The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

September 19, 2012

Wonderful Fruit Smoothies

Karen's Kitchen
Karen Freeman

TARBORO — I love fruit smoothies. I don't know why I don't have them more often. When I do, I totally love them. They taste as good as any dessert and if made correctly, are very good for you. Find your favorite and give it a try. If you have good one, send it my way either by email or Facebook. If you have a ninja (like a mini food processor except 10 times better!) you can make a smoothie in no time at all.

The first is a lo-cal strawberry banana. It's easy and uses a sugar substitute, so it's healthy.

The second is a bit more decadent. It's banana caramel! I love caramel, so I use a little more than the recipe calls for.

Recipe three uses watermelon. We have watermelon coming in from the garden and I have about run out of uses for it. So, this is a special treat! It has lettuce in it! That changes the texture a little but you don't really taste the lettuce. It's just a great way to get a veggie in your kids!

The next is a kiwi mango layered smoothie. It's very pretty but it takes just a bit more time because you do the mango mixture first, pour it up and then you have to rinse the blender and do the kiwi portion. But, if you want a beautiful and tasty drink, it's worth the small bit of extra effort.

The next smoothie is a knock off of an almond joy. It's exactly the same but very close. But, yes you could change some of the ingredients and actually use almond joy candy bars!

I was saving my favorite for last. The banana split smoothie. I love these! I also love the banana split blizzards and thought this would be a healthy substitute. I was right. It's really good!



Lo-Cal Strawberry Banana Smoothie



1 Cup Fresh Strawberries

1 Banana

1 cup Non-fat yogurt

1 packet sugar or sugar substitute. I like using Stevia

1 cup of ice



Blend until creamy and delicious, which won’t take long.



Banana Caramel Smoothie



6 oz. Low-Fat Vanilla Yogurt

1 Banana

1 Cup Almond or Soy milk

1 Tbsp Caramel Fat Free Topping

1 Cup Ice

Pinch each of Cinnamon, Ginger and Clove

Add all ingredients into the 48 oz. pitcher and pulse 6-8 times until smooth. You can use any blender you like, but the recipe was supplied for the Ninja Blender.

Makes 2 Glasses/servings



Watermelon with a Twist



Ingredients:

4 cups watermelon chunks, no rind please.

1 banana

5 leaves romaine lettuce

Juice of 1/2 lemon <–this gives the smoothie a great flavor.

Blend it and really enjoy it while watermelons are still in season. Makes 2 servings or 2 quarts.



Kiwi Mango Layered Smoothie



2 1/2 cups frozen mango

3/4 cup vanilla fat-free yogurt

1/4 cup honey

2 tablespoons water

1/2 teaspoon grated lime rind

3 ripe kiwifruit, peeled

2 cups ice cubes

2 tablespoons green tea

1/2 cup packed baby spinach



Place mango, 1/2 cup yogurt, 2 tablespoons honey, 2 tablespoons water, and lime rind in a blender; process until smooth, stirring occasionally. Divide mango mixture into each of 4 serving glasses; place glasses in freezer.

Rinse blender container. Place 1/4 cup yogurt, 2 tablespoons honey, kiwifruit, and next 3 ingredients in blender; process until smooth, stirring occasionally. Gently spoon green tea-kiwi mixture onto mango mixture in reserved glasses, working carefully around inside of each glass to create a clean horizontal line. Stir to combine flavors, if desired. Serve immediately.



Almond Joy Chocolate Smoothie



1 cup coconut water

1/2 cup almond milk

2 tablespoons flaked coconut

1/2 tablespoon cocoa nibs

6 ice cubes

1/2 teaspoon coconut extract

1 scoop of chocolate whey powder



Place in a blender, liquids first, dry goods, and then ice. Blend for about 30 seconds, staring at the lowest setting and moving to the highest speed.

Then let it blend on high for another 30 seconds, making it light and airy.



Banana Split Smoothie



2 bananas

8 oz. crushed pineapple, drained

1 1/4 cup of milk

1/2 cup of unsweetened strawberries  (frozen or fresh)

2 tbs. honey

6 ice cubes

1 scoop of vanilla ice cream (optional)

Garnish

whipped topping

chocolate syrup

maraschino cherries



Combine bananas, pineapple, milk, strawberries and honey in a blender. Blend until smooth, no lumps. Start adding ice slowly and blending until slushy.

Pour into large glasses, preferably chilled then garnish with whipped topping, chocolate syrup, and maraschino cherries.

The perfect banana split in a glass.