest choice of drink. Sodas don’t offer real nutritional benefits but worse than that, they’re full of additives, sugar or sweeteners.
Persuading them to ditch sodas isn’t that easy though, as you may well have found out already!
What you really need is a healthy alternative that tastes great and is more appealing than their favorite sodas.
Is there really an option that can tick all of these boxes? Turns out you can easily make a healthy, delicious smoothie that helps your child to enjoy vegetables and fruit, maybe even without realizing it!
Making your own smoothies is the best move as pre made, shop bought smoothies can be loaded with sugars and fats and this can be as bad or even worse than the sodas you’re looking to swap out.
Creating your own smoothies gives you control over what your kid is really slurping, plus you can experiment a lot more with different combinations and recipes to find ones that get a big thumbs up.
Making smoothies together with your kid can also be a fun activity that’s also great for educating them on healthy nutrition.
Tips for Making Soda Substitute Smoothies
So, how can you create smoothies that get the nod over soft drinks? These tips should help!
Getting the Right Sweetness for Your Smoothies
One of the big reasons why kids love soft drinks so much is their sweet taste, and this is something you’ll want to replicate in your smoothies.
You don’t need to add any sugar or sweeteners for this; fruit will add natural sweetness of its own. A touch of natural sweetener such as honey can work well if you need an extra helping hand.
You can gradually wean your child off the sweet taste as they get used to having more veggies in their smoothies and less fruit, but in the early days you’ll definitely need to keep things sweet to compete with the taste of soft drinks.
Getting the Right Texture
Even a sweet tasting smoothie may not be enough if the consistency is off putting. Kids who don’t tend to drink fruit juice, especially the kind that has sediment collecting at the bottom of the glass, are often reluctant to embrace too much in the way of texture. Therefore, an ultra smooth smoothie is an absolute must if it’s going to win over a soft drink.
In my experience, a smooth texture is more likely to go down well with kids and your choice of blender can be key for achieving this.
In my experience, using one of the higher end bullet blenders such as these is a good bet and won’t leave chunks of vegetables or fruit behind that didn’t quite blend well enough.
Getting the Right Color
Once you’ve got the taste and texture spot on the last thing you want to ruin it by offering up an appetizing looking concoction that kills their interest in smoothies for life. If your child isn’t a big fan of vegetables, a green or light brown smoothie can be a big no no, for example.
The good news is that there are plenty of fruits and vegetables you can use in smoothies to add a more exciting color, and these can actually be a lot more vibrant than some soft drinks. You may need to experiment a bit to find the combinations of tastes and colors that your child likes best.
3 Soda Swap Smoothie Recipes
Here are a few smoothie recipes to start weaning your child off soft drinks and onto delicious, healthy smoothies:
Banana Strawberry Milkshake Smoothie
If your kid is a big fan of strawberry milkshake, it’s easy to make a healthy smoothie version that they’ll love just as much. They won’t even realize how much goodness it has in it!
- ½ banana
- ½ cup strawberries
- ½ cup oatmeal
- ½ cup almond or coconut milk
- Optional – 1 tsp honey to sweeten
- Optional – ¼ tsp vanilla essence
- Add oatmeal to your blender and blend first until it becomes a fine powder.
- Add everything else to your blender and blend until smooth and creamy.
Banana Caramel Smoothie
Got a child that loves drinking Coca Cola or Pepsi? This smoothie has a caramel flavor that they won’t be able to resist! And it’s a whole lot better for them in terms of ingredients.
- ½ banana
- 1-2 Medjool dates (pitted)
- 1 tbsp nut butter
- ½ cup almond or coconut milk
- ¼ tsp vanilla essence
- Add everything to your blender and blend until smooth and creamy.
This zingy lemon smoothie is a refreshing and healthy alternative to lemonade – perfect for quenching your child’s thirst!
- ½ cup low fat or Greek yogurt
- ½ lemon
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 tbsp ginger (grated)
- Blend or juice half a lemon until it becomes lemon juice.
- Add the other ingredients to your blender and combine.
These recipes are sure to go down a treat with kids and as they get a taste for smoothies. You can experiment with adding various vegetables and other healthy ingredients to broaden out the nutrients they get from smoothies. Just remember to keep it smooth and fun with the texture and color!