Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Breakfast in a Glass—Fruit Smoothie


School here starts pretty early. Actually, it starts real early.

I’m an early riser myself, so the early hour isn’t too big of a deal. But one thing I’m not, when I first wake up, is hungry.

I usually want to eat something about an hour after I’ve woken up. My children are the same way.

Unfortunately, that’s not an option. An hour after they’ve gotten up, they’re already sitting at a desk in school. And lunch comes pretty late for both of them.

I always put a breakfast of some kind in front of the children. Here in the South, breakfasts are traditionally large. That might be, historically, because they’re an inexpensive meal to fix and they can keep you from being too hungry, later, for the more expensive lunch and supper.

Sometimes my children will eat all their breakfast…sometimes they’ll just pick at it and I can tell they’re still half-asleep and not a bit hungry. Considering I’m the same way, I can’t really blame them.

But one way I know I can fill their tummies with enough fuel to get them to lunchtime is by giving them a smoothie.

There are about a million different ways to make a smoothie. You can actually just put any fruit you’ve got in your house in it. I’m going to share my favorite smoothie—the one the family likes the best. I can feel good about it because of the nonfat yogurt, the fiber, and all the vitamins from the fruit. And…it only takes minutes. Using mostly frozen fruit makes it a snap to fix...and also gives the smoothie a nice consistency.

IMG_20110315_123427Mixed Berry Smoothie

1 32-oz container vanilla flavored nonfat yogurt
3/4 of a 16 oz. bag of frozen, mixed berries
1 speckled banana (my family will not eat speckled bananas)
1/3 cup shredded wheat (I like a whole grain one)

Combine all in a blender and blend on medium.

I like to put the yogurt on the bottom of the blender—frozen fruit on the bottom tends to gum it up too much and make the process take a while longer. If you like the consistency thicker, you could add more fruit. If you like it thinner, you could add a little juice to the mix (I’ll sometimes add orange juice.)


This serves to both fill them up and give them a healthier jumpstart on their day. Plus, it’s just a little more appetizing sometimes than just another bowl of cold cereal.

And…they’re not just for breakfast, of course! They’re great for a snack, too…to keep us from reaching for something a little less healthy :)

Delicious and Suspicious (July 6 2010) Riley Adams
Pretty is as Pretty Dies –Elizabeth Spann Craig


  1. This does sound like a nice change for breakfast. I don't eat breakfast until I've been up for awhile too. This would be great to prepare and take on the go. Thanks.

    Thoughts in Progress

  2. Mason-- It's perfect to have in the car on the way to work or school. :)

  3. What a great idea, Elizabeth. I'm not hungry when I wake up, either. I tend to wait until mid-morning to have a bowl of oatmeal, or to warm up leftovers from the night before. You know how people can eat breakfast any time of the day? I can eat dinner any time of the day. We've tried making smoothies here, but we've never added the shredded wheat. Thanks for the suggestion!

  4. Julie--I think the shredded wheat is a nice way to add a little extra fiber, vitamins, and minerals to the mix. :)

  5. What a good, kid-friendly breakfast. This is one of my son's favorites, too. He was never a cereal kid. Nice!


  6. Oh yum! What a great way to start the day. Thanks, Elizabeth.

  7. We freeze our bananas and make smoothies from them. We have a "bullet" type blender so each smoothie is made in it's own glass. I just use frozen bananas, milk and peanut butter. My son likes a little chocolate syrup in his. I have substituted yogurt for the milk and it works well.
    I like the idea of adding the shredded wheat - have to try that.

  8. Elizabeth/Riley - Thanks!! With the warm days coming, I can really use this smoothie recipe. I can't wait for the fresh berries to start appearing, and I love your idea of using frozen berries in the meantime, so you can enjoy this all year long. (Sara, freezing the bananas sounds like a great idea, too.)

    Drink with joy!
    ~ Cleo Coffeehouse
    Cleo Coyle on Twitter

  9. Elizabeth we sound the same. I get up around 5. I am never hungry when I wake either. Most of the time I eat after I get the 2 boys to school. It is early here as well. Logan eats at school for breakfast as it is free so 7:15 for him. Ethan eats here at home he likes more choices.
    We do smoothies about once a week. Ethan likes drinking them on the rounds to school. He gets to school at 7:30.
    Duncan and I love them too so easy and he loves the flavors change from milk and juice for him.

  10. Avery --See, if you sneak it into their drinks, they have no idea what they're consuming. :) So funny about your son and cereal! Ha!

    Mary Jane--And I'm about to make another batch because the one I took pictures of yesterday is all gone now!

    Sara--Oh! I've got Blender Envy! My blender is in the "pretty-good" category, but really just a workhorse-type blender that I picked up at Costco a couple of years ago. It'll blend, but there are no bells and whistles (sigh!)

    Cleo--I'm thinking that you would probably *want* to freeze the bananas if you used fresh berries, just to keep that consistency the same (or add ice, either way.) We're getting some good fruits here now, so I'll add a handful of whatever we've got in the house to the mix!

    ~ Babs ~ Sounds like we have *exactly* the same schedule. I'm up at 5 and not hungry until after 6. My daughter is at school at 7 (late bell is 7:30), my son is eating at 6:45 to leave the house at 7:10. It's all crazy! At least we're giving them a healthy start to the day.

  11. You are exactly right I keep telling them breakfast is the most important meal of the day. I would feel awful if i miss my breakfast I can miss lunch sometimes do but not breakfast ;).

  12. Babs--It definitely is! I'm the same way...I'll get busy and skip lunch, but I have breakfast religiously.

  13. Elizabeth, this sounds like a great lunch on the go, too. I've never thought about putting shredded wheat in a smoothie!

    ~ Krista

  14. Krista--Just an easy way to make it healthier! :) Good idea to have it for lunch...that's usually the meal that I end up forgetting to eat!