Smoothies for Toddlers

23 March 2012

I have started giving the twins fruit smoothies. This is a good additional tip to fill picky toddlers with more calories. My strategy with the smoothies is that I hope to replace one of their milk cups with a smoothie cup. Asides from the extra calories, it also gets them used to "drinking" their vegetables - a habit I hope will carry through to adulthood.

Toddler Smoothie Composition
For each smoothie, I try to include one of each group below. Some ingredients overlap and in real life, any available fruit or veggie would do.
  1. A source of dairy - either milk or yoghurt. I like to use either plain or vanilla flavored yogurt. Just get the big tub.
  2. A high calorie vegetable - avocados, bananas etc
  3. Sweetener - This is a sweet fruit like orange, grapes etc. Stay away from bottled juices if possible and use the real fruits. A handful of red grapes imparts a lovely, non-cloy sweetness to the smoothies
  4. Thinner - something to give the smoothie a more flowy consistency that can be sucked out of a sippy cup. This could be the milk, water or a fruit with a high water content like watermelon.
3 Toddler Smoothie Recipes
In the last 2 weeks, I've tried the 3 recipes below

Banana smoothie: Banana + grapes + honey-flavored greek yoghurt + water.
Avocado smoothie: Avocado + grapes + vanilla-flavored yoghurt + water.
Carrot smoothie: Carrot + watermelon + vanilla-flavored yoghurt + water
Avocado Smoothie
Carrot Watermelon smoothie

All 3 were very well received by the girls with a few caveats. I used an ancient blender so some of the drinks were gritty. Specifically, we had visible pieces of the grape skins and carrot chunks as well. These blocked the valves of the sippy cups several times resulting in angry, screaming. I had to rinse out the valves before the girls could continue drinking. This could have been prevented with a more powerful blender or sieving the drink before serving or serving in a straw sippy cup. All 3 options were not available to me at the time. However once we unpacked and I made a smoothie with my Oster Blender, the texture was great.

Suggestion: Thin the smoothies with water AFTER pouring in the sippy cups. That way mommy still has a thicker smoothie to pour on ice.

Confession: I don't like smoothies or thick liquids in general or vegetables. So yes I tasted the smoothies and loved them, but I'm still working on being able to drink my veggies

For the younger toddlers who can't use drinking straws yet or for when you're leaving the house, consider putting the smoothies in a reusable food pouch.

Enjoy and do let me know what combinations you tried in the comments section.

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