My kids like sports, which isn’t all that surprising because their dad happens to be a sportswriter.

Now, maybe if I wrote about vegetables for a living, they would have developed a fondness for leafy greens, but neither of those things happened. Which is why I picked up “Best 100 Smoothies for Kids” by Deborah Harroun, thinking maybe she had found a few ways to sneak foods good for growing bodies into something that resembled a milkshake.

And it turns out she succeeded … for her three kids, anyway, who at the time of her writing ranged between 1 and 5.

My trio of teenagers isn’t so gullible. Trying to mix broccoli florets with milk and frozen berries into something palatable proved beyond my capabilities. And broccoli is one of the vegetables they actually eat.

I had better luck disguising its cruciferous cousin in a Banana Cauliflower smoothie (which also includes milk and cinnamon). Their complaint was not with the veggie, but with the spice. “Too much ginger,” they said after a considered pause. Not the response I was expecting, but I understood what they meant.

Harroun breaks her hundred smoothies down into four sections, with breakfast (26) getting the most attention. She says it’s her toughest meal of the day because it takes her too long to get moving.

She offers 23 recipes for lunch, 25 for snacks, 20 for desserts and six for bedtime. Ingredients range from two (Watermelon Coconut Water, Grape Slush) to eight (Apple Pie) items, from the mundane (ice cubes) to the never on hand (mashed, cooked sweet potato). She recommends a high-speed blender, but tested all the recipes with a lower-end model to make sure all could be made in the average home.

I use a handheld stick blender, which seems to work well enough, even when chopping up oats. Just remember to soak them first in whatever liquid you are using (cow’s milk, soy milk, rice milk, almond milk and coconut milk are among her suggestions), for at least 10 minutes.

The Oatmeal Raisin smoothie (in the dessert section) proved “definitely better than the last two,” according to one son, who still thought I should cut down on the ginger, er, cinnamon. The texture of oats and raisins, even with plenty of processing, came out on the gritty side.

The biggest hit turned out to be the Cherry Banana breakfast smoothie, which elicited the following comments:

1. “Tastes like a milkshake.”

2. “A nice fruity feel.”

3. “Good.”

So there you go. Give the kale a whirl if you must, but stick with the stuff that seems most like a milkshake.



Makes 4 (10-ounce) servings

2 cups milk

2 cups frozen cherries

2 frozen ripe bananas

1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt

Pour the milk into a blender. Add the cherries.

Slice the bananas and add them to the blender along with the yogurt. Blend until smooth.

Only subscribers are eligible to post comments. Please subscribe or to participate in the conversation. Here’s why.

Use the form below to reset your password. When you've submitted your account email, we will send an email with a reset code.