When the weather starts warming up, there’s nothing kids like better than an ice pop. You just have to watch a swarm of them chase down an ice cream truck to see that. This summer, instead of falling prey to the computerized tinkling of “Turkey in the Straw”, why not make your own ice pops? It’s cheap, easy, fun – and it can even be healthy!
We know a lot of parents are huge advocates of hiding veggies in the foods their kids already love, and smoothies are a perfect example of that. Well, an ice pop is essentially just a frozen smoothie, making it the perfect place to sneak in some extra veggies! All you need to do is make a fruit and vegetable smoothie (a good blender is key), pour it in your ice pop mold, and freeze for 3-4 hours (depending on your freezer)
For a good basic ice pop, try blending together some baby kale, frozen berries, a banana, and some orange juice until smooth. This will make dark red ice pops with no kale flavour, rich in vitamins A, C, and K.
Kale isn’t the only veggie that can get in on the game – 3 cooked carrots can be blended with 1 cup apple juice, 1 cubed mango, and 1 cup fresh or frozen raspberries for some tart and fruity ice pops that are high in vitamins C and A.
Another good candidate for hiding in an ice pop is the beet! Beets are naturally sweet, and their earthy flavour blends beautifully with sweet strawberries and creamy avocado. Blend 1 medium cooked beet with 1/2 an avocado, a big handful of strawberries, and add a little honey to taste. The result is a smooth ice pop full of healthy fats.
Some kids are into ‘monster-coloured’ ice pops, and for them, spinach is a great choice. Combine 1 cup raw spinach with 2 bananas, 1 cup pineapple, 1 peeled kiwi and a little honey to taste.
The smoothie ice pop doesn’t have to be just for kids either! If you are used to having a protein shake post-workout, make protein pops instead. Blend chocolate protein powder with cold brew coffee and coconut milk for a luxurious recovery ice pop that gives you a jolt of caffeine to get on with your day. Or blend vanilla protein powder with a scoop of matcha powder and milk (or milk substitute) for delicious matcha latte pop.
Really, the options are endless. If you can make it into a smoothie, you can (and should!) make it into an ice pop.