Sometimes my girls are picky eaters. And since–like their father–they turn into gremlins when they’re hungry, I often find myself desperate to get them to eat something. Anything. We always have cheerios and goldfish on hand because I know Margot will eat the former and Mila will eat the latter. Our snack stash has saved lives. Literally.
But I try to feed my family natural, whole, unprocessed foods whenever possible. Extra sugars and empty calories and all kinds of artificial and preservative chemicals are not my favorite. I mean, you do what you gotta do (see above paragraph and the fact that I took my girls to Mickey D’s for chicken nuggets for lunch yesterday, thankyouverymuch) but having easy, homemade, healthier options is always nice.
Since I’m assuming other people might be interested in super easy, fairly healthy, kid-friendly recipes, here is the first of (hopefully) many recipes that meet those criteria. And this one barely even counts as a recipe, it’s so easy.
When I first made this chocolate banana smoothie, both girls went nuts over it. Mila downed like half of it by herself, and Margot was torn between drinking and dancing because she was so excited. I was thrilled because 1) it was pretty dang delicious and 2) I didn’t have to force it down anyone’s throat! Hallelujah!
A chocolate banana smoothie is now our favorite 3 o’clock snack. There’s just enough sugar from the banana to satisfy a craving for sweetness, but enough protein from the almond butter and milk to keep your energy up for quite a while. It takes like two minutes to throw together. The girls think it’s a treat, so when I let them have as much as they want it’s like the best day ever, and they’re not begging for cookies or popsicles five minutes later. Best part? I get to drink the leftovers. Yum.
Chocolate Banana Smoothie
Makes enough for two little girlies and their mama. Adjust quantities as needed.
1 ripe* banana
1/4 cup almond butter
6 ice cubes
2 heaping tablespoons cocoa powder**
1 1/2 cups whole milk
Put everything in a blender and blend until smooth. (Mixture will be fairly runny.) Pour and serve. Use a straw if you want to avoid the amazing chocolate mustache action going on here.
*The riper it is, the sweeter your smoothie will be. I use bananas up until they’re turning dark enough for banana bread, at which point I make this instead. Which is far less healthy but also quite delicious and a big hit with toddlers and husband’s alike.
**I use Hershey’s special dark cocoa powder. It is brilliant. Can’t recommend it highly enough.