It's not easy being green. My son won't touch these. My husband just started to. They contain no chocolate and usually no added sugar.
They taste good anyway. Plus they're super nutritious--couldn't we all use a few extra cups of greens in our diets. Super adaptable--you can take pretty much whatever greens you've got lying around and combine them with pretty much whatever fruit you've got lying about. Easy to make--throw it in the blender. Oh--and cool people like them.
But they look a little...wholesome. Nevertheless, my sister and I enjoyed several varieties of green drink over our Christmas vacation. She has a Vitamix blender (ooh, aaah), and plenty of lovely greens from her CSA or whatever it is. Over the course of 4 days we consumed (though not all in the same green drink) spinach, kale, chard, avocado, strawberries, bananas, peaches, apples, apple juice, orange juice, lemon and even parsley. I think these drinks are what saved us from sudden death from all of the, um, less healthy choices we made that week.
Below is a simple one that is one of my favorites and can be made tastily in the type of mediocre blender I happen to own. Seriously, give it a try. If the green puts you and yourn off, throw in 1 C of blueberries.
Although I don't believe you need a recipe book for green drinks, they can be kind of fun (especially if you've got a decent blender). If you're interested in getting more recipes for green drinks, you can have a look at greensmoothiegirl.com or have a look at Victoria Boutenko's books containing recipes. My sister had Green Smoothie Revolution and Boutenko's also got one called Green for Life. [Warning: These women both have STRONG feelings about green smoothies.]
To keep the costs down at this time of year, buy frozen fruit (stuff from Sam's is probably the cheapest, but WalMart is okay too), but not frozen spinach--sorry, but it will make these nasticular. This summer, freeze a bit of the super cheap fresh stuff. You won't be sorry. I've still got peaches in my freezer. Yum.
The cost if you're wondering of a full day's worth (per the food pyramid, so take that for what it's worth) of fruits and vegetables. (And I've been generous in my estimations--I actually think it's cheaper than this.)
So if you buy a soda at McDonald's or a coffee in the morning, you can easily skip that and make this. If you buy $20 of prescription prenatal vitamins like I used to, you can definitely skip that and make this.
Simple Peach Spinach Green Smoothie
Note: The first time I had one of these, I expected it to taste like a Jamba Juice or something. It doesn't. Jamba Juice has a lot of added sugar in it and this doesn't. It is still sweet and so good, but not in a cup of added sugar kind of way. If you have them regularly, you'll get very used to the milder sweetness (and probably a little addicted), and the sweeter mall versions will start to turn you off.
Another Note: If you really can't handle them at first or your kids can't, you can:
a) use more apple juice concentrate
b) sprinkle a bit of sugar into your/their glass
c) use about 6 oz sweetened yogurt and some milk in place of the water (this will naturally make it more caloric, but also add some calcium, protien, bacterial cultures, and Vitamin D
1 C peaches (frozen)2 C spinach
1 T apple juice concentrate
Enough water to make it blendable.
Blend it up.
If you can't drink it all at once and you're kids think you're wonky for even asking them if they want some, it can be tightly sealed and stored for up to 3 days (supposedly--the longest I've stored mine is about 18 hours--it was still great).